Weekend guide to Swansea Bay (where to stay, what to do and where to eat!)

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Weekend Guide to Swansea Bay (where to stay, what to do and where to eat!)

Swansea Bay in Wales is an absolutely fabulous weekend break! Not only does it have some of the best coastal views in the country, it’s jam-packed with things to do! There’s the beach, coastal walks, indoor and outdoor watersports, a 12th century castle, several museums and lots of great shopping! Want to find out more? Here’s your weekend guide to Swansea Bay – where to stay, what to do and where to eat!

How to get to Swansea Bay

By car

The easiest way to get to Swansea Bay is by car. You’ll follow a more scenic route and have the convenience of having a car to take you between activities whilst you’re visiting (although not necessary if you’d prefer to travel via public transport).

There’s ample parking pretty much everywhere you go in Swansea, either in the city centre or if you head into Mumbles for a drive down the coast.

The journey is four hours from Manchester and only three and half hours from London.

Mumbles Pier from the beach with rolling waves

By Train

If you don’t have a car (or just prefer to chill on the train!), there are regular train services that take the same length of time as driving from London Paddington Station and Manchester Piccadilly Station.

There are journey options with no changes from these stations with the trains running every hour on week days until 9.30pm. However, journeys with changes begin after 4.30pm.

Sunday services are every hour and run until between 8.30pm and 9.30pm (depending on what station you’re coming from).

View of the bay and rows of candy-coloured houses in Swansea Bay from Oystermouth Castle

Where to stay

If you love to stay central to the action without breaking the bank when you travel (like me!), you will love the Dragon Hotel.

It’s around a seven minute walk away from everything you could need during your stay, including the train station, the museums, waterpark and shopping.

The hotel is also only a seven minute walk away from the bus station where you will find regular services to take you into Mumbles – making it perfectly located!

Reception of the Dragon Hotel in Swansea Bay with red dragon tail carpet and a glass table in the middle of the room

The Dragon Hotel is not only fabulously located but it’s affordable and stylish too, with prices starting from only £60 per night.

The bright and spacious bedrooms include a big comfy bed, ensuite bathroom, complimentary toiletries, air-conditioning, flat screen TV, tea and coffee making facilities, large wardrobes and most importantly free wifi!

Red hotel room with a white and red bed in the middle of the room in the Dragon Hotel in Swansea Bay

You can also add breakfast to your booking, which will set you up for a day of adventure activities. They offer a range of breakfast options from cereal and fresh fruit to fry ups and warm pastries.

White bathroom in the Dragon Hotel in Swansea Bay

If you plan on taking a little more time for relaxation during your stay, the Dragon Hotel also has a brasserie with fine dining and a leisure club with an indoor pool, saunas, fitness centre and spa treatment rooms.  

Mini bottles of toiletries at the Dragon Hotel in Swansea Bay

What to do

Swansea Bay is jam-packed with things to do! There’s the beach, coastal walks, indoor and outdoor watersports, a 12th century castle, several museums and lots of great shopping!

There’s truly something for everybody in Swansea Bay and plenty to keep you occupied for a full week let alone just a weekend!

Check out my, top 10 awesome things to do in Swansea Bay post for my full list of recommendations on the best things to do and my weekend vlog for a behind the scenes look!

Where to eat

The Swansea Bay area is home to some fantastic eateries but I must Verdi’s by the seafront is my favourite!

Verdi’s is a beautiful family run Italian cafe and ice cream parlour that looks out right onto Swansea Bay. It has all your classic Italian favourites including pasta, pizza and gelato.

Vegan options, include: fusilli pomodoro and spicy penne arrabbiata (with the cheese omitted) and vegetarian pizzas without cheese. They also stock vegan vanilla and strawberry ice cream.

It’s the perfect pit stop whilst exploring Mumbles or en route for a coastal walk along Bracelet Bay!

Outside Verdi's restaurant in Swansea Bay - a glass building on the seafront near Mumbles Pier

Other vegan-friendly restaurant options in and around Swansea Bay include:

  • NO18 Vegan Cafe Bar: located in the Uplands area of Swansea, this super cute and colourful 100% plant-based cafe has a fantastic atmosphere as well as delicious vegan food! Lunch specials, include: tofish and chips, chickn katsu curry, spaghetti bolognese, buddha bowls, burgers and tofu vegetable noodles. As well as a full board of smoothies, freshly pressed juices and teas.
  • Truffle: a cheery and relaxed eatery located just outside Swansea Bay with bay windows and a menu of Mediterranean-style dishes with some global influences. They have a few vegan options, including: spicy peanut and butternut squash soup and spring vegetable and coconut red Thai curry.
  • The Swigg: located by the National Waterfront Museum, The Swigg offers a range of vegan options, including plant-based burgers, pizzas and salads. They also have vegan desserts and a selection of vegan-friendly drinks.
  • Uplands Diner: situated in the Uplands area of Swansea, Uplands Diner has a separate vegan menu with various options such as vegan breakfast, burgers, sandwiches and wraps. They also offer vegan milk alternatives for hot drinks.
  • Govinda’s Vegetarian Café: located in Swansea city centre, Govinda’s Vegetarian Café offers a range of vegetarian and vegan dishes. They serve a daily changing menu of freshly cooked meals, including: curries, salads and desserts.

Have you ever spent a weekend in Swansea Bay? 😊

Quick FYI guys – I was invited by Visit Swansea Bay to review fun activities and restaurants for the weekend but as always my opinions are all my own and would only recommend activities and places I think you’ll love! This post also contains affiliate links. I will receive a small commission for purchases made through these links at no extra cost to you. Thanks so much for your support!

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  1. … Turkish… delight… gelato? :o

    This looks like a great weekend trip! I never really considered Swansea as a destination, but clearly I’m missing out! Thanks for this handy guide, definitely bookmarking for an open weekend.

  2. Swansea Bay looks like a lovely spot for a weekend away. The hotel looks really charming and what a great name for a hotel! I’m guessing there must be a legend involving dragons…My friends who live in London would love this place. I’m going to pass it on.

    1. I hadn’t thought about it before but Swansea Bay is definitely a foodie place and I loved it. Everything was locally grown so was really fresh!

  3. Great food choices you gave! Swansea Bay is one weekend trip from London we have not done. The same as Devon. Two places to go back to now!

    1. Carol you need to get down there haha! ;) I need to check out Devon, family have been there for a birthday weekend and were raving about it.

  4. This is a great guide for people visiting Swansea Bay. Lot’s of practical advice. I’m sure people will find it very helpful.

  5. Yes, I would love to see Swansea someday soon! We are so alike in travel style. I also travel by commute and always on the lookout for decent accommodations without breaking the bank. Bookmarking this and thank you for sharing your wonderful weekend!

  6. I’ve never heard of Swansea Bay, but it looks like such an adorable town! I’d love to explore all the great restaurants and the views from Grape and Olive look fantastic. Paddle boarding would be fun as well–I’d love to visit!

  7. Girl, I love your video!! Swansea Bay looks like such a fun place, can’t wait to visit. And good for you for trying the indoor surfing! You looked great! :)

    1. Aw thanks so much boo! Next time you’re in London, head up for a couple of days I really think you’ll love it and enjoy getting out of the city too. The indoor surfing was a great workout but so much fun too! I wish I had something like it near to me :(

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