Cardiff Castle

Hands up if you thought I’d never post this…

Liam left me for a while, and I decided to explore Cardiff Castle. It had the perfect location for our short trip, right in the middle of the city and next to the Christmas market. While the weather was grey most of the day, it brightened up for my little adventure, though it was still windy! The keep – in the middle of the castle and raised on a hill – was my favourite part, and I made myself proud by walking up the steep steps to the top to see the view that spread over most of Cardiff, I think. For someone who is terrified of heights and steps and this kind of activity in general, this was kind of a big deal! It was absolutely beautiful, so completely worth it. Inside the castle, I noticed lots of monkey carvings, so I asked a member of staff why they were there. She explained that they were a fashion in the Victorian era, but that the owner of the castle was a devout Catholic, and may have gathered so many monkeys as a tongue-in-cheek mocking of Darwinism. How interesting! As we explored the city, I noticed a few other monkeys knocking around, and they were fun to keep an eye out for during our day. I also got lost in the castle, which is pretty standard behaviour for me, but on this trip meant that I got to visit Santa’s Grotto before it opened! A janitor found me wandering along the walls of the castle and trying any door to try to get back to where I was supposed to be, and offered to show me the Grotto before taking me back to the area open to the public. It was really fun to see it, as I had been a bit disappointed that we had come so early and would be missing out. Fun fact: there are two Santas at Cardiff Castle this year – one fat and one thin. The thinner one has an armchair to sit on, but they had to get a sofa as well to accommodate the fatter Santa! This was a really fun little adventure, and while I wish Liam could have seen it too, I really enjoyed the time to explore at my own pace and get lost around a really beautiful series of buildings. Cardiff Castle – I’d recommend it!

Would you like some proof about Santa’s Grotto? Here you go! I was maybe a little bit too excited…

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