Cardigan to Tenby
Explore Dylan Thomas country on this tour of South West Wales
Follow the route - Cardigan to Tenby
> From Cardigan follow the A484, and eventually, past Newcastle Emlyn, turn right along an unclassified road to Dre-fach Felindre.
Visiting Dre-fach Felindre
Just before the turning to Dre-fach Felindre, a left turn leads to the Teifi Valley Railway at Henllan, where tiny engines pull the trains along a narrow-gauge railway. The Teifi valley has long been a woollen producing area, and the Museum of the Welsh Woollen Industry is in the village. There are still a few small mills in the area where you can see the cloth being made. The original mill building has an exhibition showing the processes involved in cloth-making, and there are spinning and weaving demonstrations.
> Continue south along unclassified roads to join the B4333, then the A484 to Carmarthen.
Carmarthen is believed to be the oldest town in Wales, and the birthplace of Merlin. Remains of Roman occupation include an amphitheatre site. The Gwili Steam Railway at Bronwydd opened in 1860, but closed in 1973 when the milk traffic was transferred to road tankers. It was reopened in 1978 and now operates for 4 miles (6.4km) from Bronwydd Arms to Danycoed, following the course of the River Gwili.
Places to stay near Carmarthen
> Go west along the A40, turning left at St Clears to join the A4066 for Laugharne.
Laugharne had a strong influence on Dylan Thomas, and the town hall, clock tower and many of the people became part of Under Milk Wood. Thomas moved into the Boathouse with his family in 1949 and along the path to it is ‘The Shack’, which became his workshop. The Boathouse is now a museum, Dylan Thomas is buried in the local churchyard and there is a festival of his work every third year in July. The castle by the sea was built in the 12th century, but the present building is mainly Tudor.
Places to stay near Laugharne
> Follow the A4066 to Pendine.
Pendine is best noted for its golden sand, on which Sir Malcolm Campbell and others made land speed record attempts. Amy Johnson took off from here in 1933 for the start of her epic transatlantic flight. Nowadays the beach is used for bathing and fishing, and there are beautiful cliff walks nearby.
> Take the B4314, then left onto unclassified roads to Saundersfoot.
This 19th-century fishing port and coal port has become a family holiday centre with three sandy beaches, rock pools and a sheltered harbour. Boats are available for fishing and pleasure trips. The village is in a sheltered valley, and there are good walks along the coast.
Places to stay in Saundersfoot
> Drive south along the B4316, then the A478 back to Tenby.
People have been singing Tenby’s praises enthusiastically since the ninth century, when an anonymous Welsh poet composed verses in honour of the fine fortress on the bright headland and the courage and generosity of its late lords. More recently, people have fallen in love with the beautiful old harbour, handsome Regency houses and narrow medieval streets, all hemmed in by the best-preserved town walls in south Wales.