Why it’s best to go to Bristol

Dwelling to Banksy, a scorching air balloon fiesta, and Brunel’s SS Nice Britain and delightful Clifton Suspension Bridge, Bristol has turn into one of many UK’s hottest metropolis break locations. Picked by The New York Occasions as one of many high locations to go in 2018, this “edgy” and “artistic” metropolis in south-west England is a “cultural powerhouse”. 

The rumours “are true”, mentioned the Unbiased, Bristol is “banging”. With its sweeping Georgian crescents and “pulsing” centre, that is one in all England’s coolest cities and is heaving with arts, meals revolutionaries and folks with ardour that make it “a particular place to be”. 

Bristol “doesn’t wish to brag”, mentioned Condé Nast Traveller. Actually, it’s the “exact reverse”. It might be “straightforward to move by the town with out realising how particular it’s”. However stroll in any path and there’s “no mistaking” Bristol’s attraction. Because the Banksy mural in Stokes Croft reminds us, welcome to the “Delicate Delicate West”. 

Prime sights in Bristol: issues to see and do

Brunel’s Bristol 

Bristol’s most spectacular landmark is the long-lasting Clifton Suspension Bridge, which was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel in 1831 and accomplished in 1864 after his demise. The legacy of the “most well-known honorary Bristolian” may be discovered all around the metropolis. Different in style Brunel landmarks embody the mighty SS Nice Britain ship, which is positioned on the Nice Western Dockyard, and Temple Meads Station. 


As soon as a busy dock the place sailors and retailers would “commerce items and set sail for voyages of discovery”, Bristol’s Harbourside is now a contemporary improvement “stuffed with eating places, bars, retailers and accommodations”, mentioned the Go to Bristol tourism board. Issues to see and do right here embody the SS Nice Britain, Bristol Aquarium, Watershed and M Shed.

Banksy and road artwork 

Born in Bristol in 1974, Banksy is probably the most well-known graffiti artist “of our time”, mentioned Black Tomato. Recognizing “a Banksy” has turn into a “badge of honour”, and the most effective place to do that is in Bristol, “the place the magic began”. Dwelling to many Banksy artwork areas, followers can go on strolling excursions round Bristol to find extra. Though you will discover graffiti and road artwork in all places right here, there are some “hotter” areas, mentioned the Blocal journey and road artwork weblog. Nelson Avenue was the placement of “See no Evil”, Bristol’s first road artwork pageant, whereas different vibrant areas to go to embody Stokes Croft, “the hipster heaven”, and Easton, “the place Banksy supposedly lived”.

Music and ‘Bristol time’

Dwelling to in style acts comparable to Large Assault, Portishead, Difficult and Roni Measurement, Bristol has had a vibrant music scene for many years. What makes the place “so interesting” is the “quiet confidence it has in its personal rhythms” – “Bristol time, because it’s identified”, mentioned Condé Nast Traveller. “It may be heard in its famously sluggish sound, often called journey hop, pioneered by Large Assault and Portishead within the Nineteen Nineties.” 

Balloons over Clifton Suspension Bridge
Scorching air balloons 

Look out over the skies of Bristol and also you’ll usually see scorching air balloons flying excessive. Each August Bristol performs host to the Worldwide Balloon Fiesta, Europe’s largest scorching air balloon occasion. The following Bristol Worldwide Balloon Fiesta takes place from 10-13 August 2023. 

The Wave 

Situated simply off the M5 at Easter Compton, The Wave Bristol is the primary inland-surfing vacation spot of its sort. Guests can hit the waves, be taught to surf and even keep at The Camp. 

Bathtub and surrounding areas

Many guests to the West County mix a twin metropolis break by going to each Bristol and Bathtub. The Roman metropolis of Bathtub is only a 15-minute practice journey away and is certainly value a go to. With Bristol’s location, and having junctions on each the M4 and M5 motorways, it additionally means you might be very near the agricultural delights of Somerset, Gloucestershire and South Wales.

