"Come to Sunny Prestatyn,
Laughed the girl on the poster,
Kneeling up on the sand,
In tautened white satin."
Sunny Prestatyn, Philip Larkin.
Lying just three miles east of its raucous neighbour Rhyl, Prestatyn is the oldest seaside resort in North Wales. Shielded by mountains, Prestatyn benefits from a warmer climate than some of its neighbours and is therefore a good destination for both families with children as well as the somewhat older tourist. Prestatyn is also a handy base for a range of long distance walks in the area.
With some three miles of golden sandy beaches, Prestatyn is a good choice for a relaxing seaside break in Britain. Children will be easily entertained by jumping in the waves and building sandcastles on Prestatyn beach. There's a range of entertainment in the great outdoors on Ffirth Beach with everything from quad biking and trampolining to walking in the landscaped Festival Gardens or splashing in the Boating Lake. Indoor attractions in Prestatyn include the Nova Entertainment Centre, a leisure and swimming complex, the North Wales Bowls Centre and 10 pin bowling. If that's all a bit too tame than check out the Prestatyn Racecourse and either watch or join in on the races.
Prestatyn is a great base for walkers who will find a range of both long distance and short distance routes in the area. The first of these is the Prestatyn Town Trail. Starting at the Prestatyn Parish Church, the walk will take you past sights in Prestatyn such as the mound of Prestatyn Castle, Cross Foxes (the oldest pub in Prestatyn) and the remains of the Roman Baths. You'll find more details of this route and others at the Prestatyn Tourist Information Centre.
The best known of the long distance walking routes from Prestatyn is the Offa's Dyke Path. The largest ancient monument in the United Kingdom, the route runs for 177 miles from Prestatyn to Chepstow. Do note that if you're only planning to walk a short distance, you will not see any of the earthworks until you are south of the River Dee but your efforts will be rewarded with outstanding views of Snowdonia, Liverpool, Blackpool and the offshore wind farm. An alternative long distance walk from Prestatyn is the 122 mile Clwydian Way which will take you through the Clwydian Range, Llangollen, Corwen, Vale of Clwyd and back to Prestatyn.
Bird watchers will want to head for Gronant Dunes. Situated between Prestatyn and Gronant, this protected sand dune area is home to the only little tern breeding ground in Wales. As well as the smallest and rarest seabird in Britain, you may also spot sanderling, dunlin, ringed or grey plover as well as roosting gulls and cormorant.