GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Glamorgan Heritage Coast Walk

11 miles (17 km)

This walk follows a section of the lovely Glamorgan Heritage Coast from Dunraven Bay to Nash Point lighthouse and St Donat's Castle. It's a lovely stretch of coast with wonderful cliff top views, interesting limestone rock formations and pretty beaches.
The walk starts from the public car park at Dunraven Bay in Southerndown. The ruins of the 12th century Dunraven castle can be explored in this area too. From here you can pick up the coastal path and follow it south to Traeth Mawr Beach and cliffs. You then pass Cwm Nash and Cwm Marcroes before coming to Nash Point. Here you'll find a noteworthy Grade II listed lighthouse, which dates from 1831-32. After passing the lighthouse you come to the medieval St Donat's castle. Wonderfully positioned on cliffs overlooking theBristol Channel, the site has been occupied since theIron Age, and was by tradition the home of the Celtic chieftainCaradog.
The route finishes at the castle and returns on the same paths, though you could follow an inland path to visit the village of Marcross on the way.
Part of the walk follows the long distance Vale of Glamorgan Circular Walk. This epic waymarked route is a great way to further explore this beautiful area. You could continue along the route to visit the nearby town of Llantwit Major for example. If you head in the other direction from the car park you can visit Ogmore by Sea on the Southerndown and Ogmore Coastal Walk. There's nice views of the Ogmore River and the option of continuing to the wonderful Merthyr Mawr Sand Dunes.

Glamorgan Heritage Coast OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Glamorgan Heritage Coast Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking

Pubs/Cafes

Head to the The Horseshoe Inn in the peaceful little village of Marcross for some refreshments on the walk. The historic country pub dates from the 19th century and has been serving the local farming community for well over a century. There's a friendly welcome, a good menu and a lovely large garden to sit out and relax in on warmer days. You can find the pub in the village with a postcode of CF61 1ZG for your sat navs.

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

Just inland from this stretch of coast you will find can try the Cowbridge Walk. This circular walk explores the attractive market town with its Physic Garden and pretty riverside park.
The Llantwit Major Walk will take you along the river to the beach before following the coastal path to the Nash Point lighthouse on the coast. The historic town is also well worth a visit. There's a lovely beach and some fine old buildings including a 13th century church and a 12th century pub.
The Church College and Lighthouse Walk is a longer circular walk which explores this area.

Photos

Descending towards Dunraven Bay - geograph.org.uk - 161825

Descending towards Dunraven Bay. The beach was very popular on this Bank Holiday Weekend. The car park can been seen in this picture too.

Dunraven Bay, Southerndown - geograph.org.uk - 305889

Dunraven Bay, Southerndown Looking down the valley adjacent to the walled gardens towards Dunraven Bay, with Porthcawl on the horizon.

Traeth Mawr - geograph.org.uk - 1189576

Traeth Mawr. At low tide from the limestone-layered foreshore, looking south-east along the beach and coastline.

Traeth Mawr - geograph.org.uk - 1323264

The translation of Traeth Mawr is Big Sands. When the tide is out you can understand why.

Nash Point to Cwm Nash - geograph.org.uk - 1323212

Nash Point to Cwm Nash

The mouth and beach of Cwm Nash, Nash Point. - geograph.org.uk - 861752

The mouth and beach of Cwm Nash, Nash Point.

Nash Point Lighthouse, Monknash - geograph.org.uk - 850968

Nash Point Lighthouse, Monknash

View from St Donat's Castle - geograph.org.uk - 1322809

View from St Donat's Castle. The castle stands above the Bristol Channel in the south of the rich agricultural lands of the Vale. The castle is the longest continually inhabited castle in Wales.

GPS Files

GPX File

Glamorgan Heritage Coast.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Share>Save to Files')

Memory Map Route

Glamorgan Heritage Coast.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Share>Save to Files)