Whiteford sands are located on the northwestern edge of the Gower Peninsula and form a seemingly endless expanse of flat sand lining the Loughor Estuary. Curving for around 2 miles between the cliffs of Broughton Bay to the sandy spit of Whiteford Point the beach here looks over the water to Burry Port.
This is a place for bracing walks, or bringing the dog so he can run himself silly! The windswept coast is backed by the low dunes of Whiteford Burrows and a pine plantation. Owned by the National Trust, this and the neighbouring salt marsh are a National Nature Reserve.
This is a great spot for birdwatching with an enormous population of wintering wildfowl and waders. It is also home to some rare and beautiful flora including early marsh orchid, fen orchid and dune gentian.
Sitting off the end of the beach is Whiteford Lighthouse. Abandoned in 1933 this lonely cast iron tower stands just above the low water mark, guarding the entrance to the estuary. You can actually walk out to the lighthouse, but my advice is don’t - there is only a 3 hour tide window to get there and back and it can take an hour to walk to the tower. You don’t want to spend the next 9 hours clinging to the side of the lighthouse waiting for the tide to go back out!
You may be surprised to know there are further dangers lurking at Whiteford Sands. Back in World War II this area was used by the army as a mining and shelling range. Over the years quite a few nasty surprises have turned up. The good news is the amount of unexploded ordnance discovered gets less and less as time goes by.
Type of beach
Dogs friendly beach?
SA3 1 DL
OS grid ref.
SS 4413 9504
Parking in farmers field between Llanmadoc and Cwm Ivy (honesty box for payment).
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