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Newgale

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General details:

Newgale is a Good Beach Guide featured beach and has a very long (about 1.5km), flat, sandy beach headed by a large shingle bank which sometimes fails to give protection to the pub & campsite when the sea comes over the top in rare storms. This means the tide goes out a long way (spring tides are around the 6m mark) - up to 300m walk!

On the other hand, you really don't want to sail Newgale when the tide's up on the shingle: 1) the waves dump, 2) the boulders are v. hard (a little like Pozo in Gran Canaria but nothing like so extreme) and 3) you get a reflected wave which causes chaos in the water & broken kit recoveries. The beach faces WSW and is thoroughbred sand. Only when you get right down to the S end of the beach does it turn into a rockpile where the cliffs have collapsed over the aeons. Don't sail that far down. There are no bad rips & only slight sideshore currents.

If there are any waves to be had in St Bride's Bay, Newgale is where they'll lurk. Consequently, it's very popular with surfers, body boarders, kayakers & surf skiers - often all at the same time. Generally, the beach is large enough to cater for all. With SW or W winds and big surf, it's best to leave it to the surfers as the waves will be very mushy & difficult to get through. Once the waves get above about 1.5m in this wind direction it's time to go elsewhere. Best wind directions are NW, S thru' SE.

Newgale occasionally gets used by sand buggies & I've sailed my land speedsail there. Apart from kite-flying people, dogs, children building sandcastles, etc, the beach is ideal for these activities.

Newgale has a campsite, surf shop (which rents surf & body boards), a cafe & shop, a couple of houses & a pub called the Duke of Edinburgh conveniently located right next to the campsite, and just behind the beach.

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Directions to the right place:

From Haverfordwest, take the A487 towards St David's. Your first view of the sea is a spectacular view as you drop down into Newgale (OS Ref: 846222). There's a campsite on the R (pretty basic), across the road from the shingle bank at the head of the beach. As you come down to the bottom of the hill, there's a road off on the L with 2 car parks. The second (more Southerly) one is where the windsurfers tend to congregate! Keep going about 1/2 mile beyond the second car park & there's yet another small, free car park by a shop & caravan park. Another good place to sail from.

During the busy summer months you can encounter a traffic jam as you return through Carmarthen. This is as nothing compared to the traffic jams you will encounter returning from Cornwall. However like all jams, it's well worth avoiding if you can plan your return or find a pleasant pub to hide in instead.

Click here for location map

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How the winds work:

NE - Off shore, very flat water blasting. Excellent surf if any swells are around. Pretty gusty for wave sailing.

SE - Off shore, port tack

S - Port tack waves

SW - Large mushy waves, hard to get through - can get very big

W - Large mushy waves, hard to get through - can get very big

NW - Starboard tack waves. Good for wave sailing.

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Tidal conditions:

HW springs tend to occur around 19:00 - 20:00. HW neaps around 12:30 - 14:30 (GMT).

Avoid sailing at high tide when the waves are dumping on the shingle bank. During spring tides, the tides are in the 6.0m range.

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Hazards:

Surfers and swimmers when out sailing.

Waves breaking on the shingle bank during your launch or recovery.

Intimidatingly large waves. In cross & offshore winds, the waves can be reasonably well spaced. In onshore conditions, it can be a bit manic.

Occasional weever fish - apparently at their most numerous in August. Excruciatingly painful stings if you step on one.

Spiny crab shells. Honest!

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Facilities:

Car parks right by the beach. Pay and display - £2 for the day (2011).

Toilets (in the bottom car park), ice cream van. A short distance away there is also the petrol station selling all sorts of wonderful goodies + petrol and the pub.

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B&B's / campsites

  • There is a pretty basic campsite just behind the beach at Newgale. Check here for more details. £5 per tent per night in 2006.
  • There's another campsite as you go North up the hill out of Newgale towards St Davids. It's much larger than the one above, but even more basic. £5 per tent per night in 2006. It's not signed, and partially hidden so very easy to miss. I just drove past there (Jul 2011) and could see tents, but no obvious way in, so not sure if it's still in business as a general campsite.

Check also the accommodation details for Broadhaven

The Duke of Edinburgh inn- 07792 961930, now offers guest rooms, well situated just across the road from the beach. Only three rooms, so not many people to disturb you. Private parking, en-suite.

Several B&B's in Solva. Advisable to book in the summer.

For more details on the Newgale, Solva & St David's area, contact:

Pembs Tourist Information - Tel: 01437 720392. Fax: 01437 720392. (Open all year)

Nearby Broad Haven has a 3 star rated Youth Hostel.

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Pubs and eateries

There's a chippy in Roche

There's a good chippy back in Haverfordwest - on the left just before Tesco (when heading in to Haverfordwest).

Sands cafe in Newgale does all day breakfast, paninis and ever-changing specials as well as homemade cakes and proper coffees.

IMHO, The closest decent pub is the Harbour Inn in Solva, 3 or so miles towards St David's. This pub provides good beer, excellent food and a fascinating location, unfortunately its popularity means that it can be very busy in the summer.

The Duke of Edinburgh in Newgale serves food 12-3pm and 6-9pm. 01437 720586

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Content supplied by & .

Update from John Mellor - Jul '03. Anon update on the Sands Cafe - Jul 2010.

Note: All comments and opinions mentioned in this section of the site are the personal opinions of the various contributors. Inevitably, one person's favourite may be another person's least favourite.

The information provided here is provided in good faith. We can take no responsibility for the consequences of any inaccuracies. Should you find any inaccuracies, then please take the trouble to tell us, using any of the update links.

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