Aberdaron short beach loop

By Dan | Oct 9th, 2022 - 8:00pm

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At a glance

Key stats

Difficulty icon Difficulty: Intermediate
Distance icon Distance: 0.9 miles
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Brief Overview

A short loop with some impressive climbing and a short sequence of stairs around the mid-point. Sandy/rocky beach return stretch, should the tide allow for it

Navigation

Navigate to: Aberdaron, Pwllheli, LL53 8BE
Latitude/Longitude: 52.80449829200858, -4.712162390776314
what3words: rationed.invite.sits

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Difficulty

Difficulty Icon

A rough estimate of difficulty, this does not factor in distance and is only based on the conditions of the route followed. A 20 mile walk on paved roads will be marked as beginner, whereas a 1 mile scramble up a mountain will be Advanced/Expert. Please consider both distance and difficulty when choosing a walk.

Beginner

Clearly marked routes that are easy going with smooth surfaces, little to no inclines or declines. Should be accessible to all.

Intermediate

May include some minor sections of uphill or downhill that could be a little challenging. Some surfaces may be loose or otherwise be difficult to pass. The vast majority of people should be able to tackle this walk, but good hiking shoes are absolutely recommended.

Advanced

Walks may be almost completely comprised of difficult terrain, be it up/downhill or difficult surfaces that are slippery or muddy. Some may struggle on this walk, hiking shoes and possibly hiking sticks are a must.

Expert

A very difficult walk, may require scrambling or climbing in parts. Appropriate preparation should be made before attempting these walks, as they may require additional equipment. These are very much for experienced walkers only and it may be worth having a guide who knows the area with you.


Length

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A rounded estimation for the distance of the route shown, remember to factor in the return journey! Obviously, circular routes will end with you where you started, but any point-to-point walks have been doubled assuming you are going to retrace your footsteps. If the articles includes any suggestions for extra walks they will not be included in this value.


Route

Length Icon

The map displays a downloadable .GPX file that can be used in Satellite Navigation devices or apps. Walks shown will typically be the simplest route described in the article. Routes are for reference only, always remain on paths and be aware of your surroundings.


Navigation

We offer links to either copy or navigate to the destination, the navigate link should work on most modern platforms (If all else fails you can manually copy the text above the buttons!). It is recommended you use Latitude/Longitude rather than address whenever possible as it will be much more accurate and consistent across different navigation tools, but we understand that sometimes address is the only supported option so we include that too where applicable. Unfortunately, if your destination is in the middle of the countryside you may struggle to navigate by address.



Features

Toilets Toilets
Multiple in Aberdaron
Parking available nearby Parking available nearby
Parking free for NT members
Food & drink available Food & drink available
Many options in town
Dogs welcome Dogs welcome
24-7 access 24-7 access

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For Aberdaron, Wales

Right out on the furthest reaches of the Llŷn Peninsula, sat in the shadow of the headlands is the quaint little village of Aberdaron. This tiny former fishing village is a beauty spot for its mixed beach and seafront - the jagged rocks against the golden beaches made all the prettier with the quaint town as a backdrop. The lanes that cut through the buildings of Aberdaron are all postcard-worthy and you could easily spend a great day just enjoying the beach, the town and, of course, the pub, but you are sat at the foot of some colossal adventures all begging to be explored. The Wales Coastal Path circles this region, running clear through the town and all around the cliffs that make this area oh so special and distinct from walks further south, but such grand walks aren't for everyone; today I am going to recommend a little loop, perfectly suited to give you a taste of the headland adventure without having to venture too far. You can soak in some splendid views and maybe even get a section of beach to yourself, you can use this as a jumping-off point and if you still have plenty in the tank you could always continue along the coastal path as far as your feet are willing to take you...

Aberdaron town - Afon Daron

Venturing out onto the headlands

A stormy view out to see from Aberdaron beach



Reaching Aberdaron by car couldn't be much simpler, if you are on the Llŷn Peninsula and heading west then all roads will lead to Aberdaron eventually! The simplest routes are to either follow the B4413 from near Pwllheli along the south coast or the B4417 from Trefor along the northern coast. Either way, you will end up on the B4413 as you descend into the town, and there is a pretty good amount of parking for such a small town - the two most prominent places are the large National Trust car park in the centre of town, and the smaller gravel car park next to the SPAR. Public transport links can carry you via bus from towns such as Pwllheli, which has a train station, so this is a pretty easy place to reach all things considered, and an excellent base of operations for many an adventure.

