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Once you’ve booked your tickets for the Swansea International Festival 2018 and you’re looking forward to a fortnight of incredible live music, theatre and comedy, why not take some time to plan the rest of your visit to Swansea?
With its two museums, Art Quarter, art galleries, city parks, traditional indoor market and five miles of beautiful coastline, Swansea is a vibrant waterfront city, calling to be explored!
A history enthusiast?
Start your time in Swansea with a visit to one of our festival venues – the National Waterfront Museum, where you’ll hear the story of industry and innovation in Wales, now and over the last 300 years. After coffee and a cake overlooking Swansea Marina, stroll to Swansea Museum – the original home of the Royal Institution of South Wales – for a glimpse of Swansea life, past, present and future. Keen to check out history from further afield? Then the Egypt Centre at Swansea University (close to the Taliesin, another Festival venue!) might be just the thing!
An art aficionado?
Head to the Arts Quarter in SA1. Once you’ve checked out Festival venue, Volcano Theatre, pop into local galleries Galerie Simpson and elysiumgallery to see their latest collections and artists in residence. The Glynn Vivian Art Gallery is also looking resplendent after its recent refurbishment, and is well worth a visit for its temporary exhibitions as well as the permanent collections. Also nearby is Mission Gallery, which maintains its reputation for dynamic and distinctive programming. You can keep an eye out for the galleries and exhibitions that often pop up around the city too!
Lover of literature?
Swansea is rightly proud of its most famous son, Dylan Thomas. The Dylan Thomas Centre is a great place to start finding out more about Thomas’ life and work, but you can also take a tour of Dylan’s birthplace in Cwmdonkin Drive, stroll through nearby Cwmdonkin Park, Dylan’s childhood playground, and even stop for a break at some of his old haunts, the No Sign Wine Bar and Kardomah Restaurant and Coffee Shop. Want to see it all? Why not try the Dylan Thomas Trail?
A foodie fanatic?
Do you like exploring new areas through the local food scene? You’ll be spoilt for choice at the award-winning Swansea Market, Wales’ largest indoor market, where cockles, laverbread and freshly baked Welsh cakes are the order of the day. Visit Mumbles for seaside bars and restaurants overlooking the majestic sweep of Swansea Bay, making sure to leave room for a scoop or two of Joe’s Ice Cream, a Swansea favourite since 1922. Uplands, home to Swansea’s student population, is also rich in cosmopolitan restaurants, offering a vibrant, youthful atmosphere and – if you’re visiting on the middle weekend of the Swansea International Festival 2018 – a brilliant outdoor market, packed with local food producers. Swansea’s nightlife is award-winning too – the only place in Wales to hold the prestigious Purple Flag Award for its safe, diverse night time economy.
A grand explorer?
Do you love the great outdoors? Get out on the water with the team at 360 Beach and Watersports. Or get your walking boots on and explore the beautiful Gower Peninsula, right on Swansea’s doorstep. Fancy something a little less energetic? Then make the most of Swansea’s walking and cycling promenade, which runs all the way from the city centre to Mumbles – if you’re visiting during the school holidays, you can even take the Swansea Bay Rider land train if you fancy! As well as it’s stunning beaches, Swansea also boasts many beautiful city parks, five of which (Clyne Gardens, Singleton Botanical Gardens, Victoria Park, Cwmdonkin Park and Brynmill Park) have Green Flag Awards. And if the Welsh weather is up to mischief and you need to stay indoors, then head to the top of the Meridian Tower, Wales’ tallest building with incredible 360° views, to sit back and take in the view instead.