I love Doctor Who (although I often say I don’t consider myself a fan of it because I’m not obsessive about it) but as Matt and I were in Cardiff to run away from zombies anyway it would have been rude not to pop along to the Doctor Who Exhibition and take a quick peek. We were very lucky that the weekend we were due to be there was the first week they opened up the TARDIS set to the public and keen to see everything we booked an Ultimate ticket consisting of a walking tour of filming locations in and around Cardiff Bay, a tour of the current TARDIS set and access to the experience itself.
Come morning I have to say that I was a tad excitable. I’m always worried about being late but we were staying very close by in the Atlantic Wharf Travelodge and made it in plenty of time. We kicked off the day with the walking tour which I loved. Although I’ve been to Cardiff once before it was very briefly and pitch black as it was the middle of Winter, this time I got to see it on a glorious sunny day.
Our guide (sorry I can’t remember his name) admitted that he hadn’t been doing the tours long and didn’t appear to be a huge fan of either Doctor Who or Torchwood referring to his cue cards a lot but at least the cards had a lot of good information on them!
We went to way too many locations for me to go through each of them in this post so I’ll just mention a couple of my favourites. Being a huge Torchwood fan Roald Dahl’s Plass and the famous Torchwood tower as well as Ianto’s shrine are incredible to see. (Who knew a fictional character could elicit so much sympathy!)
This building was probably my favourite of them all and the interior was used for many, many episodes including the Glaswegian pub Strax is seen having a bar fight in the season seven finale. I love old buildings and this one was beautiful, I only wish I’d been able to get inside!!
It was also interesting to hear the lengths that the BBC go to in order to get things how they want them without having to venture too far from the studios. They imported tons of sand to turn the Waterguard Pub on the bay into the Boeshane peninsula, home of Captain Jack.
If you’ve never been to Cardiff and are a big fan of either Doctor Who or Torchwood it’s a great way to see a lot of locations in a short space of time (the tour took just under 90 minutes) rather than blindly trying to find them all for yourself!