Cardigan Bay has the largest concentration of dolphins in Europe.
A good starting point is the Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre in New Quay. If you book a dolphin watching trip with Dolphin Survey Boat Trips you’ll be supporting their research as each trip carries a volunteer researcher from CBMWC. The centre has interpretative and interactive displays showcasing the huge variety of marine wildlife found in the bay, including an rock pool aquarium. The Sea Watch Foundation is a marine mammal research charity which also works out of New Quay in Cardigan Bay, monitoring bottlenose dolphins. Video here
New Quay harbour wall is a superb spot for bottlenose dolphins which can be seen on an almost daily basis throughout the year.
George Monibot’s Feral memorably describes a mackerel fishing trip in his sea kayak in Cardigan Bay and the dangers of the Greater Weever fish.
I live a few miles from Cardigan Bay. Whenever I can get away, I take my kayak down to the beach and launch it through the waves. Often I take a handline with me, in the hope of catching some mackeral or pollock. On the water, sometimes five kilometres from the coast, surrounded by gannets and shearwaters, I feel closer to nature than at any other time.
Last year I was returning to shore through a lumpy sea. I was 200 metres from the beach and beginning to worry about the size of the breakers when I heard a great whoosh behind me. Sure that a wave was about to crash over my head, I ducked. But nothing happened. I turned round. Right under my paddle a hooked grey fin emerged. It disappeared. A moment later a bull bottlenose dolphin exploded from the water, almost over my head. As he curved through the air, we made eye contact. If there is one image that will stay with me for the rest of my life, it is of that sleek gentle monster, watching me with his wise little eye as he flew past my head. I have never experienced a greater thrill, even when I first saw an osprey flying up the Dyfi estuary with a flounder in its talons.
The Sarns of Cardigan Bay
Sarn Wallog is one of several more or less parallel shingle reefs extending into Cardigan Bay. Welsh legend has it that they were dykes which protected the drowned realm of Cantre’r Gwaelod.
“Made up of rounded cobbles graded in size, this ‘causeway’ looks beguilingly like the work of our ancestors” Country Diary in The Guardian
The sarns are are very unusual shallow subtidal reefs, which extend many kilometres into Cardigan Bay from the coast. They are glacial moraines resulting from the last glaciation and are composed entirely of boulders, cobbles and pebbles mixed with various grades of sediments.
See also similar Sarn Gynfelyn