Bristol bucket list: 50 things to do when you visit Bristol including food, pubs and festivals
A Bristolian’s guide to Bristol - with things you need to check out this year
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Having nothing to do in Bristol is an impressive feat with hundreds of events held across the city each week.
Whether you’re visiting at some point during 2023, still adjusting to life as a student living in the city, or if you’ve lived here your whole life Bristol World guarantees you can discover and love something you didn’t know was happening at some point this year. Whether it’s delving into the history of the city, which will celebrate several prominent anniversaries this year, or searching for a pint costing less than £4 in the city centre, we will help guide you.
We’ve put together a 50-strong bucket list for you to read through and check off. You might not be able to cross off every item on the list but it’s always better to aim high. Some events and places to visit will already be known to you while others are waiting to be explored.
Here’s our list of things to try in 2023, enjoy...
Food and Drink
- Find a pint in the city centre for under £4
- Explore any of the 29 Bristol restaurants included in the Michelin Guide
- Try Chilli Daddies, on Baldwin Street (a personal favourite, the Tofu Noodle Hotspot is highly recommended)
- Try one of the city’s newly-opened vegan restaurants
- Glen’s Kitchen, in St Pauls
- Enjoy the Sri Lankan cuisine at Stokes Croft’s Nadu
- Enjoy the city’s micropubs
- Dine at any of the top 10 restaurants in Bristol according to Tripadvisor
Anniversaries to explore
- 650 years since Bristol was declared a city
- 200 years of Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
- 200th anniversary of St George’s concert hall
- 125 years of Cabot Tower
- The 60th anniversary of the Bristol Bus Boycott
- 55 years of St Pauls Carnival
- 21st anniversary of Tobacco Factory Theatres
Things to do
- Have a smooth bus journey from south Bristol to the centre
- Attend St Pauls Carnival for the first event since the pandemic
- Buy a ticket to an unknown artist at any of Bristol’s great music venues
- Visit the Bristol Beacon when it reopens in November
- Find a Bristolian accent in Clifton
- Take part in the Tuesday quiz night at the Bag O’ Nails cat pub
- Enjoy a day of board games at Chance & Counters, at the bottom of Christmas Steps
- Harbour boat ride
- Attend the Balloon Fiesta in August
- Love Saves the Day festival: headlined by Fatboy Slim and being held on May 27/28
- Take part in the Bristol half-marathon / 10k
- Bristol Harbour Festival: July 15/16
- Shop local - Bristol has hundreds of independent businesses and traders, many of whom have struggled during the cost of living crisis.
- Spend the day gin tasting
- FORWARDS festival: September 1/2
- Take a Voi scooter for a spin
- Attend the King’s Coronation on May 6
- Dine Naked with strangers
Places to go
- Climb up Brandon Hill for the views from Bristol’s oldest park
- Explore the city’s history at the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
- Discover Bristol’s social history at M Shed
- Wapping Wharf
- Explore an abandoned nuclear bunker off Flowers Hill, in Brislington
- Arnos Vale Cemetary: Built in 1839, is of ‘considerable ecological importance’ due to its progression from the mediaeval countryside to Georgian estate to Victorian Cemetery to modern day.
- Clifton Rocks Railway: Explore the city’s railway history
- 20th Century Flicks: A heaven for cinephiles in the city. The small store rents more than 20,000 movies on DVD and also offers an intimate 11-18 seat cinema experience available for private hire.
- Blaise Hamlet: made up of nine picturesque cottages, north of the city centre. It was built in 1811 to house retired staff from Henbury’s Blaise Castle estate.
- Enjoy a night at the Bristol Hippodrome
- Peruse St Nicholas’ Market
- The Loco Klub, near Temple Meads
- Cheer on the Gas at the Memorial Ground
- Cheer on City at Ashton Gate
- Cheer on the Bears at Ashton Gate
- Paddleboarding in the harbour
- Take part in a game of volleyball at Queen Square, near the harbourside