Cardiff has made its mark 150 miles west of London as the lively capital of Wales. Since 1999 it has been the home of the Welsh Assembly. The historical heart of the city is Cardiff Castle, which stands on a Roman site developed by the Normans. Every room is a beautiful example of Victorian medieval style, and highlights are the Chaucer Room, Arab Room, and the Fairy Tale Nursery. Nearby is the National Museum and Gallery in Cathays Park, which houses a nice collection of impressionist paintings and natural history and archaeological exhibits.
A short walk south of the city center is the Cardiff Bay area, which is dominated by the imposing Wales Millenium Centre which houses a huge theater for the performing arts. The Visitor Center is known as the “Tube” due to its unique architectural design. The area is popular for its waterfront walking paths, beautiful architecture, and old Norwegian chapel converted into a café. The Museum of Welsh Life is a 100-acre open air museum featuring reconstructed buildings, the showpiece of which is the Castell Coch, commissioned by Lord Bute as a country retreat and dramatically perched on a steep hillside.