Geek on Tour: Doctor Who Experience, Cardiff Bay

As proper nerds we don’t spend our holidays at a sunny beach, we go to rainy London and Cardiff to check out the geekiest venues 🙂 Here is…

Part 1 – The Doctor Who Experience, Cardiff Bay

The first stop of our geeky tour to the UK was the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff. Unfortunately you gotta be quick to visit the Exhibition, as it will close down in September. But if you are familiar with the timey, wimey, wibbly, wobbly science of travelling back in time the closing might not bother you… We are not so gifted and that’s why we had to incorporate a one day trip to Cardiff into our one week trip to London.

Although London strangely enough looks a whole lot like Cardiff on Doctor Who (if you know what I mean 😉 ), there was no TARDIS to get us in a blink of an eye from London to Cardiff Bay. We had to travel mundanely by train, which is a nice two hours trip from London Paddington to Cardiff Central. There seems to be no straight connection between Cardiff Central and Cardiff Bay, so we had to walk through the lovely City of Cardiff to get to a station that took us to Cardiff Bay. Make sure you have a map with you and don’t get lost 🙂 There are no signpost showing the way to the Doctor Who experience from Cardiff Bay station. But you simply can’t oversee the impressive Millenium Center, which we all know too well from Torchwood. To the right of the Millenium Center you will also see the secret entrance to the Torchwood facility. I checked all the tiles… entrance didn’t work 😦 Alas, there was a fun fair in front of the building, so I could not make any nice geeky Torchwood pictures, but here are some mobile snapshots:

 

Walking past the Millenium Center towards the bay, turn left and walk by the Norwegian Church. From there you will already see the facility housing the Doctor Who Experience. The building is not very charming and the entrance hall has a canteen atmosphere. Nothing like the Harry Potter Studio Tour, to which I will come in Part 3 of our geek tour to the UK. But there are some props presented in the small entrance hall right before the entrance of the tour.

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 Photo taken by my favourite human: Patrick Neudeck

In a small group we entered the “interactive experience” presented by a quirky guy in a timelord robe. I don’t wanna get too much into detail here and spoil the mini adventure with The Doctor for you. But I can say you will pass through neatly made sets and experience a nice, really interactive adventure with The Doctor on screen.  The scenes were exclusively shot for the experience showing Peter Capaldi himself talking to you *aweeeeeee

After your little adventure through time and space you access the exhibition hall, displaying different TARDIS interiors and exteriors and some nice memorabilia on the first floor. Of course there is a photo opportunity as well. We booked the merchandise package, which comes with four green screen pictures. Unfortunately the waiting time was pretty long and the photos were rushed a bit and no time for fancy posing. But compared to other photo opportunities the price at least was ok. With the merchandise package also comes a pretty nice ticket, a small booklet for the photographs, a certificate signed by The Doctor, an official companion guide, a TARDIS key in a box and you get a very big hipster canvas bag with gallifreyan signs on it. Probably saying something like: “YOLO? Never heard of it”.

I just read on the website the merchandise packages are sold out. So only normal admission tickets are available by now.

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On the second floor you will find nearly every monster seen in Doctor Who and a whole lot of costumes worn by the actors. There is also the beautiful TARDIS painted with flowers for Clara, which I personally found very impressive

 Photo taken by my favourite human: Patrick Neudeck

The Doctor Who Experience is clearly worth a visit for true fans, although it’s clearly not as spectacular as the Harry Potter Studio Tour, which I would even recommend to Non-Potter fans. Nevertheless it was an amazing feeling to stay in a real TARDIS set, see all the costumes and get the chilly feeling of standing eye to eye with a Cyberman or Dalek.

Check out the next two parts of our geeky trip, which I will post in the coming days:

Part 2 – The London Film and Comic Con 2017

Part 3 – Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour

 

 

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