Probably taking its name from the Scandinavian axwick, meaning water creek, Oxwich is a small seaside village skirting the western fringe of a 4km sweep of sandy bay. Once a port, exporting limestone quarried from the headland of Oxwich Point, the village is now a quiet hamlet, only really coming alive during the summer months when hordes of tourists flock to the area's numerous holiday and caravan parks. Despite these new features, Oxwich retains it anachronistic character - a result of the village's location lying a good distance from any main road or thoroughfare. The medieval church and castle still dominate here as do the fine cottages that once housed the local quarry men. One cottage inparticular has gained fame for its connections with the preacher John Wesley. With much of its countryside now being protected by its classification as a National Nature Reserve, it is hoped that the timeless appeal offered by the village will continue to delight many generations to come.
Oxwich Bay is backed by a combination of sand dunes, salt marsh, woodland and cliffs, themselves backed by the imposing Old Red Sandstone hill of Cefn Bryn - the backbone of Gower.
The area is a naturalist's haven, containing a variety of flora and fauna rarely found in the U.K. Unfortunately, one species was completely eradicated by the wreck of an oil tanker in 1945, its spillage ridding the area entirely of the cockles that used to be gathered daily from the shore. For more information on the natural history of Oxwich, there is an excellent Information Centre located at the rear of the bay's main car park.