Location is everything for Swansea Bay’s castles, most of which boast spectacular sea views.
Take in a jaw-dropping vista at Oystermouth Castle, which casts its eye over the village of Mumbles from high up on a hill; its 30ft-tall glass bridge gives you an even better vantage point for panoramas of Swansea Bay. The castle boasts ancient graffiti art from the 14th century and a medieval maze of deep vaults and secret staircases, and was recently restored, with areas that were out of bounds for centuries now accessible.
Three Cliffs Bay
On the Gower Peninsula, gaze out of Weobley Castle’s windows onto the same scene the de la Bere family would have enjoyed five centuries ago, over wild marshland and out to sea; if you’re lucky, you might spot red kites, ospreys and buzzards flying over the open roof of the castle. Nearby Pennard Castle, built at the turn of the 13th and 14th centuries, is said to have been ruined by the Queen of the Fairies and is best reached on a coastal walk from one of the area’s best-loved beaches, Three Cliffs Bay.
Swansea Bay is blessed with plenty of parks and gardens. One of the area’s most charming hidden gems, Clyne Gardens is home to ancient woodland and a heady mixture of fragrant, colourful blooms throughout the year. Another all-season green space is Singleton Park, whose delightful Botanic Gardens grow up to 200 different flowering plants in winter alone. Dylan Thomas spent his childhood days exploring Cwmdonkin Park - look out for the water fountain that featured in his poem The Hunchback in the Park and a memorial stone featuring lines from 'Fern Hill'. Dylan’s Birthplace is within walking distance of the park, at 5, Cwmdonkin Drive.