Angle - Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Southern Section.
Set on the western curve of the narrow Angle Point headland the name Angle came from invading Vikings and means Corner, referring to this remote and unspoilt turning in the coastline.
Thankfully its isolated location at the end of the Peninsula continues to protect it not only from marauding Norsemen but from the modern invasion of mass tourism.
The village itself has been designated a Pembrokeshire National Park Conservation Area and can be approached from two different directions on the Wales Coast Path as it sits along the length of a narrow inland valley that cuts right across the wider Angle headland.
At one end is the sands of West Angle Bay a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest which looks out over the narrow entrance to the immense Milford Haven Estuary, its rock pools home to the rare green starfish.
At the other end of the village you will find the larger mudflats of Angle Bay only 10 minutes’ walk by road but over 3 miles away on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path route and here the tranquil broad arc of estuary mud flats gives a completely different feel.
At its head is the unique 16th Century Old Point House Inn, so close to the sea it’s virtually in it, its access by road routinely cut off by the high spring tides. Much beloved by skippers of visiting boats and yachts who are “in the know” its one of those atmospheric seafaring places, partly built from ship wreck timbers and you doubt much has changed there in the last 300 years.
The village calls itself an RNLI (Royal National Lifeboat Institution) community and is justifiably proud of its lifeboat connections with there having been several dramatic rescues off the headland here, and whilst on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path you will pass the remains of the old as well as the new Angle lifeboat stations.
Little happens on this side of the village other than small scale fishing and seaweed harvesting, and its one of those magical and timeless places where everyone seems to be endlessly watching the ships out in the wider estuary, muttering about the wait for the next tide to arrive, but consoling themselves by supping cider at the Point House.
From a seabirds perspective however Angle Bay is a hive of feathered activity, the rare eelgrass beds in the tidal mud flats, along with the lack of human disruption, supporting an array of wildlife including flocks of visiting wetland birds and waders who stalk the foreshore and mud banks. It’s a birdwatchers paradise.
In between the two ends of the village you will find simple rows of workers cottages mixed with more modern housing along with the classic Norman Style church of St Marys which hides a much smaller fisherman’s chapel in its grounds.
The tiny chapel is dedicated to St Anthony and was built by Edward de Shirburn a 15th Century “knight of Nangel” and sits over a crypt where bodies of unknown shipwreck victims that washed up on the peninsular were committed in past times to burial.
Take a wander around the village before dinner and you will find the old dovecote and the 14th Century Tower house, a fortified castle like Pele tower and the only example of its kind in Wales.
Its left open and you can climb 3 floors up the tower to the old living quarters.
As an alternative walk head to the prehistoric menhir at Devils Quoit around one mile outside town, one of the area’s best preserved burial chambers.
Angle serves the Pembrokeshire Coast Path walkers well enough with two pubs and a well-stocked and reliable shop good for a packed lunch but accommodation is limited and fairly basic.
For those that prefer a wider choice or more luxury then the daily coastal walkers buses link the village quickly and easily with the nearby town of Pembroke. However if you can, try to stay here where the land just runs out as there is no other overnight stop quite like this one on the whole Pembrokeshire Coastal Path Route.