There was only one moment I was truly upset I didn't have access to a kitchen during my time in the UK, and it happened when I walked into Cardiff Market and smelled the fish. Like anything truly exceptional during travel, we found this purely by accident as we walked around downtown. It's a Victorian-style indoor market with all sorts of surprises around every corner -- fresh fish, whole pigs, and plenty of stalls for quick bites if you're stopping in for lunch. We ate some excellent pasties and some fresh cheese as we shopped, and if I could have gotten somewhere to cook some of that fish ... well, it's probably a good thing I didn't, considering we were traveling on a budget.
I don't subscribe to the idea that something all the tourists do is automatically worthless, but I'll admit it was nice to see plenty of locals there as well. Considering its central location, there's really no excuse not to stop in during a visit.
Ohh it was so cold. I was looking forward to this visit a lot, but the cold got into my bones straight away. It became obvious in the first 10 min after our arrival that we could not just walk around the city, but had to find some shelter and this indoor market was just the right spot.
The Cardiff Market is located not far away from the train station, bang slam in the middle between the HighStreet and some massive shopping centers. It's a Victorian market with stalls build in (the one in the middle even has a fake clock tower) and it boasts a rather generous first floor balcony, with further stalls on it. You really need to go up there ... we found the statue of a panda bear guarding some tables at one of the greasy spoons. So random. So fun.
The market has a wide variety of stalls from bakeries, over fishmongers, to pet shops and second hand book and music stores. When you're there I advice to go and buy some welsh cakes (Yummy!), but compare the prices between the stalls, as some are more expensive.
Cardiff Market is the kind of old-fashioned market that faces extinction. Walking into the market feels a little like stepping back in time; the huge Victorian, glass-topped building houses dozens of stalls on two levels and is unashamedly dated in its appearance.
With the arrival of shopping centres and busy, thriving town centres, markets like this have become scarce and many cities lost them years ago.
What a delight then, to find Cardiff Market a bustling place on every visit. There are numerous stalls: Food (Fish, Meat, Fruit and Veg), Books, Clothing, Homeware, Electrical to mention just a few.
It's a place you go to have a browse for 5minutes and find yourself coming out after 45. Other than being a good browsing market, it's incredibly useful. On more than one occassion I've found myself looking for something out-of-the-ordinary, something I've had no success looking anywhere else, only to find it at Cardiff Market.
Though not every stall stocks the highest quality goods (it seems that there is a tardis delivering much of the stock), the pride that independent traders put into the place is admirable.
Support Cardiff Market, its stalls, people and smells are one of a kind and would be deeply missed if it were gone.
Talk about local flavour, this is it.
Pop along grab a freshly made donut or maybe a Bacon and egg BAP
Plenty of crafty sort of stores with different wares for sale.
Worth a visit just for the proper Kardiff Accents. Looks good for fruit and veg and also seafood if you are brave enough tot eat anything that comes out of the bristol channel!
Situated right in the heart of the city centre, the indoor market, which has been here for over 100 years, is a must for visitors and locals alike.
There are a vast array of stalls including Ashtons the fishmongers situated at the Trinity street entrance. Fish and shellfish are all on display, as well as the welsh world famous delicacy of lavabread (surprisingly nice, try it!).
Further in are stalls selling fruit and vegetables, bread, confectionary as well as gifts, jewellery, cards and household goods.
One favourite of mine is C.L. Jones on the first floor, who stock all manner of light bulbs and electronic products.
There is also an umbrella and walking stick stall, which my grandmother would always shop at.
Whilst my grandfather always frequents the butchers stalls which are found around the edge of the market.
A friend of mine actually had all her wedding flowers from the flower stall here, which I can safely say were absolutely beautiful.
For Visitors to Cardiff, the Welsh gift stall is a must for mementoes to take home.
I used to avoid Cardiff's indoor market because I hated the smell of fish from the fishmonger's, which is positioned near one of the entrances, but I've got over this phobia now and occasionally pop in to visit the pet shop (which is a bit rubbish, but is the only one I know of in the city centre) - or to pick up hard-to-find bits and bobs such as watch batteries or sewing cotton.
