103. Porthgain – Porthstinian

103. Porthgain – Porthstinian

Distance: 12.36 miles

Max Altitude: 103 m

Min Altitude: 1 m

Height Gain: 484 m

Height Loss: 471 m

My day began at The Sloop Inn at Porthgain. A mighty breakfast to start the day.

It’s hard not to like this place or not be fascinated by its contents. Everywhere you look there are bits and bobs, various sorts of memorabilia, trinkets, maritime odds and ends, photographs and ephemera. And the food is great too!

Before I re-joined the Wales Coast Path I decided to look around the village and harbour.

These white beacons were placed here as markers to guide boats into the harbour.

On the green in the middle of the village was this washed up float from a catamaran. I was about to do the research on where it had come from when I saw  The Sloop’s Facebook page contained all the information already, thus saving me the trouble! This float washed up at Abereiddy and was moved here by staff from The Sloop. It was competing in the Transit Jacques Vabre race when it struck a shipping container. The two crew members made their way safely back to France, while this bit of their vessel made it all the way here to Pembrokeshire.

It was time to move on. I was sorry to say goodbye to Porthgain. It continues to be one of my favourite places.

I walked past these dilapidated buildings and wondered what they looked like when they were in use, who worked here, what happened to them…

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It was a wonderful day outdoors. It was all I could do to carry on walking instead of stopping to gawp at every sight I encountered.

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I arrived in Abereiddy in the aftermath of the Red Bull Cliff Diving. I had tried to get tickets for the event but they had long since sold out. Apparently thousands of people had crammed into the environs around the so-called Blue Lagoon to witness the spectacle. But by the time I came through it was empty, with just a couple of security guards hanging about.

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My breath disappeared from my lungs when I saw the diving boards. Look how high up they are!

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And the Visit Wales ‘EPIC’ slogan was also still there. But so was the miserable security guard sitting in the car behind, ruining my shot!
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By the time I made my way around the path to the bottom of the cliff, Miserable Security Guard was sitting on the actual sign. I was destined to not get an epic shot by the looks of it.

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My next encounter was with a group of hay bales. Or at least, it could have been. They appeared to have rolled down the hill and onto the Wales Coast Path. I began imagining scenes from Indiana Jones, only with me in the title role instead of Harrison Ford.

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The last time I had seen the sea this blue was on Ynys Môn weeks and weeks ago.

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Just as I was comparing the Pembrokeshire Coast with the Greek Islands, something burst my bubble and reminded me that I was, indeed, still in Wales…. yes, cattle. My nemeses.

They were scattered across the path, blocking my way. ‘Oh no’, I thought to myself, ‘not again’.

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As I got closer I saw that they were trying to have a drink in a stream. It was a hot day, so who could blame them. I tried to moo and chat to them (three months alone on the trail will do this to a person), but it was no good. So I had to raise my voice, and shoo and clap them out of my way. For some reason I felt bad for doing so.

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And I was walking again. Unscathed.

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Porth Mawr (Whitesands Bay) was strangely quiet when I got there. Just a few surfers dotted about in the waves. I continued.


Yet more delight was about to greet me as I heard the now familiar sounds of seals. I peered over the edge of the cliff and there they were, lying down having a chat.

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Ynys Dewi (Ramsay Island) was up ahead. What a relief. My feet were barking at me to stop walking.

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And here was my stopping point in Porthstinian (St Justinian’s), at the Tyddewi (St David’s) Lifeboat Station. A new station is under construction. The old RNLI station below on the left was being sold as a holiday home (ah, Wales, country of holiday homes….).

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I sat and looked out on Ynys Dewi opposite me and contemplated my walk. I concluded that it had been yet another perfect day on the Wales Coast Path.

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