Prime 10 issues to see and do in Bristol, UK

Whether or not you take a stroll by way of the harbour, strolling down Park Road or exploring Bristol’s different scene, there’s at all times some sort of music tinkling (or often blaring) away. It could be a busker, a DJ set, or one in all Bristol’s eccentric characters having a sing-a-long, however shut your eyes and town is as vibrant for the ears as it’s for the eyes.

Strolling down Park Road, near the college hub, I used to be reminded of how expressive Bristol is. It’s not simply the road artwork – splashed throughout town in eruptions of color – the persons are additionally dressed with aptitude and creativeness, donning rainbow make-up, brightly dyed hair, costume jewelry and funky outfits that contribute to town’s enjoyable, youthful vibe.

That is one thing I’ve at all times observed and beloved about Bristol since I studied on the college (UoB) from 2009 to 2012. It rings as true at the moment because it did then, and I used to be thrilled to return this summer time and revisit, and uncover, among the fascinating issues to see and do right here.

So what’s to not miss on a visit to Bristol?

Take an alternate strolling tour of Bristol’s road artwork

Where the Wall street art tour

Road artwork in Stokes Croft (c) Lucy Woods

Be taught in regards to the historical past of Bristol’s road artwork and graffiti on a strolling tour corresponding to The place The Wall, which begins on Faculty Inexperienced close to Bristol Cathedral.

Our tour, led by Bristol legend John Naton, took us on a captivating journey by way of the historical past and growth of Bristol’s road artwork scene, beginning with the worldwide phenomenon Banksy, whose stencil themed art work could be noticed everywhere in the metropolis.

From Faculty Inexperienced we headed in direction of Nelson Road to admire the quite a few large-scale graffiti tasks that fashioned a part of the “See No Evil” graffiti pageant in 2011.

The tour takes 2-2.5 hours and ends at Stokes Croft, the graffiti “hub” of town, the place nearly each store, residence and pub is roofed in graffiti (generally legally, however as a rule, illegally). I couldn’t advocate this tour extremely sufficient!

Hand around in Stokes Croft

The Full Moon & Attic Bar

The Full Moon & Attic Bar (c) Lucy Woods

On the finish of the tour, take advantage of your location and discover Stokes Croft, which has some nice different retailers, bars and eating places.

One of many jazzier buildings is The Full Moon & Attic Bar, which has been run by the identical homeowners for 20 years and is painted to appear to be a starry constellation. The bar usually hosts reside music and has an important beer backyard.

In the event you’re getting peckish, drop by Caribbean Croft, a conventional Caribbean restaurant with a relaxed vibe, which serves essentially the most scrumptious, spiced pork stomach I’ve ever eaten.

Take a self-guided “Every thing is Music” tour of Bristol

Bristol is well-known for its reside music scene and has produced bands together with Huge Assault and Portishead. If you wish to be taught extra in regards to the metropolis’s musical historical past you’ll be able to take a self-guided tour utilizing your smartphone through the “Every thing is Music” digital museum.

The situation-based and free-to-use platform launched this yr in Might, and all you want is your smartphone and a pair of headphones. Open the web site (and have your GPS turned on) and also you’ll see a map lined with pins pointing to music-themed venues, labels, artists and extra.

As you discover town, notifications will pop up and you may entry all types of knowledge together with tales, interviews, songs, Youtube movies and even 4D audio visualisers (therefore the necessity for a smartphone).

View the Clifton Suspension Bridge from the digital camera obscura

Clifton Suspension Bridge

Clifton Suspension Bridge (c) Lucy Woods

Bristol’s most well-known landmark has bought to be Clifton Suspension Bridge, designed by  Isambard Kingdom Brunel. The bridge was constructed throughout Avon Gorge in 1864 and attracts vacationers from everywhere in the globe because of its spectacular views and eye-watering top (101m above the water).

Head to Clifton Observatory and purchase a ticket to go to The Big’s Cave and Digicam Obscura for distinctive views of the bridge. Make your method down 130 steep steps to the Big’s Cave, which was as soon as a part of a small chapel in 305AD. Bristol folklore tells of two giants who lived there, Goram and Ghyston.

The Digicam Obscura sits atop Clifton’s Observatory tower and is one in all solely three working Digicam Obscuras within the UK. The Victorian designed “digital camera” makes use of a collection of lenses and mirrors to mirror a 360 panoramic image of the suspension bridge.

Paddle Board alongside Bristol’s harbour

Paddle Boarding along the Harbour with SUP Bristol

Paddle Boarding alongside the Harbour (c) SUP Bristol

This family-friendly watersport includes propelling oneself (both sitting or standing) alongside the water on a large inflatable board. We took half in a 1.5-hour taster session with the award-winning SUP Bristol.

