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Here's our guide to Cardiff, the capital city of Wales! Cardiff is situated on the south coast of Wales and is just a short distance from England. The city has a population of almost 350,000, making it the largest city in Wales. Historically Cardiff's port made it a hugely influential city in the 19th century, especially in the transportation of coal. Today, the city is the home of the national rugby team, the National Assembly of Wales and is the hometown of the children's writer Roald Dahl!
Traveling to Cardiff can be done through flights, trains, or buses. Cardiff Airport (CWL) is situated 12 miles west of the city centre and there are daily domestic, European and some international flights. There are regular bus and train services from the airport into the city centre, or you can call one of the local taxi companies. If you are traveling to Cardiff by bus or train, Cardiff Central Bus Station and Cardiff Central Railway Station are located in the city centre. (TIP: Another option is to fly to London Heathrow Airport (LHR) and connect with Cardiff by bus or train.)
The Public transport in Cardiff makes for very good, cheap and reliable travel. Most of the city centre and surrounding area is serviced by an extensive bus service. There is also a bus service if you would like to connect between the city centre and Cardiff Bay. Cardiff transport options are inexpensive, however, most of Cardiff city centre is pedestrianized allowing many students to walk or cycle.
If you're looking for places to stay Cardiff for a short term visit, check out some of the hostels that don't skimp on quality. For longer term student accommodation in Cardiff, take a look through the accommodation section of our website.
Saturday night has some of the biggest nightlife in Cardiff, although there's plenty of clubs and bars to go to any night of the week. The best areas to go to in order to fully experience Cardiff nightlife are St Mary Street, Greyfriars Road, Mill Lane and Castle Quarter. Wednesday nights are popular with the uni crowd because of the students' nights held at a lot of different venues.
When looking for Cardiff attractions, the city has plenty to keep you busy. Spend a few hours in the Cardiff Castle or the National Museum Wales, visit the Techniquest science centre or enjoy a concert or a show at the Wales Millennium Centre. If you are a sports fan there is 'Premier League football' at the Cardiff City Stadium, and 'Rabo 12 rugby' at Headingley. For the more energetic, enjoy a run or a cycle in one of the city's many parks, or along the Cardiff Bay. During the 6 Nations or 'Autumn Internationals', we highly recommend watching a rugby match at the impressive Millennium Stadium!
Cardiff is regarded as one of the best shopping destinations in the UK. Most of the city centre shopping is also pedestrianized meaning that everything is within a manageable stroll. If you are looking for big brands, try Queens Street or one of the several shopping malls including the St David's Shopping Centre and the Capital Shopping Centre. For a more intimate shopping experience try one of Cardiff's six Victorian Arcades. The Arcades offer more independent and versatile stalls and shops. Cardiff is also home to a number markets, including the Cardiff Market, which features a number of traders under one roof. We recommend the annual Cardiff Christmas.
Cardiff is home to four universities and colleges. These include Cardiff University and Cardiff Metropolitan University. For more info. on studying at any of these, please visit the university section of the website.
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