Lydstep to St Govan's

14½ miles

14½ miles

Lydstep to St Govan's

A very scenic and varied walk that takes in some of Pembrokeshire’s most remarkable beaches and some historical sites.

The Kings Quiot, on the path, just before you get to Manorbier, is an ancient burial chamber and of course, there’s Manorbier castle itself. Further along the coast path, you’ll reach the Stackpole Estate built by the Cawdor family and now in the care of the National Trust, plus the enchanting St Govan’s chapel, a hermit’s cell built in the cliff at the stage end.

The beaches of Barafundle and Broad Haven south will provide the perfect location for a lunch stop or a chance to dip your toes in their clear waters.

The gradients on this section aren’t too taxing, but it’s strenuous nonetheless.


  • Start from Lydstep Head car park, overlooking Lydstep Haven caravan park

  • After half a mile take a detour down steps on the left, down a dry valley. It leads to a superb low-tide beach with caves.

  • Back on the path, continue west past the youth hostel and inaccessible Skrinkle Haven.

  • The path detours around Manorbier army camp but is well signed.

  • Continue to Manorbier beach past the Neolithic burial chamber of King’s Quoit.

  • The moderately strenuous path continues up & down to the isolated Swanlake Bay and then on to Freshwater East (cafe, restaurant and toilets).

  • It’s possible to scramble down to the beach at its eastern end of Fresh’ East if the tide is out.

  • Head for the slipway, along the road for a few feet then along a wooded path back onto the cliff top.

  • A reasonably level path continues to Stackpole Quay (cafe & toilets).

  • Climb up and down again to the stunning Barafundle beach.

  • The easy path up to Stackpole Head continues almost on the level all the way to St Govan’s, except when it drops down to Broad Haven south beach.

  • Clamber down the rocks and walk across the beach if you can or detour round to the Bosherston Lakes if you have time.

  • Head up the steps on the far side of the beach (toilets & ice cream van).

  • West of here is the super little low-tide beach at Trevallen.

  • If the ranges are closed, this is as far as you can go. Tel 01646 662367 to check.

  • St Govan’s Head is an easy stroll from here. The chapel is only a little further on.

  • Turn inland here to go to Bosherston village.

  • If in doubt, follow the acorn symbols that indicate where the route goes.

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Useful information

Refreshments: Cafe & restaurant by the beach at Freshwater East. Pub at Stackpole & cafe at Stackpole Quay. Pub & cafe in Bosherston.

Attractions en-route: Manorbier Castle, Bosherston Lakes, St Govan’s Chapel.

Nearest Tourist Information Centre: Tenby, Upper Park Road (Next to the multi-storey car park & bus station)

Tel: 01437 775603


I can highly recommend Pembrokeshire - it has everything for a great holiday!

Valery Collins, Experienced Traveller