Port Eynon is closed for the season, no shops, no cafes but we do manage to knock up a sleepy publican who very generously gives us a couple of bottles of water. The weather looks promising and I am looking forward to a long walk to burn off all the cakes, chocolates and alcohol consumed so enthusiastically over Christmas. After a short stretch along the beach we come across the ruins of a salt house with tanks intact, used in the eighteenth century to extract salt from sea water.The story goes that this was actually a cover for smuggled goods since most of the population of the town were involved in smuggling at that time.Behind the derelict buildings the narrow track winds up the bank through scrub and bracken and at the top we are given clear directions.I stop and take a photo looking back along the bay.…..and soon we are up on the edge of the cliffs. From here the tidal island known as Worms Head (I didn’t think worms had heads) looks deceptively close – this will be our tea and cake stop. From now on the hulking limestone cliffs predominate, the track is rocky in places and I need to keep an eye on my feet, keeping my weak ankle in mind.
We stop for a chat with a very relaxed black sheep and round a corner run into a father and son looking for a cave. I point unhelpfully at a black hole in the cliff in front of us but these two are searching for Pavilland Cave – the site of prehistoric remains and one which can only be accessed for a few hours a day when the tide is out. After a brief consultation of maps we say goodbye – later on we catch sight of them from time to time peering over the cliff edge, still trying to locate the cave.We are by now getting close to Worms Head so we follow the track up to the lookout station with a board outside showing the times when it is possible to walk across the causeway – but we are too early. Instead we make our way to the Worms Head Hotel for tea and Welsh cakes – it is very cold when you stop walking but there is a magnificent view from the benches outside.
After tea we climb down to the beach, heading for the remnants of a boat, rising out of the sand like the long neck and head of some petrified sea creature. Some brave (young) souls are surfing and Damian models the latest in walking wear.
Walking on down the beach we pass Hillend caravan site, tucked in behind the dunes and are now looking for a footpath to take us off the beach and back to the car. My iPhone is playing up so it’s difficult to track our position but just as I am beginning to feel a bit anxious we see a couple in front of us walk off the beach and into the dunes. Following in their footsteps in the dusk, trudging through soft sand, we finally reach a car park at what later turns out to be Broughton Farm caravan site. From here we walk up the narrow road to the Kings Head at Llangennith for a pint of Gower Gold. It has been a beautiful day.