The Cardiff Castle is in the very center of the city in the Welsh capital. Admission is about 9 sterling pounds. It was a Norman castle, which was built on top of an old Roman building. The great wall rebuilt from the base of the original wall really draw your attention. Admission includes an audio guide that takes you along a path of the castle, first outside and then inside. Definitely a rigorous visit if you come to this city.
Castell Coch is a castle in the SXIX reconstructed by William Burges, the architect who designed the nearby Cardiff Castle on an earlier one from the middle ages. The exterior is constructed to look like a real medieval castle, with a drawbridge, and a moat surrounding the castle ... Inside the castle, the decor is baroque as it was a castle used as a summer residence by one of the most influential families. Although there are lots of trains and buses from Cardiff, the most interesting way to get to the castle is a path-cycle path for both pedestrians, bikes and horses called Taff Trail (it runs along the River Taff) that can be caught from Cardiff Bay or a little later, from Bute Park. The trails are each about 5 miles (8km one) of smooth ascent. There are hardly any hills, so it is very nice for going by bicycle. Highly Recommended
Wales is another area that comes highly recommended, especially if you love castles and the Arthurian legend. Supposedly, it was in Wales where the famous King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table founded the legendary Camelot. Conwy is a nice little place on the North Wales coast. The hilltop castle can be seen from long distances, on the area's highest point because of its size. It's been pretty well preserved, taking into account that it was built around the 12th or 13th centuries. Its architectural characteristics match other buildings in Wales, which is usually called concentric. The castle campaign coincides with the annexation of King Edward I (Longhshanks or Hammer of the Scots, was his common nicknames). Today, it's holds a historic heritage of mankind and is a true example of a medieval building in Wales, because it's one of the most important castles in this small charming country. The views over the river and the town of Conwy are simply spectacular.
The Millennium Stadium is the official state stadium of Wales, built close to the river and a few hundred meters from the historic center of Cardiff. Both rugby, the most popular sport in the country, and football are played here. It has a capacity of 74,500 spectators, and was used for the finals of the FA Cup, the Carling Cup and the Community Shield when Wembley Stadium was being renovated.
Tintern Abbey is in South Wales, near the border with England (about 4 miles from the town of Chepstow). It was the first Welsh Cistercian construction and the second in the UK (1131 - 1536), of great importance during the Middle Ages until its destruction by the English Reformation (Henry VIII). The ruins of this abbey were very famous in the eighteenth century through the poetry of Wordsworth, who wrote "Tintern Abbey". In winter, the cold is brutal but the landscape and river are lovely.
As Cardiff is the capital of Wales, the seat of parliament is found here in Cardiff Bay. I was able to visit it and I was surprised as, in contrast to most parliaments, this is a truly cutting edge, eco-friendly building. The light enters through enormous windows, and the rest of the structure is made almost entirely of wood. There are stunning views of the bay front, so it's especially nice on a sunny day. There are many ethnic restaurants in the area, and it's especially beautiful at night, when the colored lighting creates really amazing effects. I reached Cardiff Bay Barrage Coastal Path from Penarth, a small town south of Cardiff. The walk is very scenic, and takes about an hour.
The Town Hall in Cardiff is truly impressive, built of the same kind stunning white stone that was used to build the central building of the ancient universities. The building was inaugurated in 1906 and is an example of the Edwardian Baroque style. The statues that decorate it are important characters in the history of Wales.
Wales, that small country next to England. I couldn't see it all, but seeing the North Shore is a small wonder. The route took me through castles, small coastal towns and castles up to Caernarfon. I liked to see the signs were written in Gaelic, though I don't know if the English will love that little detail. We could not see much of the city. It was cold and it was windy ... but I liked walking through the streets up to the castle, a stunning gray mass that rises along the river and you cannot look away. We crossed a small bridge to view the other side of the river, to give us some perspective. Probably if the castle didn't exist, few people would visit the city, but most people don't know that the castle was built to subjugate the people of Wales in the time of Edward I of England. Yet it is worth going to see it and compare the English with the Welsh environment.
