|Cardiff's Parkland Palace and Gardens
From Victorian coal port to splendid Edwardian City of Empire!
One of the city’s greatest secrets is its Civic Centre: no royal palace as you would expect to find in many European Capitals, but instead a parkland palace devoted to justice, government, culture and education. Its domes, gleaming white towers, colonnades, formal gardens and tree lined avenues make it easily the finest collection of civic buildings in Britain. No other British city boasts such a combination of architectural order, elegance, and co-ordination. The interiors continue the theme with symbols, statues of Welsh heroes, colour and works of art.
On this 90 minute walk we begin in the heart of Victorian Cardiff and make our way to Cathays Park where the civic buildings stand. Along the way hear and see how the town fathers became ever more determined and impatient to place Cardiff on the world map, with ambitious dreams of a glorious city. On arrival at Cathays Park we see the results and how pride in Cardiff’s emerging status combined with a rediscovery of Welsh nationhood and culture not felt for centuries.
It also shows how sometimes national pride had to be expressed secretly, invisible to all but the most astute observer: see if you can spot the baby sleeping dragons and hidden daffodils! We will also try and catch a glimpse of some unusual residents of the City Hall Clock Tower!
However, this walk is about more than buildings. We step back to the time before the Civic Centre was created, to discover what lay on this site before the first stones were laid; a magnificent palatial house which has long vanished; a temple like structure reminiscent of India; a lake; a jungle; and a giant garden party!
This is a private tour which can be arranged at a time and date to suit you (subject to availability) at a price of £5 per person (subject to a minimum total charge of £25). Walks start from the Tourist Information Centre in The Hayes
Duration: 90 minutes
Meeting point: Tourist Information Centre entrance, The Hayes.
To book a walk please click here.
For any questions please click here
To check the terms and conditions please click here