So this year I spent more time travelling in the UK than abroad. In fact I only went abroad twice. I was lucky enough to spend two weeks in Toronto and Fenton, Michigan visiting my fav American friend Jordan as well as a long weekend in sunny Marrakech whilst it was freezing here in the UK. But, my favourite place…….Swansea!
I spent four years at university in Swansea up until late 2014 so I am always excited to go back, even just for a night. Swansea is a place I hold dear in my heart. A part of me will always be in Swansea, it’s like a second home to me. Not only is it where I made some of my cherished memories, it is also where I met some of my best friends, including my fellow travel buddy, Jodie. This year alone I have lost count of how many weekends I spent there and I still have New Years to come!
But there is more to Swansea…..oh so much more!
To start off with the people are some of the friendliest yet bonkers (in a fun way) people around. The Welsh always know how to have a good time and where else to have a good time but by heading to a street full of bars. Bring in Wind street. My favourite bar is Jack Murphys……£1 jaberbombs, old school music, sweaty dancefloor and always the best night. What more do you want? But, if that is not your cup of tea you are spoilt for choice with Yate’s, Revs, Fiction, Bamboo, Kon Tiki, Prohibtion. Another amazing place is Sin City. Here you can watch some amazing bands as well as stay after to carry on partying. Finding out they give out toast at like 2am in the morning was a personal highlight.
Ok less of the drinking highlights but the other amazing parts of Swansea. A massive, literally, massive part of Swansea is the beach, 5 miles of it, running all the way from the west of Swansea to the Mumbles in the east. It’s great for a coastal walk and with stunning views. A great place to stop for a bite to eat of drink is 360 on the waterfront or Verdis at the end of Mumbles near the pier (amazing ice cream). I used to spend many evenings walking back from uni along the beach in my last year.
If you want to get out of town then the Gower Peninsula is stunning. Accessible by bus or car there are a number of great beaches to explore. You can walk the coastal path from Mumbles all the way along the coast to Caswell Bay. A great beach is Three Cliffs Bay, a short walk from Penmaen. However my all-time favourite beach is Rhossili Bay. It’s only been voted by Trip Advisor as the 9th best beach in the world! It is 3 miles of gorgeous sandy beach running from Worm’s Head in the south to Burry Holms in the north. Worm’s Head is great though slightly tough walk out to the island at low tide. After this walk you’ll want to stop for drink or snack at The Worms Head. At the other end of the bay you’ll find the small village of Llangenith which has access to beach from here which is great for surfers and kayakers. A visit to PJ’s surf shop is a must for those renting boards. Across the road is The King’s Head pub. I’ve driven all the way here just for the food one afternoon. I also witnessed a wedding party getting merry before the wedding even took place in the church opposite.
At the other end of Swansea and within 30 minutes’ drive is Waterfall country and just on from there, Brecon Beacons National Park. One time my parents and I were driving back Pen Y Fan (a must for all hikers, it’s the highest point in South Wales) when we got lost and ended up along this country road that went over one of the hills nearby. It was a clear day and not a car of person in site. From the top we could see the Brecon Beacons on one side and Carmarthenshire and its the rolling hills from the other. I was so in awe of the view, not photo would have done it justice.
So if you haven’t guessed by now, I love Swansea!