Beach bell tents in Carmarthenshire

Overlooked by those set on the Pembrokeshire Coast, idyllic Carmarthenshire is still worth a visit.

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100% (16 reviews)

Popular camping styles for Carmarthenshire

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Beach bell tents in Carmarthenshire guide


Set between Pembrokeshire to its west and the Brecon Beacons to its east, camping in Carmarthenshire is often overlooked by virtue of its position between these more instantly recognisable of tourist-friendly regions. But this vibrant county in south-west Wales retains a distinctive identity all its own. Verdant valleys, enchanting woodlands and a richly varied coastline make Carmarthenshire a ready-made destination for camping. Throw into the mix ancient prehistoric sites, Arthurian legend and the literary lineage of Wales’ most famous writer, and there’s no denying that Carmarthenshire is one of Wales’ best-kept camping secrets.  

In days of heraldry, Carmarthenshire was the largest of Wales’ thirteen historic counties. Now its population is largely dispersed between rural settlements and the three largest towns of Carmarthen, Ammanford and Llanelli. The region is heavily agricultural, which means an abundance of campsites on working farms. Most on-the-farm campsites allow guests to muck-in with the daily chores such as milking cows, feeding new-born lambs and collecting eggs from the resident hens, making them some of the best campsites for kids in West Wales.    

Carmarthenshire’s unique coastline presents yet another perspective on West Wales camping. In contrast to the rugged sea-battered cliffs of the Pembrokeshire coast, Carmarthen Bay’s vast estuaries – fed by the River Loughor to the east and Tywi, Taf and Gwendraeth (the Three Rivers Estuary) to the west – make for an altogether flatter coastline. ­But it’s no less spectacular for it and arguably offers a far more diverse coastal camping experience. There are endless sandy expanses like Pendine Sands and St Ishmael; the marram grass and sand dunes of Pembrey Beach; and, of course, the stunning Gower Peninsula juts out into Carmarthen Bay, home to the tidal marshes that produce the grazing for that Welsh delicacy, Gower salt marsh lamb. So wherever you opt to pitch your tent, there’s sure to be a beach within reach.

Away from the campsite, there’s a wealth of places to visit and things to see and do in Carmarthenshire. The region is dotted with well-preserved castle ruins like Kidwelly Castle, Llansteffan Castle and Carreg Cennen Castle. Or spend the day at the National Botanic Garden of Wales in Llanarthne - an internationally-recognised horticultural centre boasting one of the world’s largest glasshouses. Try your hand panning for gold at Dolaucothi Gold Mines. The pretty estuary village of Laugharne is synonymous with Dylan Thomas – join the literary trail and visit the great poet’s old haunts including the famous boathouse and writing shed, now a museum. Or, for a flavour of the national obsession, head to Llanelli to see the Scarlets rugby team in action.

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