Are you new cardiff

In the middle of the city centre is Cardiff Castle, a medieval castle encircled by Roman walls. William Burges’ opulent interiors epitomise Victorian Gothic design, and once inside you can marvel at intricate woodcarvings, epic murals, stained glass and rich colours that stretch from wall to ceiling.

Climb to the top of the Norman keep to see views over the entire city. On a clear day you can see its sister castle, Castell Coch, in the distance.

Stretching for nearly a kilometre between the main shopping streets and the castle end of the city, the Victorian, Edwardian and contemporary indoor arcades give Cardiff its nickname, ‘the city of arcades’. Along the winding corridors are independent boutiques, family-run cafes and quirky pop-up spaces, all much more charming than the chain stores in St David’s shopping centre. Browse the vinyl racks at Spillers, the world’s oldest record store, or hug a mug in Coffee Barker (instagram.com/coffeebarker), a coffee shop with cosy nooks and exposed bricks.

Home to Wales’ art, geology and natural history collections, as well as touring exhibitions, the National Museum is educational and vast. It contains the UK’s largest collection of French Impressionist paintings outside of London and works from artists as diverse as Van Gogh and Picasso. The Evolution of Wales charts the story of Wales from the Big Bang up to the 21st century, and features epic dinosaurs.

 

Cross a sea-spanning barrage

Built to regenerate Cardiff’s docklands, the barrage is Europe’s largest waterfront development. It’s essentially an unwalled path for pedestrians and cyclists stretching across the water from Cardiff Bay to Penarth, a nearby seaside town, but it’s a great viewpoint from which to appreciate the scale and history of the city.