Castles & heritage in Pembrokeshire
Pembrokeshire’s landscape is peppered with everything from mysterious prehistoric tombs to medieval castles and Celtic religious shrines.
Pembroke Castle and Carew Castle are probably the finest castles in Pembrokeshire whilst Cilgerran Castle probably commands the most dramatic location perched high above the Teifi Gorge.
Llawhaden Castle was a fortified Bishop’s palace rather than a true castle with panoramic views from its battlements. Picton Castle is a cross between a medieval castle and a fortified manor house. Built in the 13th century by Sir John Wogan, it’s still occupied today by his descendants.
Manorbier Castle is a Norman baronial residence overlooking the beach. It was described by Gerald of Wales as ‘the pleasantest place in Wales’.
St Davids Bishops Palace was home to the Bishops of St Davids and was built as a private residence but later in the 13th century became a much grander building for stylish entertaining. Lamphey Bishop’s Palace was built as a retreat for those medieval bishops seeking solace from the everyday stresses of Church and State.
The Tudor Merchants House in Tenby has been restored by the National Trust and recreates the home of wealthy merchants trading from Tenby during the 1500’s.
Other must-visits include St Govans Chapel near Bosherston. A small 13th-century chapel built into the sea-cliff and accessible only by steps from the towering cliff above. Pentre Ifan is Wales’ most iconic prehistoric site. The Neolithic burial chamber topped by a massive capstone is made from the same stones as the inner circle of Stonehenge.
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An enormous oval castle, mostly surrounded by a serene mill pond. Extensively restored in Victorian times, it’s dominated by the complex gatehouse on the outside and the huge circular keep.
Milford Haven Heritage & Maritime Museum
Housed in the Old Custom House in the dock area, one of the oldest buildings in the town. The museum illustrates the history of the major industries which the town has been home to.
Tenby Museum & Art Gallery
The museum features the prehistory of the area, maritime and piracy, a local history gallery and the Story of Tenby Gallery as well as two art galleries featuring work by Gwen and Augustus John.