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St Dogmael’s to Newport Town Walk

Taken from Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority walk guide.

St Dogmael’s to Newport Town is the most challenging section of the Coast Path, 15.5 miles
long with frequent very steep hills. There are no services between Poppit and Newport
Sands. Walkers should ensure that they are properly prepared with adequate food, drink and
clothing. Walkers who would find this too much may wish to take two days over this section
with a break at Moylgrove (Moylgrove is 0.8 miles inland from Ceibwr. At Moylgrove there is:
WC, bus (occasional) stop, small car park, two small B&Bs – book early).

1. St Dogmaels to Poppit Sands 1.3 Miles (1.61Km)
The new marker for the start/finish point was unveiled at St Dogmaels in July 2009. The path then
follows the road which is sometimes busy, and is a full width road with no pavement. The Webley
Hotel near Poppit and the Ferry Inn in St Dogmael’s are popular spots for walkers celebrating
completion of the Coast Path. Follow the off road route through sand dunes for 600m east of
Poppit. For reasons lost in the mists of time, the official start/finish plaque was orginally sited by the
Poppit car park. Gentle Gradients. Views across the Teifi Estuary.
Walk Difficulty – Road
Market town with a good range of services. Good bus links to Aberystwyth, Carmarthen and
Haverfordwest. Start – finish of the Ceredigion Coast Path.
St Dogmaels
A large village with small shops, pubs and accommodation. The Coast Path starts (unmarked) at
the slipway near the Ferry Inn. Bus service to Poppit and Cardigan.
Worth a look
Poppit Sands Beach
This beach, at the mouth of the River Teifi, is a popular leisure spot. The dunes are important for
wildlife, especially rare plants such as the bee orchid.
National Park Staff manage over 20 hectares (50 acres) of dune, marsh and grazing land here. One
of its projects is to turn the willow scrub behind the dunes back to reed-bed. On the eastern side of
the dunes, erosion has formed sand cliffs over 4 metres (13 feet) high. Take care near these, as
they may collapse. New dunes are building up close to the access boardwalk.
Car Park / Public Transport Access
Poppit Sands
Bus stop (Poppit Rocket – thrice daily return – Cardigan to Fishguard). Large National Park car park
(charge in season), cafe, radar WC, WC. Wheelchair access to large sandy beach with a blue flag

2. Poppit Sands to Allt-y-goed cattle grid 1.4 Miles (1.61Km)
Quiet, steep, single track road with good views. Joining paths give options for circular walks to
Walk Difficulty – No man made obstructions to wheelchairs, ground conditions vary
Walking Access Point
Four Footpaths
Four joining paths give options for circular walks inland of varying lengths. At GRs(grid refs) SN
150484, SN 147486, SN 144487, SN 141488.
Seaview Youth Hostel
Walking Access Point
Footpath to Cei-bach
Partly permissive footpath to small beach, also accessible from Poppit Sands at low tide.
Walking Access Point
Path to Cemaes Head
The first 150m or so is usually very wet and muddy. Starts as a bridleway but then footpath only to
Pen Cemaes. Was originally the path to the Coastguard lookout building.

3. Allt-y-goed cattle grid to Cemaes Head path 1.2 Miles (1.61Km)
Spectacularly faulted high cliffs with views across to Cardigan Island. 4 stiles with dog access, 25
steps, mostly gentle gradients. Horses graze on Cemaes Head
Walk Difficulty – Stiles or flights of steps or steep hills
Worth a look
Teifi Viewpoint
Good views across to Cardigan Island and of the estuary. Much of the headland is a nature reserve
owned by the Wildlife Trust West Wales. Look out for Guillemots, Cormorants, Fulmars and
Razorbills which nest on the cliffs in spring and early summer. You may also see the rare Chough,
feeding on the grassy slopes or performing its characteristic aerobatics. A project run jointly by the
Wildlife Trust, National Trust and National Park staff has introduced ponies to graze the headland, to
improve the quality of cliff-top grassland and heath. This will help the Chough’s survival prospects.
Cemaes Head is also a good spot to watch out for bottle-nosed dolphins.
Pen Cemaes Lookout
Disused Coastguard lookout

Cliff Edge
Eroding cliff edges. Keep to path

Walking Access Point
Cnwcau Footpath
Old Coastguard Lookout path joins offering a circular walk back towards Poppit. Follow the public
footpath downhill until it joins a bridleway, keep straight on (don’t turn right) and it brings you to the
road at Cnwcau (wet and muddy at the bottom).

