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Cardiff, the Capital of Wales

Dicembre 2019
La città che ha dato i natali allo scrittore Roald Dahl e alla cantante Shirley Bassey è una delle mete turistiche più popolari del Regno Unito. La prospera e creativa capitale del Galles è circondata da paesaggi mozzafiato.

di Alex Phillips

The Wales Millennium Centre
The Wales Millennium Centre

Cardiff is located on the south coast of Wales on the River Taff, which winds through the centre of the city and flows into the freshwater lake Cardiff Bay. Founded as a fort by the Romans in the 1st century, Cardiff became a town in the historic Welsh county of Glamorgan, taken over by the English in the 16th century. The town expanded considerably in the 19th century, owing to its rich resources of coal. Its port area, known as Tiger Bay, was once the busiest in the world.


Cardiff Castle stands on a hill in the city centre, offering fantastic views. The original castle was built in the late 11th century on top of a Roman fort. In the 19th century the interior was lavishly redesigned in the Victorian Gothic revival style. Take a tour to see the ornate decor that fuses exotic worldly influences. For a complete history of the city through stories, photographs, films and objects, head down to the Museum of Cardiff in nearby Cathays Park. Local products on sale here include traditional Welsh wool blankets.


Cardiff is home to the world’s oldest record shop. Spillers Records opened in 1894 and is currently located on the corner of Morgan Arcade. Browse records or catch a live performance by a local musician. For bigger events and an impressive library, head to the Cardiff Central Hub: a modern cultural venue with excellent facilities and spectacular views of the city.


The expansive grounds of Bute Park are a great place for a walk. The park was a gift to the city from a rich family who transformed Cardiff during the Industrial Revolution. The Secret Garden Cafe, in the heart of the park, uses local produce and offers vegetarian and vegan food.


Typical Welsh food includes Welsh lamb, leeks (the national emblem of Wales) and a delicious range of cheeses. Welsh rarebit is a traditional dish made with Welsh cheese and other ingredients melted over slices of toasted bread. Typical desserts include Welsh cakes, similar to scones. There are also many excellent Welsh beers, ale and ciders; try them out at the City Arms, one of Cardiff’s oldest pubs, located opposite the football stadium.


A boat runs from Bute Park down to Cardiff Bay, where you can visit its wetlands wildlife reserve. The Wales Millennium Centre is also located here. It hosts high-profile performances of opera, dance, theatre, comedy and musicals.


St. Fagans, a pretty village on the city’s outskirts, is home to the Welsh National History Museum: an outdoor museum where visitors can look at buildings representing Welsh history and culture from across the ages. A half-hour drive from Cardiff, Dyffryn Gardens is a collection of botanical gardens located near the village of Dyffryn in the beautiful Vale of Glamorgan.   

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