The largest city in Wales is famous for its nightlife and revelers flock to its clubs and bars every weekend. Easy to explore on foot, Cardiff is one of the top destinations for stag weekends because of its party atmosphere and up-for-anything locals.
Your guide to a fun-filled stag weekend in the Welsh capital
Most of Cardiff’s hot spots are within walking distance of its two local landmarks, Millennium Stadium and Cardiff Bay. It’s a great city for big groups looking to have a wild night out. The Welsh are famous for knowing how to party so you won’t find yourself stuck for things to do.
At a glance:
- A compact city in comparison to the other major UK destinations, but with plentiful attractions and venues within easy reach
- Enjoy the welcoming buzz of Welsh hospitality
- Ideal for outdoor adventure lovers with easy access to the countryside and the coast from the city centre
- A sports fan’s dream with one of Europe’s biggest purpose built stadiums
- Great music scene with plenty of unique venues, plus major arenas for the biggest name concerts
Things not to miss:
Autumn music festival in the heart of the city
Visiting in October? Swn Festival (http://swnfest.com/
) sees more than 200 acts performing across Cardiff over four days. There’s something for everyone with DJ sets, film screenings, open air performances and plenty of live music. You can buy day tickets, but most visitors opt for a four-day wristband which is a little cheaper and gives you access to almost every event over the course of the festival.
Initially built in 1999 to host the Rugby World Cup, Millennium Stadium has become central to Cardiff’s sports scene. It’s a must-see for any Rugby fan, as well as lovers of sports everywhere. Book a tour to get an inside look at the third largest stadium in the Six Nations Championship and the second largest stadium in the world with a fully retractable roof.
Mill Lane is home to an endless supply of restaurants, cafes and bistros. There’s something for everyone with a mix of upmarket indie eateries and popular chains. The street comes alive at night when locals and tourists start filling up before a night on the town. When the weather’s good, pop-up beer gardens appear out front offering great people-watching spots.
On a hot and sticky summer’s day, Cardiff Bay is the only place to be. With hundreds of bars, restaurants and stunning scenery, it’s a perfect place to grab a beer and relax by the water. It’s got a great vibe, while More daring visitors will love the Cardiff Bay Water Activity Centre which offers a range of watersports for all ages and abilities. Getting there is fairly easy if you travel by bus. The bay can be reached on foot, but it’s a 50-minute walk and not a direct route. http://cardiffbay.co.uk/
Best pubs in Cardiff:
City Arms, Quay Street
Number one for knowledgeable staff and a wide range of cask ales from across Britain. Friendly with hundreds of breweries across the country, they regularly change their selection making them one of the best places for both experienced and novice ale lovers. Can’t decide? Try their unique Pint of Thirds, with a trio of third-pint ales of your choice and pick your favourite.
Queens Vaults, Westgate Street
A classic pub with a fantastic range of British ales and ciders. Three pool tables, darts and live Sky Sports in HD mean it’s the ideal place for sporty stags on a budget. Pop in on Sundays for a traditional carvery with all the trimmings.
Goat Major, High Street
A contemporary Brains beer pub with a mouthwatering pie menu, all freshly made on site. Great for a traditional Welsh pint with the lads.
Best clubs in Cardiff:
Missoula, St Mary Street
A great place for partying groups as all the staff love to kick the party up a notch for special occasions. Resident and guest DJs rock the house with the latest and greatest tunes fresh off the charts. Sophisticated interiors and great deals on drinks makes Missoula a great starting point.
Live Lounge, The Friary
Live Lounge is ideal for the second or third night when you feel like simply kicking back and enjoying yourself in one place. With bottles of wine going for £3 and lively surroundings, plus live bands and performers covering a whole host of different genres. At night, the Lounge turns into a small but casual club for night owls, with typical club music and a vibrant yet friendly atmosphere.
Ladybird, St Mary Street
A Cardiff favourite loved by students and local clubbers alike. Start your weekend at Therapy, LadyBird’s most popular night with fresh hip hop, R’n’B and dance. Saturday nights are reserved for VooDoo, featuring some of the best old school R’n’B and house music. It’s a little smaller than some of the city’s other top venues, so arriving a little earlier means you can avoid the longer queues.
The Vaults, Bute Street
Ever wondered what it would be like to dance the night away in a converted bank vault? Then head towards the Bay for this quirky, one-of-a-kind venue. They don’t host regular nights like most of Cardiff’s nightclubs, so it’s best to check in advance and see what’s going on. With great music and an ‘anything goes’ dress code, it’s not to be missed.
10 Feet Tall, Church Street
With a great drinks menu and an out of this world 2-4-1 cocktails list, this large three-level venue is a hotspot for those looking to party. Popular with the locals, it boasts an eclectic mix of music from pop funk, 60s soul, contemporary and everything in between.
Food: eat like a local:
Blink and you might miss Cafe Citta on Church Street. This tiny Italian restaurant may be small but its dishes have locals lining up outside the door. Citta’s authentic Italian pizzas are all cooked in a wood fire oven and beers come served in chilled glasses.
For a twist on traditional vegetarian cuisine, stop in at the Vegetarian Food Studio (http://www.vegetarianfoodstudio.co.uk/
) on Penarth Road. Their Asian-inspired dishes are not only delicious, but most are suitable for vegans too.
Award-winning Mint and Mustard (http://www.mintandmustard.com/
) on Whitchurch Road is the place to go for a five star contemporary Indian dining experience.
If you’re after the greasy spoon experience then Café 37 on Salisbury Road is perfect for anyone who manages to crawl through the doors after a big night out. American-style pancakes and full English breakfasts are just some of the mouthwatering and inexpensive options.
Another Cardiff favourite for hangovers is Garlands Coffee Shop over on Duke Street. A huge menu, generous portion sizes and friendly service make it totally worth the slightly higher than average prices.
Because Cardiff’s such a compact city you can get by without much need for public transport, perfect for big groups. If you find yourself needing to get from A to B, buses are by far the best and cheapest way to travel. All buses within the city stop off at Cardiff Bay.