Beach review – Stackpole Quay

This tiny, and extremely sheltered, little cove was used as a private harbour for the former Stackpole House

What it’s like:

Tiny, mostly rocky, cove, with an imposing Victorian stone quay. At low tide, you can walk across the beach to climb onto the Quay; at higher tides you’ll need to continue along the path past the steps to Barafundle until you come out on a miniature headland, where there’s a steel ladder firmly anchored into the cliff wall that you can climb down.

How to get there:

From Warren, head back towards Pembroke along the B4319. Take a right towards Stackpole village, a little way after the turning to Bosherston, through the woods. Continue through Stackpole and past the turning to Stackpole Elidor. Take the next right to Stackpole Quay. Park in the car park, walk towards the Quay for a short distance before heading right up & over the headland to the Deer Park wall and the long flight of steps leading down to the beach.

Alternate routes are to park at Stackpole House or Bosherston. Walk around the Lilyponds, cross Eight Arch Bridge and head on over the hill to Stackpole Quay

What to do when you’re there:

  • Climb down the ladder. It’s all been a bit “Health & Safety’d” now, but even with the new stainless steel enclosed ladder that replaced the old simple & unprotected iron one, it still makes you feel a bit like you’re a pirate, a smuggler or perhaps a member of the Famous Five on an adventure.
  • If the tide is high & you’re feeling brave, jump off the Quay or the cliff next to the ladder. Even if you’re not so keen on getting wet, just peering over the edge into the crystal clear waters will remind you just how amazing nature is, as you gaze down through metres of water all the way to the sand below.
  • Learn to scuba dive. With the clarity of the waters in the area and the sheltered launch, this is a favourite place for scuba divers keen to see the sights under the waves.

Other things you should know about it:

The Stackpole Estate used to be owned by the Cawdor family – of Macbeth fame. Whilst Pembrokeshire was often used as a stopping off point for a sea route to Scotland (which was much easier, safer and quicker than travelling overland), the 600 year delay between Macbeth & the 16th Earl of Cawdor acquiring the land by marriage means that you’re unlikely to be treading in his footsteps.

The village of Stackpole used to be much closer to the route between the Quay & Stackpole Court, but a former resident decided that it spoilt his view & had the whole village torn down & moved to its current location.

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