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Area Guide - Mercure Cardiff Centre

3Self Classified Hotel Ratings explained
WHARF ROAD EAST , CARDIFF, CF10 4BB
Mercure Cardiff Centre is situated 15 to 20 minutes walk from Cardiff Castle, the Millennium Stadium, St David's Shopping Centre and nightlife. Ideally located for visiting The Motorpoint Arena, Millenium Stadium, Cardiff Bay, Red Dragon Centre, Cardiff Millenium Centre and Cardiff bay. With easy access from M4 and 5 minutes taxi ride from Cardiff Train Station.

The 100 modern rooms have air cooling system, TV, tea and coffee facilities, hair dryers and en-suite showers. You can enjoy breakfast, a light meal or relax with a drink in the bar. Our on site car park contains 80 spaces at a cost of £5 per day.

Rooms are double for 2 adults or twin/ family can accommodate up to 2 adults and 2 children under 15.
Free internet access.
Picture of Mercure Cardiff Centre, CARDIFF at LateRooms Rollover image to see larger view. Rollover image to see larger view. Rollover image to see larger view.

A Guide to Cardiff

Cardiff has developed much in recent years, becoming an excellent place to visit. Cardiff is home to many visitor attractions and new businesses, meaning that whether you are travelling for business or leisure you will definitely find something to suit you.

Getting There and Away

By Air

Cardiff Airport is situated in Rhoose, 12 miles (19km) from the centre.

To and from the Airport:

Airbus Xpress

  • This operates every half hour Monday to Friday, and hourly on Saturday and Sunday.
  • Cost: £7.00 Adult return, £5.00 Child return.
Taxi
  • Taxis operated by Cardiff Airport Taxis.
  • Journeys can be prebooked by credit card (+44 (0) 1446 710693).
  • Cost: £20.00.

Train

  • Hourly between Rhoose and Cardiff Centre.
  • Rhoose train station is reached by a shuttle bus which departs from outside the airport.
  • Prices are dependent upon the time and day of your travel.
By Train
Hourly between Rhoose and Cardiff Centre.
  • Cardiff Central Station The main train station is located in the South West of the city centre, next to the bus station.
  • Cardiff Queen St Station Cardiff's secondary train station, situated in the North East of the centre. Connecting trains can be caught to Cardiff Bay Station.

By Coach

All coaches and buses (both local and national) arrive at the Central bus station located next to Cardiff Central Station.

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Getting Around

Walking
  • Cardiff is a compact city, and the centre can be crossed on foot in 20 minutes.
  • Cardiff Bay is only 30 minutes walking distance from the centre.
Bus

There are a wide range of tickets available:

  • A City Rider costs £3.50, and is valid on all Cardiff Buses for 1 day.
  • A Network Rider costs £5.70, and is valid on all bus networks (except the Airbus Xpress) for 1 day.
  • Weekly tickets cost £12.60, and must be purchased from the Travel Shop on Wood Street (opposite the central bus and train stations).

The Bay Express can be used for getting to the Bay:

  • Operates every 10 minutes until 22:30.
  • Cost: Single £0.65, Return £1.15.
  • Network and City Rider tickets are also valid.
Waterbus:
  • Runs every 30 minutes from 11:00 to 18:00 (later service on Saturday nights).
  • Operates on the River Taff between Penarth Marina, Cardiff Bay and Cardiff centre.
Pedal-Powered Taxis :
  • These taxis are free and operate around the city centre carrying up to 2 people.

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Must Sees

Cardiff is full of many exciting and interesting tourist attractions that are not to be missed.

Cardiff Castle

Castle Street, Cardiff CF10 3RB

  • The Castle represents 2000 years of Welsh history.

Opening Times:

March to October 09:30-18:00
Saturday and Sunday 10:30-16:30

Prices:

FREE

Llandaff Cathedral

Llandaff, Cardiff CF5 2LA

  • Situated in the quiet suburb of Llandaff.
  • Features artistic involvement from William Morris and Jacob Epstein, among others.

Opening Times:

It is advisable to check in advance before visiting by calling +44 (0) 2920 564 554.

Cardiff Bay Visitors Centre

Cardiff, Cardiff CF5 6XB

  • Also known as "The Tube" due to its unique shape.
  • Offers an insight into the maritime history and regeneration of the Cardiff Bay area.

Opening Times:

Monday to Friday 09:30-17:00
Saturday and Sunday 10:30-18:00
(October to April closing time is 17:00 at weekends)

Prices:

FREE

Saint Fagan's National History Museum

Canongate, Royal Mile, Cardiff EH8 8DX

  • This open-air museum offers an interesting insight into Welsh life. It has traditional buildings moved here from all across Wales.
  • Set in the grounds of Saint Fagan's Castle there is much to see and do.

