I spent a large part of my professional career travelling to and from Brussels. I would usually use the train to get from the airport to my meeting venue. Brussels Airport station in underground, below the very busy arrivals and departure halls. Rhoose Cardiff International Airport station is completely the opposite. You get off the train, it is above ground, generally deserted and there is no airport in sight. In fact you have to then get on a bus to go to the nearby airport. For me today however there was no international flight waiting to board as me and my dog were going to walk along the coast to Barry.
Rhoose Cardiff International Airport boasts the longest railway station name in the UK. Or is it? I’m sure the North Wales station at Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch would argue differently though that is generally shortened by TfW to Llanfairpwll.
My intention this fine June day was to take my time, enjoy the views and keep as close to the coast as possible. I probably hadn’t walked this section in its entirety since I did it as part of my Wales and England Coastal Walk.
My walk started by going across the nature reserve between the railway line and the coast. It is designated as a ‘Site of Importance for Nature Conservation’ and a mixture of lakes and grassland areas. The area used to be occupied by a cement works, an asbestos factory and a quarry.
On reaching the coast at Rhoose there is a lovely gap which takes you down on to the pebbly beach with layered cliffs either side of you.
For most of the walk I was able to stay either on the cliff tops or go down onto the beach. There was one section where I had to go inland to avoid a caravan park. The part just West of Porthkerry Country Park took me high up onto the cliff tops in woods before a steep decent down to the pebbly Porthkerry beach.
The tide was quite far out today and from Porthkerry we were able to pick our way across of Cold Knap, stopping on one sandy section for him to have a well deserved run in the sea. I popped him on the lead so he could have a rest and dry out and I promptly fell asleep in the sunshine. One of the joys of retirement eh! He is not keen on swimming but had always enjoyed chasing the waves back and forth along the beach getting in as deep as his tummy.
It was back up off the beach as soon as we got to Cold Knapp as walking along the pebbles there is very hard work. To finish the talk off we walked around Barry Harbour and along Harbour Road but not all the way to Barry Island. Instead we turned around and caught a train back to Cardiff from Barry railway station on Broad Street. Another fine day out.
Date of trip: 5 Jun 2019
See progress to date: A-Z of Railway Stations