Cardiff Visitor information
An Introduction to Cardiff
Cardiff is the capital of Wales and its largest city. The city is Wales' chief commercial centre, the base for most national cultural and sporting institutions, the Welsh national media and the seat of the National Assembly for Wales. Cardiff is a significant tourism centre and the most popular visitor destination in Wales.
The city of Cardiff is the county town of the historic county of Glamorgan. A small town until the early 19th century, its prominence as a major port for the transport of coal following the arrival of industry in the region, contributed to its rise as a major city.
Cardiff was made a city in 1905, and proclaimed capital of Wales in 1955.
Since the 1990s Cardiff has seen significant development with a new waterfront area at Cardiff Bay which contains the new Welsh Assembly Building and the Wales Millennium Centre arts complex. International sporting venues in the city include the Millennium Stadium (rugby union and football), SWALEC Stadium (cricket) and the newly opened Cardiff City Stadium.
Activities of interest in Cardiff
Cardiff is a lively and modern capital city, gaining popularity with tourists interested in its history and culture. It offers world-class stadiums for rugby, football, cricket and athletics and an International Sports Village offering an Olympic size swimming pool, ice rink and an Olympic-standard Canoe Slalom.
There is a lively entertainment scene in and around Cardiff, with opera, ballet, musicals, art galleries and live music venues. Other visitor attractions include: fairy tale Castell Coch just up the A470 out of Cardiff; Cardiff Castle; Llandaff Cathedral; the Millennium Centre; the National Museum and Gallery; The National Museum of Welsh Life at St Fagan's; Chapter Arts Centre in Canton; Roath Park with its lake, boats and visiting birds; Bute Park next to Cardiff Castle.
Getting to Cardiff
Cardiff is easy to reach from all parts of the UK and beyond due to good road, rail, bus and air links. Located on the M4 corridor, Cardiff is easily accessible by car and is well-served by rail services too, with frequent services to and from London as well as regular links to the rest of the UK. Regular bus and rail services link the centre of Cardiff to the valleys and South East Wales.
Travelling east on the M4. Leave the motorway at Junction 33 or 32 and follow signs. Travelling west on the M4. Leave the motorway at Junction 29, follow the A48(M)/A48 then follow signs.
Cardiff Central Rail Station is situated next to the Central Bus/Coach Station. Services throughout Wales are provided by Arriva Trains Wales. For all rail services throughout the UK - contact National Rail Enquiries.
National Express provide an extensive network of coach services. Coaches depart from Stand B2/B3 from Central Bus Station close to Cardiff Central Rail Station.
Cardiff Airport is situated at Rhoose, 12 miles south-west of Cardiff city centre and 10 miles from Junction 33 on the M4.