Things to do in Bristol

Things to do in  Bristol

Take it to the Banksy

Artsy, left-leaning, and fiercely independent, home to street artists such as Banksy, plus a thriving drum and bass scene and no shortage of cultural institutions, Bristol’s verve and energy make it one of England’s most enticing cities. Where docklands and industrial estates once stood, the city now boasts shipping-container parks filled with trendy coffee shops and plant-based restaurants, plus craft breweries and communal pubs serving local cider. History nestles among the things to do in Bristol too, from the Clifton Suspension Bridge to Brunel’s SS Great Britain and the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery.

Top 3 attractions in Bristol

Smoke & Mirrors

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Smoke & Mirrors offers a one-of-a-kind Bristol experience. Enjoy an evening of comedy and magic at this atmospheric pub and 1920s-style performance venue, which hosts a cast of house magicians performing masterful feats and illusions. With seating for only 44 people, the theater offers a cozy, intimate atmosphere.More

Brunel's SS Great Britain

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Now permanently docked in Bristol, the SS Great Britain showcases the industrial prowess of 19th-century Britain. Designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, this steamship was one of the largest vessels of the era at 321 feet (98 meters) long. It was also technologically trailblazing, drawing upon both steam and sail power simultaneously.More

Cheddar Gorge

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Characterized by jagged cliffs and green valleys, Cheddar Gorge is England’s largest gorge and one of southern England most impressive natural sights. Formed during the last Ice Age, the gorge cocoons the now-underground Cheddar Yeo River and winds its way through the Mendip Hills. More

Top activities in Bristol

Only Fools and Horses Tour of Bristol
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Life Drawing Classes

Life Drawing Classes

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The House Magicians' Comedy Magic Show at Smoke & Mirrors in Bristol (Sat 7pm)
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Afternoon Bath City Tour - Private tour from Bristol with a local guide
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Bath City Tour & Fly a Hawk Experience - Day Trip from Bristol
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Wells, Cheddar Cheese and Cheddar Gorge - Private Day Trip from Bristol
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All about Bristol

When to visit

Summertime (June–August) is peak tourist season in Bristol, and with good reason—the weather is usually warm and sunny, and the city hosts a stellar lineup of festivals. Bristol Harbour Festival (July) honors the city's maritime heritage with music, dance, food stalls, and ships; Bristol International Balloon Fiesta (August) is one of Europe’s biggest hot air balloon events; and Bristol Pride (July) celebrates the city’s LGBTQ+ community.

Getting around

You can get around most areas of Bristol using its First Bus services. Either cash or contactless payments are accepted when boarding. The city has two train stations—Bristol Temple Meads and Bristol Parkway—as well as a ferry service that operates between Bristol Temple Meads and the city center. On top of this, the city is bicycle-friendly, and its compact center makes it a great place to explore on foot.

Traveler tips

Bristol is a great city for cocktail fans, as it has a thriving underground speakeasy scene. For a dimly lit Prohibition era–themed venue, check out Hyde and Co, which is located just off the Clifton Triangle. Alternatively, bookworms will enjoy the atmosphere of The Library on St Nicholas Street, which is entered by ringing a bell and then walking through a secret bookcase door.

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People Also Ask

What is Bristol known for?

Bristol is known for its arts, culture, and nightlife. It’s also known for the Clifton Suspension Bridge, which was built over the River Avon back in 1864, as well as the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery, which houses one of the finest collections of art in southwestern England.

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How do I spend a weekend in Bristol?

With a full weekend in Bristol, you’ll have enough time to walk across the Clifton Suspension Bridge and check out the nearby Camera Obscura. See Banksy’s art at the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and visit the Brunel’s SS Great Britain, once the largest passenger ship in the world.

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Is Bristol or Bath better to visit?

Bath and Bristol each offer unique selling points. If you’re looking for history and beautiful architecture, you may prefer Bath, though you’ll get better value for your money in Bristol, which is larger and more affordable. Bristol also tops Bath in terms of nightlife options.

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What is the nicest area in Bristol?

The wealthy Clifton neighborhood is perhaps the nicest area of Bristol, featuring beautiful old townhouses, many with views of the Clifton Suspension Bridge and the River Avon. This area is also home to many of Bristol’s best restaurants and boutiques.

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Is Bristol in England or Wales?

Bristol is in England’s West Country, just across the River Severn from Wales. Getting to Wales is an easy drive from Bristol on the M4 motorway, and the Welsh capital of Cardiff is less than an hour away by train.

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Is Bristol worth visiting?

Yes, Bristol is absolutely worth visiting. It gets fewer tourists than Bath, but still offers plenty of fantastic architecture, particularly in the charming Clifton area. The nightlife is also fantastic, and the city is home to a few great museums, notably the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and Brunel’s SS Great Britain.

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