There are two entrances to the market: the main entrance on St. Mary Street, and an additional entrance from pedestrianised Trinity Street, opposite St. John's Church. Housed in a grand Victorian building, hundreds of stalls occupy the market floor, and you can pick up meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, freshly baked bread, a wide variety of cheeses, and cold meats. But it doesn't just focus on food - there are also cheap home ware shops (a favourite with students), sewing shops, greeting card shops (selling some rather tacky designs), and places selling jewellery, handbags, and other accessories. If there's something you're after and you can't think of a shop that sells it, it's quite likely you'll find it in the market.
I am so glad the market is still here. This is a real delight after the modern brightness of all the new shopping arcades.
You can probably find most things here, ok you won't get your stylish clothes but you can get your shoes fixed, find some cheap electrical goods and pick up something for your pets.
The best thing is undoubtedly the food. Living on your own can sometimes be expensive when everything in the supermarket is packaged for a family. At the market you can pick up just what you need, fresh and tasty and cheap too, not to mention convenient
As with so many markets, there are a lot of different stalls. Some are hits and some are misses. Fortunately most of the stalls in Cardiff Market provide good products are service. It's certainly worth taking a gander at and a wander around if you're not already familiar.
The most useful thing for most people's daily lives (key cutting and the like I don't count as a daily need) is surely the fresh fruit, vegetables, fish and meat.
I think most people who know Cardiff well will be familiar with that lovely smell of the fish stall in one of the entrance ways. People either spend ages there choosing their dinner, or run through with their hand firmly clamped down over their nose. Either way, I think most people who agree that this is the best place for seafood.
When I was a kid, one of the highlights when coming in to the city centre was surely going to see the pets on the upper level. There is a balcony that runs around the edge of the market from which you can look down on all the hustle and bustle below. Here you'll find puppies, kittens and bunnies. Oh, and fish and hamsters probably, but they're boring.
Cardiff Market is a really interesting building, from a design perspective its really lovely and houses a real atmosphere for bargain hunting and shopping.
I would recommend the fish mongers in the entrance, I purchased a delicious cut of monkfish for £11 and it was entirely worth the price tag. There also some good DIY stalls within the market, but they are unreliable for getting deliveries when they say they will. All seamstresses, visit the market before going to City Road because there are some good bargains. There is also a while-you-wait shoe repair service at the rear of the market.
I have also purchased some delicious sundried tomatoes from a deli stand. it outshines any supermarket in terms of produce.
This is certainly a different way of life to view as a busy market place within a Welsh Capital city which holds many varieties of market stalls within its small complex. I feel that it has a great mixture of different cultures of the world's atmosphere in here.
Welsh and some other culture, but I can't quiet put my finger on it. The smells of fish and sea food and the smells that the animals from the pet shop store explode off from the scent of their bodies and way of living.
It is ever so busy in there; I like a market stall that sells Welsh items, gifts and crafts on it and another one that sells stamp collections of films and TV programmes such as Doctor Who, Torchwood and Star Wars. They have cafes and other shops too.
The prices are cheap for most items and products and it is well worth visiting because of its atmosphere and what shops are in there. It is very different to the rest of Cardiff and so, therefore it feels almost like it is another world that you enter... I recommend it to all tourists and it is free to enter.
For the locals, Cardiff Market is the last stop shop if you need something specific and the rest of Cardiff has sold out/has no idea what you're talking about and keeps looking at you funny. Can't find a buckle-free belt? Cardiff Market. Need a watch fixed? Cardiff Market. Want a bolt of cloth? Cardiff Market? Fresh fish and the stench on your clothes for the rest of your life? Cardiff Market.
It's like the "miscellaneous" portion of the Cardiff shopping experience. Brewery Quarter for food. Mill Lane for clubs. St. David's 2 for retail and Cardiff Market for other.
For tourists and visitors, the market is, as mentioned, like stepping into another world. Coming away from the spit-polish shine of the rest of Cardiff you walk into this wonderfully tawdry building filled with old stalls and businesses where you can collect some wonderful things you won't find anywhere else before emerging, blinking in the Cardiff city shine again as a little part of you wishes you could go back to the market where everything had character instead of chrome.
