Experiencing Dr. Who in Cardiff

Cybermen at the Dr. Who Experience

Cybermen at the Dr. Who Experience

Just over a month ago, on September 9, the Dr. Who Experience closed its doors for good. As a huge sci-fi nerd and devoted fan of the tenth Doctor (I love you David Tennant!) I didn’t want to miss out on this opportunity. Since we knew this would be our only chance to see it, we decided to make the trip to Cardiff while we were in England.

An older version of the Tardis

An older version of the TARDIS

The BBC series started in 1963 and ran for more than 20 years, going off the air in 1989. It started up again in 2005, with Christopher Eccleston playing the Doctor for one season, and continues in production to this day.

Part interactive “experience” and part museum, the Doctor Who Experience embodied the camp and the cool of the show. The experience opened in a Library of Gallifrey with a librarian leading visitors through various sets on a search for missing crystals. We had to travel in the TARDIS as part of our adventure and I have to say, entering inside was pretty incredible. I kind of just wanted to stay there and enjoy the awesomeness of it. But the librarian was busy acting out his story, keeping us from taking photos and making us move on. (Note to future Experience creators: let us stay in the TARDIS for longer and please – let us take photos!)

Dr. Who Experience weeping angel

A weeping angel shows its evil side

As we wandered through a garden with weeping angels, I struggled not to blink, sure that one of those angels would sneak up on our group. But they didn’t. They were just concrete angels. A missed opportunity for sure.

Once the crystals were recovered, the librarian led us into the exhibit part of the Experience. Housed on the upper floor, the entire space was filled with costumes, monsters, daleks, police boxes and cybermen from every era of the show. It was fun seeing the props side by side, comparing how they’ve evolved over the run of the show. The Doctor’s distinctive outfits were lined up together, as were the ever-changing cybermen and daleks. Even the police boxes have changed in subtle ways and of course the inside of the newest TARDIS is way cooler than the first few generations.

While there are rumors about the exhibit moving to Manchester or somewhere else, the BBC has yet to confirm anything. Whovians who missed out can still get an experience of sorts with the walking tours of filming locations in Cardiff.

Accessibility: 5 out of 5. The entire Dr. Who Experience was accessible. An elevator takes you between floors and steps are ramped.

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  • omnivagant 28 October 2017 at 12:19 am

    That looks pretty fantastic! Looks like you had a fun day there. And a walking tour through the filming locations in Cardiff sounds pretty great too if I make it to Wales. Thanks for sharing!

    • Sherrie 28 October 2017 at 11:52 am

      I would actually like to go back to visit Cardiff. It looks like an amazing city and it’s right on the water. Definitely a future trip for us 🙂

  • Denira Varma 28 October 2017 at 12:47 am

    Man, this looks like such fun! I would have also been bummed about not getting to take all the pictures I wanted and how dare they kick you out of the TARDIS😂

    • Sherrie 28 October 2017 at 11:52 am

      Yeah, I probably should have been braver and just taken my photo!

  • Karen 28 October 2017 at 6:43 am

    This looks like such fun. I love visiting filming locations.

    • Sherrie 28 October 2017 at 11:53 am

      Me too — I grew up in L.A. so we got to visit a lot of sets, some on the street where we lived!

  • Amber Alexander 28 October 2017 at 8:55 am

    That trip looks fantastic. I have some friends that love Dr Who and would be very interested in this trip!

    • Sherrie 28 October 2017 at 11:54 am

      Oh, the should definitely visit Cardiff. The city itself plays a large part in the series. And it’s a beautiful place to see!

  • Grace Silla 28 October 2017 at 9:15 am

    Sounds like a fun experience! I’ve never visited Wales and was actually just thinking about it the other day! It’s cool to see someone blog about it 🙂

    • Sherrie 28 October 2017 at 11:55 am

      I definitely want to get back and spend more time there. Cardiff is beautiful.

  • Kana Imamura 15 November 2017 at 11:46 am

    I’ve never been into Dr. Who but my husband is a HUGE fan. I bet he would enjoy this! Thanks for joining Fly Away Friday – hope to see you again this weekend! xo

  • fillmypassportblog 15 November 2017 at 1:21 pm

    How fun! I never got into the show but always recognized the phone booths when in the UK. Looks like a great time in Cardiff! See you at Fly Away Friday this week!


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