Aberdaron itself is a charming little village, with a few places to eat or grab a coffee and of course some inns and pubs to wet your whistle. The road through the town spans two beautiful old bridges, one crossing the Afon Daron and the other a tributary, the Afon Cyllyfelin, and the two are so pretty and are just waiting to be snapped up by budding photographers. The seafront is well worth an explore if you are already in the town, take a stroll along the sea wall or down on the sands below - the church (Eglwys Hywyn Sant) with its sprawling graveyard around it really gives the town a historic feel, with a real sense of that slower pace of life you just love about these kinds of towns. The beach all in stretches for about a mile, so you can get a great walk without taking your feet off of the sand which is something I am sure we can all appreciate. Still, today we are going to be taking you up above the beach, at least for a little while, before we bring you back down to it once again to enjoy it in what I can hope will be secluded and away from the main crowds...

The two rocks out to sea and a sailboat

The lower path and the optional scramble

Once you are settled into the town and ready to disembark, you should make your way to the hillside to begin this walk. I recommend doing the walk either at or just after high tide, for reasons that I will explain shortly - I would recommend having some food as if my plan for this walk pans out you may have to wait a brief while for the waves to part and give you access to the beach again. The National Trust car park is an easy landmark to navigate from, alternatively, you can travel from the beach to reach the start of the walk but if the river through town, the Afon Daron, happens to be quite full it can make getting across difficult. If you head out from the car park, just follow the sandy path at the foot of the hill and follow it as it ascends upwards. If you fancy an extra challenge, as we did, you can tackle the impressive-looking stairs carved into the side of the hill, more of a scramble than a gentle ascent and the footholds are on the small side so you should only give that route a go if you are very sure-footed! If you wish to play it safe, stick to the gentler path in front of you to make it an easier climb up. The picture above shows the lower path with the steps going up the hill from both above and below, it is hard to see in picture form how steep and slippy they were, but believe me, it was quite the laugh making it up there!



If you chose to take the sensible route then part way up you can check out the remains of a piece of road that once allowed access to the beach, many storms have taken their toll around the Welsh coastline, luckily, Aberdaron was spared the worst of it but the marks are still present - the fractured chunks of concrete a testament to just how powerful the waves can be. Continue onwards and upwards until you reach the road and layby at the top and then immediately turn back on yourself to start your walk along the hilltops. The paths are pretty gradual in gradient and smooth enough that they shouldn't pose any real problems to most walkers - enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the sprawling ocean mixed with the countryside around you. You should have plenty of great vantage points to look out over the coastline and the town, all wonderful in their own regards and well worth a picture or two, just keep moving onwards until you reach a bench and can begin your descent back down.

The fractured sea road

Up above Aberdaron

Views back up the coastline

It may feel a little frustrating to face a descent so soon after making your way up, luckily this is the only one on our little loop but you should be warned: if you opt to continue onwards, following the coastal path all around the cliffs, there may be a few spots (depending on how far you go) where you will need to descend and once again ascend as you cross little streams and outlets, so you'll want to be fit enough to tackle all those stairs should you wish to continue. Our loop takes us down the stairs, across the bridge but then away from the main path and onto the beach below. If you opted to do this around high tide, but with the water heading outwards, you should have a nice chunk of sand that is cut off from the rest of Aberdaron's sprawling section of beach (at least, temporarily), that is hopefully just for you. Sat in the shadow of the cliff and watching the water gently lap, or crash and roll, towards you is a great sight and can feel even more special if you have it all to yourself. Plus, with Aberdaron sitting pretty in the distance, you can snap some great photos, enjoy a bite to eat and wait for the water to recede enough to get back along the beach. Those looking for a grander adventure can continue along the path they were on previously, ascending the opposite stairs and continuing the coast - those wanting a glimpse of Bardsey Island will need to continue about 1.8 miles one way from this end of the beach to get a good view. If you just want to get back and the waters have yet to retreat, then just retrace your footsteps back along the hills to return to the town. If you haven't had enough but don't want to trek all the way out then Aberdaron's beach stretches a good way - so just follow your feet along the sand and see what you discover...



For all of our grand adventures, up mountains and along valleys, sometimes a nice little walk in beautiful surroundings is all the soul needs to feel rejuvenated. Plus, sliding my way up that scramble at the start was the kind of funny and surprisingly memorable quick challenge that just tend to stick with you, something to look back and laugh at (and probably not try again! My size 11 boots did not fit well in those tiny steps...). Those looking for a trip out of Aberdaron much bigger in scale can so easily follow the paths to adventure, in either direction just pick one of the trails heading out of the town and you will so quickly be awash with stunning views and amazing coastal walks. I would love to return and pick up the trail from Aberdaron all the way to the National Trust Manor house of Plas yn Rhiw, a nice challenge with some great sights in between. That being said, adventures don't need to be some epic challenge to stretch your leg muscles to their limits, sometimes it is the little things like a private beach with gorgeous views...

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