In 2019 we walked the Pembrokeshire Coast Path from Amroth to St. Dogmaels. Our first walking day was from Amroth to Tenby. Read all about my experiences on this stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path and practical tips on how to get to the start in Amroth and what you’ll see on the way to Tenby.
Amroth to Tenby: Pembrokeshire Coast Path walking day 1
Start of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path
6 month prior to our trip to Wales, we decided to dedicate our May/June holiday to walking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. The path is 299 km (186 miles) long and is part of the Wales Coast Path. We decided to walk southeast to northwest, making Amroth the start of our journey.
About me and my Pembrokeshire Coastal Path walk
My name is Naomi, I live in the Netherlands and I’m in my 30’s and I have Crohn’s disease. I’m also overweight and struggle with IBS too. The Pembrokeshire Coast Path was a huge challenge for me. We don’t have any hills in the Netherlands, so walking up and down-hill is not something I can practice. When I call something hard or tough, this might be way easier on you so don’t let me discourage you from hiking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path.
I was not paid or sponsored to write about my experiences. I paid for everything for my boyfriend and myself out of my own pocket. This post does contain affiliate links to products and services I used and can recommend. If you decide to follow one of my links and purchase something, I’ll earn a small commission. This is at no extra cost to you.
Quick Facts and Data for walking from Amroth to Tenby:
- Date: Sunday 26th May
- Start time: 11.30 am
- Finish time: 6 pm
- Distance walked: 11 km (7 miles)
- Elevation gain: 280 m elevation gain and 260m down-hill
- Best resource: I highly recommend the Pembrokeshire Coast Path book by Manthorpe and McCrohan
Pembrokeshire Coast Path Day 1: Amroth to Tenby
Curious what the path looks like and my experiences walking from Amroth to Tenby? Check out this short video of our first day of walking.
Getting to Amroth
It was finally here! The first day of our Pembrokeshire Coast Walk. We needed to get to Amroth for the start of our hike and this proved more difficult than I imagined. The start of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path is in Amroth, next to the New Inn. Here you’ll find a marker for the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path. As it turns out, the only way to get there by public transport is bus 351 from Tenby to Pendine.
Bus 351 to Amroth
This bus service by Taf Valley Coaches runs from Tenby along the coast to Amroth Castle and then inland to Pendine. Click for dates and the 351 bus schedule here. But… as it turns out, the service doesn’t run on Sunday. And guess what day it was? Sunday of course!
Alternatively, we could have taken the bus or train to Kilgetty but then we had to walk more than we wanted and trace back our steps a lot. We decided to take a taxi to the start in Amroth.
But guess what, although Tenby is quite a busy place, especially on this bank holiday weekend, there was no taxi available on Sunday morning. We called several services and finally could arrange a pick-up time nearly an hour later. We agreed 20 GBP on the phone, but the cabbie insisted it had to be 25 GBP. It was quite an expensive ride but we were eager to start our walk, so we forked over the money.
Starting in Amroth Wales
There is a car park at the end of the beach, opposite the New Inn pub, and the cab driver dropped us off there. He took our picture next to the marker and it started to rain. We decided to first take a toilet break and a drink at the New Inn pub and we waited half an hour to see if the rain would pass. It didn’t.
Amroth to Wisemans Bridge
We put on our rain gear and decided to head out anyway. We wanted to start and it seemed we had to start in the rain. It was less than a mile down the road, but we got absolutely soaked on this stretch. The wind blew the rain straight into our faces but we were giddy and excited. We’re doing it!
At the end of the beach, we found the first real way marker of the Wales Coast Path and the acorn of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. At the public restroom, we took off our rain gear and started to climb the first hill. Man, it was steep. Within minutes I was gasping for air and the steps were quite big so my legs started to protest halfway in.
But this part was lovely. Through the green ferns, we climbed through a thick woodland area and soon we emerged from the trees and found ourselves on the first hill, overlooking the water.
Via the main footpath, we arrived at some houses and before we knew it, we’d reached Wisemans Bridge. The sun came out and the parking lot was already filled with cars of day-trippers. We passed the Wisemans Bridge Inn but continued along the road to the public toilets and found a free bench where we had our first stop of the day. We looked out over the water, taking in the views and looking at the excited people walking passed us.
After half an hour or so, we packed up our gear and continued to Saundersfoot. This was a lovely stretch. It was very close to the sea on a dedicated footpath. The coastline was really capricious here, with lots of pinnacles sticking out of the water and the petrified lava stream. We passed through a few tunnels and emerged on the other side at Saundersfoot.
Saundersfoot looked lovely. But we just had a break already, so we passed through the hordes of people and filled our water bottles at the toilets at the end of the harbor. Here, we took a wrong turn for the first time. We were a bit distracted by all the people and missed the sign at the parking lot. We traced our steps back and found the acorn of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path to Tenby again.
