The southwest has a reputation as a land of rolling hills and easy living. However, the largest city in the southwest is also one of the liveliest and interesting in the country. Bristol has a lot to offer, and there are a huge number of reasons why you should spend a weekend here. These are our top five reasons to visit Bristol for a weekend, but we’re only scratching the surface!
Nightlife that can’t be bettered
If there’s one thing that Bristol does well, it’s a good night out. From the pubs of King’s Street to the nightclubs of Stokes Croft, there’s something for everyone. One highlight that can’t be missed is the Old Duke of King’s Street, the city’s foremost jazz pub. You should also pay a visit to the Bag of Nails, a tiny pub filled with resident cats. For a more upmarket experience, go up the hill to Clifton Village and visit a few of the late-night whiskey clubs, or head across town to Stokes Croft and the never-ending whirlwind of revelry that can be found there.
Music every night of the week
Another area where Bristol beats the competition all around is in the sheer amount and variety of live music that can be found. There’s a huge number of live music venues across the city, from the huge Colston Hall right down to tiny pub backrooms. Check out venues like the Old England and the Exchange for a real taste of Bristol’s music scene, or pay a visit to the O2 to catch national touring acts.
Beautiful theatres across the city
Bristol boasts several top-class theatres. The recently-renovated Old Vic, located on historic King’s Street, retains the original Grade I listed facade. Touring comics and stage performances can be found any night of the week, and you can even fill up with a pre-show dinner at the theatre’s own 1766 restaurant. The Hippodrome, a larger theatre located in the city centre, boasts a larger capacity and is often home to large-scale touring productions
Amazing countryside all around
Something that surprises visitors is how quickly you’ll find yourself in the countryside when leaving Bristol. While you can head deeper into Somerset to the south, and out to Wales by heading west, Bristol boasts plenty of gorgeous countryside practically within the city itself. Take the time to visit Ashton Court, a 17th-century estate located just the other side of the world-famous Clifton Suspension Bridge.
A beautiful city to walk through
There are plenty of amazing places to visit in Bristol, but sometimes the city itself is enough of an attraction. Spend an afternoon walking around the floating harbour, passing by the SS Great Western, or trek up to Brandon Hill Park to take in the view from Cabot Tower. These sights are as characteristically Bristolian as strong cider and a west country burr, and are a big part of what makes Bristol such a special city.
Take your time and fall in love with Bristol
We haven’t even talked about how easy it is to reach Bath, the beautiful scenery in Wales, or the myriad other things that make Bristol such an attractive place to visit. You’ll just have to come and see for yourself!