We took a tour on a lovely spring day, the sun bellowing down on the old castle stones, with every inch of it looking perfectly picturesque. It was the perfect occasion to climb onto the motte to see the whole of Cardiff below, and to really appreciate the vast ground that the castle sits on.
But if you happen to be in Cardiff during winter; don’t fear. Being one of the first places to have central heating in the Victorian era; the extravagant gold decorated rooms are warmer than you would expect.
The average entry tour (£12) allows access unto the grounds of the castle and the fort but perhaps is a little limiting. So we opted for the guided house tour instead. Although being an additional £3, gave us access to the opulent rooms Lord Bute and his family occupied, as well as an enthusiastic tour guide; who was filled with knowledge about every aspect of the castle and its previous occupants.
If you visiting Cardiff in the spring and summer months, take advantage of the Wartime Shelters tour, which gives you insight into what it was like to hide in the castle during the air raids of the Second World War. Although there is no additional charge for this tour, it is however only available on the weekends, and on school holidays.
The café situated in the visitor centre is nothing to rave about, good for perhaps a quick coffee or to rest after an afternoon of wandering around the grounds. But you are looking a good lunch then we suggest heading over to Pettigrew Tea Rooms in Bute Park for some lovely afternoon tea (have a look at our review of Pettigrew Tea Rooms below).
As an introduction into Cardiff and its origins, the Castle is your best option. The décor will mesmerise you, its religious history will charm you and its ancestral history will enlighten you.