If you are looking for a gentle, family bike ride in the southwest of Wales, cycling from Mumbles to Swansea Marina in Gower is simply perfect. This traffic-free cycle path follows the curve of Swansea Bay and offers magnificent views of the sea and Gower peninsula.
- Start point: Mumbles Road, Mumbles (SA3 4DN)
- Parking: Pay & display car park
- Type of Cycle ride: Out and back
- Distance: 6 miles each way
Cycling from Mumbles to Swansea
The cycle path follows the Sustrans Route 4, part of the National Cycle Network which runs from London to Fishguard. This stretch of the route is flat and gentle, so is ideal for families. Furthermore, the cycle path has a tarmac surface, so is an easy ride and suitable for cyclists of all skill levels. It is also traffic-free and has separate pedestrian and cycle lanes.
However, as it is such a popular route it can get busy, so I would advise going early if you want to beat the crowds.
The cycle path to Swansea follows along the route of the old Mumbles tram line that carried the world’s very first railway passengers in 1807. Apart from the absence of hills, the best thing about this family cycle ride is the views. The cycle path hugs the coastline, so you get coastal views of Swansea Bay all the way there.
Plus, there are fantastic places to stop all the way. Stop for a picnic on the beach or at one of the ice cream stalls for a quick pick-me-up!
On arrival at Swansea, we crossed over the pedestrian swing bridge, before stopping for a snack overlooking Swansea Marina. After years of regeneration, the Maritime Quarter in Swansea is now a very modern area. If you have time you could visit the National Waterfront Museum or Dylan Thomas Centre, both of which are nearby.
Then, we then cycled round and came back over the Tawe Barrage Lock, before retracing our steps to Mumbles.
Return to Mumbles Head
Mumbles is a traditional Victorian seaside town, with plenty to amuse its visitors. If you have time, take a trip to the 12th Century Oystermouth Castle, which is 10 minutes’ walk from the town. Alternatively, you could head to the end of the promenade to visit the beautiful pier or trip out to the Mumbles Lighthouse if the tide is out.
Extending your cycle route
The ride to Swansea Bay is just over 5 miles in each direction, though obviously you could do less if you wanted. However, if you want to extend your route there is a fantastic cycle path which runs through the Clyne Valley Country Park to the village of Gowerton.
You can access this on the way back when you get to Black Pill. You need to cross the main road (A4067) to get to the entrance of the country park. This cycle path follows the trackbed of the old London Midland Scottish Railway. It is a beautiful woodland route, with plenty of wildlife to spot.
Unfortunately, one of the boys was stung by a wasp, which put a damper on our bike ride. We stopped for refreshments at the railway Inn and then returned to our original homebound route.
Hiring your bikes
If you fancy this ride, but don’t have bikes, you can hire them from one of the six docking stations along the way. You will have to register for this in advance. Click here for details.
We loved cycling from Mumbles to Swansea. It’s an exhilarating bike ride with fantastic views, and best of all it’s flat and traffic-free.
There’s a good choice of places to stop for refreshments or for a picnic, so is an ideal family trip. Obviously, you could do our route in reverse and start in Swansea if that is more convenient.
Have you tried cycling from Mumbles to Swansea? We’d love to know how you got on?
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