A vast area of greenery along the banks of the River Taff, Bute Park - once part of the castle estate – is the city’s most visited public park, hosting a series of important events throughout the year and making a popular addition to tourist itineraries, often combined with a tour of the exquisite Cardiff Castle.
Dating back to 1873, Bute Park was laid out by Andrew Pettigrew, gardener to the park’s namesake – the 3rd Marquess of Bute, who inhabited the castle at the time. Bequeathed to Cardiff Council in 1947 by the 5th Marquess of Bute, the park is now a public domain – the largest and most prominent in the city.
Stretching over 130 acres (56 hectares) of walking routes, woods and grasslands, Bute park also encompasses the Castle Green (an 18th-century landscaped garden to the design of Capability Brown), an arboretum, a series of flower gardens and a restored Victorian wall decorated with animal sculptures by renowned artist-architect, William Burges. A hub of activity during the week, the park is not only beloved by joggers and dog-walkers, but offers tennis courses, football pitches and a cricket club within its boundaries. It’s during city celebrations, though, when the park really comes to life, hosting giant Guy Fawkes’ bonfires, colorful Mardi Gras celebrations, the RHS Flower Show and the Cardiff University Student Ball.