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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 March 2007, 07:14 GMT
Time lord tourism boost for city
Dale Who with a slitheen
Dale Who says science fiction fans enjoy visiting Cardiff
Science fiction TV series Doctor Who and Torchwood have pushed Cardiff into the top 10 short break UK destinations, according to a travel website.

The two shows, which are filmed all over south east Wales, attract fans keen to visit key locations.

Cardiff Council said the city was building a "tourism package" on the back of the success of the programmes.

Dale Who from Brighton, who started visiting Cardiff because of the series, said the city was "stunning".

In the case of Doctor Who, Cardiff often doubles as London and other cities. Torchwood is set in modern-day Cardiff.

Interiors for both series are shot at purpose built BBC studios in Upper Boat, near Pontypridd.

The travelsupermarket.com UK destination Top 10
Yorkshire Dales

Travelsupermarket.com compiled the top 10 from searches made on their website for UK holiday destinations.

They spoke to travel experts and attractions in the cities and regions featured in the top 10 to identify a trend based on popular films and TV shows.

Mr Who, 33, has returned to Cardiff on three occasions and has been impressed by the modern buildings of Cardiff Bay.

"A lot of the fans like visiting the towering water feature outside the Wales Millennium Centre and jumping up and down on the paving stones because that's where the Torchwood hub is supposed to be," he said.

Cardiff's four-star Park Plaza hotel has been selling Doctor Who packages costing 140 per room for over a year. They include entry to the Doctor Who Up-Close exhibition in Cardiff Bay.

John Barrowman in Torchwood
Torchwood is set in modern day Cardiff and stars John Barrowman

The hotel's marketing manager, Caroline Sims, said: "We are expecting the combined effect of Torchwood and the fourth Doctor Who series to create a real buzz about Cardiff locations.

"The packages are particularly popular with families. We provide them with a locations map which includes Howells and the Wales Millennium Centre so they see exactly where the filming took place."

The Doctor Who Up-Close exhibition, which is based in the Red Dragon Centre, Cardiff Bay, had more than 57,000 visitors between July and November last year - an average of around 500 a day.

Manager Graham Jones said: "In our visitor book you see names and comments from all over the world.

"We are increasingly seeing visitors from New Zealand and Australia who come to Cardiff for the day or an overnight stay to visit the exhibition and locations."

A spokesman for Cardiff council said Doctor Who and Torchwood had helped to raise the profile of Cardiff.

He also said that visitors attracted by Doctor Who and Torchwood were finding that Cardiff had a lot more to offer for a short break.



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