Stay Social


Spending quality time with friends is an important part of university life, helping to create a healthy balance between work and relaxation.


Research has shown that healthy relationships can contribute to good physical health, a more positive mental health and can provide you with great emotional support. Harvard Medical School have even highlighted how social connections can help to reduce stress, which is important to remember when it comes to stressful periods such as exam season!



If you are experiencing money worries, social plans that involve meeting with friends may be one of the things you are cutting from your calendar to save money. Although seeing friends can be expensive, from bottomless brunches to shopping sprees, it’s important to remember that there are so many things in Cardiff that you can do with friends at a low, or even no, cost!


Below are some suggestions of free and low-cost things to do in Cardiff that we hope strike some inspiration:


Free Activities

  • Visit one of the many beautiful parks in Cardiff, special mentions for Bute Park, Victoria Park and Roath Lake! – You can even make a day of it and take a picnic which would be less than buying food out!
  • Go for a day at the Museum – Cardiff is home to the National Museum Wales which is right here in Cathays. You can also find the Museum of Cardiff in the city centre where you can learn more about the history of the city.
  • St Fagan’s National Museum of History is free to visit and is a full day out, from visiting the castle gardens to the old-fashioned sweet shop. Just outside of Cardiff city, it’s easy to get to by car or bus for a low cost.
  • Cardiff Bay and barrage can be a great day out if you are able to avoid the rain! You can get there for free if you walk (about 20 minutes from the city centre) or take the bus or train from Queen Street for less than £2. There are several free attractions down the bay to add to the beautiful views, including the Norwegian Church and Wales Millennium Centre which often has exhibitions that are free to enter!



Low-cost Activities

  • Going out for a meal with friends can end up costing a small fortune, so as a budget friendly alternative, you could get together and cook a meal with friends. The hardest part may be deciding on something that you all fancy, but once the big decision has been made, you can share the ingredients list (and cost) between you.
  • Cardiff castle is located in the centre of Cardiff and can be a great way to spend the day. Although some of the grounds are free, a ticket is needed to access the Norman Keep and the interior of the castle. However, if you live or work in Cardiff, you are entitled to a Castle Key (if you are able to provide evidence, such as with a bill or proof of employment). A Castle Key has a £7 admin fee, but this will give you free access for 3 years as well as some other discounts.  
  • Cardiff is home to part of the Incredible Taff Trail which stretches 55 miles between Cardiff Bay and Brecon in Mid-Wales. A great way to explore the trail is by bike. As a student at Cardiff University, you are entitled to a Free Annual Membership for OVO bikes which gives you the first 30 minutes free per trip.



Got any other free or low-cost ideas?! Share them with us:


Contact Student Advice
02920 781410

Cardiff University Students’ Union, registered in Wales. Nothing here in contained constitutes an order for goods or services unless accompanied by an official order

Telephone | 029 2078 1400 Email | Website | Address | Park Place Cardiff CF10 3QN Charity No. | 1137163 Company Registration No. | 07328777
Undeb Myfyrwyr Prifysgol Caerdydd, wedi’i gofrestru yng Nghymru. Nid oes dim yn gynwysedig yma yn gorchymyn am nwyddau neu wasanaeth oni bai bod archeb swyddogol yn cyd-fynd ag ef

Ffôn | 029 2078 1400 E-bost | Gwefan | Cyfeiriad | Plas y Parc Caerdydd CF10 3QN Rhif Elusen | 1137163 Rhif Cofrestredig y Cwmni | 07328777