Rhossili via Worms Head Circular (Wales Coast Path) walk
A gentler cliff top headland walk a dramatic extension - a classic walk out to 2 small islands cut off at high tide, with stunning views of Rhossili beach.
|Tides||Worms Head is only accessable 2.5 hours either side of low tide. You must check the tide times in advance to do this part of the walk.|
|Length||10km / 6.1 miles|
|OS Map||OS Explorer (Gower)|
|Toughness||4 out of 10 (except for optional scambling over Worm's Head)|
These 2 walks starts in Rhossili, a small village at the south west end of the Gower Peninsular. Rhossili is named after a truly stunning beach, regularly on best in the world lists. Both walks head out from the village (pub, tea rooms, bus to Swansea) to its headland.
The first is the classic walk out to the Worm's Head (NT), 2 small islands which are cut off by the sea at high tide. You must plan this walk in advance by consulting tide timetables.
The second walk is a gentle cliff walk around Rhossili headland (with stunning views of the beach), continuing past Worms Head, around to Mewslade Bay, and back across the headland to Rhossili village.
These 2 walks can be done together, but either is a spectacular walk on it own.
The walk, including Worm's Head is suitable for children, with adult supervision. Dogs should not be off the lead due to sheep, and cliff edges.
Tea is on the terrace of the Worm's Head Hotel pub with a truly stunning view.
There is a direct bus service from Swansea bus station. Hourly or 2 hourly. Check if a day pass is cheaper than a return.
SA3 1PP. There is an NT pay car park (£2.50 for 2 hours, £5 all day), or very limited on street parking.
18-Oct : high: 05:45 low: 12:06 high: 18:02
19-Oct : low: 00:28 high: 06:23 low: 12:43 high: 18:39
20-Oct : low: 01:02 high: 06:58 low: 13:16 high: 19:13
21-Oct : low: 01:33 high: 07:29 low: 13:47 high: 19:45
22-Oct : low: 02:03 high: 07:59 low: 14:17 high: 20:15
23-Oct : low: 02:31 high: 08:27 low: 14:45 high: 20:44
24-Oct : low: 02:59 high: 08:56 low: 15:13 high: 21:13
Times for Burry Port. Corrected for BST if appropriate. Contains ADMIRALTY® tidal data: © Crown Copyright and database right.
The Worm's Head (NT) is 2 small islands off the headland of Rhossili, Gower. They are joined to the coast at low tide by a causeway. The walk out to them is a classic, with great coastal views.
The walk does involve some light scrambling (i.e. hands needed to balance yourself in places). The causeway is quite rocky - wear boots! You must plan this walk in advance by consulting tide timetables, and do not try and beat the tide back across the causeway. You might not make it. The islands are 50m (150 feet) high, enough for a stunning view. On the way back, its much quicker and easier to walk around, rather than over, the middle island.
The walk is possible only 2.5 hours either side of low tide. People who ignore this fact are regularly stranded - don't be one of them. Do not try and cross back when the causeway is closed - wait to be rescued.
You are requested not to climb the further island from 01-March to 31-August due to ground nesting birds
Rhossili is a small village in a superb location at the southern end of Rhossili beach - the beach is regularlly on 'best in the world' lists. Behind the beach is a down (grassy hill). Beyond the village is a headland and the Worms Head islands.
Eat: The Worms Head Hotel, thewormshead.co.uk - OK bar food, £4 pints, has a terrace with an absolutley stunning view of the bay. Probably the best view of any pub in the country! There's a tea room next door.
By Bus: Year round bus from Swansea. Buy a bus pass. About 1 hour. Every 1 to 2 hours. Check the times before travelling, especially off season.
By Car: SA3 1PP, about 45 mins from Swansea. In 2015, the National Trust brought the village car park for £3 million, raised the fee to £4 (free to members, £2 for 1 hour), and made the charges year round. There's free parking for a few cars by the church, or on the road in to town.
Stay: There are several B&B's in Rhossili, and holiday rentals, besides the Worms Head Hotel. The nearest youth hostel is Port Eynon
Clockwise from Swansea - Gower's beaches are exceptional - there really are this many 5 star walk here!
If you want to do the Gower Coast Path
The nearest train station is Swansea... but its a 10 min walk from the bus station. Some early morning / late evening buses start from it though.
London Paddington to Swansea : 3 hours, £80 off peak return. 'Advance' tickets (no changes) from £20 single. A good compromise is "Advance" out, and an (Open) "Single" back - about £60.
London Waterloo via Salibury and Bath - £60 off peak return. Much longer. Cheap advance tickets on the few direct trains per day.
Megabus (London to Swansea from £6 single) coach and National Express coach is another option.
Driving to Swansea takes about 3 hours from London. The Seven bridge costs £6.60 to Wales only (free coming back). Its not worth driving around via Gloucester, even if going to the Brecon Beacons. Its a lot longer, and with the extra fuel, you wont save much
You must check the bus times beforehand - using traveline.cymru/ Why? Because times and routes vary on school days, not school days, weekdays, Saturday, Sunday, summer, winter... It might be efficient, but its confounding for visitors. There are different day bus passes for each company which are good value (about the same price as a single!), but which one you need varies by destination and day !!!
Partial update: Summer 2018
Swansea bus station is about 15 mins walk from the train station. From there, 2 companies run buses to Gower, with a bizarre obfuscated schedule.
There is a 'Go Gower' day pass for £5.40, valid on both companies.
Notes. Mumbles official name is Oystermouth, they are the same place. Swansea, Black Pill and Mumbles are on Swansea Bay.
Current routes are
New for 2018: There is a £3.50 one-way flat rate ticket for West Gower, for thoes returning to their car.
Swansea is the best place for public transport users. The city doesn't have many tourist sites except for Wind Street (pronounced Wine Street, loads of mega pubs) and the marina. Many old seafront B&B's, and mega chain hotels.
Mumbles (Oystermouth) is a pretty seaside village, quieter at night and more upmarket nowadays as the 'Mumbles mile' pubs are no more. Old B&Bs and boutieque hotels. Swansea's 'latin' quarter.
There is a Youth Hostel in Port Eynon, and a large beach campsite on Rhosilli beach near Llangennith. Also campsites at Three Cliffs. Rhosilli itself would be a great place to stay for car travellers.
The Severn Estuary has the second highest tidal range in the world (after the Bay of Fundy), with typically, a 30 foot (10 metre) difference between high and low tide.
If you walk along the beach beneath high cliffs, or far out on the sands, be aware of that you can be cut off by a rising tide!
After the walk, we would love to get your feedback
|Map Walk||This walk requires an OS map and a compass or GPS for navigation. You can print out OS maps using the link above.|
National Rail: 03457 48 49 50 • Travelline (bus times): 0871 200 22 33 (12p/min) • TFL (London) : 0343 222 1234
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The directions for this walk are also in a PDF (link above) which you can download on to a Kindle, tablet, or smartphone.
- Park either in the pay car park, or down the road a ways
- (from the car park) Walk along the path out to the headland
Worm's Head Option
- Checking the safety notice, and the tide times.
- Walk out over the rocks to the middle then to the final island, returning the same way.
- NB: its quicker, safer and easier (but not so fun) to walk over the rocks directly to the further island (i.e. around the middle one)
- Either return to Rhossili, or continue the cliff walk.
Cliff Walk to Meswlade Bay Option
- Continue along the cliff path as far as Mewslade.
- Cut back, across the headland to Rhossili
- Have a well deserved drink in Rhosilli's pub.