Walk 1828 - printer friendly version
Three Cliff Bay & Ilston Cwm from Southgate Walk
Author - Lou Johnson
Length - 9.0 miles / 14.6 km
Ascent - 800 feet / 242 metres
Grade - easy/mod
Start - OS grid reference SS554874
Lat 51.5668810 + Long -4.0876839
Postcode SA3 2DJ (approx. location only)
This walk is one the classic routes in the Gower Peninsula offering a taste of both coastal and rural scenery. The start is the National Trust car park at Southgate (grid ref. SS554874) where you will also find public toilets and refreshments. The route then takes an antic-clockwise route to Pwlldu Head before turning inland along the Bishopston Valley to Ilston Cwm. The walk then turns south to reach the wonderful Three Cliffs (or more correctly Three Cliff Bay).
After parking walk east along the coast following the Wales Coast Path which runs along the side of the lane leading to Hunt's Farm (grid ref. SS565871).Shortly after the farm, bear right and stay on the Wales Coast Path as it swings south to Pwlldu Head from where there is an excellent view back along the coast to Three Cliff Bay. Continue along the cliffs to Pennard Farm. From here the path descends to Pwlldu Bay. Here the route turns inland (grid ref. SS573871) leaving the Wales Coast Path and turns north up the steeply sided Bishopston Valley.
The path along the Bishopston Valley generally follows the foot of the western valley side. Continue past Hanging Cliff on your right before the valley swings to head northeast. Following the obvious path keep the stream on your right. The valley swings north and heads towards Bishopston. Ignore the first path on your left climbing up the valley side but continue to a junction of paths (grid ref. SS574888). Here turn left and climb out of the valley. At the top of the climb turn right and follow the path to reach the B4436 in Bishopston.
Turn right along the B4436 and then almost immediately turn left along the lane leading to Kittle Hill Farm. Continue past the farm to reach the A4118 (grid ref. SS567901). Cross the road with care and take the track opposite. This leads past Courthouse Farm into Ilston.
Turn left along the lane and take the signed path on the left (grid ref. SS556903). Cross the footbridge and follow the follow the wooded valley downstream. After approximately 400 metres you reach a path junction. Here keep right following the valley down through Ilston Cwm to reach the A4118 once more (grid ref. SS551891). Cross the road with care and walk to your right. Turn left over the first bridge and once on the other side bear right to take the signed path heading west with a stream on your right.
At grid ref. SS554891 the path turns south along a beautiful valley following Pennard Pill. Stay at a low level, ignoring paths on your left that leave the valley and continue past Pennard Burrows on your left to reach the small headland at the western end of Pobbles Beach. Enjoy the view west across Three Cliff Bay before turning east to follow the cliff top path. You soon rejoin the Wales Coast Path, which is followed back to the start.