City Guide

Things to Do in Cardiff

Ben Maples  · Feb 3rd 2023
Cardiff riverside

Cardiff is one of the biggest cities in Wales and is the country’s capital city. It is the UK’s eleventh largest city and will receive around 21.3m visitors every year!

Here, we will show you the different things to do in Cardiff.

Things to do in Cardiff


The capital of Wales is certainly one of the most sought-after cities in which to study. Cardiff has a population of 346,100 according to the most recent figures. Certainly one of the most popular places to study in the whole of the UK, but it’s the culture and the people that attract people to the Welsh capital.

Things to do in Cardiff

Glam is a good place to start, full of great music, a great atmosphere and a special bank holiday surprise, so mark the date on your calendar! Next up, is the incredibly famous Clwb Ifor Bach nightclub (English translation is: Little Ivor’s Club, also known as The Welsh Club). Apart from having its own Wikipedia page, the club is renowned throughout the UK for being one of the hottest places for live music and comedy! There is also PRYZM Nightclub as well, which features a number of different events that they run as well as themed events depending on the time, another great night out in Cardiff!

Cardiff boasts a broad range of culture and activities that are easily accessible to the public. Cardiff’s museums have long since been an attraction of the city. With the National Museum of Cardiff being one such place in which the public can learn about the heritage of Cardiff and the art of the city and Wales.

If you’re a fan of the cinema and you’re itching to see the latest in film releases then fear not! Cardiff has some of the best cinemas on offer including Cineworld, Premiere Cinemas and Odeon. All of which are available and accessible well within your student budget! Although if you’re looking for more independent films then check out any of the local film clubs!

Cardiff has a numerous of activities that run annually including the Bay Beach Festival, The Harbour Festival & P1 Welsh Grand Prix and of the Sea and the International Sports Village Festival, which is likely to be attended by those interested in studying Sports Science.


The city of Cardiff has some of the best transportation links in Wales. As the country’s capital city, it needs to have the best and it certainly provides that.

Cardiff’s main railway station is the Cardiff Central Railway Station, which has nine platforms and gets an average foot-traffic of over 12.5m people every year. You can travel locally, but you can also catch trains to Bristol, Birmingham, London and Manchester.

The city also has a number of bus services that operate in the city. Cardiff Bus is the most well-known bus service in the city, but there is also NAT Group, Stagecoach South Wales and First Cymru. National Express and Megabus also operate in the city as well and will head to all of the major cities.

There is also an airport in the city as well, which is Cardiff Airport (CWL), which is an international airport. It will fly commercially, nationally and internationally and can be found in the village of Rhoose.

Things to do with kids in Cardiff

Universities in the City

There are four major universities in the city, which are:

Cardiff University is one of the most respected universities in the UK and is a member of the Russell Group of Universities. The universities was initially founded as the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire in 1883 and eventually became a university in 2005.

The university’s student body is represented by the Cardiff University Students Union and has it’s building near Cathays Park. The union represents 260 clubs and societies in the university.

The union also provides a number of different media group as well, such as gair rhydd, the university’s free student newspaper and is released every Monday. There is also Quench, which is an arts and lifestyle magazine and CUTV, the student TV channel and Xpress Radio, which is the student radio station.

The university competes in a number of different sports as well, with everything from ice hockey through to tennis. The university also competes against Swansea University in the annual Weslh Varsity, especially in the Welsh Boat Race. In fact, Cardiff’s annual rugby match against Swansea (often referred to as the Welsh Varsity Rugby Game) is second only to the rivalry of Oxford University and the University of Cambridge. The university also participates regularly in the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) League.

Cardiff Metropolitan University started in 1865 as the Cardiff School of Art. The university rebranded itself many times and became the university that we all know now in 2011.

Cardiff Metropolitan student body are represented by the Cardiff Met Students' Union. There are a number of different sports teams in the uni as well, including:

  • Cardiff Metropolitan University Archers
  • Cardiff Metropolitan University FC
  • Cardiff Metropolitan Universityuwic Gaelic Football Club
  • Cardiff Metropolitan University RFC

Next, there is the University of South Wales, the university was formed in April 2013 as part of a merger of the University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales, Newport. It is the second largest university in Wales.

There is a student union at the university, which is the University of South Wales Students' Union and it operates about the same as any other union, providing students with discounts in local shops and at big name brands and also represents the student sports clubs as well.

And finally, the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama. The college was established in 1949 and is considered to be more of a conservatoire than a university or college. The college was initially called the Cardiff College of Music, but the name was changed in 2002, when it was awarded a Royal title during the Queen’s Golden Jubilee. It is a member of the Federation of Drama Schools.

Things to do with family in Cardiff

History and Culture

The city has been around ever since the early Roman-era and before the Roman conquest in the UK, Cardiff was essentially a part of the Silures, which was a Celtic British tribe and remained a Roman stronghold for as long as the Romans were in the UK.

Caerdiffe Castle, is one of Cardiff’s many landmarks and in 1081, William I, the King of England, becan work on the castle and as a result, turned it into the heart of the city. The city was essentially burned to the ground by Owain Glyndŵr in 1404 and the buildings were then rebuilt with sturdier structures.

The Bristol Channel experienced a devastating flood in 1607 (which some assume was a tsunami) meant that the River Taff changed course and also ruined St. Mary’s Parish Church, which meant it had to be replaced by the chapel of ease St. John the Baptist.

The city was damaged quite extensively during World War II, as the Llandaff Cathedral was damaged very badly, although the Cardiff blitz was not as bad as other sections of the country during the second world war.

The city officially became the capital of Wales in 1955, beating out Caernarfon and Aberystwyth for the title.


The city is one of the biggest sporting cities in the UK.

In terms of rugby, the city was home to the National Stadium and it’s successor, the Millenium Stadium (or Principality Stadium), which also hosted the FA Cup Final for five years while Wembley was being redeveloped.

There are a number of Rugby Union clubs, with around 23 clubs playing in the WRU national league system.

In terms of football, one of the most well-known clubs in the city is Cardiff City F.C., the city’s main football club. The club have somewhat yo-yo’d in the league system, having played in the Premier League, although they currently play in the Championship. They also have the distinction of being the first (and currently last and thus only) Welsh team to have won the FA Cup.

There is also the Cardiff International Sports Stadium, which opened in 19th January 2009, which replaced the Cardiff Athletics Stadium. It is a multi-sport and special event venue and offers a an international track and field athletics facility.

Who’s from Cardiff?

There are a few stars from Cardiff including; Roald Dahl, Ifor Bach, Griff Rhys Jones, Gareth Bale, Joe Ledley & Ryan Giggs.

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