When it comes to breaks with the kids, not all destinations are created equal. Personally, I think Cardiff really stands out as a family-family holiday hotspot. For a start, it’s the home of Doctor Who, while it’s also got castles and activities aplenty.
My top three child-friendly picks in Cardiff are…
1) The Doctor Who Experience
What child doesn’t love Doctor Who? Not only is Cardiff the home of the show (the BBC studios where it’s shot are located on Cardiff Bay, while you can see lots of locations used in the programme around the city), but it’s also where you’ll find the amazing Doctor Who Experience.
The great thing about this attraction, in my opinion, is that it’s interactive. So, unlike museums where kids are repeatedly told not to touch, here they can go on an adventure they can participate in, helping the Doctor fight off his enemies! This experience includes exclusive footage of current Doctor Matt Smith, so it’s bound to be particularly exciting.
There’s a lot else to do besides the interactive side of things. For instance, you can browse the world’s biggest collection of Doctor Who-related paraphernalia – including all his famous costumes from 1963 onwards!
And, of course, an added bonus of coming here is that it’s just as exciting for adult fans of the series as it is for kids!
If you and the children really can’t get enough of Doctor Who, you’ll be glad to hear there are other themed things to do. For instance, you could take the Doctor Who Tour, which lasts around three hours and whisks you to all kinds of exciting locations from the series, including the village where Amy Pond grew up.
2) Cardiff Castle
Next on your list should be Cardiff Castle, which has an impressive history spanning 2,000 years. What’s great about coming here is the fact that families are well catered for, which means you and the kids will be able to follow a special family trail; with a series of questions to answer, you’ll find the answers around the castle. To see if you got everything right, you can check the attraction’s website.
Plus, lots of events are held here too. For instance, if you’re planning to visit Cardiff soon, you can come on March 24th as part of the Cardiff Children’s Literature Festival. Ages from three to 13 are catered for, with the Revolting Rhymes tea party open to four to eight-year-olds at 17:00.
3) Go Ape!
There are also lots of decent family-friendly attractions just outside of Cardiff. If your kids are aged ten or over and have an adventurous nature, I reckon they’ll absolutely love a trip to Go Ape!.
In case you’re not familiar with Go Ape!, it’s a forest-based adventure park that gives adults and children alike the chance to tackle high rope courses in forest canopies. There are a good few Go Ape! sites across the UK, but the nearest to Cardiff is in Margam Country Park.
Here, participants have to be a minimum of 1.40 m tall to participate, as well as aged at least ten years old. Among the things you can do are zipwire through forest canopies, climb rope ladders and have a go on the Tarzan Swing – it’s great fun!
Just as a final note, I recommend hiring a holiday cottage for your break (you can book these through companies like Sykes Cottages). After all, this’ll give you much more space than a traditional hotel, as well as the chance to create a homely atmosphere for the kids.