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The best Cardiff bars

Coming to Cardiff for a night out? Here’s a list of the best bars you wouldn’t want to miss. The very best Cardiff bars.

First of all, it depends what you want: a pub? club? live music bar? real ale?

My favourite traditional pub in Cardiff is the Cricketers in Cathedral Road, on the road north out of the city to Pontcanna. It serves Warrior ale, which is delicious. It’s just a great place to go before a game, or to watch a game of rugby.

For a ‘land that time forgot’ pub right in the middle of town, the Old Arcade is hard to beat. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself drinking shoulder to shoulder with former Welsh rugby fly-half Barry John, as this is one of his regular haunts. Brains beer is kept better than anywhere else here, so this is one of the best Cardiff bars to sample a pint of Brains SA, known locally as Skull Attack.

One of the┬ábest Cardiff bars for music is Clwb Ifor Bach in Womanby Street, the bar-filled backstreet which runs from the Castle to the Principality Stadium. I began drinking here when it was set up in the 1980s as a venue for Welsh-language music. My band played here three or four times. Today, it’s still a great place to see bands.

The Live Lounge in the City Centre is another good place to go to hear live music. It’s got a casual, young feel and gets quite lively later.

One of the best bars in Cardiff for cocktails is 10 Feet Tall. There’s been a 241 offer there for quite a while but, frustratingly, the last time I ordered, they insisted that the two cocktails be the same! Luckily, the atmosphere makes up for this.

If it’s real ale you want, head to Tiny Rebel’s Urban Tap House on the corner of Westgate Street, opposite another favourite pub, the City Arms (used to be Cerys Matthews’s fave).

I’ll end this list of the best Cardiff bars with a recommendation in Canton, just north-west of the city. The Chapter Bar is a relaxed place where people go to watch a film, exhibition, work on the free wifi. There’s some nice German wheat beer here, but best to drink this in halves.

Pick of the best Cardiff bars Photo by SocialButterflyMMG
Pick of the best Cardiff bars Photo by SocialButterflyMMG