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Travel information

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The following information relates to our traditional Open Days that are currently suspended due to coronavirus (COVID-19). Although we cannot welcome you physically on campus, you can join us for our Virtual Open Day on Friday 3 July 2020.

Cardiff is easy to reach whether you're travelling by public transport, by car or by air.

Travelling to Cathays Campus

Cardiff is easily accessible by rail from London, major UK airports and many towns and cities across the country.

The Cardiff-London InterCity rail service, from London Paddington, runs seventeen times a day, with a journey time of approximately two hours.

Frequent regional network trains, the Sprinter services, connect Cardiff with many towns and cities across the UK, including:

  • Bristol (50mins)
  • Birmingham (approx. 2hrs 30mins)
  • Southampton (2hrs 40mins)
  • Manchester (3hrs 20mins)
  • Liverpool (3hrs 45mins).

Various rail companies operate direct services to Cardiff Central train station from London's Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

Cardiff Central train station

Cardiff Central train station is approximately 20-30 minutes on foot to Cardiff University's Main Building. Walking will allow you to get a feel for the city including the shops, restaurants and entertainment it has to offer.

Cathays train station

Alternatively, visitors can change at Cardiff Central for Cathays train station (the University's station).

Cathays station is located in the centre of the Cathays Park Campus, opposite the Main Building. It provides easy access to all other University buildings at Cathays Park including the Students’ Union.

Ticket discount

Discounts are available if you choose to travel with Great Western Rail or Transport Wales.

You, your family and friends can receive 20% off Advance Purchase fares for most mid- and long-distance routes to Cardiff Central train station with Great Western Rail (GWR) or 10% off Advance Purchase fares with Transport for Wales (TFW) on our Open Day (1 April).

Groups of 10 or more travelling together with Transport for Wales (TFW) can purchase a Group ticket which provides a 25% discount on the full adult fare.

Cardiff is served by a number of local and national bus services – many of which drop passengers within easy walking distance of the University.

Park and Ride

Park and Ride Cardiff East, Junction 30 of the A48 (M), CF23 8HH

There will be a special University Open Day shuttle service from the Cardiff East Park and Ride site to our Cathays Park Campus, where Open Day registration is held. The Open Day bus service begins after 08:00 and runs until 16.30. Please ensure you catch the correct service as other routes operate from the site.

Buses from the Park and Ride depart approximately every 15 minutes. The journey time to the city centre is around 20 minutes and will cost £7 per car (cash or contactless). If paying by cash, the exact fare is required.

Return buses to the Cardiff East Park and Ride site will depart from the bus stop outside the Law Building on Park Place (Cathays Park Campus) throughout the day, until 16:30. Please note that this is the same bus stop at which visitors disembark the shuttle service on the inbound journey.

Free shuttle buses will be available from Main Building (Cathays Park Campus) for those who wish to visit the Heath Park Campus. If you are visiting the Heath Park Campus and wish to return directly to the Cardiff East Park and Ride site, rather than returning via Cathays Park, a bus will be available from the stop in front of the pedestrian entrance of the multi-storey car park. Your Open Day Park and Ride ticket will also be valid on the return journey from the Heath Park Campus.

That there may be a queue for this service at peak times, both on the inbound and outbound route.

After 16:30, the Open Day Park and Ride service from the Law Building on Park Place (Cathays Park Campus) will cease. However, you can use your ticket and catch a return bus to the Park and Ride Cardiff East site from Dumfries Place, Stop HV (near Sainsbury’s), in the city centre. The last bus from here departs at 19:30.

Please note that the Park and Ride site closes promptly at 19:45 and is locked overnight.

Visit the Park and Ride East website for more information.

Parking in the city centre

To avoid the hassle and cost of parking in the city centre, we recommend using public transport. However, there are a couple of car parks within walking distance of Park Place.

There is limited on street ‘pay and display’ parking on Park Place, Senghennydd Road and within the civic centre. This typically costs around £6.10 for five hours. For further information about parking areas in Cardiff, please visit Cardiff Council’s website.

There are a number of city centre multi-storey car parks. However, please note that charges vary considerably, up to approximately £26 per day.

Nearest airport: Cardiff Airport

Several inter-regional and international air services operate from Cardiff Airport, which is about 12 miles from the city centre. The Cardiff Airport Express Bus runs between the airport and the city centre. For further details, please visit the airport’s website.

Additional transport services are available from a number of UK airports providing onwards travel to Cardiff.