About Cardigan Bay

Cardigan Bay

The largest bay in the British Isles, Cardigan Bay stretches approximately 50 miles – from Bardsey Island off the Llyn Peninsular in the north to Strumble Head in Pembrokeshire in the south. This renowned marine habitat is home to a rich variety of wildlife, including the largest resident population of bottlenose dolphins in the whole of Europe. Although the ever-playful bottlenose dolphins often steal the limelight, Cardigan Bay is also home to the smaller harbour porpoise as well as Atlantic grey seals and a wide variety of bird species.

Bottlenose dolphins Cardigan Bay

A Special Area of Conservation – take part in conservation science!

This richness and variety of marine wildlife led to the Bay’s stunning coastline being designated as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) in 2003, to help to ensure that this beautiful environment and its flora and fauna are safeguarded for generations to come.

The SAC starts at Ceibwr Bay in Pembrokeshire and runs along the coastline covering Cardigan Island, Mwnt, Aberporth, Tresaith, Llangrannog, New Quay, Aberaeron and on to Aberarth.

Cardigan Bay Special Area of Conservation

Under the Ceredigion Marine Code, boats in the SAC follow regulations and guidelines that ensure that our much-loved marine animals are not disturbed and that our activities form part of a sustainable approach to wildlife tourism in Cardigan Bay.

Our wildlife watching boat trips depart from just outside Cardigan within the SAC. Our operating area includes Mwnt, Aberporth and Cardigan Island which are some of the most reliable places in the SAC to see the Bay’s resident bottlenose dolphins.

We have been privileged to cooperate with Sea Watch for many years, reporting sightings to them and periodically hosting volunteers on our boats. Now you can join the conservation effort too, by downloading their app and reporting any sightings that you enjoy on your trip with us to be added to their national database.