Just got back about a week and half ago from a vacation to the UK. Just some observations about our Wales/England part of the tour.
Flybe sucks. Thats not a strong enough statement, but it gets my general feeling across. We had prepurchased tickets from Belfast City to Cardiff before going to the UK. On the morning of our flight we arrived 2 hours early, and got checked in. About 30 minutes before the flight, Flybe cancelled it. After having to go back out, get a new flight to Exeter, go through security and check in again, and have 2 more hours to wait, we got to Exeter airport. It's about 2 1/2 hours by bus to Cardiff from there. Flybe paid for the bus, but that pretty much hacked our Monday travel time and plans in half. Flight back from London to Belfast City almost as bad - actually heard ground crew asking where the plane was headed, and when told Belfast, he had to go run and tell the pilot.
Cardiff itself was a way-point on our trip, we really only had time or wanted to see the Dr. Who/Torchwood exhibition as well as Roald Dahl Plass. That part of the Cardiff adventure was really nifty. However, we picked up a car at Cardiff airport and decided we could drive to Bath, Burford/Oxford and thus have the opportunity to see some of the Cotswolds if we ran out of things to do in Bath. We didn't, and the car sat in a car park for 2 days racking up parking charges. In retrospect, I would book a flight to London and then train/bus to Cardiff or Bath. There is a toll charge on the M4 going towards Cardiff from England, btw. No charge the other direction. We had the car since one of our destinations was well-nigh impossible to reach via bus, but we could have just as easily rented a car in Bath to drive there.
More in Part 2