The Church In The Sea, Porth Cwyfan, Aberffraw


Best at / for: high tide, sunset, stormy weather.

Best avoided: public holidays, sunrise, flat light.

Parking: free parking with close access to the location.

Access: minimal walking required if mobility is a problem.

Notes: a popular location, so can be quite busy at times.


In any list of my favourite landscape photography locations, I could hardly choose a more frequently visited place than St Cwyfan’s “Church In The Sea” at Porth Cwyfan, Aberffraw. After all, it’s the closest well-known landscape photography location to my home in nearby Bodorgan.

But let me start with a small warning: visiting during the day can be noisy. The racing circuit of Trac Mon is found immediately on the headland alongside the church. So it’s not always as tranquil as images may suggest!

This location is where I started my YouTube channel. And it’s probably my most vlogged location, although not all my visits end up on video. The wide angle shot here was from a ‘stills-only’ visit!

For most of the year, apart from a couple of months around mid-summer, it makes an excellent sunset location. In mid-summer, though, the sun sets too far to the North West to be very useful. Although the main image here was captured at that time of year and does show some reflected light with the sunset far off the to left.

Access and parking are easy as you’ll see from the map. But beware of boondocking in a camper van overnight as the land is privately owned by the Bodorgan Estate. They actively discourage that sort of thing. That said, I’ve never heard of anyone being shooed off at 3:00am!

The beach conditions vary wildly, there are rocks, pools and sand at low tide, but in my opinion, images of the Church are best composed at high water, and especially on spring tides. This reduces distracting elements and allows the Church to remain the star of the show.