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Enjoy a bracing swim in Anglesey’s stunning waters

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Experience all Anglesey has to offer from beautiful Rhosneigr

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Relieve stress, improve health and enjoy the beautiful beaches of Anglesey on a sea swimming trip. You’ll find swims for all experience levels and a welcoming community of swimmers. Sea swimming is a truly addictive pastime and while you might not have the natural beauty of Anglesey at home – we guarantee it’s something you’ll want to continue once your holiday finishes.

middle aged women enjoy a swim in the sea

What is Sea Swimming?

Sea or open water swimming is a swimming discipline practised in open water (oceans, lakes, rivers). While people have been swimming in open water since time immemorial, the modern fascination is said to have begun with Lord (mad, bad and dangerous to know) Byron’s crossing of the Dardanelles (then known as the Hellespont), a body of water that forms part of the continental boundary between Europe from Asia.

The activity has gained huge popularity in recent years thanks to books such as Wild Swim by Kate Rew, founder of the Outdoor Swimming Society and Waterlogged by late environmentalist Roger Deakin as well as several television documentaries and a common perception of positive health outcomes. While medical studies of these medical benefits are in their infancy, there are positive indications that sea swimming benefits participants in the areas of mental, cardiovascular and musculoskeletal health.

Best Sea Swimming Locations on Anglesey

It can get a little chilly depending on the time of year, but sea swimming around the coast of Anglesey is an incredible experience all year round. Not only does Anglesey have six Blue Flag beaches, it also has some breath-taking scenery and friendly open water swimming groups that welcome visitors. If you’d like to plan your swim ahead of time, you could do worse than consider the following:

drone captured image of rhosneigr from the air with blue water in the foreground
  • Trearddur Bay: – Located on the west coast of Holy Island (south of Holyhead), Trearddur Bay is a popular wild swimming location and hosts regular wild swimming events. The sea is mostly calm, making it ideal for beginners, and boasts a wonderful beach and excellent scenery.
  • Penrhos Beach: – A sand and shingle beach near Holyhead, Penrhos Beach is a popular destination for most water sports and, being quite sheltered, provides a good introduction for beginners, while the more adventurous can swim around the coast to the Penrhos nature reserve.
  • Lligwy Beach: – Another sheltered beach, Lligwy is another area that’s welcoming for open water swimmers of any level. What separates it from some others is the friendly sea swimming group run out of the nearby Lligwy Beach Cafe (the aptly named Lligwy Beach Cafe Swim Club) which hosts regular events.
  • Benllech Beach: – A gorgeous, Blue Flag sandy beach about three quarters of a mile long, Benllech Beach is among the best catered for in terms of both accessibility and amenities, making it ideal for swimmers with families. In addition, the water is generally nice and calm, meaning you can introduce the entire family to the joys of open water swimming.
  • Porth Swtan (Church Bay): – With a beach warden in attendance during the summer months, Porth Swtan is a sand and pebble beach near Holyhead and is popular with anglers, sailors and swimmers. The water can get choppy a little further out, so swimmers will need to be careful and pay close attention to conditions on the day.
  • Traeth Bychan: – Just north of Benllech, and similarly well covered in terms of amenities, is another sand and pebble beach, this time on the east of the main island. Backed by cliffs and sheltered from the prevailing winds, the island is a great destination for swimmers of any experience level.
  • Traeth Llanddwyn (Newborough): – A stunning beach with mountain views, Traeth Llanddwyn is a great option for open sea swimmers new and old, with calm water near shore. However, even the most experienced swimmers will need to be careful as currents pick up quickly further from the shore – though adventurous swimmers can head from there to the tip of Ynys Llanddwyn (a tidal island) where there are some stunning views.
  • Menai Strait: – Not for the faint hearted, sea swimming along the Menai Strait is for experienced swimmers only (and even then, we’d recommend one of the guided swims below). All that said, the exhilaration of swimming in such fast moving water will get the blood pumping and the scenery (probably best to look before and after) is sensational.
  • Traeth Crigyll (Rhosneigr): – A truly stunning location (if we do say so ourselves), Traeth Crigyll is sandy beach with views of Snowdonia and a shallow gradient meaning you can swim a fair way without being too deep. The sheltered location also protects swimmers from the currents making it ideal for mixed skill groups of swimmers and families.

 
If you’re planning activities, we have plenty of additional information on other available water sports on our site, and about the various beaches, in our beaches section.

Where to Hire Equipment

While sea swimming can, of course, be done in normal beachwear, for longer swims and for more adventurous swimmers, there is the option of hiring a wetsuit if you don’t own your own. Some options for this include:

Gecko Surf

High Street,
Rhosneigr,
LL64 5UQ

A family run business, Gecko operates a surf school – but also offers equipment hire. With wetsuits available from £5 per hour, beginners looking to try out open water swimming before making a larger investment will benefit from Gecko’s shorter rental periods.

Funsport

1 Beach Terrace
Rhosneigr
LL64 5QB

Hourly rentals start at £4 with Funsport, but there’s the option of a full day rental for just £15, so if you’re planning a full day in the water, this is a great option. Funsport also has plenty of other equipment available for hire if you’re looking to try more than just a swim.

Where to Book Lessons

Love SwimRun

Y Bedol,
Conwy Old Road,
Capelulo,
Penmaenmawr,
Conwy,
LL34 6SP

As mentioned, swimmers looking to challenge themselves against the Menai Strait would do well to consider a guided swim and Love SwimRun provides just the ticket (and successful swimmers will achieve an ‘I swam the Menai Strait!’ swim cap). With prices from £99 per person guaranteeing a full safety crew, this is the way to experience the Menai Strait.

Love SwimRun also organises a Holy Island event if you’re the competitive type.

Anglesey Outdoors

Porthdafarch Road,
Holyhead,
LL65 2LP

Offering guided wild swimming sessions which run to three and a half hours each, and for all ages and abilities, Anglesey Outdoors prices begin at £30 per person, though guided sea swimming is only available as a private group booking, so arrangements need to be made through their office rather than online. Activities take place, generally, at Porth Dafarch, though they can arrange for sessions as far as the beautiful Ynys Llanddwyn.

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