The climate gods have been on our facet for your entire morning, and as we coasted alongside the water, previous the SS Nice Britain and the reproduction of The Matthew of Bristol (the ship sailed by John Cabot in 1497 from Bristol to North America), I felt a way of complete calm and contentment. We have been additionally fortunate sufficient to paddle previous Christopher Walken as he was getting filmed for the upcoming BBC One drama The Offenders. By no means a boring second in Bristol!

SUP Bristol additionally supply household and harbourside adventures in addition to programs and subscriptions. All tools is included – carry your self and garments you don’t thoughts getting moist.

Channel your internal baby at ‘We the Curious’

We the Curious Museum

We the Curious Museum (c) Lucy Woods

Bristol’s Harbourside can also be residence to We The Curious, an interactive museum and academic charity impressed by science and human curiosity. They’re at the moment exhibiting a brand new exhibition, Undertaking What If, primarily based on questions requested by the individuals of Bristol, protecting themes corresponding to sickness, rainbows, happiness, the universe, the soul and invisibility.

There are 68 new reveals and 25 artwork items, most of that are extremely interactive. As I explored the exhibition I attempted on an invisibility cloak, examined what I’d appear to be in 50 years, recorded a message for the little inexperienced males and had a dialog with a robotic. The exhibition is solely fantastic – I felt like a toddler once more and it was so enjoyable and fascinating.

Board the SS Nice Britain

ss Great Britain hero shot, December 2017

SS Nice Britain (c) SSGB

The Clifton Suspension Bridge wasn’t Brunel’s solely good design. The SS Nice Britain, as soon as the longest passenger steamship on this planet, was superior for her time and journeyed to the furthest reaches of the globe, from New York to Australia. After being retired after which ultimately deserted within the Falkland Islands, she was rescued and introduced again to Bristol, and became a reasonably good museum.

The museum takes you on a journey by way of the ship’s historical past and her uncommon building, earlier than boarding and exploring her internal galleys. You may also take a wander across the docks, and be taught extra about Brunel within the “Being Brunel” exhibition.

Have lunch at Cargo

Chicken tacos at Cargo Cantina

Hen tacos at Cargo Cantina (c) Lucy Woods

Only a 10-minute stroll from the SS Nice Britain is Cargo at Whapping Wharf, a group of re-purposed transport containers which were transformed into meals retailers providing a variety of worldwide delicacies. It’s finest simply to rock up and see the place there’s house – we ended up at Cargo Cantina, impressed by genuine Mexican cantinas and specialising in tacos and burritos, in addition to ice-cold beer and cocktails. I opted for the Hibiscus Margarita and rooster tacos, with a facet of tortilla chips with oozy melting cheese and plenty of dips – yum!

Meet bears and wolves at The Wild Place Undertaking 

Albie the European brown bear (c) Andre Pattenden

Albie the European brown bear (c) Andre Pattenden

If you’re eager on a wildlife-themed exercise with the youngsters then you’ll be able to’t go flawed with a go to to the Wild Place Undertaking, a 50-acre wildlife conservation park situated on the sting of Bristol which opened in 2013.

The undertaking is conservation-focused and the format is designed to supply a extra pure habitat for the animals. One of many highlights is exploring Bear Wooden, residence to 4 “extinct” British species – bears, wolves, lynxes and wolverines – who roamed these lands many centuries in the past. Stroll alongside raised walkways by way of the dense woodland and observe these animals from up excessive.

Watch a present and dine on the Bristol Outdated Vic 

The Bristol Outdated Vic is an actual establishment in Bristol – it’s the oldest constantly working theatre within the English talking world, has just lately undergone a serious refurbishment. You will discover out what’s on right here.

As a part of the refurbishment, there’s a new glass-fronted café, restaurant and bar. The restaurant has just lately partnered with the favored Italian Pizzarova, which specialises in serving handmade sourdough pizzas, to launch Pizzarova x Grano Kitchen. We dined right here on a Sunday night. The service was nice and the meals and wine have been scrumptious. It’s the perfect place to have a chew to eat earlier than a present.

Reality File

The place to remain: The four* Bristol Harbour Lodge is in a beautiful location near the harbour and has a spa, fitness center, restaurant and speakeasy-style bar. The service right here is outstanding and we felt like we have been in a 5* resort throughout our keep. Learn our resort evaluation right here.

Getting there: Bristol is ideally located for street entry from London in addition to from the north and east of England, as it’s located on the intersection of the M4 and M5 motorways. You may also journey by prepare to Bristol Temple Meads, the most important rail hub within the West of England.

Prime tip: Bristol may be very a lot a metropolis for strolling. The buses aren’t nice and its hilly nature signifies that it’s a must to be a sure kind of lunatic to wish to cycle.

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