16 brilliant Cardiff events to look forward to in 2016

With the end of the year fast approaching, it’s time to start planning all the awesome things you’ll be filling your calendar with in 2016.

Big gigs, comedy tours, food festivals and iconic sporting clashes are among the events you can look forward to in the Welsh capital next year. Here are a few key dates to pop in your diary.

1. Faulty Towers – The Dining Experience


Enter the manic world of Britain’s beloved haphazard sitcom at this immersive theatre experience, complete with a three course dinner. The likes of Basil, Cybil and Manuel will clamour around you while you eat, with predictably hilarious consequences. The chaos begins at Wales Millennium Centre on 26 January and lasts until 3 February.

2. The Libertines

The Libertines

Photo credit: Toni Rosado / Flickr / CC 

Indie heroes The Libertines arrive at the Motorpoint Arena on 26 January to play songs from their latest album Anthems For a Doomed Youth, alongside classics from their back catalogue. Hearing likes of ‘Can’t Stand Me Now’ and ‘Don’t Look Back Into The Sun’ live will doubtless fulfil the fantasies of many passionate rock fans in Cardiff.

3. Slipknot


As one of the biggest rock bands in the world, Slipknot know how to put on a hell of a show. The nine-strong force of heavy metal led by enthusiastically sweary frontman Corey Taylor is both terrifying and marvellous to watch. Bring earplugs and your best mosh pit moves to the Motorpoint Arena on 8 February.

4. Enter Shikari

Enter Shikari

Enter Shikari are famous for fusing the irresistible energies of post-hardcore and dance music, so it’s only right that their live shows contain the best elements of both – one gigantic rave, combining passionate rock singalongs with dancefloor-filling beats. The resulting vibes will turn the Motorpoint Arena into a riotous party on 23 February.

5. That’s The Way, A-Ha A-Ha, Joe Lycett

Joe Lycett

Cheeky, effortless comedy from gifted up-and-coming performer Joe Lycett will have the Glee Club roaring on 24 February. Known for his aloof persona and unpredictably devilish mischief, the name of Joe’s tour alone should be enough to convince you that this will be a memorable night out.

6. Six Nations Rugby Championship


Cardiff loves a good rugby match, especially when it takes place in the epic Millennium Stadium. Whether or not Wales win the Six Nations in 2016, the matches here are bound to be an amazing spectacle. Catch the talented Welsh side play at home against Scotland on 13 February, France on 26 February and Italy on 19 March.

7. World Half Marathon Championships

Cardiff half marathon

Keen runners certainly won’t want to miss out on the World Half Marathon Championships, which descends on Cardiff on 26 March. Some of the best athletes in the world will be running it, and you can race on the very same course to earn your own championship medal.

8. RHS Spring Flower Show

RHS flower show Cardiff

This floral fiesta returns to Bute Park on 15 April, inviting you to explore large marquees filled with beautifully arranged botany and other fantastic foliage. Even if flowers don’t do it for you, the large number of street food stalls featuring artisan nibbles is well worth coming along for.

9. Not That Kind of Art

The pop culture portraits that Cardiff artist Nathan Wyburn makes aren’t you’re typical paint on paper fare. No, Nathan chooses to express his talent through the mediums of kitchen cupboard ingredients like marmite, beans, coffee and jam. This workshop at The Cardiff Story on 16 April will give you an insight into the workings of his amazing celebrity portraits, as well as the chance to create your own food art.

10. Busted


The boyband reunion that no one thought would happen: Busted are back, and they’ll be touring with their original line-up of Charlie Simpson, James Bourne and Matt Willis in 2016. The highly anticipated Cardiff date at Motorpoint Arena takes place on 24 May.

11. Rihanna


Legendary diva Rihanna will be rolling through Cardiff as part of her world tour on 16 June. The singer’s incredible voice is likely to fill every corner of the Millennium Stadium – make sure you don’t miss her.

12. Sarah Millican: Outsider

Sarah Millican

Lovable comic Sarah Millican brings her relatable humour to the St David’s Hall on the 27 and 28 June. The first night is already sold out – no wonder, when Sarah’s lightning quick wit is such a joy to watch. Book your tickets for the second night, sharpish.

13. Tafwyl Fair

Tafwyl Cardiff

A celebration of the Welsh language and its continued use throughout the country, Tawfyl includes a street food feast, literature, drama, sports and music. Free to attend, the bilingual fun kicks off at Cardiff Castle on 2 July and continues on 3 July.

14. Cardiff International Food and Drink Festival

Cardiff Food and Drink Festival

Want to taste some of the scrummiest food that Wales has to offer? Come down to Cardiff Bay for the Cardiff International Food and Drink Festival. The date for 2016’s event hasn’t been set yet, but it usually takes place in July. Admittance is free, so you’ll only pay for what you eat.

15. Pride Cymru


Photo credit: Benson Kua / Flickr / CC

The biggest event on the LGBT community calendar, Pride is an amazing experience regardless of your sexuality. Cardiff sure knows how to celebrate it: on 13 August there’s a festival in Bute Park, a parade through the city centre and a whole load of partying at the clubs in Churchill way.

16. Cardiff Harbour Festival

cardiff bay harbour festival

This annual event is an excuse to go wild on the waterfront, with speedboat racing courtesy of the P1 Welsh Grand Prix of the Sea being the main draw. There’s also lots of tasty food to be had and street performers to entertain the crowds. The 2015 Harbour Festival took place in Cardiff Bay on August bank holiday, so expect the 2016 one around the same time of year.