Page last updated at 08:58 GMT, Saturday, 17 May 2008 09:58 UK

Things to do if you hate football

By Jo Manning
BBC News (and football fan if you are wondering)

Cardiff fans
Not everybody in Wales is a Cardiff City fan

Are you sick of Cardiff City and the FA Cup? Are you hoping to avoid watching the match, its associated build-up and the aftermath?

Well read on because there are plenty of things you can do to occupy your time while the Bluebirds fly the flag for Wales at Wembley.

In Cardiff, the streets are sure to be eerily empty thanks to the thousands of City fans enjoying their day out at Wembley and those without tickets being glued to television sets in pubs and living rooms.

So what better opportunity could there be to check out the city centre shops and tourist attractions?

Man in a facemask
You couldn't possibly watch the cup final if you get a facemask

You'll have a fair crack at the early summer sale bargains and if you want a bit of culture, this could be your chance to tour Cardiff castle or the Artes Mundi exhibition at the National Museum Cardiff.

If you're keen to avoid television at all costs then get yourself to the St Fagans National History Museum on the outskirts of Cardiff.

Exploring farmhouses from the 18th century, medieval churches and miner's cottages, not to mention scoffing Welsh cakes, should all make for a diverting afternoon - and there won't be a goggle-box in sight.

Seeing as the WAGs (wives and girlfriends) of the City players will have moved enmasse to north London for the day, the plush pamper rooms of the region's hotels and salons should be much quieter than usual.

So treat yourself - get a facial, a massage, a manicure, a pedicure, aromatherapy, a spray tan, a cut and blow dry. The list is endless.

Unfortunately, the weather forecast for the weekend isn't exactly fabulous, so unless you're a brave soul, camping and barbecuing are out.

A puffin
Avoid the footy and go to see the puffins on Skomer Island

However this might be an ideal opportunity for you to get on with some gardening, a bit of DIY, catch up on some film releases at the cinema and on DVD or even take in a round of golf.

In fact, getting out in the fresh air would be both invigorating and a clever FA Cup avoidance tactic.

There are no televisions on the Brecon Beacons for example or on the top of the Garth mountain, just north-west of Cardiff, or along the coastal paths of the Gower.

If you're into your wildlife, slightly further afield is Skomer island off the Pembrokeshire coast.

The island is a sanctuary to a wide range of birds including puffins and razorbills and at this time of year is covered in a carpet of beautiful bluebells.

Or maybe you could tune in and watch the first days of the first osprey chick which hatched on its Gwynedd nest on Friday and is being covered by a web camera.

So as you can see, there's plenty of ways to avoid the wall-to-wall football this weekend.

And if all else fails, you could always pop down to Swansea for the day where their club's supporters will be far less excited by the final and may even provide a refreshing point of view on their preferred team.


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