Daffodil hats. Everywhere.
During a rugby weekend in Cardiff you will see people dressed like daffodils, sheep and even the occasional leek popping up. Everyone knows that rugby is a massive sport in Wales and we are a very passionate country… especially when it’s the Six Nations and we’re playing against England! All the six nations games are important and exciting, but a home game against England is a massive event and this event is coming to Cardiff on Saturday, 23 of February. Cardiff is a great city with loads of activities but the best time to visit Cardiff is during a rugby match. Here’s what to do during a rugby weekend, the best places to go and what to expect.
FRIDAY: The lead up…
As mentioned before, Daffodils will be everywhere on the Saturday but on Friday Cardiff will be quieter than usual because people will be getting ready for the big match on Saturday. As the weather is meant to be nice and sunny on Friday, make the most of it: it doesn’t happen very often in Wales, especially in February! If you want to immerse yourself in Welsh culture, start with a visit to Cardiff Castle. A ticket costs about £11.30 but well worth a visit as it’s a beautiful place and you’ll be able to see Cardiff from the high tower in the sunlight. Remember to pack your sunnies. If you don’t fancy going to the Castell, visit Cardiff museum, which is free to enter. A walk around Roath Park is great in the lovely weather too. As the night draws closer, Cardiff has a million different places to eat and drink. Wetherspoons is always a favourite as it’s, well, cheap and cheerful- but a lot of places have deals on a Friday and plenty of choice!
SATURDAY: Match day!
Imagine a stampede of daffodils coming your way… that’s what the streets of Cardiff will look like. I know I’m banging on about daffodils and all, but I’m not joking when I say they will be everywhere! The day will start calm; a big breakfast is always a good idea. A lot of places do a lovely cooked breakfast but I recommend visiting a cafe called Barkers Tea Rooms. Their breakfasts are massive and cost around £8 but you will be fuelled ready for the day! The café is also very nice inside and you’re very close to the stadium- and the closer to the stadium you are, the better the atmosphere you get. Alcohol will be more expensive on game days but Wetherspoons is, as ever, a great shout. Be warned: Spoons will get full very quickly as everyone knows it’s one of the cheaper places to go on a match day. A lovely bar called The Glassworks is a nice place to go for a drink, doesn’t get too busy and it’s very close to the stadium. The day gets busier the closer it gets to the match, the streets will fill up and as the weather looks nice for the weekend, people will be drinking and eating outside. You will be able to feel the atmosphere heating up as people start getting excited. The excitement tingles through Cardiff before a game starts. People will start heading into the stadium around 3:30pm as people and bags will be searched.
Most pubs and bars in Cardiff will be playing the game and entry will be free. A good place to watch the Rugby from my own personal experience is Walkabout. Their bar is big with two floors and big screens. A pint is £4.50 so not too expensive. Cardiff streets will be quiet when the game’s on but once it’s finished, around 5 to 10 minutes before the game ends, the streets will be getting busier and busier and soon the streets will be packed full of people. Shoulder bumping with people and depending on the outcome of the game on Saturday, the streets will be wild. The streets may be frantic with people rushing to get home before it gets too busy and the excitement of either winning or the game itself but it will never become violent. Let’s say, if Wales lose on Saturday, Cardiff will still be an exciting city, as everyone loves a rugby day. Expect to hear a lot of Welsh songs like Sospan Fach, Hen Wlad fy Nhadau and always a Tom Jones song, Delilah’s a popular one. If Wales beat England… well another song that may be sang may include swearing and chariots, it goes a little something like “You can shove that f****** chariot up your a***”. Or even if Wales lose, we will still sing as we love to sing!
SUNDAY: Rest day.
This will be a quiet day in Cardiff. A lot of people with sore heads, nursing a hangover. As town may be a little quieter than usual, it’s a good day to either rest from the night before or seize the day and go wandering around Cardiff. The Cardiff arcades are a great place to wander around, as you will see many unique shops and businesses. Cardiff Bay is a lovely place to visit, with a lot of places to visit, eat, drink and walk.
-Carys “Delilah” Evans