A wonderful place to learn about the history and architecture of the Welsh capital, Cardiff City Hall has been the centre of local government since 1906. Its distinctive 59 metre clock tower surmounted by a Welsh dragon towers over Cathay’s Park, evoking the prosperity and confidence of the Edwardian era like few other structures. Now considered one of the finest civic centres in Europe, City Hall is set amongst a number of other notable buildings, including the Temple of Peace and the National Museum and Gallery of Wales.
Once you’ve finished admiring the exterior, City Hall’s cavernous rooms also contain some treasures. Don’t miss the elegant Pentelicon marble statues depicting famous figures from Welsh history, such as Boudica by J. Havard Thomas and Hywel Dda (King Howell the Good). There’s also an extensive art collection adorning the walls, featuring “Winter” by Joseph Farquharson, as well as works by Penry Williams, Sir Luke Fildes and E. Blair Leighton.
While it’s a popular tourist attraction, Cardiff City Hall remains a working municipal building. Strolling through the elegant halls you may well catch a wedding party or two - it’s a popular registry office - as well as local conferences or international event.
When you’re done perusing the atmospheric rooms, don’t forget the grounds which offer one of the best places in the city centre to relax. In addition to City Hall’s manicured lawn there are three formal gardens in Cathay Park, each with their own character.