Opening Times:

Daily 10:00-17:00

Prices:

FREE

National Museum Cardiff

Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP

  • This museum contains many interesting collections and exhibits across the field of art, natural history, and archaeology.
  • There are also many interactive opportunities.

Opening Times:

Tuesday to Sunday 10:00-17:00

Also open Bank Holiday Mondays

Prices:

FREE

National Assembly for Wales

Cardiff Bay, Cardiff CF99 1NA

  • Visits can be made to view the Debating Chamber, Committee Rooms (by prior arrangement), and the Pierhead Exhibition.
  • Seats can also be booked to view debates for plenary sessions and Committee meetings.
  • In order to book a tour or visit the public gallery, you should email assembly.bookings@wales.gsi.gov.uk.

Opening Times:

Pierhead Exhibition Centre is open:
Monday to Friday 09:30-16:30
Saturday and Sunday 10:30-16:30

Prices:

FREE

Techniquest

Stuart Street, Cardiff CF10 5BW

  • An interactive approach to science and the universe.
  • Boasting over 150 interactive shows, displays and exhibits, Techniquest is an ideal day out for all the family.

Opening Times:

Monday to Friday 09:30-16:30
Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays 10:30-17:30

Prices:

Adult £6.90
Child £4.80
Family tickets £20.00

 

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Where to Stay

LateRooms.com can offer a great variety of Cardiff hotels, B&Bs, and guesthouses to suit any budget.

Cardiff has a wide range of accommodation to offer, and due to the size of the city, wherever you chose to stay you will not be too far from the big attractions.

The Bay, due to extensive redevelopment and regeneration, has established itself as a thriving hotel base with lots of new hotels emerging. Only a 30 minute walk from the centre and easily reached by bus and train, the Bay is well worth considering.

For your accommodation needs, LateRooms.com has many fantastic hotel deals available to suit any budget, both in the centre, Cardiff Bay and the outlying areas.

LateRooms Tip
  • For big events at the Millennium Stadium (e.g. rugby and football finals), accommodation can be very expensive and limited, so plan your trip and book early.

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Where to Eat

Cardiff has something to suit everyone, with a varied range of flavours from all over the world. Take a look at our restaurant guide which offers a sample of places to eat to suit a range of budgets.


In and around the Centre
Armless Dragon

97 Wyeverne Rd, Cardiff CF24 4BG

  • Serves contemporary Welsh dishes using local produce.
  • An evening meal will cost around £25.00 per person including wine, although a light lunch is available for around £10.00.
  • The restaurant is open Tuesday to Saturday for lunch and dinner.
Zio Peppino

9 Park Lane, Cardiff CF4 7PF

  • Situated just by the main shopping street, this Italian restaurant attracts a varied crowd.
  • Food is reasonably priced with an average 2 course meal costing between £10.00 and £15.00.
  • Open for lunch (Monday to Saturday) and dinner all week.
Taurus Steak House

55 Saint Mary Street, Cardiff CF10 1FE

  • This steak house serves reasonably priced steak and other meat dishes.
  • A sirloin steak ranges from £11.00 to £16.00.
Champers

61 Saint Mary Street, Cardiff CF10 1FE

  • Spanish restaurant with an extensive tapas menu offered alongside an 'a la carte' menu.
  • Vegetarian dishes are available on request.
  • The restaurant offers a 2 course lunch at £5.95. Tapas is priced at around £3.00 per dish, while a main course from the 'a la carte' will cost around £10.00 £15.00.
  • Open for lunch and dinner.
Cardiff Bay
Spice Merchant

The Big Windsor, Stewart Street,Cardiff CF10 5BW

  • This Indian restaurant uses only natural ingredients in its authentic but modern style food.
  • An average meal will cost around £15.00 per person including drinks.
  • Open from 11:30 until late all week.
Woods Brasserie

Pilotage Building, Wood Street, Cardiff CF10 5BW

  • This popular brasserie offers a modern Mediterranean menu.
  • It is very popular, so advance booking is recommended.
  • An evening meal costs around £25.00 for a 3 course meal, while set lunch menus are also available at £15.50 for 3 courses.
  • The Brasserie is open everyday for lunch, and Monday to Saturday for dinner.
Izakaya Japanese Tavern

Mermaid Quay, Cardiff CF10 5BW

  • This restaurant prides itself on offering traditional Japanese food in authentic surroundings.
  • It has karaoke rooms and private Japanese rooms, as well as a bar/dining area.
  • Dishes cost around £5.00 to £6.00 each with a wide range of options available.
Bosphorus Turkish Restaurant

Bute Place, Cardiff CF10 5BZ

  • Provides fantastic views of the Bay.
  • Set lunch menus are available from £7.95 per person and the evening menu, although slightly more pricey, is extensive.
  • Bosphorus is open all week for lunch and dinner.

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Nightlife

Cardiff has considerable nightlife, the hub of it based around the West End district, which includes Mary Street, Mill Lane, Café Quarter and Brewery Quarter.

