A day by the lake side, armed with picnic basket and board games, is a great way to unwind and spend quality time with your loved ones. It’s even better if you get to see the best attractions the city has to offer just a few kilometers away from you, and it’s the best if you’re down at Cardiff Bay, near the barrage, to do all these things and more.
This dam, built in 1999, transformed the area from mushy, swampy mudland to dry, fertile land surrounding a pretty lake. Though the barrage scheme met with a lot of opposition, building it thankfully had more positive effects than negative, and the area transformed into a bustling hive for business and entertainment. The barrage tself is 1.1 km long and extends from Cardiff docks to Penarth and provides a safe route for pedestrians and bikers to amble along. There are quite a few sights on the barrage and close to it worth seeing.
- Barrage Circles by FeliceVarini, is a unique art installation which creates an optical illusion of circles. The artist painted upon different parts of the barrage so as to create an illusion of numerous circles when viewed from a particular angle.
- Imagine spending a few hours in perfect silence, fishing. You can do that at the designated Sea Angling zone at the northern arm of the barrage. If you’d rather just view some salmon and sea trout happily swimming around, you can see the specially designed ‘fish pass’, with its underwater cameras, motion and audio equipment.
- There are special barrage educational trails for families and groups, which take you down the area but this time, with the eyes of an environmental investigator. There’s also a play area for the small ones.
- There are two fascinating exhibitions, one titled ‘The Age of Coal’ and the other, ‘Captain Scott’. Using props and literature, you’ll be able to study how minerals and crystals are unearthed by the mining industry in the Welsh valleys as well as the Captain’s dangerous voyages to the poles.
- There’s the Skate Plaza which replicates the features of the best skating destinations from around the globe! Skaters, cyclists, joggers and runners will enjoy coming here.
- Cardiff Bay’s Water Activity Centre will provide you with the opportunities and equipment required to set sails and get your knees accustomed to the seas! This is based in the Environment Centre in the area.
- Tips and Warnings: There are plenty of benches along the way to take rests if you want to.
- If you’re cycling, be careful of the pedestrians on the path.
- The Barrage Locks allow boat users to enter/leave Cardiff Bay and pedestrians cross the locks from both Penarth and Mermaid Quay.
- Bus: 'Bendy Bus' (no.6).
- Train: Frequent rail services operate Monday to Saturdays with connections at Queen Street Station from the rest of the Valleys and Cardiff local routes network.
- De Courceys Manor (Contemporary)
- Cafe Citta (Italian)
- Shaam Nights (Syrian)
- Bomber’s Sandwich House (International, Welsh, Sandwiches)
- The Pot (French, Bistro)
- The Clink (Contemporary, British)
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35.75% of people who visit Cardiff include Cardiff Bay Barrage in their plan
3 PM - 4 PM
42.39% of people start their Cardiff Bay Barrage visit around 3 PM - 4 PM
People usually take around 3 Hrs to see Cardiff Bay Barrage
92.83% of people prefer to travel by car while visiting Cardiff Bay Barrage
Love walking along the barrage. The car park is a decent price There is a great kids park at the end. The views are stunning
Lovely place to go for a walk and beautiful scenery. Cardiff barrage offers plentiful things to do in the summer from, walking, cycling, fishing, kids parks, skate parks and cafes. Parking is easy, but does get busy over the weekends.
There's something nice about blue skies, blue water, and a rocky coastal trail with no cars 🙂
Great start for a walk across the barrage. Plenty of parking, though be careful as many of the car parks are operated by a notorious local parking company. Locks are interesting to watch when in use and are quite busy. An "optical illusion" is painted in yellow on the locks visible from the yellow X at the barrier to lock 3.
Always pleasant to walk around the bay. Highly recommended.