Now, apart from going to the conference, we had a little extra time to spend in Cardiff, and just in case you would like to hear about that as well... here you go.
First of all, Cardiff was
really, really nice. They have a very good and quite affordable public
transport system, with a bus going out to Cardiff Bay every few minutes and
buses going everywhere about all the time. (Except to the airport on a Sunday
morning!) There is lots of small and large shops and many different shopping
arcades, a large covered market where you can buy food and other stuff, several
parcs, the very imposing castle, lovely food for fair or very fair prices and
lots of friendly people.
My only problem with the
friendly people that were chatting at us randomly was that I sometimes had a
lot of trouble understanding the accent. It’s a lovely accent (I am a fan of
locally different forms of language anyways) and I had already heard a little
bit more of it due to watching Torchwood, but sometimes… well, sometimes it
could as well have been Welsh they were speaking at me.
Apart from all this, there
is also lots of culture going on in Cardiff – events at museums, galleries,
there’s the Millenium Centre with lots of stuff happening and so on and so on.
We had not enough time to take advantage of all that, but altogether, it
reminded me a tiny bit of London, only much smaller and less expensive. (And
with probably more Dr Who and Torchwood.) We did manage to stroll along the Bay
and visit the Dr Who experience, which was a lot of fun.
The only disappointment was
public transport to the airport. It is called “Cardiff International Airport” but
should probably called “Wales International Heliport”, judging from its size.
It has exactly one runway and is tiny, and with only very few flights going in
and out. (Nuremburg has only one runway and is sort of as tiny, but much more
busy.) Now, I’m all for small airports (I find them much more charming and
nice, in general, than the huge ones), but if it is not possible to get there
by train or bus by 9:30 on a Sunday… well, that is kind of inconvenient. We had
to take a taxi out to get there in time, not something I had planned on.
To be fair, we had to take
a taxi to get out to Nuremburg airport on our way to Cardiff as well, but that
was for a flight taking off at 6 in the morning, and I can understand public
transport not running then!
That minor issue aside, I
totally enjoyed being in Cardiff, as well as the conference, and I could well
imagine going back there some day in the future. Probably in the summer,
though, not in January!