The Gower peninsula is ideal for the classic British beach holiday as it provides a wide variety of beaches, bays and coves in a relatively short coastline.
These are located along the east, south and west coastline and all are within a short drive from Hill House.
Distances and driving times are provided in the interactive map at the top of this page.
Some of the popular beaches have life guard patrols and dog walking restrictions during the spring and summer time.
The area is very popular with surfers and there are a number of surfing schools catering to all age groups and abilities. See our Gower Surfing Schools page for information on the various schools that operate on the peninsula coastline.
To help you get the most out of your holiday we have produced a smartphone App that gives you detailed information on all of Gower’s bays, beaches and coves. It is free to download and use and available for Android or iPhone as shown opposite.
History of the Gower Peninsula
Wales is known to have been inhabited since at least the Upper Paleolithic period and the Gower Peninsula has been the scene of several important archaeological discoveries. There are 83 scheduled ancient monuments and ancient monument sites representing most periods in history from the Upper Palaeolithic caves through medieval castles, eighteenth century parkland and industrial monuments. It has been described as an ‘unrivaled microcosm of Wales’s historic wealth.
In 1823 Rev. William Buckland discovered a fairly complete Upper Paleolithic-era human male skeleton in one of the Paviland Caves (Goat’s hole cave) between Port Eynon and Mewslade. The find was named the Red Lady of Paviland because the fossilised bones are dyed in red ochre but later investigators determined that the skeleton was actually a male. This was the first human fossil to have been found anywhere in the world, and is still the oldest ceremonial burial to be discovered anywhere in Western Europe so far discovered. The most recent re-calibrated radiocarbon dating in 2009 indicates that the skeleton can be dated to around 33,000 Before Present (BP).
At the time of the burial the cave was probably more than 100km from the sea and Wales was still attached to the european continent. The passage of geological time has since made the cave a decidedly more scenic final resting place.
In the 1950s, Cambridge University excavating in a cave on the peninsula found 300-400 pieces of flint related to tool making, and dated it to between 12,000-14,000 BC. In 2010 an instructor from Bristol University, exploring caves in the same area, discovered a rock drawing of a red deer from the same period- which may be the oldest cave art found in Great Britain.