Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre
The Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre was originally established in 1996 as a non-profit organisation dedicated to conserving Cardigan Bay’s marine wildlife through education and research. Based in a heritage building in the heart of New Quay, overlooking the beautiful beach and harbour, the centre has become the focus for marine research in the area.
The visitor centre is primarily manned by volunteers who participate in all aspects of our work. We receive no core funding to keep the centre open and instead rely on donations and profits from our small gift shop to keep us running. We deliver much of the Trust's Living Seas work as well as hosting the Marine Team staff and volunteers.
The Visitor Centre is now closed for the season and will re-open 1st April 2023.
Dolphin watch LIVE!
Watch bottlenose dolphins from your own home daily from 5 am to 11 pm.
Cardigan Bay is a haven for marine wildlife and is known for being a hotspot for sightings of bottlenose dolphins as well as being the mid-point of the Wales coast path. Bottlenose dolphins visit New Quay harbour regularly throughout the year, with increased activity from April through until November.
Plan your visit
The Visitor Centre
Newly refurbished in early 2020 our visitor centre is full of interpretative displays showcasing the huge variety of marine wildlife found in Cardigan Bay.
Manned by volunteers, our visitor centre is free to enter and is open 7 days a week, 10am-3pm from Easter until the end of October. For the summer holidays our visitor centre is open 7 days a week from 9am-6pm!
The exhibits provide information on different themes such as the dolphins, seals and sea birds which can be spotted locally, the geology of the area and important issues surrounding pollution and sustainable fishing.
Our Living Seas staff and volunteers are on hand to answer any of your questions and tell you all about the marine wildlife in the area, including the Cardigan Bay Big 3, bottlenose dolphins, harbour porpoise and Atlantic grey seals as well as our marine conservation work in Cardigan Bay and Wales.
Enjoy a bit of shopping? Our gift shop is bursting with wildlife goodies and local crafts for you to take home as a souvenir. Or why not hire one of our ‘Borrow Bags’ and explore the local rock-pools? Each kit contains all the equipment and information you’ll need to discover more about our coastal wildlife.
How to find us
Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre is located on the slipway just off Glanmor Terrace (the main road down into New Quay) next to the RNLI lifeboat station, so if in doubt, head towards the sea and from there, look out for our sign with the CBMWC logo at the top of our slipway directing you to the centre. Here you can also book onto a boat trip with our colleagues at Dolphin Survey Boat Trips.
How to get here
New Quay is off the A487 (the main coast road between Cardigan in the south and Aberystwyth in the north) on the A486 (from Synod Inn) or the B4342 (from Llanarth).
The nearest train station is Aberystwyth. Plan your route.
There are no car park facilities at Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre but there are several public car parks in New Quay which are signposted from the roads leading into town and they cost approximately £4 a day.
Support Cardigan Bay
Our staff team are dedicated and work with the local community to raise awareness of our fantastic marine wildlife!
Dive with common dolphins
Sightings Update 12/01/2022
During the second survey of the day a female Atlantic grey seal was observed swimming in New Quay Bay.
Sightings Update 10/01/2022
A lone Atlantic grey seal was spotted between the headland and harbour wall. Our first recorded marine mammal sightings of 2022!
Sightings Update 15/01/2022
An Atlantic grey seal appeared briefly by the harbour wall.
Another beautiful autumn morning in New Quay. The only sighting was of an Atlantic grey seal swimming close to the harbour wall. We…
Living Seas volunteer Dave spotted eight dolphins including three calves travelling and foraging across the bay. It was also a great…