Last year we walked the Pembrokeshire Coast Path from Amroth to St. Dogmaels. On our twelfth day, it was time to leave St. Davids behind and head out on the trail again. Read all about my experiences on this stretch of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path and practical tips on how to walk from St. Davids to Trefin and what you’ll see on the way along the coast path in Wales.
Hiking from St. Davids to Trefin – Pembrokeshire Coast Path Wales
Leaving St. Davids Wales
After 2 days in St. Davids, the tiniest city of the UK, it was time to pack up our bags and leave this part of Pembrokeshire behind us. We could count the remaining days of walking on one hand but this major stretch of secluded Welsh coastline separated us from the finish line.
If you pick up any guidebook or read anything about the Pembrokeshire Coast Path online, you’ll quickly learn that this part is described as challenging. The area is more secluded, less facilitated and more rough than the southern part near Amroth. Here, you’ll find some of the highest ascends of the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path, less frequent bus routes and little accommodation and shops.
But, it was time to leave the comfort of St. Davids behind us and we set out by bus to Whitesands Bay.
I was not paid or sponsored to write about my experiences. I paid for everything 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 St.Davids to Trefin:
Date: Thursday 6th June
Start time: 9.30 am
Finish time: 5 pm
Distance walked: 18,4 km (11 miles)
Elevation gain: 427 m elevation gain and 373 m down-hill
Best resource: I highly recommend the Pembrokeshire Coast Path book by Manthorpe and McCrohan
Pembrokeshire Coast Path Day 12: St.Davids to Trefin
Curious what the path looks like and my experiences walking from Whitesands Beach to Trefin? Check out this short video of our day of walking.
Getting to Whitesands Beach St. Davids
The day before, we finished our walk at Whitesands Beach and took a bus back to town. As the bus was waiting at the car park near the beach it was super easy.
It only made sense to find the same bus back to Whitesands Beach and pick up the trail from there.
We stuffed our faces one last time at the luxurious breakfast at the Grove Hotel, and checked out.
Packed with our bags, we walked into town, to find the bus stop for the 403 Celtic Coaster that stops in the center of St. Davids and at Whitesands Beach.
It turns out, that is not that easy as there are not really dedicated bus stops across town and to us, it didn’t make sense at what side of the road the bus would stop or not.
But, like the previous 12 days, things all worked out in the end. If you wait long enough, a bus will come and we hopped aboard and within a couple of minutes, we saw the golden stretch of sand of Whitesands Beach.
St. David’s Head
Yesterday, it was low-tide at Whitesands Beach and it was a very bright and sunny day. This morning, we can hardly see the beach as the high-tide crushed big waves on the tiny strip of beach that is left. Clouds cast an ominous spell on the strip of land below us.
As always on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, we climb up from the beach and reach the headland. It isn’t long until we realise we’re roaming St. David’s Head.
This part of land, crops out to the sea and is a playground of rocks, hills and remains. We meander through the tall grass and rocky remains out to sea.
At this point, the path is just a hint of the direction. There are hardly any markers and no clear path is visible. But we continue to keep the sea at our left side and follow grass tracks to the north.
My boyfriend has fun climbing every rocky outcrop he can find, but I decide to save my energy for later that day.
I have only just recovered from my severe stomach bug and I’m still taking antibiotics. At this point, I carefully have to dose my energy and I can see where we’re heading next:
The highest point of the Pembrokeshire Coast Path thus far.
Wildlife on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path
As we pass through a gate, I suddenly get raddled by a creature slithering on the ground beneath my boyfriend’s feet. He didn’t see it, but I distinctly see a snake escaping his big hiking boots!
As adrenaline is pumping through my veins, I get very distracted. For the next mile or so, we slowly gain altitude but all I’m thinking about is the snake I just saw and how I’ve never seen a snake in nature before.
We did our best not to disturb the snake, as per local law. But I did manage to snatch a picture….
Climbing Carn Penberry
As we leave St. David’s Head and the rocky remains behind, we follow the Wales Coast Path up the hill. The grass is tall and vivid green. The sun comes out and casts beautiful shades on the water and grassland below us.
But in the distance, I can see the hill that we’ll tackle next. It is quite the zid in the landscape and I feel we have to climb right over the top. This will be tough!
My mind is so preoccupied with all the animals and nature we’ve seen thus far on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, that I don’t even notice we’ve climbed a long way. Only when I look back on the grassland below us and notice the tiny size of the fence and people walking below us, I realized we climbed a long way!
Carn Penberry is a hill of roughly 175 m tall (574ft.) but the path up to its shoulder is quite good. There was only a small stretch of sheet rocks that was a bit difficult. Luckily for me, we didn’t have to climb to the top and over it. The path passes over the shoulder of the hill, maximum height was 115m.
After this, we found a secluded part of the path and I aired my feet for a bit, as my boyfriend set out to take some pictures. Awhhh a break can be so well deserved!
As we had the hardest part behind us, we set out again. Through green fields, along jagged cliffs and slate grey coves. We kept our eyes peeled to the water below us and deep below, we saw some seals again!
Walking over the green hills was a breeze and with the sun burning down on us, we were thrilled to find Abereiddy Beach in the distance.
This rocky pebbled beach was a delight as it has bathrooms at the far end of the beach. A whole surfing class just finished for the day, so it was quite busy with people geared out in wetsuits and flippers, but I managed to find a spot.
As I returned, my boyfriend had laid out our yoga mats on the beach and I ordered some hot dogs, drinks and snacks from the food truck at the beach. This was just what we needed. We basked in the sun, in the distance the calm waves tickling the pebbled beach and for a moment, my muscles relaxed and I dozed off for a second or two.
