The best things to do in Bristol, UK

The best things to do in Bristol, UK

Have you ever thought about a city trip to Bristol? This is a pleasant English university city, and there are many great things to do in Bristol. 11 tips.

11 fun things to do in Bristol

What to do on a Bristol city break? These are the best things to do and the most beautiful sights.

Visit Bristol Cathedral

The gigantic Bristol Cathedral is a beautiful sight and a place that you shouldn’t miss during your city trip to Bristol. It has been regularly renovated during the last centuries and part of the building dates back to 1220. During my visit to the cathedral, I imagined myself being in a Harry Potter movie. There are so many beautiful details and it feels a bit magical to wander around the cathedral.

Clifton Suspension Bridge

Clifton Suspension Bridge Bristol - pic via Unsplash

Photo: Hello I’m Nik | Unsplash

The Clifton Suspension Bridge is probably the most impressive landmark in Bristol. This large bridge is located west of Bristol and overlooks the Avon river. It is a spectacular sight, the bridge is about 400 meters long and if you walk over it you are 74 meters above the river. For a beautiful view of the bridge, head to the Clifton Observatory.

Explore the Bristol Marina

Bristol Marina

Bristol has a good connection with the sea, which you can see in the Bristol Marina in the city center. It’s a great place to explore and wander around. There are many restaurants and pubs and you can see more during a boat trip through the harbor. A very nice place to hang around on a lovely, sunny day.

SS Great Britain

In the Bristol Marina, you will also find one of the most famous ships in the world: the SS Great Britain. In 1843, it was the largest ship in the world and the first ship with an all-metal hull. It is now a museum ship and Bristol’s biggest tourist attraction.

Check the official website for more information and tickets.

Visit the free museums

Just like in London, Bristol also has several museums that you can visit for free. So, visiting Bristol on a rainy day is not too bad. There are plenty of things to do in Bristol without getting rained on, and visiting a museum is your best bet. These are some museums that are worth visiting:

  • Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
  • M Shed
  • Red Lodge Museum

You can check this website for an overview of the museums in Bristol.

University of Bristol Botanic Garden

The Bristol Botanic Garden is a really calm and beautiful place to visit. In the gardens, you will find more than 4500 species of plants. It has different zones (there is, for example, a cool zone and a tropical zone) and everywhere you will see interesting plants. Especially the large water lily Victoria cruziana is gorgeous to see.

Visiting the Bristol Botanic Garden costs £5 and you have to make a reservation through this website.

Have a pint

Having a pint on the terrace in Bristol

Of course, you can’t visit England and not drink a pint (or two). I don’t really like beer myself, but after a few days, I discovered my favorite: pear-flavored cider, it’s super delicious! In Bristol, you will find a pub with a typical English name on almost every street corner where you can drink tasty beers. Cheers!

Discover the artworks of Banksy

Did you know that Bristol is the home city of the famous artist Banksy? Wandering the streets of Bristol gives you a good chance to see some works of art by this artist.

Tip: Bristol is bursting with cool street art. To find the best works of art, I would highly recommend going on a street art tour.

Climb Brandon Hill and the Cabot Tower

Do you enjoy a good view? Then you should climb the Cabot Tower on Brandon Hill. It is completely free and from the top, you’ll have an amazing view of the city and its surroundings. Brandon Hill is a lovely park, which is perfect for a picnic.

Find the Christmas Steps

The coziest street in Bristol is the Christmas Steps. It is a street full of stairs and has little to do with Christmas. There are often cozy lights and you can see a few beautiful houses from the nineteenth century. In the vicinity of the Christmas Steps, you will find many cozy restaurants and pubs.

Go on a day trip to Bath

Day trip to Bath

Photo: Hulki Okan Tabak | Unsplash

Bristol and Bath are often mentioned as one travel destination, and you can easily combine both cities during a city trip. Bath is 20 kilometers from Bristol and you can get there in 11 minutes by train, so easy! Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a sight to behold. In the eighteenth century, this was a popular spa destination and you can still see it in the architecture. The city is full of beautiful, elegant buildings from that time.

Book a Bristol city trip

Would you like to visit Bristol? You can visit Bristol as a separate trip, or visit the city as a day trip from London since it’s really easy to travel from London to Bristol by bus.

Here are a few useful websites that will help you book your trip:

  • Find the cheapest flights to Bristol via Momondo or Skyscanner.
  • The largest selection of awesome hotels, hostels, and other accommodations can be found via
  • You can book fun guided tours on Get Your Guide.
  • You can find cool travel guides on Amazon.

Want to read more about England?

Do you fancy a city trip to Bristol and do you want to discover more beautiful places in this beautiful region? These are some great travel guides:

Lonely Planet Pocket Bath, Bristol & the Southwest

The Rough Guide to Bath, Bristol & Somerset

On this website, you can also read this article:

Hi, and how nice of you to read this disclaimer! As you may understand, maintaining a website like this is not free. That is why some of the links in this article are affiliate links. If you use these links to book or buy anything, I’ll get a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you!


As a girl from a small town in the Netherlands, I always dreamed of traveling. I thought it would always be a dream, but nowadays, I travel 6 to 8 months a year and I hike thousands of miles on the most beautiful hiking trails. On this website you can read all about my favorite destinations.

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