The city of Swansea is a great base for FIT holidays. There is easy access to the sandy 5 mile (8 km) sweep of Swansea Bay and the spectacular coast of the Gower Peninsula and the open green countryside, enabling many contrasting day trips. Here are some suggestions.

City of Swansea

Swansea (Abertawe in Welsh, meaning the mouth of the River Tawe) sits on the edge of Swansea Bay. There is little left of Swansea’s industrial past, as “Copperopolis", a dock for the heavy copper smelting in the Swansea Valley.

Views of the ruins of a castle in the sunlight.

Swansea Castle

A modern Maritime Quarter, buzzing with bars and cafes, has replaced most of the old docks. Dylan Thomas, a son of Swansea, is the most quoted writer in the English language after Shakespeare. The Dylan Thomas Centre in the Maritime Quarter has the Man and Myth exhibition which captures the essence of Dylan’s life.

Visitors can also visit 5 Cwmdonkin Drive, Dylan Thomas birthplace and where he lived for 23 years, writing two-thirds of his work. There are tours of the house, afternoon teas and, for a truly unique experience, visitors can stay the night. Other tours on offer will take visitors to all Dylan Thomas’ haunts in and around Swansea and further afield to Laugharne and West Wales.

To meet the warm-hearted people of Swansea and Gower head for Swansea indoor market, where stalls are piled high with fresh, local produce. Try the seafood delicacies, cockles and laverbread (seaweed) from Gower.

A bust of Dylan Thomas and people exploring exhibits at the Dylan Thomas Centre.
An aga and copper pots, pans and kettle.
market stalls full of shoppers.

Dylan Thomas Centre, Dylan Thomas birthplace and Swansea Market

Private walking tours around Swansea can be arranged throughout the year with Fogo's Free Tours (All 'free' tours operate on a 'pay as you feel' basis after the tour).

Visit Swansea Arena for a range of shows and events throughout the year. The 3,500 seat capacity is in the heart of the city.

A group of people on a walking tour outside an arena.
External artist impression of a music and arts arena.

Fogo's Free Tours outside Swansea Arena

Museums and galleries

The National Waterfront Museum in Swansea tells the story of industry and innovation in Wales, now and over 300 years. It also has a fun-packed events programme and excellent facilities for visitors. Free entry.

An old plane on display with people looking at other exhibits at a museum.
Exhibits in glass boxes with a wooden trimmed base and lightboxes in a museum.

National Waterfront Museum

The Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, housed in a very handsome Edwardian building in the city, offers a broad range of visual arts. Paintings from Monet and Pissaro to modern works and sculptures by Barbara Hepworth are on permanent display.

A red and sand brick building, home to an art gallery on a tree lined road.
Inside the atrium of the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery

Glynn Vivian Art Gallery

Beaches, walks and activities

Swansea is often referred to as the “Gateway to Gower”. 

The Gower Peninsula was designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) nearly 70 years ago, the first in the UK. It’s west of Swansea and packed with a captivating coastline, world class beaches, a coastal path along dramatic craggy cliff tops, wild moorland and an abundance of historic sites.

Gower is relatively small in area, 19 miles (30 kms) long, There’s plenty to do to appreciate the beauty of this special area, including walking, golf, horse riding, surfing, paddle boarding kayaking around the coast and bushcraft skills with Dryad Bushcraft.

Cyclists on Coast Path at Blackpill at sunrise with Mumbles Head in background
Aerial shot of a golf course and coastline in the sunshine.

Cycling, walking and golf on the Gower Peninsula


Visitors can enjoy the promenade walk along the seafront from Swansea to Oystermouth Castle 4 miles (7 km) in Mumbles. The 12th century castle on a high ridge commands stunning views across Swansea Bay. Kings, lords and ladies have lived within the thick stone walls through centuries of turmoil. Look for the 14th century graffiti art and explore a medieval labyrinth of vaults, chambers and rooms. A variety of open air events are regularly held at the castle.

Your clients may also want to include a visit to one of Cadw's castles in the area including Oxwich Castle, Loughor Castle and Weobley Castle.

The ruins of a castle on lush green banks.

Oystermouth Castle


Wales is a golfer’s paradise with around 200 courses, many of them championship courses. Swansea and Gower have their fair share. Play, eat and stay at The Gower Golf Club. Marvel at the view of Three Cliffs Bay from the Pennard Golf Club. Along the rugged coast towards Caswell Bay lies Langland Bay Golf Club

These are just three of the many courses for the keen golfer, within easy reach of Swansea, all at affordable prices and all ready to receive visitors with a Welsh style ‘Croeso’ (Welcome).

