Cardiff, Escaping Zoo Animals, and Broken Umbrellas

_DSF1126It’s been eight years since I studied at Cardiff University and I’ve been well overdue a reminisce around the beautiful city. The things I loved about Cardiff when I first decided to study there are still the things I love now: the castle, the huge expanse of green that is Bute Park, the beautiful civic centre and university, the busy city and the River Taff. Things I had conveniently forgotten: that it rains a lot and when it rains its also very windy (hence a sudden remembrance of the streets littered with broken umbrellas on a particularly stormy day), that there are way too many shops in the city centre, that it is quite chilly with the wind carrying the chill from the sea.

Favourite Story:

I love the story that the Marquis of Bute wanted a zoo within his castle in Cardiff but the people of Cardiff didn’t like the idea, they were worried about the animals escaping. So he had some stone animals built along the outer wall, all animals climbing over the wall to escape!


Tourist Stuff:

Plenty to do in Cardiff. My favourite tourist places:

  1. Cardiff Castle.
  2. Civic Centre (the centre of Cardiff University, which has some beautiful buildings and gardens).
  3. Bute Park. Beautiful and huge and in the middle of a city. There are flowerbeds and standing stones, sports fields and wild areas, the River Taff.
  4. Cardiff Bay. The bay has been redeveloped since its use as a dock and there are nice restaurants here, there is also the new Welsh Assembly building (worth a look for the architecture) and plenty of other cultural things to see.


Photo below: Bute Library, the social sciences library where I spent a lot of time. I always loved the red dragon on the roof.


Photo below: The green square at Civic Centre and beyond it the science blocks of the university.


Photos below: The beautiful flower beds in Civic Centre.

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Photo below: the ‘Main Building’ of Cardiff University, mostly holding lectures for the sciences when I was at university here. I loved using it as a cut-through however.


Photos below: Bute Park and the River Taff. I often walked through the park and along the river as my student flat was right next to the park. Looking at it now I feel incredibly lucky to have had such a wonderful green space on my doorstep. Such a treat in a big busy city like Cardiff.


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