Thursday 25 May 2017

Cardiff Castle World War Two Shelters and Battlements - A Toddler Explores


Cardiff Castle World War Two Shelters and Battlements - A Toddler Explores

We visit Cardiff Castle often. We are very lucky as the castle is in the city centre and easy to reach by bus. For just a few pounds Cardiffian's can purchase a castle key, and gain access free for three years.
This means we pop in for coffee or just a little bit of peace and quiet but we had never been into the World War Two shelters, in fact I used to live in the castle grounds and never even knew they were there.
I decided to take Bear whilst Grandad was recovering from his hip operation. He loved it although parts were "a bit scary!"

The Castle is right in the centre of town



The shelters are accessible with a buggy. There is a ramp up to them and they are all on one level. The only problem is that at the end there are two flights of stairs up to the battlements. I managed to drag the buggy up quite easily, as the stairs are nicely spaced. At the top there are a couple more small steps then it is all flat again.

There are two adjacent tunnels, the first is dark and has loud speakers playing music from the War, Gracie Fields, and radio announcements. These are interrupted by the sound of bombs dropping. It can be scary and definitely gives a taste of how it may have been.

The entrance to the shelters are flanked by sand bags

Once inside it is dark and noisy

There are a few exhibits such as bunk beds and a canteen. At the end of the tunnel it turns ninety degrees and the next tunnel is light with windows looking over Cardiff and the Castle. At the far end is a flight of stairs up to the battlements. Bear actually loved this bit.

The canteen, it would have sold tea and biscuits

At the end there are steps, I managed to get a buggy up no problem, but the alternative is to turn around and leave the way you came

Outside are the battlements and a great view of the Castle Keep

The actual battlements are flat and easy for buggies

At the end there is a monument......

.....and while we were there a blue dragon guarding the Champions League Trophy

It takes about twenty minutes to walk the tunnels and the battlements without stopping. There are views from the battlements over the city but they are too high for toddlers to get to so its very safe. When we visited, Cardiff was preparing for the Champions League football final and so the grounds have been taken over by big marquees.

There are accessible toilets, a little cafe and a shop. It is a great place to visit. There is also the castle and the keep. The keep has very steep steps so we didn't go up, I am not good with heights.


We had a great time and Bear was very well behaved so I bought him a sword, only £3 in the shop. He loved it and told everyone he saw that he was a knight. He was slightly disappointed not to meet  real knights in the castle though.

Cardiff Castle's best knight guarding the entrance
I have attached a very short video (about 20 secs) of inside the tunnels just to give a flavour.

If you'd like to see more of Cardiff Castle why not check out our post Cardiff castle - A Toddler Explores.



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