A Guide to Rockpooling with Kids in North Wales
Rock pools are a like a miniature world, full of interesting creatures, sights and textures and are always fun to explore with the whole family. The fact they can be a little tricky to access adds to their fun, and you can easily spend hours learning about their eco-systems. We highly recommend heading out on a rockpool adventure when staying at our Wales caravans for sale.
What You Need
You don’t need much to get into rockpooling; a net and bucket are enough. A bucket is handy if you want a closer look at any creatures too – remember to fill it with some seawater and put everything back when you are finished! A torch can be useful also, for looking into dark crevices and underneath bigger rocks. Your kids will definitely need your help too, and if you are involved it can increase their enthusiasm. Make sure everyone going on the rockpooling adventure has sturdy shoes – old trainers or wellies are best, and flipflops are useless!
Where to Go
The UK coastline has plenty of great places to go rockpooling, and in Wales, the best spots include the Anglesey coast, the Llyn Peninsula and areas a little closer to our holiday parks such as Rhos on Sea and Llanddulas. Keep an eye out for rocky sections on beaches, which are covered by the sea at high tide. The rocks will have plenty of pools that are home to a variety of sea creatures such as crabs, limpets and starfish. The best pools will be those closest to the sea, as they will be full of salty seawater.
Anglesey has some great locations; you can easily make a day out of it. Rhosneigr is a favourite for many when it comes to rockpooling, as there are several beaches nearby that have excellent rock pools. Cable Bay, Porth Nobla and Broad Beach are a few.
Best Time to Go
Though rockpooling can be a year-round activity the best time of year is late spring to early autumn as it is when the sea and beaches are the warmest, which encourages creatures to be more active near the surface of the water. You need dry, calm and warm weather for rockpooling, not just so that you and your kids stay dry and comfortable when scrambling over the rocks, but good weather also keeps the surface of the rockpool still so that you can see into the water.
It is important you keep an eye on the tides when you want to explore rock pools, becuase you can be caught out by the rising tide, as the sea can sometimes cut off access to the beach. The best time to set out is at low tide, as this is when the greatest number of rock pools are exposed.
Something New in Each Pool
You will find every place, and every pool is different when rockpooling. There will be new creatures in each pool you look in and depending on the area you will find all types of sea life. This is what makes the activity something that has been enjoyed for generations.
Some of the creatures you expect to see in rockpools around North Wales include goby fish, pipefish, prawns and shrimps, which can be spotted swimming under the surface. Further down in the pools you may find starfish or brittlestar, and sea hares can be found eating seaweed. If you see something waving at you – that’s a sea anemone, and shells that move about on their own will be the home of a hermit crab.
You should be prepared to get your hands a bit wet when rockpooling, as that results in finding hidden creatures. Turning over seaweed and rocks will give you a glimpse of sea mats, sponges, green shore crabs and edible crabs. Keep your fingers away from red-eyed blue velvet swimming crabs as they can nip!
If you go on a rockpooling adventure when on holiday in North Wales, be sure to let us know about your finds, we’d love to hear about it!