Rest Bay, Porthcawl – a perfect beach day out

Last week, Nick was on holiday, and the weather was warm and sunny, so we headed over to Wales in search of a beautiful beach to enjoy for the day. And we found one we loved so much, we went again the very next day!

This is Rest Bay, Porthcawl. Just off the M4 near Bridgend, only a 1.25 hour drive from Bristol, a haven of golden sands, blue sea, and nothing else. Except a cafe. Which is very important, in my books.

Everything about it was perfect. Excellent sandcastle construction opportunities. Lots of rock pools (we found a huge crab!). Paddling. Lifeguard patrol. Ice creams. Clean toilets. Surf.

The kids were entertained for hours with digging up sand, paddling in rock pools, eating a picnic, and walking down to the sea, paddling in it, and going back again. Lovely, down-to-earth, honest fun.

The only downside to this beach is that at high tide the sand is underwater, so it’s essential to check tide times before going, and choose to go when the tide is receding, or when it’s low. It was also quite windy both days we went, but that didn’t stop us from swimsuit wearing nor going in the sea, which was a remarkable 17 degrees and didn’t feel cold at all.

The price tag? £6.60 for the Severn Bridge crossing, £2.80 for the car park all day, £1.60 for a takeaway cup of tea (miles better than tea from a Thermos), and £10 for four ice creams.

So, while a trip to the beach should really be free, this was still cheaper than a day at a theme park, and we didn’t have to stand around in queues, and I got to read a whole chapter of my book. With no interruptions. Win.


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