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1,166 bytes added, 14:07, 2 December 2012
By bus
{{London2012[[Image:PC176179.JPG|thumb|300px|Wales Millennium Stadium}}Centre, the focal point of the revamped Cardiff Bay.]]
'''Cardiff''' (''Welsh'', '''Caerdydd''') is the capital of [[Wales]] in the [[United Kingdom]] and is on the [[South Wales|south]] coast of the country. Though it had a reputation of being an industrial city, Cardiff has changed dramatically in recent decades. It is now a lively and modern capital city, gaining popularity with tourists interested in its history and Welsh culture. It is quickly becoming one of the United Kingdom's tourism hot spots. Summer is by far the best time to visit as the city hosts large festivals with al fresco dining and drinking becoming ever more popular due to large areas of pedestrianisation. The city centre has seen huge development over the last decade and is now considered to be one of the top ten shopping destinations in the United Kingdom. Cardiff is a very green city, having the most green space per person in the UK, and this is complimented by Bute Park which sits in the heart of the city. It has a reputation as a ''city of castles'', having 5 different castles within its surroundings. The city's core population stands at roughly 341,000, with 861,000 living in the larger urban area.
[[Image:PC176179.JPG|thumb|300px|Wales Millennium Centre, the focal point of the revamped Cardiff Bay.]]
===By bus===
National Express [] operate regular services to and from most other major cities in Britain with Cardiff Central bus station, which is in the forecourt of Central railway station, making it quite easy to switch between train and bus. In addition, MegaBus offer a regular and very cheap service to London and departs from Kingsway near Cardiff Castlethe Hilton Hotel. Cardiff is about 3 hours, depending on traffic, from London.
==Get around==
===By bike===
The city's flatness makes cycling fairly painless, especially around the Bay and City Centre (including Bute Park). The Taff Trail and Ely Trail provide mainly off-road paths through the city and beyond. Most parts of the city provide pleasant cycling, although some areas are more difficult due to heavy traffic or no-cycling pedestrianised roads (such as Queen Street). Cycle hire options include the 'Oy Bike' scheme, with free bicycles at a large number of sites around the city, including all the key tourist attractions.
===By bus===
* '''Cardiff Castle''', Castle St, ☎ +44 29 2087 8100. fax: +44 29 2023 1417, [] . Cardiff Castle is a large castle whose foundations are based upon a Roman fort. In the nineteenth century, it was the one of the homes of the Marquis of Bute. The Norman fort in the centre, the Welsh regimental museum and and excavated Roman ruins are open, and tours of the Bute household are available. The Bute part of the castle is quite amazing. The interior was all done in the early 1900s in a very idiosyncratic and interesting style. There is barely an inch that is not adorned with some sort of artistic work. Yet, it is not overwhelming. The craftsmanship is well worth a look. Admission is £8.95 for adults, £6.35 for children and £7.50 for students and seniors. Admission with a tour is £11.95 for adults, £8.50 for children, and £9.95 for students and seniors. There are family group discounts.
* '''The Millennium Stadium''', []. 74,200-seater stadium opened for the 1999 Rugby World Cup, and now host to the Wales national rugby and football teams. It hosted the FA Cup Final for some years during the redevelopment of Wembley Stadium in [[London]] and is still the largest stadium in Europe with a completely retractable roof (good for those rainy days). A must see for any sport lover, tours are available online or at the ticket desk. Tours cost £6£8.50 for adults.
* '''The Wales Millennium Centre''', []. An outstanding piece of modern architecture, opened in 2004 by the Queen, the futuristic Wales Millennium Centre is host to opera, dance and West End musicals throughout the year, making it a must see for those who like theatre. Entry is free throughout the year. While entrance to the theatre is charged, free live performances take place in the foyer every lunchtime at 13:00 and before shows in the evening. It currently hosts the exhibition about Cardiff Bays development that used to be house in 'The Tube'
* Go for a pint of Cardiff made Brains beer in one of the city centre pubs on a match day at the Millennium Stadium.
