Gower Walk of the Month – Arthur’s Stone, Llanrhidian and Weobley Castle

Gower Walk of the Month – Arthur’s Stone, Llanrhidian and Weobley Castle (50days: #4 & #5)

IMG_3707Rain rain go away. This weather high is here to stay! Making the most of this incredible March sunshine (our guests got sunburn – yes, that’s right – SUNBURN – on their Gower walk yesterday), we grabbed the chance of a family walking adventure last weekend. This time, we plumped for gorgeous North Gower – a walk with castles, ancient monuments, a unique local delicacy and no less than three pubs. It also meant that we got to tick off two new adventures from our #50days adventure bucketlist (‘Arthur’s Stone’ and ‘Weobley Castle with a saltmarsh lamb supper’). All credits for this route go to Andy Davies and his brilliant Cicerone guidebook: ‘Walking on the Gower‘ (which we have here at Langland Cove Guesthouse for our guests to use). Here’s how he describes the walk:

This walk starts on the second highest point in Gower giving excellent panoramic views of the peninsula and beyond. The dramatic Arthur’s Stone is encountered near the start and the route then drops down to Llanrhidian where you have the choice of two pubs for refreshment. The walk continues along the edge of woodland just above the vast salt marsh of the Loughor Estuary to the impressive Weobley Castle, before traversing across farmland to climb to the ridge of Cefn Bryn once again.

Need to know:

Start/finish: Cefn Bryn (SS4907 9004)

Distance: 11.5km (7 miles)

Total ascent: 320m

Time: 3 hours

Cost: Walking route is free! Weobley Castle adult admission £3, family admission £8.10, under 5s go free

 

Arthur's Stone, Cefn Bryn, Gower Peninsula, Gower walk

Starting point for the walk: Arthur’s Stone, Cefn Bryn

Highlights of this Gower walk

Arthur’s Stone:

A Neolithic burial chamber dating back to 2500 BC, dramatically situated on Cefn Bryn (or ‘ridge hill’ in Welsh). This red sandstone ridge is a dominant feature of the Gower landscape and the second highest point on the peninsula. Here you’ll enjoy glorious views down to both coasts – Three Cliffs Bay on one side, and across the saltmarshes to the Loughor Estuary on the other (you can read more about the wildlife of the saltmarshes on our blog about the Whiteford Nature Reserve). Lots of fascinating theories on how the 25.4 tonne stone arrived here exist – read more about them here.

Llanrhidian:

This peaceful, picturesque village is well off the tourist track and offers an authentic slice of Gower life. In the heart of the village, St Illtyd’s Church is well worth a visit. The current building was built around 1300 but the entrance porch is home to an ancient hunk of rock known as the Leper stone which dates from the ninth century. The village is also home to two lovely pubs which make excellent stops on a Gower walk in this area: we enjoyed a sunny ale in the garden of the Welcome to Town – a recently refurbished pub and dining room with an excellent menu that features lots of local produce (members of the Swansea Good Food Circle). And the Dolphin pub – not visited but looked perfectly pleasant for a restorative ale.

Enjoying a pint at the Welcome to Town. Llanrhidian, Gower Peninsula, Gower walks

Enjoying a pint at the Welcome to Town, Llanrhidian

Weobley Castle

There aren’t many areas of the world that can claim the density of castles that Wales can – and we are blessed with several on our pretty peninsula. Ancient Weobley Castle is well worth a visit – a fortified manor house that was home to the de la Bere family until the 15th century. Gaze from its ancient decorative windows over the marshlands and mudflats of North Gower – a breathtaking view that is little changed in half a century.

Weobley Castle Gower Peninsula Gower walks

Weobley Castle, Gower Peninsula

 

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Saltmarsh Lamb

Next door to Weobley, you’ll find one of Gower’s most revered and delicious culinary offerings – Gower Salt Marsh Lamb (another member of Swansea Bay’s Good Food Circle). Sheep born here spend their lives grazing the salt marshes, which infuses their meat with the flavours of Samphire, Sorrel, Sea lavender and Thrift. If this sounds good it’s because it is – we loved it! If you aren’t salivating already, hurry down to The Greyhound pub in Oldwalls (you’ll walk past it en route back to Arthur’s Stone). Here you can sample dishes made using this award-winning meat and sup some excellent local ales – The Greyhound is also home to The Gower Brewery. The perfect way to finish this perfect Gower walk.

Cefn Bryn, Gower walks, Gower Peninsula

Parking attendants at the rustic parking spot on Cefn Bryn

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