The Blue Lagoon of Wales
Before we set out for this day walk from St.Davids to Trefin, I knew I might not have the energy to walk the full 18 km. As I was still recovering from 5 days of severe stomach bugs, I had little energy left.
But I also knew I wanted to continue and see the Blue Lagoon. After our energizing break, one more hour of walking should be manageable!
The parking lot and toilet block at Abereiddy Beach is so popular because of the nearby Blue Lagoon. This old mining quarry is now filled with lovely water and a small beach. As we followed the crowds up on the hill, we soon found ourselves among a herd of people.
It was quite crowded and all the voices echoed against the slate walls of the quarry. Someone was doing some paddle boarding and groups of young people were just chilling. We decided we didn’t need another break and continued on our path.
After the Blue Lagoon, we had reached the highest point and had sweeping 360 degrees views of the beaches below us and the grassy hills around us. The open sea was always on our left hand, we descended again towards Traeth Llyfn beach. A lovely golden beach with beautiful turquoise waves crushing on the sand.
We passed a lot of information signs about the mining industry in this area and the history and before we knew it, we crossed another hill and saw the tiny harbour of Porthgain below us. Through a set of steep stairs, we descended down into the harbour.
The small houses and the pub, the Sloop Inn was basking in the late afternoon sun and we decided to check out the bus schedule. Trefin, our stop for the day was still 4 km away and with the rate we were going, it would take us more than an hour.
So, we decided to call it a day and enjoy a nice cold drink at the Sloop Inn. Together with the other guest and some dogs, we enjoyed the last rays of sun shine on the deck. It felt like the perfect end to a wonderful day of hiking.
Trefin on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path
And as always, the last bus of the day was right on time. Within mere minutes, we reached Trefin. We booked a B&B right in the center, so we asked the bus lady to drop us off at the Ship Inn. From there, we’d find our way.
Trefin is a typical Pembrokeshire coastal town. One main road crosses the whole village. A pub and some B&B’s, right on the main road.
And you can’t miss the Cranog B&B we’ve booked. The bright pastel pink house with Pippi Longstocking- charm beacons you to come inside and stay there.
We checked in and ecstatically explored our room with a bathtub and chaise lounge. It was so charming and comfortable, I could have easily stayed there longer.
The next morning we were invited for breakfast and decided to try the local rarebit breakfast. This cheese melt toast with a spicy punch was the perfect way to start another day!
Overall I highly recommend Cranog B&B as we had such a comfortable stay there. The owners were so welcoming and friendly, I’d love to go back again one day. Their delicious rarebit breakfast might have something to do with it too!
Hiking Pembrokeshire Coast Path in video
What is it like to hike the Pembrokeshire Coast Path in Wales? We walked the full Coastal Path from Amroth to St.Dogmaels in springtime and I recorded a video of each hiking day. Check out a compilation of the best, the most beautiful, and the worst moments on the trail!
Find more video’s about my travels on YouTube. Make sure to follow me to get a notification when I upload new videos.
Tips for walking from St. Davids to Trefin
Of course, the above is already filled with some tips on great places for a break, but I have more practical tips for you.
- The Strumble Bus 404 runs between St. Davids and stops in Porthgain and Trefin. It only runs a few times a day, so make sure to time your walking time if you need to catch it. Alternatively, you can catch the T11 that runs between St. Davids and Trefin and onwards. This bus doesn’t make the loop to Porthgain.
- Eat enough and bring enough water. St. Davids to Abereiddy you’ll not find any facilities for food or drinks until you arrive at Abereiddy. There are restroom facilities there and we’re happy to find the food truck at the beach for a snack. We were happy to refill our LifeStraw Drink bottle and water bladder, as both were empty by the time we arrived in Abereiddy.
- I was very 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.
- Take breaks to enjoy the view and to air your feet. A good stop would Abereiddy beach but you need a break well before that. Of course, the Blue Lagoon is the perfect spot for a good rest. Take good care of your feet by changing your socks often, air them out and if necessary, take care of any blisters with Compeed Blister Cushions. I never go walking without it.
Where to stay in Trefin?
Trefin is just a very small village on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. I think nearly everyone sleeping here is hiking part of the Wales Coastal Path.
We stayed at the Cranog B&B, a lovely pastel pink house on the main road in Trefin. This quirky place, full of original details is luscious heaven of luxury. The owners were so warm and welcoming and our double room had high ceilings, authentic bath features, and glorious comfortable beds. Their home-cooked breakfast (we had the Welsh Rarebit) was finger-licking’ fantastic. Check out their rates and see if they can host you, via this link.
Trefin doesn’t have many facilities, so it is best to book a spot at the Ship Inn for dinner as soon as you arrive (or call ahead if you’re visiting on the weekends).
For more Pembrokeshire Coast Path accommodations suggestions, check my guide here.
Shorter walks between St. Davids and Trefin
Although it was quite hard, I really enjoyed the part between St. Davids and Abereiddy. A bus service stops at the beach in Abereiddy so if you don’t feel like walking the whole stretch, or you base yourself in St. Davids you can easily return from here. Make sure to hike up the Blue Lagoon too and include that in your scenic walk.
A nice, hour or hour and a half would be to start at Abereiddy, visit the Blue Lagoon, and continue to Porthgain. There is lots of history in the landscape and the pub in Porthgain is a nice end of your walk.
More Pembrokeshire Coast Path
This blog is part of my Pembrokeshire Coast Path series. I will write about my experiences hiking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. This was our 12th day of walking. Feel free to check out the other stretches below:
Are you planning to walk the Pembrokeshire Coast Path? Have you been to Trefin or walked from St. Davids along the Pembrokeshire Coast Path? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comment section below. I’d love to hear from you.