*<do name="Taf valley quads" alt="" address="Pontypridd Nr. Cardiff" directions="Via A470" phone=" +44 292083165829 2083 1658" url="" hours="9AM-9PM" price="" lat="" long="">Activiy centre north of Cardiff. Quad safaris, clay shooting archery and other outdoor activities. Open to individuals or groups, Established 18 years experienced friendly staff.</do>
===Festivals and events===
Things are getting better Eating in Cardiff for eatinghas improved massively. It can be very difficult to book a table in the better restaurants on a Friday or Saturday evening. As a rule of thumb '''Mermaid Quay''' and the city centre are jam packed full with a varied contrast of eateries allowing you to experience many different tastes within a small area, with further concentrations of eateries in Pontcanna and Roath.
*'''The Prince of Wales''' - a great city centre location offering great food all day at some good prices considering its very central location. This is a typical Wetherspoon pub.
*'''Canteen on Clifton Street''' has built up a reputation for excellent vegetarian and vegan food at very reasonable prices. Their evening menu []changes every two weeks, with regular 'best of' menus chosen by their customers.[] A good selection of vegan wines are available.[] Only 10 minutes walk from the city centre. The No.12 Cardiff Bus passes their door. Closed Sunday and Monday.Tel: ''+44 (0)29'' 2045-4999.
*'''Garland's Eatery and Coffee House''', 4 Duke Street Arcade, Tel: "+44 (0)29" 2066-6914. This nice little restaurant has good prices for authentic Welsh fare and other sandwiches and cheap eats. The Cardiff native I stayed with recommended it.
Also there is the small cafe's in the Indoor Market offering typical cafe food from toast to full roast dinners. prices typically range from .50p to £4.00. good deal for a quick fix.
*'''Castell Restaurant''', The Angel Hotel, Castle St, ☎ +44 29 206492002064 9200. Amazing views of the castle grounds, and serves traditional Welsh cuisine. Also caters for private parties.
*'''Le Gallois''', 6-10 Romilly Cres, , ☎ +44 29 203412642034 1264. Roughly translated from French it means "The Welsh". This is a fantastic gourmet restaurant specialising in bringing Gallic flair to traditional Welsh food such as cockles and lavabread. Expect to pay somewhere around £40/person.
*'''Tempus Restraunt''', the luxury restraunt at the St David Hotel and Spa , ☎ +44 29 204540452045 4045. Amazing views all around Cardiff Bay, and serves a traditional freshly caught seafood. With drinks expect to pay between £40-60 per person.
If coffee is your drink of choice, there are at least six Starbucks outlets or try out Coffee #1 a local chain of coffee shops, Wood Street (near Central Station) and on Albany Road.
*<drink name="Y Mochyn Du" alt="" address="Sophia Close CF11" directions="" phone="+44 29 203715992037 1599" url="" hours="" price="" lat="" long="">Y Mochyn Du is in Sophia Gardens, Pontcanna, by the Institute of Sport and Glamorgan's county cricket ground. One half is a traditional pub which has a good range of real ales, and the other side is mainly for bar food during the day. Due to it's location near the city centre, it's very busy during rugby and football internationals. The pub is also popular among the capital's sizable Welsh speaking community and all the bar staff are bilingual. On Monday nights, there is usually a group of around 10 session musicians jamming with traditional instruments. On the last Sunday night of every month, there is a Welsh language pub quiz in association with Menter Caerdydd.</drink>
*<drink name="Bogiez Rock Bar &amp; Nightclub" alt="" address="Kingsway" directions="End of Queen Street, opposite Cardiff Castle" phone="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="">Cardiff's only full time rock bar & nightclub, offers a wide range of whiskeys &amp; spirits, beers and kick ass coffee. Free jukebox until 6pm and rock,metal and alternative music from Wednesday to Saturday night.</drink>
*'''A Shot in the Dark''', 12 City Rd, ☎ +44 29 2920 4723002047 2300. Somewhere between a dimly lit bar and a chilled-out café, Has a certain joie de vivre in its unique atmosphere.
