National Museum of HistoryCardiff
St Fagans
Cardiff CF5 6XB
The correct name of this wonderful open-air museum is St Fagans National Museum of History. Set in the grounds of St Fagans Castle, the museum is a collection of buildings and exhibits chronicling the historical lifestyle, culture, and architecture of the Welsh people.
Often just called ‘St Fagans’ after the nearby village, the museum currently has 46 buildings moved from sites all over Wales. In 2007 the medieval parish church of Saint Teilo, formerly at Llandeilo Tal-y-bont in west Glamorgan was restored to its pre-Reformation state and moved to the museum.
New listed buildings are frequently arriving for re-erection, e.g. a Tudor merchant's house from Haverfordwest joined the museum in 2012. Currently waiting in storage is The Vulcan hotel and public house from Newtown in Cardiff.
This historic 19th century pub was nearly lost when Brains Brewery terminated their lease of the freehold property in 2012 and the owners applied to demolish the pub. After a storm of protest, the owners donated the building to St Fagans. It is hoped to restore the pub as it would have looked in 1915, with actors serving historic ales.
The museum was started in 1946 following the donation to Wales of the Elizabethan manor house and lands by the Earl of Plymouth. It opened its doors to the public in 1948, under the name of the Welsh Folk Museum (Sain Ffagan: Amgueddfa Werin Cymru).
The brainchild of Welsh poet and scholar, Iorwerth Peate, the museum is modelled on Skansen, the outdoor museum of vernacular Swedish architecture in Stockholm. The St Fagans Museum has been a much more ambitious project due to the fact that most Welsh vernacular architecture is built of masonry and not so easily moved.
Nevertheless, the museum has a marvellous variety of structures including a nonconformist Unitarian Chapel, a village schoolhouse, a Toll road tollbooth, a cockpit, a circular pigsty, and a tannery. It also includes two working water mills: one flour mill and one wool mill. Produce from the museum's bakery and flour mill is available for sale.
Part of the 100-acre site includes a small working farm which concentrates on preserving local Welsh native breeds of livestock. As well, a blacksmith, potter, weaver, miller and clog maker can be seen practising their traditional crafts in genuine locations.
Recent Developments
Although the museum was intended to preserve aspects of Welsh rural life, it now includes several buildings that depict the industrial working life that succeeded it and has now almost disappeared.
There is a row of workers' cottages, depicting furnishings from 1800 to 1985, from Rhyd-y-car near Merthyr Tydfil, as well as the immaculate Oakdale Workmen's Institute. A post-war prefabricated bungalow has been erected on the grounds, and even a 20th century Cardiff Refreshment kiosk has been saved for display.
Opening Hours
10:00 – 17:00 hours daily (open Bank Holiday Mondays)
Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
For safety reasons, staff reserves the right to conduct bag searches of visitors entering the museum.
Disabled Access
Dedicated parking spaces for disabled visitors are provided adjacent to the main entrance.
Wheelchair access is possible to most parts of the site. However, due to the historic nature of some of the buildings, some access may be difficult. Free wheelchairs are available on request, on a first come first served basis.
Most buildings are manned, with Information Boards outside.
For information on the Disabled Tour Vehicle and other subjects go to  Web:  St Fagans/ Access Mobility
Several cafes and restaurants provide good quality food that is cooked on site using local Welsh products whenever possible.
Toilets and Baby changing facilities.
Museum Shop and Gwalia Stores.
The Museum Shop is at the main entrance next to the Information Desk. Open 7 days a week from 10:00 – 17:00 hours.
Gwalia Stores (Gwalia Supply Co.) sells fine Welsh food and drink produce as well as bespoke textiles and homeware. It is located in front of the Oakdale Workmen’s Institute. Open 7 days a week from 10:00 – 17:00 hours.
Historic Buildings & Exhibits
There is plenty here to entertain the whole family. To whet your appetite, the official website has images and detailed information of each building on the site so take a look.
Contact & Further Information
Telephone   +44 (0)3001 112 333
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Getting There
St Fagans National Museum of History is located 4 miles (6.4 km) west of Cardiff City Centre, just off the A4232.
- By Bus
Buses operate between Cardiff City and St Fagans National Museum of History throughout the year:
- Route Easyway 32A – stops in the main car park of the Museum.
- Route 320 – stops at St Fagans village.
- Route 321 – stops at St Fagans village.
The bus ride between the Museum and Cardiff city centre is approximately 25 minutes.
You can plan your journey using the  Web:  Traveline Cymru website or by calling their helpline on  Tel: 0300 200 22 33.
- By Car
Sat Nav: Use the post code CF5 6XB.
The Museum is signposted from junction 33 of the M4 motorway (follow road signs for the Museum of Welsh Life), with direct access from the A4232.
- Parking
£5.00 per day. Please bring change as machines cannot accept notes or card payments. FREE for disabled badge holders and motorbikes.
- By Train
The nearest rail station is Waungron Park located 2 miles from St Fagans. Services are operated by Arriva Trains Wales. Waungron Park Station is located next to the main bus route to St Fagans.
Visit   Web: Traveline Cymru to plan your journey
Check train timetables at  Web:  National Rail Enquiries  or Tel:  03333 211 202.
                                       Web:  Arriva Trains Wales       or Tel:  0845 606 1660.
- By Bicycle
The main cycle route to the Museum from Cardiff city centre is via the Ely Trail. The signposted section between Fairwater and the Museum is traffic-free and follows a pleasant riverside route.
Why not cycle to the Museum from Waungron Park railway station along a 2-mile section of the Ely Trail? You can lock your bike to one of the sheltered bike racks at the main entrance, in a patrolled car park. Lockers are available on request to store equipment for a returnable deposit of £2. Please ask at the main entrance desk.

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