To celebrate the event, and to highlight the wildlife-spotting opportunities all along the Welsh coastline, Visit Wales and eight partners held a Bird Race on the day the path opened, Saturday 5th May 2012.
With 870 miles of uninterrupted coast to explore, we knew that everyone from serious birders, weekend walkers and local enthusiasts would be taking to the path in their thousands. The aim of the Bird Race was to bring them all together, inviting everyone to record the different species they spotted along the way and report them via blogs and Twitter to contribute to one collective total.
It was the first time this kind of collective activity had been organised on a national scale anywhere in the world. In all, 140 different species of bird were recorded between dawn and dusk, and it was dubbed "a quiet revolution in co-operative birding”.
Highlights included a rare Dotterel reported at 5.57am from Great Orme, Llandudno and a Red-rumped Swallow (more usually found in the Mediterranean) at Newport Wetlands, Gwent, as well as sightings of our iconic Welsh birds such as Chough, Puffin and Arctic Tern.
Find out how the day unfolded by viewing our live blog, featuring the story of the day as told by those who took part.
Want to get the most out of wildlife in Wales? Download our printable checklist of the birds of the Wales Coast Path (2260 Kb) and browse our pick of Welsh wildlife highlights and places to see them.
For all the latest developments, follow @WCPbirds on Twitter.
We are pleased to have support for the WCP Bird Race from the following organisations: