Urban adventures in Cardiff
There are plenty of epic urban adventures to be had in Cardiff. Read on for some ideas!
Have a food adventure
Cardiff is enjoying an increase in great places to eat. Whether you're after restaurants, cafés, delis, farmers markets, or bakeries, Cardiff is a place to delight you and your taste buds! Cardiff's street food scene is getting a lot of attention, so the award-winning Street Food Cardiff have done a wonderful guide to eating in the city (and just outside it too!).
To finish off, I recommend Welsh cakes from Cardiff Indoor Market, or a bowl of Science Cream. Truly cosmic.
The ice cream of the future ... by Science Cream
Take in a tipple (or four)
Cocktails on the bar by Buffalo Bar
For lovers of the grape, grain, and everything in between, Cardiff has a wide variety of great places to drink. ‘Professional’ drinker Oliver Hurley has detailed some of Cardiff’s unusual drinking spots: a list that includes modernist architecture, grade II listed buildings, yurts, and art galleries.
Personally speaking, I’m a big fan of drinking in Tiny Rebel (great for a wide selection of Wales-brewed beers and ciders within cat-swinging distance of the Principality Stadium), The Dead Canary (for an intimate speakeasy vibe) or Buffalo, when you just want to party 'til the sun comes up.
Visit a market
Riverside Farmer's Market, Cardiff by norman preis
If there’s one thing we’re not short of in Cardiff, it’s markets. Serious Cardiff shoppers will obviously head to the arcades or shopping centres, but if you’re after something a little offbeat, our markets are perfect.
On Saturday, visit Cardiff Indoor Market, with its selection of stalls from the functional to the kitsch.
On Sunday, try the Riverside Farmers Market – on the riverbank opposite the Millennium Stadium, you can pick up a variety of organic or local foods, from fresh produce to delicious ready-to-go-treats.
The first Saturday of the month also has local artist space the Printhaus opening up for punters to wander around and try their hand at artistic endeavours, like jewellery-making, or t-shirt screen-printing.
If you’re a real bargain hunter, try Splott Market or Cardiff Indoor Flea Market for vintage finds.
Adrenalin in the city
Skaters at Spit and Sawdust by Spit and Sawdust
If you’re an adrenalin junkie, never fear: Cardiff has a number of options for you too. Those who love multiple wheels should head to Spit and Sawdust, our local friendly skatepark.
For the fearless of heights, check out indoor climbing centre, Boulders. There's also Cardiff Jump, an indoor trampoline park (the biggest indoor soft play in Europe, believe it or not!). If you're desperate for some ice, Ice Arena Wales offers free skate sessions (as well as playing host to ice hockey champs, the Cardiff Devils).
If you fancy getting wet, Cardiff's White Water Rafting Centre is nearby - a guaranteed hangover cure!
Walk it off
Cardiff Bay Wetlands Reserve Centre by Owen Mathias
Cardiff has acres of green spaces, both in the centre of town and all around. If you're up for some hiking, head to the Cardiff section of the Wales Coastal Path that runs around the Cardiff Bay Barrage over to Penarth: a beautiful few kilometres that spans the meeting of the Rivers Taff and Severn. The route around the bay is an easy six miles along the flat, and en route you'll see the Norwegian church where Roald Dahl was baptised. It was originally shipped from Norway for the benefit of the Scandinavians working in Cardiff docks during the 1860s, and today is a great spot to take in a cup of tea.
The Cardiff Bay Wetlands Reserve was originally created in 2002, when a freshwater lake emerged after the Barrage was finished. Look carefully and you might see the Barrage Circles – an optical work dreamed up by Swiss artist Felice Varini, which reveals a set of perfect concentric circles if you stand on an x-marked yellow paint spot.
You can also find green spaces in the centre of town: make sure you dip into Bute Park (nestled behind Cardiff Castle).
Catch a show in Cardiff’s first pub theatre
A sold out performance at The Other Room... by The Other Room Theatre
Attached to artsy drinking spot Porter’s, The Other Room is Cardiff’s first pub theatre. Pints and performances, what could be better! Founded and launched in 2014 partly through crowdfunding, The Other Room runs a year-round programme producing and curating plays, with an emphasis on supporting the very best in Welsh and Wales-based artists. The space is an intimate theatre of just 44 seats, bringing audiences back to the live experience with an intensity no other venue in Cardiff offers.
If performance is your thing, be sure to check out the Wales Millennium Centre, the beautiful listed New Theatre, St David’s Hall, or Chapter Arts Centre to see what else is on.