Cool Places - The best places to stay in the UK

The Best Places to Stay in the UK

St Davids and Pembrokeshire

Famed for being Britain’s smallest ‘city’, St David’s is really little more than a village. But it’s one of the most characterful villages in the country, enclosed by a peninsula of wild and beautiful coast. To its south – also covered in this guide – is St Bride’s Bay, with the long surfer’s beach at Newgale, and enticing strands beyond at Druidstone and Marloes. All of this coastline forms a part of the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, which offers fabulous coastal walking. There is also plenty of sea activity: kayaking, mackerel fishing, sailing and windsurfing, white water rides, or boat trips to the island nature reserves of Ramsey and Skomer, with the chance to spot whales and dolphins.

History

This corner of south-west Wales was a Celtic stronghold before St David was born here one stormy night in the 6th century. He went on to become the patron saint of Wales, and the city’s 11th century Bishop’s Palace was built in his name. The Celtic influence is still apparent today, most obviously in the Welsh language, which you’ll probably hear being spoken in shops and bars hereabouts, although St David’s also saw the influence of many other cultures –the offshore islands of Ramsey, Grassholm, Skomer and Skokholm were named by 8th century Viking invaders, while the last invasion of Britain took place just up the coast at Carregwastad in 1797 when a motley crew of French militia were easily repelled by a mix of the Pembrokeshire Yeomanry and local women in stovepipe hats and red flannel dresses who they mistook for infantrymen. More recently, St David’s has become a focal point for outdoor sports, in particular surfing, sea kayaking, sea cliff climbing and coasteering, which was ‘invented’ here in the late 1980s, while still being just a beautiful place to walk or just hang out on the beach.

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St Davids and Pembrokeshire

Raggedly wild and beautiful, the UK's smallest city promises scenery and activities in spades.
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