4. Cemaes Head to Pwllygranant 1.1 Miles (1.61Km)
High cliff path with spectacular views of sheer cliffs close up and Newport Bay in the distance. One
dog accessible stile, steep descents and ascents from 400’ to near sea level.
Walk Difficulty – Stiles, long flights of steps, gradients up to 1:1

Path close to edge.
Take care in windy weather. Quite long sections of path fairly close to the cliff edge.

Worth a look
Cemaes Geology
The geology of this section of coast is spectacular. The cliffs are made up of thin layers of
sandstone alternating with mudstone. The layers were produced by underwater landslides, which
swept sand from the coastal shelf into the mud of the deep sea-bed, around 440 million years ago in
the late Ordovician period. Some 50 million years later, these layers were compressed by the
collision of two continents, forming the remarkable folds visible in the cliffs between Cemaes Head
and Ceibwr Bay. There’s a particularly good view of these folds from the western headland of
Ceibwr Bay, looking back towards Cemaes Head.

Pwllygranant Shore
Don’t be tempted to attempt the scramble to the shore here, the rocks are very slippery and steep.

Walking Access Point
Pwllygranant Footpath
A National Trust permissive footpath joins offering a circular walk back towards Poppit or Ceibwr –
links to a public footpath, rising steeply through a wooded valley. Turn left at either the lower
footpath, or higher bridleway, junctions for a cross-country return to Poppit. Alternatively, climb up to
the road and turn right then right at the next bridleway to return to Ceibwr. No room to park at the
roadside (huge tractors turning).

5. Pwllygranant to Ceibwr 2.1 Miles (3.22Km)
Open cliff with steep descents and ascents from 400’ to near sea level.
Near Pencastell the path has fewer hills, there are 4 stiles on this stretch 1 stile has no provision for
dog access. Sheep graze most of this section.
Walk Difficulty – Stiles, long flights of steps, gradients up to 1:1

Cliff edge
Eroding cliff edges. Keep to path.
Take care in windy weather. Quite long sections of path fairly close to the cliff edge.

Pencastell (situated on private land) is the site of an Iron Age Fort, one of 50 or so on the route of
the Coast Path.
Walking Access Point
Pencastell Bridleway
Circular routes join: Above Pencastell follow the track northwards for a mostly off-road route to
Poppit (or Pwllygranant).

Walking Access Point
Ceibwr Bridleway
Between Ceibwr and Pencastell follow the bridleway signs for a gentler route. Four public footpaths
join the bridleway offering various circular walks
Penrallt Ceibwr
Take the footpath nearest Gaerwen and you can follow a steep wooded path to the tearooms and
Moylgrove is 0.8 miles inland from Ceibwr. Bus stop (Poppit Rocket – thrice daily return ‘ Cardigan to
Fishguard). Small car park. WC. Two small B&Bs – book early.

6. Ceibwr to Pwll-y-wrach 0.9 Miles (1.61Km)
The Coast Path along this section has gentle gradients and, although the surface is fairly rough,
there are neither stiles or steps. This is a splendid section for the less mobile walker.
The Coast Path follows a minor road for about 60m at Ceibwr, then the route follows the southern
bank of Ceibwr Bay before another 100m of minor road.

Walk Difficulty – No stiles or flights of steps, gradients less than 1:6.
Car Park / Public Transport Access
Roadside parking for about six cars. Bus stop at Moylgrove (Poppit Rocket – thrice daily return –
Cardigan to Fishguard). Much of the land here is owned by the National Trust. Three seats. Access
to rocky beach.

Ceibwr Bay
The rocky cove of Ceibwr contains evidence of a more recent geological past. Cwm Trewyddel, the
valley down which the Nant Ceibwr stream runs, was deepened by glacial meltwater in the Ice Age,
and the lower part of the valley is partly blocked by glacial debris. The level platform near the base
of the cove’s western headland is an ancient ‘raised beach’, with naturally cemented beach pebbles.
This was formed about 125,000 years ago when the sea level was 5 metres (16 feet) higher than

Cliff edge at Careg Wylan
Eroding cliff edges. Keep to path. Take care in windy weather. Some sections of path fairly close
to the cliff edge.

The Witches’ Cauldron (Pwll-y-Wrach), is a blow-hole caused by the collapse of a cave roof. A
narrow passage connects it to the sea. The stream flowing down the nearby valley disappears
underground and empties into the ‘cauldron’. On the opposite side of the valley is Castell Trerufydd,
one of many Iron Age forts to be encountered along the Coast Path.

