Cardiff is a city steeped in fascinating history. The heritage of the Welsh capital certainly comes with its charms, but you’ll also discover some haunting tales along the way.
In Cardiff, legends whisper of everything from ghostly footpaths to the most eerie of haunted buildings. And to make this Halloween truly spooktacular, we’ve compiled a few of our favourites…
Haunted Happenings in Cardiff
Read on if you dare!
Cardiff Royal Infirmary
Dating back to 1822, The Cardiff Royal Infirmary has had its fair share of haunted happenings. The hospital was closed in 1996 under the decision of William Hague, then Secretary of State in Wales. When the historic building stood as a largely abandoned property, those who passed through its doors certainly left with chills.
Gareth Radcliffe worked in the CRI as a security officer and experienced several unexplained paranormal sensations. Speaking to Wales Online, he shared:
“I’ve been tapped twice upstairs on various floors and had my ankle grabbed. One of the boys – he’s about six foot – a big boy – got knocked over by something that went past him.”
Gareth explained that medical professionals have called for an exorcist in the past, adding:
“For them to work in pathology and not want to go back up there they’ve got to have seen something pretty terrible that really frightened them.”
Gareth Owen, another security worker at the CRI also gave an eerie account of his time within the building. He recalled: “I was monitoring the cameras here and something caught my eye. A figure went into the security office. Knowing the security officer was on patrol I thought it was a bit strange.”
“Five or ten minutes later I saw the figure coming back out of the office. According to the camera, that figure passed me but in front of me there was no-one. It was a lady, who wouldn’t have been in the security office in the first place.”
Gareth went on to describe the lady to have been dressed in smart clothes from a historic period of time…
Ghosts of Llandaff
Said to be one of the most haunted spots in Cardiff, Llandaff is home to a multitude of ghost stories. And they’re not for the fainthearted. Spookily enough, the stories are all said to date back to around the same time.
The spine-chilling tales fill the woodland Taff trail and surround the banks of the river. A popular spot for ghost walks today, myth tells of a young blue in blue who drowned while playing in the river. Legend has it that the ghost of the boy’s mother can still be seen wading through the water, desperately in search of her son.
The paths themselves are also said to be haunted by ghostly phenomena. Those who have been brave enough to walk the eerie footpaths have reported sightings of the ghost of Bella, who is thought to have committed suicide in the area over 100 years ago.
Sightings also tell of the illusory figure of a man who took his own life in Llandaff’s graveyard. Visitors have also reported sightings of everything from hooded, faceless figures to witch-like demons. Not to mention, the sounds of ghostly children have been heard following explorers along the paths. Do you dare go and see for yourself?
Haunted Cardiff Castle
It’s no surprise that the walls of Cardiff’s historic and hauntingly beautiful castle are filled with the eerie tales of years gone by. Cardiff Castle is a Victorian Gothic masterpiece; the castle was built upon Norman and Roman ruins. The Roman Fort is thought to date back to the end of the 50s AD. The Castle keep was built following the Norman conquest. An integral piece of the Welsh capital, the mysterious castle has quite the presence in Cardiff.
With its fort acting as a naval base until the early fifth century, the strange happenings and eerie feel of this building have been linked to its involvement with the war. It’s not unusual for buildings with a long history of deaths and tragedy to attract paranormal activity.
Following the war, the Normans went on to transform the fort’s remains into a castle. And genius architect William Burges was hired by the Third Marquess of Bute in 1865. It was Burges who was was responsible for transforming the castle into the lavish, Neo Gothic mansion you see today.
Thought the castle played host to a number of families including the de Clares and the Tudors, it is the Bute family who are remembered best for their contribution. The Bute’s contributed to the transformation of castle, the city of Cardiff and are at the heart of its mysteries.
Today, the castle is renowned for its other-worldly feel and ghostly experiences, making it a go-to venue for ghost tours in Cardiff. Legend has it that the atmospheric castle is home to a significant amount of paranormal activity.
Those that have entered the stock room have recalled seeing items move by themselves and a ghostly figure to stand nearby. Some have also reported seeing a faceless woman roaming the castle.There have also been sinister sightings of the Second Marquess of Bute travelling through the castle walls. Perhaps most famously, reports tell of a phantom coach travelling towards the castle gates. In fact, sightings of this spirit have been reported as recently as the 1950s!
St Fagans Museum of National History
St Fagans Museum of National History is a must-visit spot for those exploring the haunted happenings of Cardiff. The ghostly village is a favourite for Halloween activities due to its spooky woodland setting.The historic spot is also popular for ghost tours in Cardiff following unexplained sights and sounds.
Sitting in the grounds of Grade I listed St Fagans Castle, the fascinating village is home to an array of re-erected buildings to explore. Many believe that the paranormal activity at St Fagans could be linked to the village’s previous inhabitants. It has been said that the restoration of the village disturbed the ghosts, who have now returned to their former home.
We hope these hair-raising tales have got you in the spirit for Halloween. Whatever you believe, there’s no doubt that Cardiff is home to some of the most haunting and historic spots in the UK.
The Exchange Hotel Cardiff
The Grade II* listed Coal Exchange is one of the most stunning buildings in Cardiff. An integral piece of Cardiff’s industrial past, the opulent building helped to shape the city into the success it is today.
The Exchange Hotel is a wonderful place to spend the festive season with family and friends. Why not take a browse at what’s on over the Christmas period?
And don’t worry, we’ve yet to catch any ghostly sightings within our walls…but only time will tell!