South Gower Coast, Rhossili to Oxwich

Rhossili sun set Gower

Characteristics of South Gower Coast

Landscape

The stretch of coast between Rhossili and Oxwich is a stunning and varied wildlife rich landscape of cliff scenery, woodland and dunes.

Clear days allow views out to the island of Lundy and across to the North Devon Coast. Probably the most recognisable feature along this stretch of coast is the tidal island of Worm’s Head at Rhossili.

Port Eynon to Oxwich is a mosaic of coastal habitats including the Biodiversity Action Plan priority habitats: lowland heath, sand dune, lowland acid grassland, lowland calcareous grassland and maritime cliff and slope.

Wildlife

The south facing cliffs of South Gower Coast are rich in biodiversity and support an array of scarce flora and fauna.

Several species of conservation concern can be found here, including peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus). The rare Dartford warbler (Sylvia undata) is being spotted with increasing frequency along this stretch of coast. Birds such as chough and raven can also often been seen.

Oxwich National Nature Reserve is an area of sand dunes and marshland managed by National Resources Wales (NRW). Oxwich Wood adjoins this area which is predominantly ancient woodland and also of considerable importance for nature conservation.

Management and Commons use

From Rhossili to Port Eynon the limestone coast is remote, rugged and wild. It is mostly owned by the National Trust.

The National Trust manages the site with help from the Wildlife Trust for South and West Wales, which oversees six reserves including Deborah’s Hole, Long Hole Cliff, Port Eynon Point, Sedger’s Bank, Overton Cliff and Roydon’s Corner and Overton Mere.

History and Archaeology

It is along this stretch of coast where the prehistoric bones of the Red Lady of Paviland were discovered in one of the cliffside caves, Goat’s Hole Cave. The bones of a mammoth were also found there.

Slade Cliffs, Horton Cliffs, Sedgers Bank and Port Eynon Point are all areas of registered common land
Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC) include Penmaen and Pennard Burrows, Oxwich Woods, Port Eynon to Horton
Heritage Coast
National Nature Reserve (NNR)
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)
Gower Special Area of Conservation (SAC)
Gower Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

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