Licklist guide to... Swansea

Nestled away in South Wales rests the city of Swansea. Surrounded by idyllic coast scenery and typical Welsh greenery, the second city of England’s next-door neighbour is home to one of Britain’s nightlife capitals. 

Many Swanseans may be at a loose end when it comes to the weekends with the news that some of the city’s favourite clubs are closing, but never fear, we have scouted out some of the best of the rest and some hidden gems for you to enjoy and discover. We start at the ever-popular tourist location of Wind street. Lovingly named wine street by the banterous visitors due to the high number of bars and clubs running along the strip, Wind street was once the hangout of Welsh legend Dylan Thomas back in the day. It’s often the first port of call for many gearing up for a good night out. Strolling down one of Swansea’s most famous streets, you’re sure to find many familiar names that crop up across the UK. Venues such as Walkabout, Reflex and Vodka Revolutions all regularly attract the thirsty weekend crowd. Swansea’s own Ice bar (not actually made of ice) is excellent for a cheeky couple of 2-4-1 cocktails, tropical themed Kon Tiki, and Swansea favourite No Sign Bar flies the flag for independent bars along the crowded street. Consisting of three venues in one, No Sign Bar has all bases covered. For the best in local live music, head downstairs to the converted wine cellar The Vault. If you’re on a date, head on up to Mundays cocktail bar, the ‘elegant older sister’ of the main bar. The tranquil atmosphere of the lounge in the main bar is like an oasis away from the hustle and bustle of a busy Saturday night on Wind Street, serving up delicious food and good times every day of the week.

Swansea, of course, has a university. With around 15,000 students flooding into the city each year, expect a vibrant student scene across the city. This year’s student summer ball shows the direction that student nightlife in the city has been taking over the last couple of years. The organisers bagged Dj Fresh, vocalist Jess Glynne and bass music upstarters My Nu Leng to all come down to the event. Elsewhere, Divas, located on the main student campus and boasting a capacity of 1,500 across two floors and home to the legendary student night Tooters, is one of the main haunts for Swansea students. For all indie heads, be sure to check out Flux every Tuesday for your fix with tunes from the likes of Simian Mobile disco, Foals and Everything Everything. Venues such as Sin City and Oxygen regularly host student club nights with the all the usual drinks deals that students have come to know and love.

As love for new dance music grows and filters to every nook and cranny of the UK, many of the biggest names are adding Swansea to their touring schedule. Promoters such as Warehouse Events, who throw their events at club Oxygen, are on of the leading lights. Upcoming gigs include the first lady in waiting of bass music Hannah Wants and blonde bombshell Sam Divine, underlining their passion for bringing new music to the city.

With it’s array of pubs, clubs and trendy bars all thrown together with a dash of that well known welsh hospitality, Swansea has all the components for a great night out in beautiful surroundings. See you there!

By Jack Evans

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