The beautiful Pembrokeshire coast is renowned for its wildlife-watching opportunities, with visitors able to routinely spy seals, dolphins and all manner of birdlife.
But in the 1970s, one spot along this coast made headlines for close encounters of a very different kind.
The picturesque village of Broad Haven attracted global media attention in 1977, after residents reported a spate of UFO and "alien" sightings.
This surreal series of events has resurfaced to once again capture public intrigue thanks to a new Netflix documentary, Encounters. The new documentary, which is made by Steven Spielberg's production company, dedicates one of its four episodes to the mysterious events that occurred in and around Broad Haven.
The most prominent strange sighting, which drew initial interest to the village, occurred on 4 February 1977, when a dozen school children from the local primary school claimed that they had seen a “cigar-shaped spaceship” with a “dome on it” take off from behind some trees during their lunch break. Some also claimed to have seen a silver figure along with the craft.
After reporting what they had seen to their teachers, the boys were separated by their headmaster and made to draw depictions of what they had witnessed. According to the headmaster, each of the boys’ drawings shared similarities.
But this was just one of hundreds of unexplained sightings in the area to happen at around the same time. One local hotel owner claimed to have seen a mysterious craft hovering near her premises at night (from which she saw two unearthly figures disembark), while a hiker reported coming across a “7ft-tall” silver being without a face. Another figure, meeting the same description, was reported again by other witnesses at a nearby farm.
The numerous sightings gave the area the nickname The Broad Haven Triangle – a riff on the Bermuda Triangle, a place historically associated with mysterious goings on (primarily, the disappearance of ships).
Speaking about the team’s reasons for choosing to feature Wales in the documentary, Encounters director, Yon Motskin, told the BBC, ‘There [were] hundreds and hundreds of people that said they witnessed something. That critical mass with 450 people is huge and also entertaining.’
Sceptics claim the sightings could have something to do with the village’s proximity to the former Royal Air Force base at Brawdy (located 7 miles (12km) to the north of the village), with the mysterious floating objects actually being helicopters or jets. The silver figures, meanwhile, have been suggested to be the work of local pranksters.
However, even with a new documentary shedding light on the incidents, the truth of the sightings will undoubtedly remain a captivating mystery, ensuring this beautiful part of West Wales remains an ongoing draw for both wildlife watchers and UFO hunters.
Searching for UFOs in Broad Haven
For those hoping for a Broad Haven UFO encounter of their own, the pretty Pembrokeshire village can be accessed by public transport via the train station at Haverfordwest (from which a bus runs to the village during the day) or easily by car (via the A40).
When it comes to spotting strange crafts in the evening sky, a good place to set out your stall is along the wide golden sands of Broad Haven North Beach, which boasts minimal light pollution, or, alternatively, consider a walk along the headland to The Point, a lookout spot offering panoramic vistas up and down the craggy coastline. As for accommodation, a number of campsites, such as South Cockett or Creampots, dot the vicinity, providing ideal conditions for late-night cosmos surveying.
To ensure your trip ends with at least one sighting of a bona fide spaceship, head 25 minutes south by car to Pembroke Dock, where the town’s Heritage Centre hosts an exhibition about the Millennium Falcon from the Star Wars franchise – the prop spacecraft used in the original film trilogy was constructed in the dockyard here.