Cardiff – the gateway to Wales14.09.2016
The famous author Ken Follett spent his childhood in this city, the Welsh soccer player Gareth Bale was born here, and the singer Shirley Bassey began her career here – we’re referring to Cardiff, the capital of Wales. With just under 350,000 inhabitants, Cardiff is a small capital city but is the most populated town in Wales. The city lies in the south of the country and is beautifully situated by the sea, attracting visitors with its trendy districts and magnificent castle. Cardiff is one of the greenest cities in Europe, and Wales is a real paradise for nature lovers.
Cardiff – one of Britain’s top city destinations
Cardiff is one of the most popular destinations for city trips in Great Britain, offering visitors a great many attractions. Among the highlights are Cardiff Castle, the Millennium Stadium, the Cardiff Bay docklands area, and numerous museums. The National Museum of Art houses an impressive art collection, and the National Museum Wales offers an excellent insight into the extremely tough working conditions in former times down in the coal mines. The Norwegian church is also well worth a visit. With around eleven square kilometres of green spaces in the heart of the city, visitors can relax and enjoy a rest in one of Cardiff’s many parks.
Cardiff Castle – a journey into the Middle Ages
It really is impossible to miss. Situated right in the heart of Cardiff, the gothic fortress Cardiff Castle overlooks the city. It is a place where visitors can delve deeply into Welsh history. We highly recommend the portable audio guides (also available for children) and the guided tours to help you explore all facets of this fairy-tale castle – from the beginnings in Roman times to the Middle Ages, and the remodelling of the castle in the 19th Century neo-Gothic style. A special attraction is the network of tunnels beneath the castle, which were once used as a bunker and today are open to visitors.
Millennium Stadium – where rugby rules
Rugby enjoys cult status in Wales. And the Millennium Stadium is the best place to go to see this. Built in 1999, it was, at the time, deemed the biggest stadium in Great Britain. It is equipped with a roof that can close in just 20 minutes. The stadium can accommodate 74,500 spectators and is primarily used for rugby and soccer matches as well as concerts. If you want a taste of Welsh life, you should go to a rugby match here and join in with the fans’ spirited chanting on the terraces.
Mermaid Quay – eating, drinking and relaxing
The nicest way of getting to the waterfront from the city centre is by boat. From Bute Park, the boat travels down the River Taff to Mermaid Quay, the city’s vibrant waterfront. This district has just about everything. The many restaurants, bars, and cafés offer a wide selection of food and drinks. Welsh ice cream, Japanese sushi, or simply a classic pizza – whatever you fancy, you’ll find it here. With a sundowner in your hand, you can round off the day by the water and take the weight off your feet after all the sightseeing you’ve done.
Wales – a paradise for nature lovers
Just over an hour away by car from Cardiff is the Gower Peninsula, one of the most beautiful areas in the whole of Wales. The promontory, with its breathtaking cliffs, woodlands and beaches, is a real favourite among hikers and surfers. The peninsula has nevertheless retained its untouched, natural charm. At the southwestern end of Gower Peninsula is Rhossili Bay, which, in 2013, was voted the third most beautiful beach in Europe. If you prefer to go hiking in the mountains, then the Brecon Beacons National Park is the place to go. The mountain range northeast of Cardiff is a scenic hideaway, with unspoilt valleys, waterfalls and lakes.
Getting there / airport
From 1 October 2016, the British regional airline Flybe will be offering a new connection from Berlin to Cardiff. The airline will fly to the Welsh capital from Berlin Tegel twice a week. The route will be served on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Cardiff Airport is located in Rhoose, around 20 km to the southwest of the city. From there you can take a bus, train or taxi to Cardiff’s centre. There are various hire car companies located in the airport terminal. The Cardiff Airport Express bus departs every 20 minutes, taking you to the centre of town.