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Wales Beach Guide

Knave Beach & Foxhole Slade

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Knave Beach

These beaches consist mostly of jagged limestone rocks and only tiny amounts of sand at low tide. As beaches go, they're not up to much, but there are some impressive caves here.

Between Horse Cliff and the promontory of The Knave is a rocky bay about 200 yards wide (above). This is a popular surf spot because of its reef break just beyond the Knave which works on a low tide with a small swell. Reaching the shore involves a steep descent down a gully from the coastal path. The two caves here are Ogof Wyntog and Ogof Ffynon Wyntog. The latter usually begins with a sump, but this often dries out in summer allowing access to a cave about 600 yards long. Nearby Ogof Wyntog is approximately 100 yards long and has two entrances. The upper entrance is low and proceeding feels like going down a rabbit-hole, but after a few yards it opens out into a larger chamber with two passages. The one to the right leads via a short sandy crawl to another chamber which apparently has an inscription on the wall. From here, a passage to the left leads down to the larger of the two sea caves below, whilst a low passage to the right continues on for about 30 yards.

A short distance up the cliffs on the eastern side is a small rock arch, just big enough to sit under, with views out to sea. Continuing eastwards, but descending again some smaller caves are reached, one of which is known as Deborah's Hole.

Foxhole Slade is another small cove of jagged limestone rocks. It has two caves of note : Paviland Cave (also known as Goat's Hole) and Paviland Sea Cave, both about 20 yards in length. To visit them, the tide needs to be at its lowest and a spring tide is preferable. A narrow inlet runs for a short distance along the beach and Paviland Sea Cave is on the west side of this. The more famous Paviland Cave is higher up the rocks on the west side. Prehistoric remains have been found here, including a skeleton dubbed 'the Red Lady of Paviland', which was later established to be that of a young man.

The nearest (free) parking is available on the common at Pilton Green (Grid Ref : SS446871). from where a footpath leads across several fields to the coast path. The valley directly in front continues down to Foxhole Slade. The Knave and its beach are about 600 yards to the west.

Caves and reef breakCaves and reef break
Inside Ogof WyntogInside Ogof Wyntog
Foxhole SladeFoxhole Slade
Paviland CavePaviland Cave
Caves and reef break
Caves and reef break
Inside Ogof Wyntog
Inside Ogof Wyntog
Foxhole Slade
Foxhole Slade
Paviland Cave
Paviland Cave
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