How To Spend 48 Hours in Cardiff, Wales

Cardiff Castle
Cardiff Castle | ©Mario Sànchez Prada/Flickr
Nicholas Witts

Wales’ capital city is a wonderful place to visit, and although you would wishfully have more than 48 hours in Cardiff, there are plenty of activities you can cram into a small window. Here’s how to experience Cardiff and get a feel for its culture in just two days.

Day 1

Morning

Begin your two day Cardiff adventure with a fuelling at Bill’s. Situated in the heart of the City on Mill Lane, Bill’s has got everything from eggs Benedict and fry-ups to pancakes with fruit and bacon rolls. A staple in the Welsh capital, a breakfast at Bill’s is sure to get you on your way for your first day. After you finish breakfast, head to the nearby Millennium Stadium – an architectural landmark constructed around the turn of the century. Standing underneath its imposing, grand arches is an unforgettable experience, and will likely leave you wishing you were lucky enough to pull on a red and run out for the Welsh rugby side. Should you fancy getting a souvenir, Wales’ rugby union shop is placed conveniently alongside. From here, walk along Westgate Street and take a right towards the city centre. In just five minutes, you’ll find yourself at the front gate of Cardiff Castle. You can admire this wonderful historical structure from the outside, however a visit inside is well worth it, especially if you are a history buff.

Millennium Stadium

By now, stomachs are likely to be rumbling again. Thankfully, Cardiff has several delicious solutions. One idea is to head across the road from the front gate of Cardiff Castle to High Street Arcade where you will find New York Deli. A legendary, belly-busting sandwich shop, New York Deli assembles some of the greatest hoagies you’ll likely find. Should you think yourself capable, you can take one of these giants for the road and eat it whilst you wander the rest of the Victorian Arcade. Luckily, Cardiff is blessed with more than one of these undercover shopping wonders so make sure to spend time checking out the others – Queens Arcade and Castle Quarter Arcade amongst others.

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Night

Once the sun has set, you might want to sample some the city’s best bars. One must-visit is the incredibly unique Lab22. Established in 2012, Lab22 has been at the cutting edge of the capital’s bustling nightlife, offering discerning guests an array of liquid delights that fuse together your favourite tipples. Lab22 is open to everyone and is a place for people who crave an evening that stimulates the mind as well as the taste buds.

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Day 2

Morning

Head to Cardiff Bay at the start of day two to grab a breakfast beside the surf. Based in Mermaid Quay, Côte Brasserie is an all-day French eatery serving regional specialties and traditional classics. Open from 8am Monday to Friday, you can start with a quick meal to begin the day or a more relaxed brunch, all of which is available from its comprehensive menu. Just a short walk away is the famous Wales Millennium Centre. Designed by Jonathan Adams, the building houses the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. Inside its walls, operas, ballet, dance, comedy and musicals are performed, and there are also several workshops and free shows available when you enter the foyer.

Millennium Centre

Afternoon

In the afternoon why not take to the bay and try get an experience of the city on the water? Bay Island Voyagers, which departs from Mermaid Quay, provides the ultimate speed boat thrill ride in Cardiff Bay. It’ll stoke your adrenalin glands and give you an experience you won’t forget. If you want to try your hand at something more leisurely, jump on board Cardiff Cruises and enjoy an hour-long tour of the surrounding bay area.

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Evening

In the evening and once back on terra firma, head back for some wonderful food at the Bayside Brasserie at Mermaid Quay. Offering some of the most beautiful views over the bay and with an incredible quality of service, they serve a range of European dishes. This is a place for fine-dining meals and they have a wine list to match the quality of their food. Take your time to enjoy the vistas and reflect on your time spent in Cardiff.

Mermaid Quay at night
landscape with balloons floating in the air

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