Cardigan Bay

Cardigan Bay dominates the coastal profile of Wales – a long sweeping arc which joins the Lleyn peninsula in the north with Pembrokeshire in the south. It is a huge lee shore that faces the prevailing winds coming in off the Atlantic.

The coastline is characterised by craggy cliffs interspersed with wide estuaries silted up with spits and bars, and the occasional island.

It is a shallow bay, no more than 50m deep.

Cardigan Bay enjoys a rich marine environment, full of wildlife. Throughout the year you regularly find bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoise, Atlantic grey seals and a variety of bird life.

Many of Cardigan Bay’s habitats and wildlife are of national and international importance. Special designations reflect this.

  • Cardigan Bay is home to the first stretches of coastline in Great Britain designated as Marine Heritage Coast
  • In 2004 parts of Cardigan Bay were given European designation as Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)

Cardigan Bay SAC was designated primarily because of its importance to bottlenose dolphins. Its aim is to conserve it for generations to come.