7. Pwll-y-wrach to Newport Sands 6 Miles (9.66Km)
A remote and challenging section with 10 stiles to cross, 200 steps and many steep gradients. Most
of the stiles have no provision for dog access.
High cliff path with stunning views. Carpets of bluebells and orchids in late spring.
Horses and sheep graze the coastal slopes above Cell Howell, near Blaenmeni and cattle near

Walk Difficulty – Stiles, long flights of steps, gradients up to 1:1
Walking Access Point
Castelltreruffydd Footpath
Junction with inland path. From the rapidly eroding Castell Treruffydd (Iron Age Fort), A steep, often
muddy ascent through Fferm y Cadno to join the coast road. This is the only escape path between
Ceibwr and Newport Sands.

Pen Pistyll
The tempting descent to the beach from the Pen Pistyll footbridge although not very far, is not
advised, being over almost vertical, slippery rocks.

High cliff

Eroding cliff edges. Keep to path. Take care in windy weather. Some sections of path fairly close
to the cliff edge.
Car Park / Public Transport Access
Newport Sands
Bus stop (Poppit Rocket – twice daily return ‘ Cardigan to Fishguard). Large National Park car park,
charge in season. Accessible WC. Refreshment kiosk in season.
Newport Sands
A gently sloping sandy bathing beach backed by dunes. Good cooling off spot after walking from

8. Newport Sands to Newport Parrog 1.7 Miles (3.22Km)
This section follows the banks of the river Nevern 1km or so inland to cross the river at the ‘Iron’
Bridge. This is a shady walk through young woodland, the estuary is important for waders and
The southern section of path has a surface prepared for wheelchairs. The northern section has no
introduced obstructions and in good weather may be passable by cross country wheelchairs; this
section is well used by families with pushchairs.

Walk Difficulty – No man made obstructions to wheelchairs, ground conditions vary

Newport Sand Dunes
The dunes here suffered in the past from human trampling, but have been stabilised with marram
grass planted by the National Park.

Bryncyn Tidal Crossing
A short length of this section is flooded on the highest spring tides. It is probably best to wait this out
(approx 1-2 hours), rather than walk the extra 3 miles on the road. The tide sometimes deposits
piles of seaweed and debris here.
Walking Access Point
Newport Sands to Iron Bridge
Park at Newport Sands car park. (Parking charge in season but blue badge holders park free) First
section of path crosses golf course so the surface is mostly short grass. The last 900m has a rolled
stone surface which will re-vegetate in time, three gates with difficult latches. Most of the path is
level, or has gradients of less than 1 in 25 but there are four sections, each less than 50m long, with
steeper gradients – all less than 1 in 8. During spring tides, occurring once a fortnight, the Iron
Bridge end of the path is flooded at high tide. Nearest accessible toilets at Long Street car park,
Easy Access 1.4km

Car Park / Public Transport Access
Iron Bridge
Limited roadside parking (about 8 cars) 3 seats.

Nevern Estuary
The sheltered estuary of the River Nevern is a favourite haunt of waders, ducks and seabirds. Look
out for herons near the Iron Bridge. A Neolithic burial chamber, Carreg Coetan, stands just off the
road leading from the bridge to Newport.
Walking Access Point
Iron Bridge to Newport Parrog
Newport Parrog SN 052397 to Iron Bridge SN 063395
From Parrog Car Park, turn left back towards Newport, then left again onto the Coast Path. Purpose
made rolled stone path to BT standard; cross fall is negligible. Path surface can flood in winter;
repaired each spring. Although path predominantly level, it has slight gradients and is much used
by cyclists. Landowner allows youngsters to ride horses on this path but such use is infrequent.
Some seats, gate at east end. Toilets at Long Street car park, Newport. Wheelchair 1.1 km.

Newport Town
Newport has shops, hotels, pubs, ATM etc and is about a quarter mile inland of the Coast Path.
Newport is a fascinating little town. It was founded around 1200 as Novus Burgus, by William
Fitzmartin, Lord of Cemaes. Its streets still follow the Norman grid pattern. The castle and lordship
were fought over by the Normans and the Welsh, and changed hands several times. From the 16th
century onwards, Newport was an important trading centre, exporting wool, herrings and slate and
importing bricks, limestone, tiles and coal. Shipbuilding was another major industry. At the Parrog
there were several cargo warehouses, one of which is now the Newport Boat Club. Nearby is a
limekiln, where limestone was burned to produce lime for use in farming and building, and beside it
the kiln-keeper’s cottage. For more information about Newport, ask at the National Park Information
Centre in Long Street.