Tag Archives: Coasteering

Wales: Coasteering = rock climbing + swimming + jumping


Navigating the Coast

Imagine wearing a wetsuit and navigating along the gorgeous Welsh coastline, with the sounds of the waves of the Atlantic Ocean splashing against the rocks in the background. Sometimes you have to perform a commando crawl under boulders, other times you are perched precariously on rocks that are home to thousands of barnacles, grabbing on to them for dear life and donating a lot of skin to these sea creatures in the process. And the most exhilarating part of it is when you’re standing at the top of a cliff, with the raging waters churning below you, and you take the giant leap of faith (most literally) and plunge right into the blue deep. This is coasteering and this is what we had to do today.

Us posing in wetsuits

Commado Crawl

I’m not a fan of the waters to be honest. I’m much more of a land person, so the trek down to the waters and the process of bouldering was not too difficult for me. And another thing I’m not a fan of? The feeling of falling.

Preparing to take the leap

I knew I was asking for it when I planned for the bloggers to be videoed jumping off a cliff. I had done some jumping from a jetty in Pulau Tioman in the past, and it was higher than what I did today. But yet, when I was standing at the top of the cliff getting ready for the leap during 1 of the 3 jumps I did today, I hesitated, and ended up landing belly first. Boy was that was one painful belly flop.

All in all, coasteering was just a hell lot of great fun. Another awesome part of the activity was swimming in a cave and being tossed around by the waves like “clothes in a washing machine” (quoting what some of the bloggers said). A huge wave would rush in and crash into the rocks at the end of the cave, and before the backwash can leave the cave, another big wave would come in, hitting us from both sides, giving that tumbling feeling. We all held hands and spun around in circles, screaming and laughing at the same time.

In the "washing machine" cave

If you love the idea of rock climbing freehand, bobbing in the water, caving, and jumping of cliffs, you’ll most definitely enjoy coasteering. And even if you don’t, the picturesque view of the coast and the ocean, the opportunity to see the seals (we saw one), dolphins and even killer whales, if you’re lucky (we weren’t so lucky), is worth it all. I loved it, and would certainly want to come to Wales to coasteer again.

Dong Gu and Yuko posing with seaweed

Special thanks to Sophie, Libby and Jon of Preseli Venture.  I sure had a lot of fun and would love to stay at your place the next time I’m back in Wales.

Photo credit: Thanks to Lorraine and Libby

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I went to Wales to accompany 6 travel bloggers from around Asia as part of The Great Welsh Showdown, a Visit Britain initiative to introduce the beauty of Wales to the blogosphere.

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The Great Welsh Showdown: Day 0 – London Baby!

From L to R (Clockwise): Aparna (Backpacking Ninja, India), me, Anthony (Travel Tart, Aust), Aries (HK), Nellie (Wildjunket, Singapore), Yuko (Japan) Lorraine (Visit Britain), Dong Gu (Korea)

So after many weeks of preparation, all of us have finally gathered here at the Umi Hotel in London.

I’m here with 6 travels bloggers from around the Asia Pacific region for Visit Britain’s first ever blogger trip done in the form of a competition. Termed The Great Welsh Showdown, the competition comprises 5 challenges done over the course of 4 days in Wales, where these bloggers stand to win another pair of return tickets to their preferred destination anywhere in Britain. Not bad me thinks. How I wish I could actually be a participant in this and stand a chance to come to Britain, again! That aside…

Come tomorrow morning, we will be making our way to Cardiff to begin our first challenge of The Great Welsh Showdown – Wyt ti’n Siarad Cymraeg? (Do you speak Welsh?). The bloggers will sit in a half-day Welsh Language lesson and I think it’ll be quite interesting to see if any of the bloggers will be able pick up at least a bit of the the language. After all, Welsh is infamously difficult so much so many local Welsh, especially those of the younger generation, can no longer speak their own native tongue.

Bushcraft | photo credit: http://www.walkandtravel.com

Day 2 will see us in Swansea, where the bloggers will fight it out in the wilderness. The bloggers will undergo a basic bushcraft course to learn some useful skills on how to survive in the wilderness such as lighting a fire without matches, or setting up a shelter using branches. The 6 bloggers will be split into groups of 3, where they will compete to see which group best survives in the wilderness.

Jumping off the cliff | photo credit: http://www.angleseyadventures.com

We will move on to Pembrokeshire on the third day, where we will be doing some Coasteering. In other words. Wetsuits. Cliffs. Navigate. Take video (or rather, be videoed). Say last words. Jump.

The last day, which I’m personally super excited about, involves sheep! Loads of sheep! And their poo. Why let perfectly-formed sheep excrement go to waste when you can make paper out of it? Even Gordon Ramsey, who rears sheep to eventually cook them, thinks that their sh*t should not go to waste. And the man, makes them into menus. Check this out:

Yes, we’ll be making Sheep Poo Paper as well. After which, we will go pretend to be farmers and learn how to gather sheep. (Hopefully gather the actual sheep and not their poo.) How cool is that. We’ll be in Snowdonia, a famed national park, for this challenge and being such a nature-freak, I’m really looking forward to the picturesque views.

Flip MinoHD | Photo credit: Cisco

The last challenge can be done at any point of the Wales trip. Cisco kindly sponsored us (rather the bloggers) 7 Flip MinoHDs, and they will be taking a video, humourous in nature, of the trip. The best part? One of their readers will also stand to win 7th Flip cam. So, go leave a comment on the videos when they are up and you may just be the lucky winner. The Flip MinoHD is a pretty neat gadget.

Throughout these 4 days, the bloggers will be blogging on their individual sites while we, the organisers, will be doing some mini-updates on the microsite. And I, personally, will try to blog here. I shall take my leave now. Till Cardiff, goodnight.

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I went to Wales to accompany 6 travel bloggers from around Asia as part of The Great Welsh Showdown, a Visit Britain initiative to introduce the beauty of Wales to the blogosphere.

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