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249km (155 miles) W of London; 177km (110 miles) SW of Birmingham; 64km (40 miles) SE of Swansea

If you remember Cardiff's dull, industrial reputation from yesteryear, you may not want to fit the capital of Wales into your already busy schedule. But to omit it would be a shame because it has blossomed into one of the most inviting cities of Britain and is now an ideal base for exploring its own attractions, plus the major scenic beauty spots of South Wales.