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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Travel Tuesday: 5 things to do for free in Cardiff

Dearest hearts,

Today I have the pleasure of welcoming a guest post from lovely Julia from the blog Drops of Wander. As she describes herself she is a French trainee journalist / conservation biologist / photographer. She, like myself, craves for travelling to new places, discovering new things and enriching her mind. Is it not true that the only things we can actually take with us anywhere are the memories and the experiences we have been through?! On this note, I would like to leave you this #traveltuesday with Julia, in order to discover the wonders that Cardiff has to offer. To tell you the truth, once I have read her ideas - involving castles, dinosaurs, Celtic history and Harry Potter's Bertie Botts - I had to put Cardiff on my #togoto list ;) and probably so will you! And did I mention that some are for free?! :)
In the Welsh capital for few days and on the look for free activities? I’ve got you covered with this list of five things to do for free in Cardiff!

1) Spend an afternoon in Bute Park

The Welsh capital offers an incredible amount of green spaces in the city. Bute Park is definitely the largest with its impressive 56 hectares and is also known as the green heart of Cardiff. Perfect for a jogging, taking a walk or even just having a break, the park will have something for everyone. Filled with beautiful flowers, trees and sculptures, Bute Park is also a great place to see grey squirrels happily foraging. If you have few hours to kill and feel like having a long walk, you can take the Taff Trail and walk toward Castell Coch (2-2h30 walking distance).The green heart of Cardiff also provide a good view on the back of Cardiff Castle and making it a good spot to take some photos. Hungry after all this walking and exploring? You can head either to the Secret Garden CafĂ© or Pettigrew Tea Rooms (more expensive) for a nice afternoon tea. 

2) Visit the National Museum Cardiff
Whatever your interests are, you’ll surely find something you’ll like at the National Museum. From geology, archeology to art and natural history, this museum offers you a rich diversity of things to do and see. The art collection comprises 500 years of paintings, sculptures, drawings and other art forms from Wales and across the world and will keep you busy for hours. The natural history gallery is interactive and kids can even have time exploring natural wonders in a room reserved for them. You will get to discover as well, the latest dinosaurs discoveries made in Wales recently with the free exhibition ‘Wales’s Newest Dinosaur’. Make sure to check the program before you go as many talks and extra activities are available. 

3) Have a picnic in Roath Park
Roath Park is another great park and one of the most popular in the city. Perfect spot on a spring or summer day, this park and its lake offer various activities which will delight the entire family. From boating to fishing, the park even provides in the Pleasure Gardens bowls, tennis and basketball facilities. Perfect for a sporty afternoon! The walk around the lake is also really nice and give you the opportunity to spot various birds including some ducks, gulls, herons and other species depending on the season. The botanists will also be amaze by the Wild Garden and the Botanic Garden which both showcase a vast range of species. If you go in spring or summer, the Wild Garden is a perfect spot for a picnic surrounded by colourful roses. 

4) Discover the Welsh history at St Fagans
You can reach St Fagans National History Museum in 30 minutes by taking the bus 32A in Westgate Street. Free to visit, this open air museum will take you through the Welsh history from Celtic times to the present day. Being one of Europe's leading open–air museums, St Fagans offers a mix of theory and hands-on activities giving its visitors the possibilities to see Welsh craftsmen showcasing their traditional skills. The museum stands in the ground of St Fagans Castle and gardens, a beautiful manor house built in the 16th century. Give yourself an entire day or at least a full afternoon to be able to explore the 100-acre of St Fagans and its 40 original buildings! Perfect way to combine cultural and outdoor activities, St Fagans is a vibrant museum and has a lot to offer! 

5) Go to Penarth
Head to Cardiff Bay to enjoy some coastal vibes. Once you’re there you can take a 20-30 minutes walk to Penarth longing the Bristol channel. This 6 miles-long walk is perfect for a sunny day and will take you through some of the bay landmarks such as the Pierhead, the Senedd, and the Norwegian Church. Crossing the bay, you’ll finally reach Penarth, charming Victorian seaside town. Its beautiful coastal scenery and magnificent manor houses are definitely worth the walk. Take a seat on the pier and enjoy the view and the music. Your inner child will be pleased to discover that an old sweet shop is hidden there containing treasures of all sort. From Willy Wonka Golden Ticket to Harry Potter Bertie Botts jelly beans, this shop is the perfect stop to buy original souvenirs and gifts!  

You can find more about Julia on her Facebook page and Instagram account :)

With loads of love,
The Twisted Red LadyBug That Loves To Discover New Places To Travel