The Yard Bar and Kitchen

4243 Saint Mary Street, Cardiff CF10 1AD

  • Based on the original site of one of Cardiff's oldest breweries.
  • Modern-looking pub with restaurant area.
Cardiff Cottage

25 Saint Mary Street, Cardiff CF10 1AA

  • Non-smoking pub.
  • Popular with diners, and ideal for a relaxing drink.
Copa

4 Wharton Street, Cardiff CF10 1AG

  • Based on the site of the former glassworks.
  • Sells a variety of foreign beer.
Moloko

7 Mill Lane, Cardiff CF10 1FL

  • Vodka bar.
  • Regular DJ nights, popular with the pre-club crowd.

The area around Queen Street and Greyfriars Road is also home to a wide variety of pubs and bars.

Cuba Bar

The Friary, Cardiff CF10 3FA

  • Cuban themed bar with occasional Salsa classes.
  • Offers food from lunchtime.
Creation

Park Place, Cardiff CF10 3DP

  • Large, popular nightclub.
  • Different DJs and drink promotions on most nights.
  • Trendy pre-club bar.
Dewi's Cardiff

Mary Ann Street, Cardiff CF10 2WT

  • Regular celebrity appearances and live entertainment.
  • Large sports screens, open seven nights a week.
Henry's Café Bar

816 Park Chambers, Cardiff CF10 3DN

  • Extensive drinks list, including lots of cocktails.
  • Serves reasonably priced food.

Cardiff Bay offers a wide variety of pubs and bars, based largely around the Atlantic Wharf Leisure Village, Bute Street and Mermaid Quay.

Salt

Mermaid Quay, Cardiff CF10 5BW

  • Lively modern bar.
The Wharf

Schooner Way, Cardiff CF10 4EU

  • Waterside pub serving draft beers.
  • Regular comedy nights.
Evolution

Atlantic Wharf, Cardiff CF10 4JY

  • Large club offering a free bus service from the centre.
  • Regular promotions and different music nights.

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Theatre & Entertainment

Cardiff features a fair amount of theatre and entertainment across the city. The largest venue is the Millennium Stadium (Westgate Street, CF10 1NS), which hosts large concerts and big sporting events, and is also home to Welsh Rugby Union.

Other theatre and concert venues are:

Cardiff International Arena

Mary Ann Street, Cardiff CF10 2EQ

Hosts a range of concerts.

New Theatre

Park Place, Cardiff CF10 3LN

Hosts a wide range of theatre performances and musicals, including many well known shows.

Saint David's Hall

The Hayes, Cardiff CF10 1SH

Home to the Welsh Proms Cardiff, and holds many classical concerts.

Wales Millennium Centre

Bute Place, Cardiff CF10 5AL

Offers a good choice of theatre, musicals and comedy.

If you are looking for comedy, then you might want to try:
  • Glee Club (Mermaid Quay, Cardiff CF10 5 BZ)
  • Jongleurs Cardiff (Wood Street, Cardiff CF10 1LA)

The Cardiff Festival is also worth considering if you are visiting between the end of June and the first two weeks in August. It incorporates theatre, dance, music and art. Most of the activities and events on offer are free.

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For the Kids

Cardiff has plenty to do if you are planning to go with children. Most of the major tourist attractions provide child-orientated activities including:
  • Cardiff Castle
  • Saint Fagan's Museum of Welsh Life
  • National Museum Cardiff
  • Techniquest

There is also an annual Children's Festival: Located on Cooper's Field (just behind Cardiff Castle). This usually takes place in late July. Tickets are required for entry and cost £3.50 each (under 1s free). A family ticket can also be obtained for £12 (up to 4 persons including parents and children).

Every winter from the end of November to the beginning of January, the front lawn of Cardiff City Hall is transformed into a Winter Wonderland with a skating rink and lots of other attractions for the children.

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Shopping

Cardiff's main shopping streets are Queen Street and Saint Mary Street. There are also 4 covered shopping complexes to explore:

  • Saint David's Centre (Saint David's Way)
  • Queens West (Queen Street)
  • Capitol Centre (Queen Street)
  • Queens Arcade (Queen Street)

Located around the centre are also numerous little arcades, e.g. Castle Arcade and the Morgan Arcade, which consist of individual shops and small boutiques. Some of these are over 100 years old and contain original features.

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Gay & Lesbian

Cardiff's gay and lesbian scene is quite well developed despite the small size of the city.

Cardiff's main gay scene is concentrated around Mill Lane, Charles Street and Hayes Bridge Road. There are a fair amount of pubs and bars including the King's Cross (25 Caroline Street, CF10 1FF), the oldest gay pub in Cardiff.

The Main gay clubs are:

  • Club X (3539 Charles Street)
  • Exit (48 Charles Street)

Cardiff also hosts an annual Mardi Gras every year. For further information you can email info@cardiffmardigras.co.uk.