Cardiff market is one of those places that's probably usually overlooked by the most common city visitor. On the ground floor you will find fish, fruit and veg, a range of meat sellers, cheese, wigs and hairpieces, vaccum cleaners and electrical supplies, keepsakes, pots and pans, tools, wool, kitchen utensils, greeting cards, fresh flowers, dry flowers, books, carpets and rugs, textiles, welsh gifts and much more. If you venture upstairs you can find records, dvds, cds and collectables, toys and games, aquatics, electrical goods, a model shop and pet supplies. Last time I went there I even saw a tattooist.
All of this under one roof, and much more. I haven't even mentioned the take away food available or the café, the hairdressers or engravers. Basically, Cardiff's indoor market has everything you could possibly need if you're not fussy about shopping in a high street retail store. This building is thriving every day and you could walk through here a dozen times and still see something you didn't see last time.
Not only is it a historical building but it holds a wealth of local knowledge, if any of the market traders can't provide what it is you are looking for you can almost guarantee they will know where you can get it from. A keen tip from me is that if you ever need a watch mended come here rather than the high street jewellers as they will usually do it there and then at a fraction of the price.
It would be shame for newcomer to Cardiff to miss out on a visit to Cardiff Market when they're around the city centre. An old Victorian building that remains a good source of produce from local traders. As you enter the market you will be greeted by the same smell of fresh fish that has filled my childhood memories of this place.
After passing through a smell that divides many people (perhaps having bought some sole for dinner) to a swathe of independent traders trying to sell you fruit, sweets, watch repairs, rabbits, and donuts. It's a great place to wander around or engage with a proper salesperson and maybe try some bartering on for size.
Traders in the old Cardiff Market are an expert in their fields, so they will be able to offer expert advice and guidance that you know you can trust.
The Cardiff Market! A place where all the locals go and all the tourists should visit. Cardiff is a proud city, and it certainly shows in the market. Once you enter the market you are hit by different smells from every store whether it's from the meat stand, the fish bar, the fruit and vegetable stall, the bakery or even the pet shop. No matter what, Cardiff Market has it all!
It has such a vibrant atmosphere that you will be turning your head every way to see all the different stalls and sounds. When I go to the market I always get my fruit and vegetables from there partly because it's fresh and looks more appealing. But mainly it's because they are at great low prices. Better than buying from your local supermarket! The people who own the stores are always happy to help and sell you the offers that are on display. I would check out both levels of the market, as there is more to see with plenty of pet shops and technology stores. I bought my fish and tank from there. We named him Bob! I remember looking for a door stop all over town and the last place I went to was the market and they had plenty.
I would visit the market whether you are a local or a tourist because it's what Cardiff is all about! You are bound to find something in there that you will like at a great price.
When I first moved to Cardiff I was so impressed by this little indoor market.
It is really beautiful to look at and is lovely to poodle around.
I go here alot and often by fresh fish from the fish monger inside. The fish is fabulous..... If was any fresher it would still be thrashing away!
There are such a variety of stalls in this market. It has a superb sweet stool which I always stop off at. It sells proper penny sweets.... Mmmmm!
Whether you want to get you watch fixed or like me have a sweet tooth this market really is the place to go. However if you don't need anything this market is also a good place to walk around and have a browse.... Trust me.....I am sure something will catch you eye!
I think there is something that no city should be without and that is a market. I love indoor markets, the home of local produce and home ware at great prices. There is something that just makes you feel a little dehumanized by the commercial main stream that is Cardiff, local people selling goods that they have carefully picked. It does rather reek of fish as you enter, but don't let this put you off!
There is so much food here, you will be spoilt for choice as to what coating you prefer on your chicken or which pork pie looks like it has the most jelly in. There are sweet shops, clothes stalls and even welsh memorabilia stores.
Don't forget that upstairs there are more stores and also your classic market cafes serving up breakfasts, chip platters and other not so healthy grub that will last you the day.
It says a lot that I've lived on the same road as the market for about a year and a half and have only been in here once or twice. It certainly gets overlooked and it's somewhere I don't usually think of visiting. I figured it would all be meat and fish counters which is only about 20% right.