Berwick Lodge is one of Bristol’s top-rated hotels

Accommodations in Bristol: greatest locations to remain 

For a resort with wonderful views examine in to the Avon Gorge by Resort du Vin, mentioned the Unbiased in its “greatest for” record of Bristol accommodations. Situated in Clifton, the resort boasts panoramic views of the Clifton Suspension Bridge and the Avon Gorge itself. For these on a price range, Brooks Guesthouse is “plumb within the center” of Bristol. Right here, you’ll discover a “cute and good worth” guesthouse that’s an “supreme base for exploring the town centre”.

Situated “inside a whisper” of the town, on the agricultural fringe of north Bristol, Berwick Lodge is a “homely Edwardian mansion” with “luxurious” rooms, magnificent bogs and an award-winning restaurant, mentioned The Telegraph. Berwick Lodge is one in all two accommodations to be given a 9/10 professional score by The Telegraph, the opposite is the Bristol Harbour Resort & Spa – a boutique resort (on Corn Avenue within the centre, not on the harbourside) which is “a tribute to imaginative and conventional design”.

Mollie’s Motel and Diner just isn’t positioned within the metropolis centre, it’s truly simply north of Bristol, near the Cribbs Causeway procuring advanced and the good Wild Place Undertaking, mentioned Time Out. “Don’t be dissuaded although” – this can be a “enjoyable, trendy and vivid” place to remain which is straightforward to entry from the M5. “E-book in right here in case you’re a fan of correct burgers, extra-large shakes and all issues Americana.”

The terrace of the White Lion pub at Avon Gorge by Hotel du Vin

Eating places and bars in Bristol: the place to eat and drink 

Bristol is dwelling to 2 eating places which have one Michelin star: Paco Tapas and Bulrush. “Buzzy” Spanish tapas bar Paco Tapas has “interesting menus” which offer “loads of selection and embody all of the favourites”, mentioned the Michelin Information. Fashionable British restaurant Bulrush would possibly seem fairly modest at first look, however this “candy neighbourhood restaurant comes with an appealingly relaxed and cosy really feel”. “Prime-notch” seasonal components are both foraged or natural, “authentic” combos present “loads of contrasts”, and flavours are “clear and pure”. Different eating places advisable by the Michelin Information embody BOX-E (trendy British) and Root (vegetarian), which each have a Bib Gourmand. 

Bristol, “you might be good” and the town is serving up “some severely tasty stuff”, mentioned Sammy Jones in Time Out. And the eating places? “Sorry, we simply want to scrub up some drool from the keyboard.” At tapas bar and restaurant Bravas you will get “a real style of Spain”, whereas its sister restaurant, Gambas, relies on the harbourside and focuses on fish. Different high locations to eat embody The Ethicurean, Poco, and Souk Kitchen. 

Freddy Hen, head chef and founding father of littlefrench, was born and raised in Bristol. Talking to Nation & City Home journal, he additionally picked out Bravas as one in all Bristol’s greatest eating places. After an extended service, a “favorite pit-stop” of his is Mayflower, which is open to 3am and serves the “most scrumptious” and genuine Chinese language meals.

The Avon Gorge by Resort du Vin can also be dwelling to the White Lion pub, which has a terrace overlooking the gorge and Suspension Bridge. An ideal spot for a pint with a view…

Bristol Temple Meads railway station

Transport: how you can get to Bristol

By far the simplest option to journey to Bristol is by practice to the town’s two principal railway stations. Bristol Temple Meads station, which is near the town centre, has direct trains to Bathtub Spa (quarter-hour), Cardiff Central (50 minutes), Birmingham New Avenue (1hr 21min) and London Paddington (1hr 40min). Bristol Parkway, to the north of the town, additionally has direct trains to Paddington, Cardiff and Birmingham. Temple Meads to Parkway takes round 13 minutes. 

Situated close to to each the M4 and M5 motorways, Bristol is definitely accessible by automotive – however visitors can generally be fairly dangerous close to the junctions the place the motorways cross. Parking choices within the metropolis centre “aren’t the most effective”, mentioned BristolLive. “Anybody who drives into the town centre, significantly on weekends, is aware of that parking can usually be a serious situation.” The M32 into Bristol is accessed by way of junction 19 of the M4.

For guests coming into the West Nation by way of airplane, Bristol Airport is positioned about 9 miles south-west of the centre. The A1 Bristol Airport Flyer bus service operates between the coach station, metropolis centre (Broadmead), Temple Meads, Bedminster Parade and the airport.