48 hours in CardiffFriday 02 June 2017 by Sarah Knight There are countless attractions in Cardiff – the city literally has a little something for everyone.
Be it stuffing your face in one of Cardiff’s many eateries, visiting one of the city’s historical museums, soaking up the atmosphere at Cardiff bay or just having a cheeky drink with friends. Rain or shine, this historical and cultural city has you covered!
Drawing in thousands of national and international visitors every year, Cardiff undeniably boasts a diverse nightlife, but this city has so much more to offer. Although it is virtually impossible to experience everything that Cardiff has to offer in 48 hours, you wouldn’t be a professional traveller if you didn’t give it a try! Here are the best bits you simply must not miss to make the most out of your stay.
Day 1: History, exploring and lots of food
The best way to start a busy day is with a full stomach. Head up to St. David’s centre where you will be overwhelmed with quirky individual and classic chain cafés to suit your fancy. Coffee Barker is a trendy yet cosy café offering everything from fresh cakes to delicious cooked breakfasts and is certain to fuel you with the energy you will need for the rest of the day!
Photo credit: @coffeebarker
After you have stuffed your face and had your daily fix of coffee, Cardiff Bay has a great many attractions to offer and is only nine minutes by train from the city centre. If you’re feeling adventurous, take a speed boat trip around the bay - fast and spray-filled of course - or if you still need time to allow your breakfast to go down, take a slower boat trip and discover what the Welsh capital has to offer from the water.
Alternatively, if you like to keep fit, why not witness the best of Cardiff by bike? Pedal Power, a local charity with a renting location at Cardiff Bay, offers the opportunity to cycle your way throughout the historical yet modern Cardiff centre, around the Bay or through the beautiful greenery of Traff Trail.
If you’re not the exploring type, Cardiff Bay offers everything from bars, amusements, kids activities and even the Doctor Who experience, you’re guaranteed to find something that everyone can agree on.
Once you have worked up an appetite for lunch, the numerous eateries throughout Cardiff allow you to ‘eat the world’, or if you would prefer to stay at Cardiff Bay, Mermaid Quay provides a great choice of popular cafés and restaurants with a stunning water view.
Another fantastic way to spend your afternoon is at St Fagan’s National Museum of History- one of Wales’ most popular heritage attractions and number one in things to do on Tripadvisor. St Fagan’s is most famous for its historical buildings but also offers activities such as traditional crafts and activities, learning about nature or exploring the best-kept secret - the gardens, and best of all it is absolutely free!
As St Fagan’s is an open-air museum, it is of course weather dependent, so if it is raining be sure to head down to the National Museum Cardiff where you can discover fine art and the evolution of Wales.
After a long day of exploring, head to Bar 44 for flavour-filled tapas and vino including a classic Sunday roast if you visit on the weekend. If you’re still feeling thirsty visit one of Cardiff’s many bars or if you prefer to save money, buy your own food from a local supermarket and cook at your serviced apartment, snuggle up and refuel for day two.
Day 2: More history, retail therapy and panoramic views to thrill
Just around the corner is the perfect place to spend your morning- Cardiff Castle. Take a house tour, visit the wartime shelters or climb the steps to the Norman Keep for breath-taking panoramic views of the city - a perfect photo opportunity. Be sure to check what’s on at the castle before you plan your trip, you wouldn’t want to miss the action-packed events and shows, great entertainment for everyone.
If you are fed up with history, head back in to the centre for some well-earned retail therapy; St David’s Shopping Centre and the Queen’s Arcade offer a modern shopping experience. Boasting a large choice of high street names and independent shops, there is something for everyone. If you would like to see more of Cardiff’s history, make your way to the Royal Castle High street or Morgan for Cardiff’s older Arcades.
If shopping isn’t for you, head to Victoria Park for a fun family day out. Whatever you decide to do, all locations are in walking distance of a place to take a breather and grab a bite to eat.
To end your Cardiff experience on a high note, take a trip to the top of Garth Mountain and witness the stunning, panoramic vistas of the capital of Wales; if you arrive on a clear day, you can see as far as Weston-Super-Mare! Along with the breath-taking views, Gwaelod-y-Garth Inn offers the classic pub experience and is the perfect place to kick back and relax after a long walk and a non-stop 48 hours.