Fun things to do in Bristol

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Bristol

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    Statue - Neptune

    by grayfo Written May 15, 2015

    The lead statue of Neptune holding a fish and trident was cast by John Randall in 1723 sitting atop a square granite plinth. Until recently Neptune was a familiar sight at the head of St. Augustine's Reach after originally being set up in the Temple area, near Bristol Bridge. The statue was moved to Temple Street where it had various incarnations and movements before
    re-erected at the Quay Head in 1949. Following further alterations to the City Centre in 1999, the statue is now part of the water feature in the pedestrianised area of the Centre.

    Grade II Listed (January 1959)

    May 2015

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    The Old City

    by spidermiss Updated Jul 1, 2012

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    I stayed in the Old City during my stay in Bristol and I became familiar with the area. The Old City runs from the North East of St Augustine's Reach and Floating Harbour. The main areas are Queen Square (please see separate tip), Corn Street, St Nicholas Market (please see separate tip), King Street and Welsh Back (please see separate tip). The area mainly comprises of offices, independent shops, cafes, bars, historic pubs and restaurants.

    I got to appreciate the Old City even more during our walking tour of Bristol. Here are my observations:

    Old City
    On the guided walking tour we wandered around the Old City with its cobbled streets. We admired the buildings on Broad Street, Corn Street, St Nicholas Market, King Street and Welsh Back. We saw the old Corn Exchange building on Corn Street and the historic Llandoger Trow on King Street.

    St John the Baptist
    This is the only church left built in the city's walls during the 12th Century. It served part of Bristol's defences from attack and also a place for travellers to pray before their journeys to the unknown! The present building has been there since the 1300s with its tower and spire above the North Gate of the wall. There is a former prestigious burial place below the church and is the place for a water conduit in the 13th Century. Today the church is available for hire for cultural events.

    Tel No. 07872 502118
    Website: www.visitchurches.org.uk
    Email: rireland@tcct.org.uk

    The Exchange Building
    John Wood the Elder built the The Exchange in 1741-43 on Corn Street. It was originally used for corn and general trade exchange but now is part of St Nicholas Market. Following intensive renovations including the lowering of the roof over the 19th Century. The clock on the building shows both the Greenwich Mean (by the extra hand) and Bristol Times. Greenwich Mean Time was used for railway timetables (effect from 14th September 1852) so people knew when they had to catch the trains as Bristol time was approximately 11 minutes behind.

    Corn Street, Old City, Bristol Corn Street, Old City, Bristol Corn Street, Old City, Bristol St John the Baptist, Small Street, Old City King Street, Old City, Bristol
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    King Street & Welsh Back

    by spidermiss Updated Jul 1, 2012

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    I stayed just off King Street, in the Old City, during my visit to Bristol. It's one of the oldest streets in Bristol which was laid out in 1650 for developing the Town's Marsh. The street was named after Charles II and the north part of the street was developed first then the south in 1663. It was nice wandering round on the cobbled streets.

    There are some interesting historic Buildings of note:-

    Merchant Venturers Almshouses (Image 1)
    Society of Merchant Venturers built them in 1696 for convalescent and retired sailors. Nowadays, it's run by Society of Merchant Ventureres Almshouses Charity and provides sheltered housing.

    Old Free Library (Image 2)
    Built in 1738-40. Likely by James Paty, the Elder, and is now a Chinese restaurant (I understand the restaurant has mixed reputations according to our walking tour guide)

    Llandoger Trow (1664)
    Which began as a merchants' house but now a historic pub with a restaurant (Please see separate tip)

    The Old Duke (1780)
    A historic pub (Opposite Llangoder Trow)

    King Wiliam Ale House (Image 4)
    The building dates back from 1670

    St Nicholas' Almshouses (Image 5)
    Built in 1652. Now student accommodation

    My room looked out to Welsh Back, a cobbled street running alongside the Floating Harbour. The street mainly consist of historic buildings housing restaurants, bars and offices. The Welsh Back was originally served trows with cargoes from Wales's Slate Industry. Slate, stone, timber and coal were imported to the docks.

