Swansea is one of the most popular cities in the UK and one of the most popular cities for students to study in as well.
In this guide, we will show you the various things to do in Swansea, show you the city’s location, give you an insight into the city’s universities, speak about the city’s history & culture, the city’s sporting prominence and show you which famous people are from Swansea.
The city of Swansea holds the distinction of being the second highest populated city in Wales, and given the rich history it has and the amazing nightlife it has, it’s difficult to argue with why. The city has a rough population of 462,000 according to the very most recent figures. The city also has four universities.
Things to do in Swansea
The nightlife in Swansea really is one of the best in Wales, with many people coming from other cities to come and enjoy the delights that the city has to offer. We’ve compiled a list of three places that we think would be absolutely perfect for you to go and lose yourself into, have a look and see what you think.
First up we have Popworld, the club that is famous for its huge selection of cocktails and it’s amazingly varied karaoke music selection. The club has everyone wanting more and more and wants to come back all the time, and hopefully, you’ll be the same too! Be sure to check this place out! Secondly, we have No. 6, which is certainly one of the trendiest bars that you’ll see in Swansea. The bar has everything you need, with drinks galore and a great atmosphere. They also have something called Fizz Thursdays, which offers Prosecco for £15-a-bottle, which we recommend you look into! And thirdly we have Walkabout, which is an Australian chain bar with a straightforward menu, themed party nights and live big-screen TV sport. The atmosphere is as chilled as the beer they serve, and the music will satisfy everyone who comes through as you’re bound to find something you love.
The city of Swansea also has some interesting museums that commemorate the history and culture of the city. The museums are all accessible and affordable and include; Swansea Museum and the National Waterfront Museum. The museums are all worth heading to if you’re looking to learn a little more about the city.
There are a number of cinemas too if you’re looking for the latest and greatest that Hollywood has to offer then Swansea is home to; Odeon Cinemas, Vue Cinemas and Cinema & Co, all of which have fantastic facilities and ability to see everything new that’s out right now!
Swansea has many ways to get the community together, and one of the best ways to do that is with festivals, the most well-known one is called Swansea International Festival, which shows everything from post-war Swansea and celebrates some of the best music that Wales has ever seen too.
Swansea has a very efficient transportation system too, with everything from train routes and bus routes and well-received cycle paths too.
The bus services in the city are mainly provided by First Cymru, while other services such as NAT Group, South Wales Transport, Lewis Coaches, First Call Travel and DANSA share the rest of the city’s main services. There is also Swansea Metro, which is the city’s bus-rapid transport route. There is also Service X10, the main shuttle bus service in the city. The city also has a number of coach companies that provide transport to other major cities, such as National Express, Megabus and TrawsCymru. The city also operates a Park and Ride system as well.
The city’s main airport is Swansea Airport. The airport is mainly an aerodrome and is for local, private and recreational flights mainly. For those looking to fly further afield, Cardiff Airport in Cardiff is a better option.
Universities in the City
There is only one university in the city, Swansea University, which was established in 1920 as University College of Swansea. The college received university status in 1996 and became the University of Wales, Swansea and re-branded as Swansea University in 2007.
The university student body is represented by the Swansea University Students' Union (SUSU). The union supports a number of student-led clubs and societies and also provides a number of advice services such as money advice, student counselling, health centres and chaplains.
The union also represents Xtreme Radio, the main student radio station of the university, which was founded in 1968 as Action Radio and is the third oldest student radio station in the UK and the oldest student radio station in Wales.
In terms of sports, the university competes in an annual varsity competition against Cardiff University. This has often been referred to as the Welsh Oxbridge Event (referencing the famous rivalry between the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford).
It is thought that Swansea was first inhabited around the Palaeolithic era with archaeological digs and finds discovering what are thought to be the first modern British humans in the UK.
The area of Swansea was deemed to be very valuable land for the early Welsh kingdoms and led to numerous disputes over its ownership. Eventually Swanea was set up on its own and began to set about building a thriving economy, mainly built around the town’s trading industries. Eventually, the Normans took control of the settlement and built Swansea Castle and also began the process of minting coins in the town as well.
Swansea’s history was fairly uneventful until the industrial revolution, with Swansea rapidly growing as the world’s leading copper-smelting town, leading to the town to be referred to as Copperopolis, although the town soon began to phase smelting out and the town began to import wool, hides, wine, cloth and coal.
With smelting phasing out it was thought that Swansea would begin to struggle, until the introduction of the Swansea and Mumbles Railway in 1804, which helped move limestone from local quarries into the city and later coal.
Swansea was an important figure during World War II as its aforementioned industrial history allowed the town to make a number of important products for the army. This led to the German Luftwaffe to target the town and led to the destruction of huge areas of the town.
Swansea became a city in 1969.
Swansea has a long and proud sporting tradition.
The city’s main football team is Swansea City AFC. who play at the Liberty Stadium and play in the Championship. The team had played in the Premier League for seven years, before being relegated from the league in 2018. There are four other clubs in the city that play in the Welsh Football League System, Swansea University FC, Garden Village, South Gower and West End.
Swansea has its own rugby team as well, the Swansea Rugby Football Club (Swansea RFC), who were one of the founding members of the Welsh Rugby Union. The team plays at the St. Helens Rugby and Cricket Ground. Ospreys are the other Rugby team in the city, a Rugby Union club that plays at the aforementioned Liberty Stadium.
There is also the Swansea Bulls, the city’s only Rugby League side, who play in the small town of Ystalyfera. Glamorgan County Cricket Club is the city’s main cricket club and they play at the St. Helens Rugby and Cricket Ground.
Who’s from Swansea?
There are many notable people from Swansea including; Catherine Zeta-Jones, Keith Allen, Joanna Page, Huw Edwards, Bonnie Tyler and Dean Saunders.