Barry - Watch House Bay

Barry - Watch House Bay - Glamorgan
© Roger Cornfoot and licensed for reuse under this Licence

Barry Island is not actually an island.  It used to be, but in the late 19th century the docks built there joined it to the mainland. 
Today Barry is South Wales’s largest town and has all the traditional amusements and places to eat and drink that one would expect in a seaside town of this size, including a pleasure park and a vibrant High Street with quite a few quirky, independent shops.

Watch House Bay, also known as Watch Tower Bay, is one of the quieter beaches in the Barry Island area.  At high tide the pebble beach here is flanked by rocks on one side and low rise cliffs with dense trees on the other.  When the tide recedes, a vast expanse of sand is exposed. There is a slipway and a small jetty leading down to the water.

The old watch house, which can still be seen on the beach, was built in the 1860’s as a lookout over the old harbour, and reminds visitors of the area’s nautical past. During the 16th and 17th century this was a flourishing port.

Behind the beach is a park area with a marine lake in the shape of a Welsh harp. The closest facilities are at Knapp Beach, a short walk away.

Type of beach


Lifeguard service


Dogs friendly beach?

Dogs allowed

No dog restrictions.

Glamorgan dog friendly beaches »


  • Toilets
  • Town centre nearby

Nearest town



CF62 6FB

OS grid ref.

ST 1069 6615


Parking available a short walk from this beach.

Water quality

Water quality star rating

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Barry - Watch House Bay Reviews

Watchtower Bay.

Lee O'Brien
Sep 11th 2023

I am a member of the Watchtower waders. We swim 365 days a year sometimes a few times a day.
The Bay is our love, our place to be, its beautiful, we all keep it clean, and wouldn’t want to have our massive swim group anywhere else xxx