    Merchant Venturers Almshouses,King Street, Bristol Free Library, King Street, Bristol A memorial, Welsh Back, Bristol King William Ale House, King Street, Bristol St Nicholas
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    Bristol Highlights Walk

    by spidermiss Updated Jul 1, 2012

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    The 2 hour walking tours operate on Saturdays seasonally (usually from Easter to end of September but best checking). The two hour walking tour takes you through the new harbour, city centre, old town, markets and historic port. You learn about Bristol's history and the city's personalities who have shaped Bristol what it was and is today!

    The tour starts at 11.00 am from the Tourist Information Office, E Shed, Harbourside (near the Harbour steps). We began exploring parts of the Harbourside and were told about Bristol's role in the industrial revolution, merchants activity, the Slave Trade (including one of the slave trade masters, Pinney, and owned plantations in West Indies). We were informed about John Cabot and his explorations, which opened the world, in the 15th Century; William Tyndale who translated the bible into English; and the Berkeley Family who were involved at The Hospital of St Mark (now Lord Mayor's Chapel) in caring for the physical and spiritual health of young men.

    The tour guide briefed us about Brunel and his Victorian Engineering wonders including the Temple Meads Railway Station, Clifton Suspension Bridge and SS Great Britain. We learnt about about the city's waterways with the links of Rivers Frome and Avon and how the ships were navigated from sea to port.

    We were encouraged to ponder about the post industrial Era and how the era lead to intensive regeneration which is shaping modern Bristol today.

    I learnt a lot about Bristol and I highly recommend the tour (shame about the poor weather we had but it didn't spoil things). It cost 5.00 gbp per adult (June 2012) and there is no need to book in advance.

    The company also does tailor made theme walking tours for groups such as Clifton & The Suspension Bridge, Medieval Bristol and Bristol's Historic Wine Merchants.

    College Green and Bristol Cathedral Centre Promenade, Bristol Old City, Bristol Harvey Cellars, Bristol Floating Harbour, Bristol
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    Centre Promenade

    by spidermiss Updated Jul 1, 2012

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    The Centre Promenade is a city centre space hub for various things including the city's main bus, taxi, ferry and pedestrian travel hub to access other parts of the city centre and the suburbs. The Promenade is surrounded the Old City, Business Districts, the Floating Harbour and near to the College Green. The area is partially pedestrianised with a paved area near the Floating Harbour. The function has been remodelled a few times during the 20th Century.

    City Centre Promenade, Bristol City Centre Promenade, Bristol City Centre Promenade, Bristol City Centre Promenade, Bristol City Centre Promenade, Bristol
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    Broad Street

    by illumina Written Jan 21, 2010

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    Broad Street is one of the four original streets of Bristol, along with High Street, Vine Street and Corn Street, probably dating from Saxon times, although the earliest map depicting them is that of Robert Ricart, from the early 15th century (incidentally also the oldest town plan of any English town).

    Notable buildings are the 18th century Christ Church with St Ewen; a former Bank of England branch, the Guildhall, and on the small side lane Tailor's Court, the Merchant Tailor's Guild Hall dating from 1740.

    At the end of the street is St John's Gate, the only surviving gate from Bristol's city walls.

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    Coastal path: Portishead - Clevedon

    by juzz Updated Jun 17, 2009

    This is a nice walk, 6 miles long, between Portishead and Clevedon, two towns not far from Bristol.
    We reached Portishead from Bristol Bus station, by bus number 359, getting off at "white lion" in Portishead.
    The walk took about 3 hours and we took another bus from Clevedon "Six Ways" to return back to Bristol.
    Download the map here: http://www.bristol.gov.uk/ccm/cms-service/download/asset/?asset_id=29663034
    Google maps: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=it&msa=0&ll=51.465772,-2.791214&spn=0.119775,0.363922&t=h&z=12&msid=107904808885133442904.00046c8fa35a92980a469

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    walk alomg Great George Street

    by mindcrime Updated Apr 27, 2009

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    On my way way to Brandon Hill I passed through Great George Street (pic 1) to see the Georgian House, an old building that was built in 1791 for John Pinney, a wealthy merchant from India. The architecture was William Paty (1758-1800) that built several other buildings in Bristol like Christ Church with St Ewen etc

    The house is a museum now and you can go inside and see how the decoration and furniture was that era. Some rooms are Pinney’s office, the library, dinning and bedrooms and Pinney’s cold water plunge pool. There is also a small exhibition about Pinney’s work (sugar trade) and his slave Pero (he also lived there (after whom Pero's Bridge at the Harbourside is named).
    The Georgian House is open Saturday to Wednesday, 10.00-17.00 and there’s no entrance fee. There is no lift inside and also no WC.

