Welcome to The Gower and Swansea Bay

Take a look at our sensational Spring & Summer offers on holiday cottages and self-catering accommodation throughout Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Swansea Bay and The GowerFBM Holidays have a property to suit your requirements, from a holiday complex to a family house to a coastal cottage to a rural chalet to a country cottage, a small intimate flat for two, or a family house or chalet on a holiday village by the coast or in a rural setting.  Check out our latest additions for new self catering holiday properties, not yet in the brochure, available for this year. The Gower Peninsula and Swansea Bay has a varied coastline with magnificent beaches and historical inland scenery and castles. From Bronze Age mysteries to modern day pleasures, The Gower Peninsula and Swansea Bay casts a magical spell over visitors to their sandy shores and inland delights. 

Geography.

Situated in south Wales, about 70 square miles in area, Gower is known for its coastline, popular with walkers and outdoor enthusiasts, especially surfers. Gower has many caves, including Paviland Cave and Minchin Hole Cave. The peninsula is bounded by the Loughor estuary to the north and Swansea Bay to the east. Gower Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty covers 188 km⊃; including most of the peninsula west of Crofty, Three Crosses, Upper Killay, Blackpill and Bishopston. The highest point on the Gower peninsula is The Beacon at Rhossili Down at 193m/633ft overlooking Rhossili Bay The interior of Gower consists mainly of farmland and common land. The population resides mainly in small villages, though suburban development has made a number of communities in eastern Gower part of the Swansea Urban Area. The southern coast of the peninsula consists of a series of small, rocky or sandy bays like Langland and Three Cliffs, and a few larger beaches like Port Eynon, Rhossili and Oxwich Bay. On the north side of the peninsula there are fewer beaches, this section of the coast includes the famous cockle-beds of Penclawdd. There are six castles on the Gower peninsula: Bovehill Castle (also known as Landimore Castle), Oystermouth Castle, Oxwich Castle, Pennard Castle, Penrice Castle and Weobley Castle.

History

Following the Norman invasion of Wales, the commote of Gŵyr passed into English hands, the southern part eventually becoming heavily anglicised. Rhys Grug of Deheubarth occupied the peninsula in 1215, but in 1220 he ceded the area to the English, apparently on the orders of his overlord, Llywelyn ap Iorwerth. Thereafter Gower remained largely beyond the reach of Llywelyn’s successors as prince of Wales, though the peninsula suffered at the hands of Rhys ap Maredudd during his revolt of 1287-8. The Act of Union (1535) made the Lordship of Gower part of the historic county of Glamorgan, and the south-western section became the Hundred of Swansea. In modern times, the Gower peninsula was administered as a Rural District of Glamorgan, which merged with the county borough of Swansea in 1974 to form the Swansea district. Since 1996, Gower has been part of the City and County of Swansea.

Archaeology

The Gower is home to menhirs or standing stones from the Bronze Age. Of the nine stones, eight remain today. One of the most famous of the stones is Arthur’s stone near Cefn Bryn. At Paviland Cave in South Gower, a human skeleton (named the Red Lady of Paviland, though he is actually a male) was discovered by Victorian archaeologists, dated as 25,000 years old.

Villages

The Gower villages include: Bishopston, Caswell, Cheriton, Crofty, Gowerton, Horton, Ilston, Kittle, Knelston, Landimore, Langland, Llandewi, Llangennith, Llanrhidian, Llethryd,  Middleton, Mumbles,  Murton, Newton, Nicholaston, Oldwalls, Overton, Oxwich,  Parkmill, Penclawdd, Pennard, Penmaen,  Penrice, Pitton, Pilton Green, Port Eynon, Reynoldston, Rhossili, Slade, Scurlage, Southgate, , Upper Killay,   Burry Green, Oxwich Green, Three Crosses, Llanmadoc,  Llanmorlais,

Mumbles is famous for its small, independent shops and boutiques, selling everything from high-end fashion to casual surfing gear; traditionally-carved Welsh lovespoons to American folk art; local seafood to continental charcuterie and handmade chocolates. Or treat yourself to a relaxing spell in one of the several beauty salons dotted around the village, providing services from award-winning hairstyling, to holistic massage therapy and luxury spa treatments. Most shops and salons are concentrated in the Newton Road, Dunns Lane and Mumbles Road areas.
Less than 15 minutes from the City of Swansea, the Gower Peninsula is home to around 50 unspoilt beaches, coves and bays, from the jaw-dropping vastness of Rhossili, to the tiny, secluded Pwll Du. Inland you’ll find sheltered woodland and rolling grasslands; country pubs and fine food. The diversity of Gower makes it an ideal location, whether you’re looking for an action packed weekend, a quiet romantic day out, or a week-long family holiday.
For history lovers, the area boasts many ancient sites, monuments, caves, castles, shipwrecks and landmarks including Arthur’s Stone, Giants Grave burial chamber and Pennard Castle. Stone Age artefacts have been discovered in Gower caves, including the oldest dated modern human remains ever discovered in Britain.
Swansea City boasts an award winning Marina and Maritime Quarter, which is home to the National Waterfront Museum and the LC leisure complex & waterpark, both must-see attractions located within a few yards from each other! An iconic Sail Bridge links the Maritime Quarter with the new SA1 Swansea Waterfront, an exciting new development of modern office blocks, apartments, hotels, brasseries and other wonderful features.
Back in the city centre, you’ll find the largest indoor market in Wales, where you can sample and buy many of our local delicacies such as cockles and laverbread, and of course our traditional welshcakes. Locally caught fresh fish can also be bought along with local souvenirs including Welsh dolls, rugby shirts and lovespoons. Swansea also boasts top-of-the-range sporting facilities such as the Wales National Pool, the only 50m swimming-pool in Wales, and the fantastic Liberty Stadium, a 20,000 seat venue home of Swansea City Football Club and the Neath – Swansea Ospreys Rugby Team.
So, if you have ever wondered why Dylan Thomas wrote so passionately about his hometown, why King Arthur left his mark on Gower or why Catherine Zeta Jones heads for home in Mumbles, then visit Swansea Bay and find out.

Beaches

This is a list of the larger beaches. Blue Flag beaches are marked with a * – Swansea BayMumbles BeachBracelet Bay*, RothersladeLangland Bay*, Caswell Bay*, LimesladeBrandy CovePwlldu BayFoxhole BayPobbles BayThree Cliffs BayTor BayOxwich BaySlade BayHorton BayPort Eynon Bay, *Mewslade BayFall BayRhossili Bay (Llangennith Sands),  Burry HolmsBlue Pool BayBroughton BayWhiteford Sands as well as numerous other small beaches for your delight.  

All header pictures  © Graham Smith Photography. All about The Image