Pwllheli has two beaches - South Beach and Glan y Don. South Beach is the main one, and is a long beach of sand and small pebbles, backed by dunes and a promenade. At the eastern end is the dolerite outcrop of Gimlet Rock. Short wooden walkways provide access to the shore and protect the dunes, which are home to species such as sea holly, sea rocket, sea spurge, chicory, rest-harrow and tree mallows. Nearby facilities include toilets and a beach shop.
Pwllheli rail and bus stations are about ½ mile away, reached along Embankment Road which has (free) bays for parking along most of its length as well as a small car park at its seaward end. The road which backs the shore is known as The Promenade, and has plenty of bays for P&D parking. A dog ban operates on the section of beach between Cardiff Road and Embankment Road from 1st April to 30th September. Swimming is generally safe.
Pwllheli town has a good selection of shops, cafes, pubs, supermarkets and a leisure centre. The name Pwllheli translates as 'Salt water pool'.