We walked along the main road until we turned back into the forest area again. This part was spectacular and might have been one of my favorite parts of the whole Pembrokeshire Coast Path. The part from Saundersfoot to Tenby is through thick, lush woodland, with some steep climbs and descends. We could peak through the trees and see some deserted tiny beaches and then we’d rise back up again with spectacular views of the sea.
This part took us nearly 3 hours, we took a half hour break for a snack but the rest was quite intense walking. After another steep climb up and down, I felt a gnawing feeling in my stomach. I was absolutely starving! We didn’t have a proper lunch as we passed Saundersfoot and the part to Tenby took us longer than we anticipated. My boyfriend was out of water too and very thirsty.
Saundersfoot to Tenby
Finally, we passed Monkstone and we could see the pastel colored houses of Tenby in the distance. It took us nearly another hour to reach it and by now, it was absolutely summer weather. Hot, hungry and thirsty, we finally reached Tenby. We settled in the first cafe we could find for a big pint of coke and beer, with a bag of crisps on the side. We made it through day 1 of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path.
Walking from Amroth to Tenby
If you want to walk from Amroth to Tenby, it is only 11 km (7 miles). It doesn’t sound that much, but it was quite intense with some steep climbs up and down from Saundersfoot to Tenby.
The best short Tenby Walks
If you feel like only walking a small part, I can recommend the short stretch from Wisemans Bridge to Saundersfoot. This is only 2 km (1.2 miles) with no elevation. Bus 351 stops at Wisemans Bridge Inn and you can take a bus from Saundersfoot (or stay overnight in Saundersfoot).
A bit more strenuous, but very beautiful is from Saundersfoot to Tenby. This is 6,7 km (4.2 miles) with 200m elevation gain and 180m walking down. You can take the bus to Saundersfoot and walk back to Tenby.
Tips for walking from Amroth to Tenby
Looking back now, we made some rookie mistakes on our first day on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. We are not newbie long distance walkers (especially not my boyfriend), but I guess we were too excited to finally start our long anticipated walk, that we forgot about our basic walking rules.
- The only bus to the start of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path is bus 351. It doesn’t run on Sundays. When possible, try to walk this stretch on any other day than Sundays if you depend on the local buses. Otherwise, an expensive taxi ride or a lucky hitchhiking ride is your alternative.
- Eat enough and bring enough water. From Saundersfoot to Tenby you’ll not find any facilities for food or drinks until you arrive in Tenby. We clearly underestimated this stretch. We should have had lunch or bought some supplies at the supermarket in Saundersfoot and we should have brought more water than the 0.6 liters that fit in our Life Straw Drink bottles. We did carry our water bladders, we just didn’t fill them up.
- Change socks at least once on this stretch. Due to the rain and the warm weather after this, I was happy to have an extra pair of socks as mine were soaking wet. Changing your socks will prevent sore feet and blisters.
- Bring walking sticks or trekking poles if you’re prone to sore knees when hiking down-hill like me. Some parts of the Amroth to Tenby walk were quite steep and I was super happy with my walking sticks. I have the Black Diamond trekking poles with adjustable height which are super easy to bring with you on holiday. If you prefer the same trekking poles as me, but with cork handles, then check the Black Diamond Trail Ergo Poles here. My boyfriend uses the Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Z trekking poles which are 1 size but can be folded and are ultra-lightweight.
Where to stay in Tenby?
Tenby is a great base to explore this part of Wales and Pembrokeshire. It has numerous accommodation options in various price ranges. Apart from the bus on Sunday, the rest of the week, the bus and train connects parts of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path very well. It can be used as a base to walk several stretches of the path.
We stayed for 3 nights at Ivy Bank Guest House. This is a typical B&B accommodation and is next to the train station. It is a 5 minute walk into town. Because it is not right at the beach or smack bang in the center of Tenby, this B&B is highly affordable. We choose the family room for some extra space and we stayed 3 nights. The room was very spacious and comfortable with lovely bay windows to the street. The breakfast was exuberant and luxurious. You can choose whatever breakfast combination you’d like and we filled our bellies in the morning.
The rating of this place is sensational and therefore, it is sold out most of the times. Book early to snag an excellent deal on your Tenby accommodation, by booking here.
I gave Ivy Bank Guesthouse a rating of 10 out of 10. This was mainly to do with price/location and service, but mostly because the owner went above and beyond to help us. My boyfriend left his complete stash of back-up, big format film in a cupboard. The owner discovered it when we’d already checked out. After a few phone calls, she drove all the way to Pembroke to return the film to us.
For more Pembrokeshire Coast Path accommodations suggestions, check my guide here.
Are you planning to walk the Pembrokeshire Coast Path? Will you start in Amroth or St. Dogmaels? Have you been to Tenby? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comment section below. I’d love to hear from you.
In case you have any questions about walking from Amroth to Tenby, let me know!