You may love it or hate it but raucous Saturday night in Cardiff has to be experienced. The St Mary’s Street and Mill Lane end of the city is the focal point for most of the action. It’s worth checking out the Yard complex, a redeveloped Brains brewery which now contains restaurants, bars and a club. Moloko on Mill Lane is an interesting vodka bar, Metro’s is a great indie club and Clwb Ifor Bach (the Welsh Club) has different music on three floors. Dance music lovers should head for Emporium, which was featured in the clubbing film Human Traffic. It’s then essential to visit Caroline St, fondly known as Chippy Lane, to soak up all this alcohol with chips and gravy, chips with curry sauce, battered sausage, kebabs or whatever else you fancy. Another popular late night choice is Charleston's Brasserie, which stays open until about 4am and costs about £13 for a big juicy steak. Celeb spotters will be interested to know that this is where Charlotte Church punched her ex-boyfriend after he sold his story to the tabloids, and also where she met her current squeeze, Welsh rugby player Gavin Henson.
The best place to watch the world go by is down at Cardiff Bay, which has witnessed so much pass by itself. Originally the site of the docks which exported Welsh coal worldwide, by the 1980s Tiger Bay was a mass of derelict land and abandoned buildings. The regeneration began with the controversial barrage which flooded the bay, and now the area houses a cinema complex, restaurants, piers, clubs, bars, museums, designer apartment complexes, the Welsh assembly and the Wales Millennium Centre, the home of Welsh opera and seven other arts and culture organisations. The coffee shops and bars which now line the water’s edge at Mermaid Quay are the perfect place to watch it all come alive - by day or night.
Otherwise known as 'The Welsh Club' it eschews the commercialism and loutishness that blights the club scene in city centres around Britain, going instead for an eclectic range of musical styles and ambiences on its rather different three floors.
11 Womanby Street Tel: 02920 232199
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