I only went in as I needed some string and figured the market would be perfect. I must say, as far as buying string goes, my experience was flawless. The woman behind the counter was possibly the least friendly person I've yet come across who obviously thought that pleasantries only serve to get in the way of an efficient, no-nonsense transaction. I didn't mind too much though - I had string to buy and no time to waste.
Waste time I did though, and spent about an hour wandering round, kicking myself for overlooking this magnificent place. My preconceptions that it was all fish and meat were quickly blown out of the water as I spent 20 mins checking out the used book stall. Great prices and a great selection. I also liked that alot of the books were randoly put on the shelf, so you could have a proper browse around without alphabetical order sucking all the fun out of proceedings. I often find that it's hard to have a proper browse in the larger chain bookstores for that very reason and found books here I had previously thought of buying, and some I've never heard of which also looked good.
There's a great record store upstairs where I also lost a good chunk of time. To be honest I wasn't wowed by the meat counters or anything like that purely because they all look the same to me anyway. The pig's heads quite literally caught my eye though, which freaked me out a little as their mouths make it look like they're smiling. And that's weird.
Even though I spent an hour aimlessly browsing, I certainly didn't check everything out, and I will definitely be going back regularly (when I have money!) to blow a fair chunk on some decent books. There's something for everyone in here and it also has great shops for home stuff where I picked up 10 picture hooks for about 50p.
A must-visit indeed.
Cardiff Market is always worth mentioning because it is the heart and soul of Cardiff. There are some fantastic shops and stalls (one of my all time favourites being Kelly's Records on the balcony). There is also a butcher and fishmonger who will sell you top meat and fish at very competitive prices.
The market isn't the most amazing shopping precinct in Cardiff yet inside you get a real sense of history and it's great to just walk around and browse. My advice would be if you're visiting Cardiff give the market a go as it'll certainly be an experience if anything.
Cardiff Market is found just off Church Street in Cardiff city centre.
The food on offer here is the primary attraction for most passers through, with a range of fresh food available, including fruit and veg as well as fish, meat and poultry.
While markets like this have all but died off thanks to the rise in power of the high street shop and the ever-powerful supermarket, Cardiff Market is still a great place to go if you're struggling to find a particular item.
Whether its clothing, CD's, DVD's, even pets, you will find a surprising amount on offer inside this Victorian structure. There is also a selection of jewellery, household goods and even services available, ranging from barbers and wig makers to engravers and clairvoyants.
The varied selection on display here is unrivalled, so if you're in the city centre and can't find what you're looking for, try the market. If you don't find what you're after, you'll probably find something else along the way.
One of the great things about Cardiff Market is it stays reassuringly the same as when I first went in there as a child with my mum.
It's been though lean times and survived.
My favourite stalls were upstairs, the record shop and the pet stalls. Poking my finger through the forbidden bars at budgies, hamsters and an assortment of puppies and kittens was a highlight of any trip. Invariably this would be followed swiftly by everyone being thrown out by angry stall holders but it was a ritual that had to be observed.
Now I go there mainly for the fishmongers at the Hayes end of the market.
They have a great selection of fish and even though the smell gets a bit overwhelming at times. When I'm celebrating something I'll go there to pick up some fish for a special dinner.
Having to eat a lot of vinegary cockles with a pin when I was a child means I can't face them anymore but I buy half a pint sometimes for a friend of mine who really loves them.
Much as I'd love to highlight Cardiff Market as the most gloriously sparkling place of its kind in the whole of the United Kingdom, I simply can't. The place is perfectly standard.
Cardiff Market smells like fresh fish no matter where you stand. Cardiff Market has a shop that sells colourful keys and re-heels your shoes (why these services are always together is something I'll never understand). Cardiff Market has a man (or two) who sells fruit while calling you 'da'lin'.
You won't save much money by coming here and you won't find anything new.
However, there is one stall that I will always return to.
Without sounding a little melodramatic, I must confess that I start to doubt the world a little bit more ever time I see a greeting card sold for more then £2. It's a piece of card. Folded in half. Maybe with glitter on, or googly eyes. It will inevitably end up in the recycling bin two weeks after you purchase it.
The large card and gift store in the market is one place that seems to understand that. Providing a number of decent cards for less than a pound, it makes me relax a little and reinstate my faith in the world.
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