Great seaside walk in Pembrokeshire to a great pub: Old Point House Inn | Pembrokeshire Holidays

I I was supposed to start this walk at dawn – it’s shaping up to be a warm day, and as I leave the car park at Old Point House I am grateful for the shade of the trees on either side of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path.

Head toward Angle Point and the low cliffs above the Milford Haven Waterway, one of the world’s deepest natural harbors and described by Admiral Nelson as “the best port in Christendom.” The waterway has been in service for thousands of years: here Vikings shelter from Atlantic storms; Armies fought in and on it. Whaling ships, fishing boats, and ferries sail from the ports at Milford Haven and Pembroke Dock; More recently, oil refineries and liquefied natural gas stations have appeared on its shores.

However, the natural beauty of this magnificent estuary – calm, deep blue waters writhing on rust-red cliffs and the occasional golden-sand bay, above which a patchwork of green and golden fields stretches away – has managed to obscure industrialization and developments. . I stop to watch a gas tanker pass at the westernmost point of the peninsula near the ruins of the East Blockhouse, just one of the many defensive positions erected along the waterway over the centuries due to its strategic importance.

The garden at Old Point House with a view across Milford Haven to the South Hook LNG station

I’ve already passed two others – the Victorian fort of Chapel Bay, which has guided tours and a cafe, and Thorne Island, the site of a 19th-century coastal artillery fort. At least a dozen ships have sunk off the rocky shores of Thorne over the years, the most famous of which was Loch Shale in 1894, which in its cargo hold contained dozens of bottles of whiskey, and gave rise to the Welsh version of Galore’s whiskey.

This is also the shoreline where the oil tanker Sea Empress collided in February 1996, spilling 72,000 tons of crude oil, with devastating effects on the local environment, wildlife and economy – pretty much everyone who lives locally has a story of how it affected them. .

Continue south to West Angle Bay. Wavecrest Cafe above the beach tempts you with your last chance for refreshment at this 10-mile hike. But I resist since I bring my lunch with me and choose to enjoy it in great solitude amid the gorgeous coastal scenery that the next three and a half miles of walking will bring to Freshwater West–indeed, in this stretch of the walk. You only see four pedestrians and a dog.

View of West Angel Bay from the road
View of West Angel Bay from the road Photography: Aled Llywelyn

Although the sea cliffs along the southern shore of the Angle Peninsula seldom rise above 50 metres, the descent into the various bays along the way takes me down almost to sea level and is very steep, reminding me of the fact that walkers who complete the length of The entire 186-mile Pembrokeshire Coast Trail – of which I only walk a portion – also handles more than 10,000m of ascent along the way, which is an impressive feat.

I at last stopped over West Picard Bay for my lunch, with high-pitched metal grooves ringing across the clifftops, and treated to a stunning display of gannets diving off the shore.

The views further south are getting better with each step of the way, as the golden sweep of the Freshwater West and the Frainslake Sands approaches, bounded on one side by the pale blue Atlantic and on the other the dark green sand dunes.

I’ve been to Freshwater West for over 40 years to surf its waves, which are among the best and most consistent in Wales (Frainslake is out of bounds, being part of MoD’s launch range). It has always had a wild and mystical character, especially when I first came here, when the signs above the beach told us of dangerous streams and currents, that surfing was “dangerous and irresponsible” and even warned us about (literally) the snakes in the grass – the snake that lives In the dunes.

Whitall Bay.
Whitewall Bay on the south side of the Corner Peninsula

In the 1970s and 1980s, surfing was considered a rebel activity, and a local council member accused surfers in Freshwater West of setting a bad example that could “tempt young children to kill them”. Today, the sport is just as mainstream, with two surf schools operating in Freshwater West and RNLI lifeguards patrolling the beach.

This gorgeous strand appears in its full glory as I walk over the northern end of the beach, where I can take in a three-mile coastal panoramic view that stretches south as far as Lane Head. But then, I have to turn my back on everything for a brief glimpse of the road before I eventually take a secondary road, where a street of trees gives some shade, and walk to the south shore of East Angel Bay.

I can now see the end of my run in the form of the Old Point House pub on the other side of the bay, and fortunately the tide has come off so I can get to it in a nutshell. When the tide is higher, walk a half mile or so towards Angle Village and then back down the dirt road to the pub.

It is such a pleasure to take off my bag, enter the cold interior of the bar and order a cold pint. Don’t touch the sides…

Google map of the road

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start/end Old Point House
distance: after 10 miles
time 5 hours
total ascent 530 meters
difficulty Moderate
GPX track


old house
The Old Point House – ‘Nowhere could be more comfortable during a storm’

Old Point House has been a licensed beer house since 1802, although it is widely believed to have operated as a public house from some time in the 16th century, when it was hunting pirates, including John Callis, who was hanged for piracy in Newport in 1576.

The pub has been the local hangout for the Angle’s lifeboat crew since the lifeboat station opened in 1868, and is now an ideal stopping point for walkers on the coast course. It is also dog friendly.

It was recently taken over by the owners of Cafe Môr, an old seaweed boat converted into a beach café that once operated from an out-of-shore outpost in Freshwater West. Moore’s Café came with them and now serves burgers, crab rolls, lobsters, and fish butters in the pub garden from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The pub’s restaurant serves tasting dishes that naturally focus heavily on seafood (and seaweed), and is open from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. Space is limited so reservations are recommended.

View from inside the bar
View from inside the bar

There’s plenty of outdoor seating when the weather’s fine, with great views across East Angle Bay, and when a storm blew from the Atlantic, nothing could be more relaxing than settling down in the cozy Old Point House Bar and Restaurant.

where to stay

Next year Old Point House plans to open two large bedrooms and a two-bedroom family suite – all with en suite or private bathroom, with views of the coast or countryside. There will also be a six-person self-contained inn on the grounds. Meanwhile, nearby options include Castle Farm Camping, a small family-run farm with tent pitches and mobile homes in the suburbs of Angle, or The Globe (doubles from £130 for bed and breakfast.)Bed and breakfast in a renovated mansion in the village.

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