*'''Cadwaladers''', St Davids 2, Red Dragon and Mermaid Quay, []. Wales' best kept secret is this companies slogan but not for long as they serve some of the best coffee you will find and Ice Cream which has to be tasted to be believed, all of which is made in Wales. All other food is made by them or especially for them. It is worth checking their website for printable vouchers.
* '''Wedal Road Youth Hostel''', 2 Wedal Road, Roath Park, Tel: ''+44 (0)84'' 5371-9311, [] - for £19 (adult without YHA membership) it's the cheapest place to stay and really quite funky (for a Youth Hostel): no curfew, modern, clean, friendly personnel, and a sumptuous breakfast is included; it's about a 20 minute walk from the city centre, or 10 minutes by bus.
* <sleep name="The River House Backpackers" address="59 Fitzhamon Embankment, Riverside, Cardiff, Wales, CF11 6AN" directions="" phone="+44 (0) 2920 399 81029 2039 9810" email="" fax="" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="Dorm beds around £18 per night"> Excellent boutique hostel in central Cardiff just opposite Millenium Stadium. The dorms are neat and simple, bathrooms are nice and always kept clean. There is a common kitchen and eating area, as well as a TV and reading room. Free breakfast and wifi internet is included. The atmosphere is social but not too rowdy. Very hospitable owners and staff.</sleep>* <sleep name="ibis budget Cardiff (previously Etap Hotel" alt="" address="Prince Court, Canal Road, BD1 4SJ " directions="" phone="Tel. (+44)0127 472 4415" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Ibis budget Hotel Cardiff Centre is a low-cost hotel close to the shopping and nightlife in central Cardiff. </sleep>* <sleep name="ibis Cardiff Gate" alt="" address="Malthouse Avenue, Cardiff Gate Business Park, Pontprennau" directions="" phone="Tel. Tel. +44 29 2073 3222" url=" " checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Iibis Cardiff gate is a budget hotel, just outside of Cardiff city centre. It is 10 km from the Cardiff Millenium Stadium. </sleep>
* There are three other hostels in the city including '''Nos Da''', '''Cardiff Backpackers''' and '''Nomad'''.
* '''A Space in the City Serviced Apartments, Cardiff City Centre and Bay locations, Tel: ''+44 (0)29 216603032166 0303, [] Affordable alternative to a hotel, perfect for families.
* '''Cardiff Marriott Hotel''', Mill Ln, ☎ +44 29 2039-9944, [] is within a block of the train station, right across from at least ten clubs. It has reasonably comfortable rooms (not yet with the Marriott upgraded beds). They have high speed internet connections in the rooms, but the fee is £15/day for the service. The staff is friendly and helpful. Also, they have a small multi-storey car park for the hotels guest.
* '''Park Inn Hotel Cardiff''', Mary Ann St, ☎ +44 29 203414412034 1441, [] Comfortable hotel in the city centre.
* '''Express By Holiday Inn Cardiff Bay''', Longuiel Close, ☎ +44 29 2044-9000, []. Clean hotel in Cardiff Bay, 15 min walk from the centre.
* '''Lincoln House Hotel''', Cathedral Rd, ☎ +44 29 2039-5558, []. Traditional converted townhouse on the outskirts of Cardiff city centre.
* <sleep name="ibis Cardiff" alt="" address="Churchill way, CF10 2HA" directions="" phone="Tel. +44 29 2064 9250" url="" checkin="" checkout="" price="" lat="" long="" email="" fax="">Located in Cardiff city centre, close to Cardiff Castle and the Millenium Stadium, the Ibis Cardiff has 102 rooms all offering internet access and satellite tv. </sleep> *'''Mercure Cardiff Centre Hotel''', Wharf Road East Tyndall Street, tel:(+44)2921/13280229 2113 2802,
*'''Mercure Cardiff Holland House Hotel and Spa''', 24 26 Newport Road, tel:(+44)2921/13280129 2113 2801,
*'''Novotel Cardiff Centre Hotel''', Schooner Way Atlantic Wharf , tel:(+44)292/113280029 2113 2800.
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