St Govan Chapel

Settings do not come much more dramatic than this, approached down a flight of worn stone steps, the chapel is perched on a cliff face above the waters of the Atlantic.

About this church

St Govan is said to have been a 6th century Irish monk, who may not have come to Pembrokeshire until he was an old man, by which time he was an Abbot. Legend says that he was being chased by brigands when a fissure opened in the cliff face, allowing St Govan to slip inside, and closing up after him.

After the brigands had gone St Govan emerged but stayed on, building the chapel and living in the tiny cell that can still be seen behind it. He died in 586 and is said to be buried under the floor of the chapel.

The building is tiny and very simple, its interior containing only the most basic stone altar. There is debate as to its age, some saying it is post Norman, some saying 10th century, or even before.

In medieval times this was a place of pilgrimage, with a holy well (now long dry) whose water was said to be good for such things as eye complaints.

Key Features

  • Captivating architecture
  • Enchanting atmosphere
  • Wildlife haven
  • Famous connections

Visitors information

  • Parking within 250m
  • Dog friendly
  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

Other nearby churches

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Tabernacle United Reformed Church

The Tabernacle URC is situated in the centre of Pembroke, a town with a profound and important history. Our church has played a part in this history and its site is dominated by a landscape that emerged in Medieval times. Celebration of our past and preserving the recent memories of the people of this town has become a central part of our mission.

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Hodgeston Chapel

The tower at Hodgeston is typical of this area, tall, thin, and wider at the bottom. It is a late example of its kind, built in about 1600.

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