    Great George Street was quite that morning and we also visited St George’s Bristol (pic 2) because we were surprised of the greek style of it. I though it was just another church till I realized it’s now a venue for concerts with a capacity of 560 people. The Commissioner’s church was built in 1823 by Robert Smirke (1781-1867) in greek revival style (he is famous a designer of many public buildings in classical style like the main block of the British museum). After 1976 the church faced redundancy and turned into a concert hall. You can book tickets at 08454024001.

    Great George Street St George���s Bristol
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    city center promenade

    by mindcrime Written Apr 26, 2009

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    I just walked down Colston Hall to be at the promenade. At the main square on Colston Avenue is the statue of EDMUND BURKE (1729-1797) a famous irish philosopher and politician that is remembered for his opposition to the french revolution. The statue (pic 1-2) was erected in 1894 and there you can read part of his famous speech at Bristol in 1780:>

    At the main square there was also an iron construction (pic 3) fully lighted (it was xmas period) where one afternoon I saw people protesting for support of Palaistinian people. A few steps away is a bridge (pic 4-5) that will take you to the other side of the canal. It’s called Pero’s Bridge and has 2 modern sculptures on it. I just took some photos of them and continue my way. It was time to walk along the canal to visit the tourist info and the AT BRISTOL

    Edmund Burke statue Edmund Burke statue main square Pero���s Bridge Pero���s Bridge

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    Trench Lane Car Boot Sale

    by northeast80 Updated Jan 6, 2008

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    The first thing I did before moving to Bristol was to find out where the closest car boot sale was to me. With some help from other VT-ers I found the one at Trench Lane, Bradley Stoke.
    It is very civilised too, only open to the public from 1pm, no early mornings, to traders it's open from 12.30pm, closes around 5pm every Sunday.
    A note on parking, you have to drive across a bumpy grass field and at first glance it looks quite close, when you get closer after we'd parked, there's a valley in between where we'd parked and the car boot sale. If you drive a bit further on (from the Old Gloucester Road end) you can park much closer to the car boot.
    There were a few hot food stalls, an ice cream van and a couple of porta-loos.
    It's also free entry.

    Update - just so you know it closes for the winter, another car boot sale has opened up on Sunday mornings on the Frenchay Campus of the University of the West of England.

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    Football! Bristol City / Bristol Rovers

    by eddrockett Written Dec 23, 2007

    If you're visiting Bristol and it's a Saturday chances are one of the two football teams will be playing. If you've never been to an English Soccer / Football match then this will certainly be an experience for you :-) The good thing is you can usually pay on the day so no need to purchase tickets. Both grounds are a 10 minute taxi from the city centre and its a great afternoon especially if you haven't experienced it before! :-)

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    Enjoying The Sights...

    by coceng Updated Oct 14, 2004

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    Another sight of a building that I saw in Bristol. Could be a house & I don't mind living there...Bristol is not a busy town at all but many people told me that Bristol will shine through & through when the sun set in on the horizon !
    Too bad that I didn't wait that long...CONTINUE WITH MY PHOTOS AROUND BRISTOL... [Please click]

    Bristol, England...
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    My First Bristol Photo...

    by coceng Updated Oct 14, 2004

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    First, I arrived at Temple Meads Train Station in Bristol; Walked out from the station & saw this building on the left side of the station. A fine example of Victorian building that we could see spread out around Bristol...

    First sight in Bristol, England...
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    Ferry Ride

    by razzz Written Aug 6, 2004

    This was only worth it because I went with my friend who had an 8 month girl, and she loved it. It is good for small children. Other than that, it was not so impressive and it didn't really bring us anywhere special. I think it is good if you need to kill time with your youngsters.

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    A Bristol Memorial

    by VinceTraveller Updated Oct 23, 2003

    It was very quiet and solemn when I was here in Bristol. This memorial commemorates those who died during the bombing of Bristol in WWII. It was nice to reflect and show my respects to the people of Bristol.

    Memorial at Bristol
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