Two golfers on the green with the ruins of a castle behind on a gorse covered hill.

Langland Bay and Pennard golf clubs


The boathouse, in the coastal village of Laugharne, was home to Dylan Thomas, his wife Caitlin and their two children for many years. Here, in the writing shed, he wrote many of his best works, including Under Milk Wood. The views of the Taf Estuary and the north coast of Gower would have been an inspiration. Dylan Thomas Boathouse is now a museum, shop and tea room. The village is dominated by the picturesque ruin of Laugharne Castle. Visitors can enjoy a drink at Brown's Hotel, in the bar where Dylan enjoyed a pint most nights. For more on Dylan Thomas see the three day itinerary In the Footsteps of Dylan Thomas. 

Views on an estuary from the top of the roof of a boathouse.
A castle with a boat in the foreground.

Dylan Thomas Boathouse, Laugharne Castle and Brown' Hotel


The green flag status Clyne Gardens is internationally famous for its Pieris, Rhododendrons and Enkianthus. The national collections and rare species are set within ancient woodland and bog garden which provides views toward Swansea bay. Limited parking is available but there are opportunities for on-road parking. Other gardens to explore in the city centre are Plantasia and Swansea Botanical Gardens in Singleton Park.

Within an hour’s easy drive from Swansea 30 miles (48 km), visitors can spend a day at the National Botanic Garden of Wales, set in 600 acres of 18th century parkland. Its centrepiece is the vast glasshouse, the world’s largest single span glass structure. There is plenty more to enjoy, including walled gardens, lakes and areas of varied planting. It is also home of the British Bird of Prey Centre who offer Eagle Experience Wales, a private session flying three of the largest birds of prey in the UK. There is a shop and restaurant on site. Visitors can make the most of their visit with a number of trails and apps.

Aerial shot of a botanic garden and glasshouse.

National Botanic Garden of Wales

Near the National Botanic Garden in Llanarthne is Aberglasney Mansion and Gardens, a garden lost in time. There are 10 acres of gardens, including the Elizabethan Cloister Garden, Asiatic Garden, Alpinum, Upper Walled Garden, Lower Walled Garden (Kitchen Garden), Pool Garden and the 18th century Yew Tunnel. The ground floor of the grade II listed mansion is open to visitors and there is also a café and shop on site.

The exterior of Aberglasney House in Llangathen with garden in foreground

Aberglasney Mansion and Gardens

Nature - walking and waterfalls

A picturesque drive of around 30 minutes, 16 miles (27 km) through the Neath Valley takes the visitor to the southern edge of the Bannau Brycheiniog (Brecon Beacons) National Park to Waterfall Country. It’s a very popular and beautiful part of the National Park and the Fforest Fawr Geopark, with its steep-sided tree-lined gorges, caves and a large number of impressive waterfalls. The adventurous can walk on a natural path behind the most famous waterfall, Sgwd yr Eira, 'fall of snow'. Walkers and climbers, photographers, cavers and canoeists are drawn to this truly unique and remarkable area. Clients can even take a leisurely trip on a vintage train with Brecon Mountain Railway.

Sheep on a lush green mountain.

Sgwd yr Eira and Bannau Brycheiniog (Brecon Beacons)

Craig-y-nos Country Park provides 40 acres to explore in the Upper Swansea Valley. Part of the Fforest Fawr UNESCO Global Geopark, a Discovery Point has been created for visitors to plan their exploration of the Geopark. The paths are easy to follow, most of which are surfaced, and travel alongside rivers, large beech trees, meadows, woodland and lakes. The car park is suitable for minibuses.

WWT Llanelli Wetland Centre has so much wildlife to explore in over 500 acres. Highlights at the nature reserve include a flamboyance of flamingos who have made their home there. Free coach parking and free entry for the coach driver and group organiser are available. There is a gift shop and café on site.

A bird wading on a lake at a wetland centre.

WWT Llanelli Wetland Centre

The Spirit of Wales

Penderyn Swansea Copperworks Distillery opened in July 2023 and is their third premises in Wales. Located in a development which is transforming into a tourism hotspot due to it's copper heritage, clients will be able to see the 'copper tunnel' on a tour. There is also an exhibition area, a tasting bar and a shop on site. Masterclasses are also available.

A dark tunnel in a distillery.

The copper tunnel at Penderyn Swansea Copperworks Distillery

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