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Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

A friend and I are traveling to the UK for the first time and wanted to take a trip to Cardiff. Sadly, we don't have the time or money for multiple days of travel, so we're going to Bath in the morning and planning to catch the 11:30 train from Bath to Caerphilly (which we see involves a transfer).

We just wanted to know if it was possible to do both attractions in one afternoon? We don't know the area at all or how much time we'll need at each attraction. Would two hours at each Castle be enough time? We're worried about traveling back and forth, or the walk from the train station to Caerphilly Castle.

Also if anyone could offer and insight to the travel by train, it would be appreciated. Would the trains be like the tube and you have to know when to get off, or are there direct trains?

Wales, United...
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1. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

The Distance from Cardiff central rail station to Cardiff castle is a 10 minute walk, there is not a great deal to see of Cardiff castle without going on the guided tour.

The Journey from Cardiff to Caerphilly town takes around 20 minutes by train, every 15 minutes on the "valleys line " and the walk from Caerphilly rail station to the castle 5 or 6 minutes, straight down the high street.

So it depends how much of the castles you want to see, sure you can do it timewise, but it doesn't leave you with much time in any of them.

Caerphilly castle is the most dramatic of the two, it covers a huge area with moats, a drawbridge, the famous leaning tower, i think it may be one of the biggest castles in Europe .

Alf

Edited: 22 April 2012, 18:34
Cardiff, Wales
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2. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

I have to disagree with the previous poster. Your entry fee to Cardiff Castle includes free range of the 8 acre site which includes a walk through the largest rooms of the fantastically refurbished "Burges" rooms (ie the remodelling of the Plantaganet castle shell which took place in the 1870s for the richest family in Europe and which are lavished in carved wood, marble, painted walls and much more); the best preserved Norman shell keep in Wales where a would-be King of England died a prisoner in 1134; an interpretation centre with cafe, cinema, gift shop; and the "wartime tunnels" - one of the biggest British public air raid shelters where you can see and hear what it was like in the Blitz on Cardiff - oh yes - and you can see the Roman remains as well!

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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3. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

If you could only pick one of the two, which would you recommend? We are going to Windsor Castle as well as part of a tour on another day, if that makes a difference.

Milford, New Jersey
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4. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder", and I would imagine, so would be castle experiences. Castle comparisons in Wales are difficult - as many have unique characteristics.

Jim gives you a very good overview of what awaits you in Cardiff, and the Burges rooms are truly fantastic. The keep is striking as well. There's much to do/see in a compact area.

On the other hand, if the word "castle" conjures up an image of towers and moats, drawbridges, portcullises, murder holes, etc. and the hint of desperate battles (although there was none at Caerphilly) - then the military fortress of Caerphilly is one of the best I've seen - the water defences in particular. As Alf mentions, this is a very large fortification. This was never a palace, or a luxurious noble's residence.

Hard to compare them - one against the other. They are each highly enjoyable. You're going to have decide what experience you are looking for - comparing these against other attractions you will be seeing on your trip.

Mike

tenby
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5. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

just behind cardiff castle is the national museum of wales in the civic centre so you could do cardiff castle and museum togeather. http://www.museumwales.ac.uk/en/cardiff/

there's also a sightseeing bus tour of cardiff which goes from outside the castle.

city-sightseeing.com/tours/united-kingdom/ca…

Bucks, UK
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6. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

If you're not leaving Bath until 11:30am, I would do Cardiff Castle - it is closer, easier to get to, and there's more to see both in the castle itself and in the rest of Cardiff. caerphilly town is also much smaller and has less to retain the visitor than Cardiff, so if you planned on looking around outside the castle, Cardiff would be the better option.

These may help you decide

http://www.cardiffcastle.com/

http://www.castlewales.com/caerphil.html

Bucks, UK
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7. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

PS - re trains - most trains from Bath Spa to cardiff central will be direct, but check when you buy your ticket, as some may involve one change. There will be announcements on the train as it approaches each station plus an indicator board on the train showing the stops on the line the train will make, so there is little risk of missing your station unless you fall asleep.

8. Re: Caerphilly Castle and Cardiff Castle in one day?

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