In North Wales there's the Island Anglesey. It's one of those places where time seems to pass slowly and in which we can safely lose instead of find many visitors who are not in the same area. The rural fishing blends with the historical castles, churches, villages, cliffs, mills, ferries, lighthouses, beaches ... All this and much more is what you will find here which appeals to most. Ideal for sea lovers, this is a good spot to get lost. Also for lovers of the countryside and mountains. Anglesey... Another example of that in the UK there are many places of contrasts.
In the peaceful village of Beaumaris, North Wales lies this castle, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and is famous for that was never being finished and was never inhabited. In the 13th century, in the UK, King Edward I and his imperialists tried to unify all of Britain under his power, starting with Wales, before going to Scotland. In Wales fortresses were constructed as a symbol of occupation and power. This castle was the last and half the budget and the English king's attention shifted aim to focus on the wars with Scotland. The castle is one of the most colorful of the village, surrounded by water and trees, peaceful (especially in sunlight) to walk around and learn a little history and Welsh culture. It is normal to find ducks and swans and the truth is that there are many tourists who come to this corner of Wales.
In South Wales, near the capital Cardiff, lies the small town of Barry, where you can walk along a beach which is very nice and very clean. If you're lucky the sun will appear. When we went it was December. With lovely beach residential areas with sea views, it's a good place to get lost in the friendly Welsh countryside.
In the south of Wales, after passing Cardiff is this small charming town where you will find the local people friendly and hospitable. A former meeting place for merchants, ranchers and farmers who met in a medieval market, there are nice pubs (Real Ale Pub) where one can enjoy several pints of Welsh ale. We went there on Christmas eve so the atmosphere of this small town was amazing. An ideal place to spend a few days and disconnect for a while.
The Welsh coast is perhaps one of the lesser known areas of Britain but it is very charming. I recommend the town of Aberystwyth, on the eastern side of the Welsh coast. One of the most beautiful areas of this town is the promenade. The beaches are stony and the sea water is cold, however, July can be a very good time to enjoy this beautiful area. You will see the ruins of the ancient castle, which is now a beautiful park.
The railroad has written the history of many countries and this is no exception Wales. The country roads are narrow so a century ago you can imagine that the roads were still pretty much impassable. Amidst this scenario, the railway provided from its beginnings a good means of transport for moving passengers and cargo. Many stations still survive. Some of them are still in full activity, others are quieter but still retain the charm from when they were built. This is the case of these photos. They were taken in a remote corner of Wales, in a small traditional mining village. The railway line from this area long ago fell into decay, but this railroad effected several trips a day to the mines. It's basically a tourist attraction (which therefore has a fairly high price), but it serves to recall the charm of an era in which the hand of man broke the mighty mountains to carry trains and progress to the remotest geographical corners.
The hills and rocky cliffs are probably the most stereotypical image that springs to mind when you think of Wales. Climb the hills in any region in Wales and admire the sea and buildings since the height is an experience that any visitor should do at least once on this trip. Aberystwyth is no exception. At one end of the town you can find the slopes of the hill, where you can take a cable car to the top of the hill. It costs about 15 euros but the scenery that you can you admire from the top makes it well worth it.
In North Wales lies this spot, certainly one of the most unusual I have ever visited. It is called Porteirion, and it is a village that was created between 1925 and 1975 by the Welsh architect Sir Clough William Ellis, who bought the land, the sea, in a kind of estuary, and literally created his own town, just as he desired it. With a neo-Italian Renaissance style, the colors and motifs, Portmeirion, came from an architectural visit to the Italian city of Portofino. But if we look closely we can find oriental elements as well as British influence, mostly in Victorian style. The whole village is now a huge museum, with a number of hotels and shops, very expensive. The effect is strange, because you can feel the personality of its creator in the whole town, which does not lack detail. The town features a theater, central square, churches, harbor and much more. It is A sort of town or ideal world in the style of Peter Pan and his 'Neverland' (translated as Neverland irregularly). Highly recommended visits to the North Wales area.
The peninsula of Anglesey, in north Wales, is famous for its white, sandy beaches and for not always having a cold sea (though not as much as the coast of Scotland). One of the most famous is the beach in Benllench. Benllech is a small village dedicated to all your beach activities so it is super-populated in summer and completely solitary in autumn-winter. Although it is a great pleasure to walk around a beach without seeing anyone with only the sound of the sea and wind, the occasional seagull can also be heard. This is another good example of the diversity of landscapes and places that can be found in this part of Wales.