The Pembrokeshire islands attract many with the romance of wild remote places. Caldey has a monastery and ancient settlement set in a tranquil valley, but it also has a lovely beach and a fascinating human history. The other islands are nature reserves where, in season, seals, seabirds and rare plants can be seen at remarkably close quarters. Skomer is thrilling to visit when thousands of Puffins and other seabirds are breeding in mid-summer, and when acres of Bluebells or Pink Campion wash it in brilliant colour. Skokholm and Skomer together are home to the largest colonies of Manx Shearwaters in the world. Evening boat-trips in summer go out to see the thousands of birds returning to their islands at sunset. Ramsey is an RSPB reserve with dramatic cliffs and an ancient rugged landscape, renowned in Welsh mythology. There you can see breeding seabirds, and in late summer, grey seals and their pups on the beaches. It has wild Ravens and red-billed Chough as well as introduced Rabbits and Red Deer. It is a superb wild place with glorious seascapes, and on a good day, you can see the mountains of Eire on the far horizon. Kayakers know Ramsey for the wild water of the Bitches in Ramsey Sound where the tide changes direction twice a day and roars through like a waterfall. All the islands can be reached by scheduled boat services, an adventure in their own right, with a chance to see porpoises and very occasionally other cetaceans too. Special off-shore trips are offered out of Martins Haven and St Justinians to look for whales and dolphins, and specialist charter companies take divers out to the Marine Nature Reserves around Skomer and Skokholm and other sites around Ramsey or Grassholm.

The secret waterways of Pembrokeshire are special places too. The Daucleddau (pronounced 'dow-cleth-eye')estuary meanders 15 wooded miles inland from Pembroke Dock (war time Sunderland Flying-boat dock overlying Napoleonic-era fortifications) to the lake-like confluence of the two rivers, and then a further 7 miles of narrow, twisting tidal river to remote Blackpool Mill on the Eastern Cleddau and the busy little county town of Haverfordwest on the Western Cleddau. Yachties, birdwatchers and fishermen find plenty for them here amongst the mudflats, tricky currents, tidal ebb and flow and the calls of winter Curlew or springtime Chiff Chaff.

Then there is the hidden world of the Afon Gwaun in the Gwaun Valley that leads from Fishguard up into the Bronze Age heartland of Carn Ingli and Brynberian (the astounding source of the stones that became Stonehenge). For more relaxing strolling there is Bosherton Lilyponds in the south of the county, where an easy path leads from waterlilies and swans to sandy beach and back to cottage cream-teas. And for the more active there is Llys y Fran Reservoir, a country park with bike and boat hire by the day.

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