Stretching for 1.1km along the Cardiff Bay, the recently established Cardiff Bay Barrage is the result of a 220 million pound engineering project, extending south from Cardiff docks until Penarth. A series of locks, sluice gates and bridges now traverse the bay, with a dedicated fish pass and designated Angling zone, as well as two yacht clubs.
For visitors, it’s the landscaped embankment that is most appealing, dotted with picturesque picnic spots and offering expansive views out across the British Channel from its pay-per-view telescope. The public space keeps in with the nautical theme, with the tip of the Barrage shaped like a ship’s bow, billowing sails set along the waterfront and a series of walkways combining wooden decking with marine blue railings. Even the children’s play area continues the style, featuring pirate ships and boats set to a blue backdrop.
Visit during the day when you can explore the history of the docks at the Age of Coal Exhibition and soak up the maritime atmosphere on the Cardiff Bay Barrage Coast Path, or take a stroll through the area at night, when the sails are illuminated and the water is dancing with lights.