Tag Archive for fairground

Walking In The Winter Wonderland

After spending a year away in hot climates with some very non-Christmassy vibes,  I was excited to come home to Cardiff and start getting in the Christmas spirit as we neared the festive season.

Winter Wonderland

Cardiff’s Winter Wonderland has been a firm family favourite since its arrival in the city. People flock there every year to enjoy some time on the ice, cosy down with a mulled wine or have some fun on the wide selection of fairground rides.

Past years’ bad weather conditions (we are in Wales after all) has meant that many people have been left disappointed when when their skating sessions have been cancelled…cue the arrival of the new “all-weather” rink equipped with a clear roof. Only 10 years too late..

Having an ice-skate is always fun, whether you’re really good..or really bad. No one can be as bad as my Mum though, who, a few years ago managed to fall and be stretchered off. Never one for making a scene, my Mum. Whether you want to spend the time holding onto the sides and making your way slowly round, or if you’re feeling brave and want to show off your skills, it’s hard not to skate with a smile on your face. Even if there are those pesky school children getting in your way.

Winter Wonderland skating

Cardiff’s Winter Wonderland is the perfect Christmas tradition with the guarantee that everyone who attends is left feeling all things merry and all things festive. Open throughout the day and well into the evening, you can’t really not enjoy yourself. Live music  in the Alpine Village ensures that you are tapping your foot and singing along whilst munching on a bratwurst or a freshly made crepe and slugging on a toasty hot chocolate or mulled wine. Just don’t do a me and forget to bring some cash so you can’t indulge in the bratwurst sausage you’ve been smelling all afternoon. Sigh.

The funfair rides offer something for everyone. From the big wheel to the Santa train to the snow slide, all the family can be entertained and finish off their day with a giggle. Relatively cheap prices (if you’re not a family of four..), these are your typical fairground rides there for the simple purpose to get you smiling. The Big Wheel is a personal favourite as it takes you up and over the city, offering you some cracking views.

Winter Wonderland funfair

Cardiff Winter Wonderland Big Wheel

With the end of the Christmas period fast approaching, it’s probably about time you got your skates on and made a move to this festive Winter Wonderland before it’s no longer acceptable to eat your weight in chocolatey crepes and drown yourself in mulled wine. What am I saying, that’s acceptable any time of the year…..

Tickets – Adult – £9.50
              Child (3-7) – £6.50
              Youth (8-16) – £7.50
              Student – £8.00
              Family (2 adults, 2 children) – £30.00

(written alongside Laura Williams) 

Megan Carr

Vienna Waits For You

Oh Vienna, you were a beauty. I loved Vienna. It was so beautiful. I found myself walking around humming Billy Joel’s “Vienna Waits For You” feeling all European and Summery (I didn’t look European at all, with my pale sunburnt skin and tourist backpack but I can dream).

After a casual stop in Prague for a bite to eat and a gander (you know, as you do), we got to Vienna late evening so once we’d found our hostel (quite easily this time, we may be improving), we relaxed and had a drink in the hostel bar. We’d been travelling most of the day and after the traumatic stay in Ritzpack hostel in Berlin, we’d both required horrific colds and coughs (curse you French man that passed this to us!). We were both feeling pretty sorry for ourselves, all sniffly and pathetic and in desperate need of a Fisherman Friend. We stayed up for a bit, relaxing in the hostel bar and abusing the free wifi, before deciding the best shout was to head to bed.

The next day, we made our way to Schönbrunn Palace. By God, it was magnificent. After a couple photos pretending we were royalty on top of 2014-08-14 14.11.27the massive balcony overlooking the platza, we ambled slowly around the gardens. I say gardens lightly, it was absolutely massive, more like a small land or you know, a country. The gardens were so beautiful, acres and acres of amazing flowers, statues, trees and plots. We made our way up to the hill overlooking the palace and marvelled at the incredible view. Overlooking Vienna and the palace, it was pretty immense to look at. After staring rather intensely for far too long at one imageof the statues trying to decide what it was made out of, we headed back down through the gardens and past the zoo. That’s right, a zoo. These gardens were so big they actually had a zoo in there. We decided to give the zoo a miss and instead headed to the maze area where we ran around a big (it wasn’t that big really, but it took us far to long to figure out so let’s just pretend it was, okay) maze trying to find our way to the centre. With onlookers who had already found their way to the centre laughing at us from aboard the platform which overlooked the maze, we desperately sought the centre whilst maki2014-08-14 16.22.42ng an embarrassing amount of wrong turns. We finally found our way to the centre and were feeling pretty chuffed with ourselves before we looked over the whole maze and realised it was actually pretty simple. We hung our heads in shame and made our way to the other smaller mazes.
After a day of walking around massive gardens in the sun, we were feeling pretty hungry so made our way to the Big Wheel which is apparently one of Vienna’s most popular tourist attractions. It was okay, nothing special, just a big wheel really…. After some dinner, we decided to give the wheel a miss and instead headed into the funfair. We acted like complete kids going on lots of different rides, laughing, nearly chundering and on one occasion, flashing (I was wearing a dress. And it was breezy. And the ride was super fast. I handled the situation well I think, you know, full of grace and dignity.)
We made our way back to the hostel and got ready for our first night out in Vienna. One of the guys from our room, Cas, deciding to come along with us so after a couple beers at the hostel bar we headed out. We ended up at a club where you pay 20€ entrance fee and then it’s free drinks all night which was pretty good and of course, we completely abused this.

The next day we said our goodbyes to Cas and made our way to Vienna centre for a wander and a look-around. After looking at the massive cathedral, we decided to find a park and have a sit down in the sun. I promptly fell asleep of course, listening to music and getting sunburnt (the sun hates me).
After an uneventful evening of a Mexican dinner and getting tipsy in the hostel bar because we were stupid and couldn’t find anywhere else to go, we headed to bed feeling all merry and even more ill even though we were practically living off Fisherman Friends at this point.

Side note; I love Fisherman Friends, every time I get a cold, I get worryingly addicted to them. They’re amazing.

Anyway.

Budapest, let’s have ya!