A trip to Bristol doesn’t have to be an expensive one. We have plenty of options to suit a range of budgets, whether you’re a student, lone traveller or have the family in tow (we know how costs can add up!).

In addition to the city’s Michelin-starred restaurants and high-end cocktail bars, Bristol also has more than its fair share of cheaper food and drink.

Here are some tips on enjoying Bristol’s award-winning food scene without breaking the bank…

Street Food

One of the best ways to experience Bristol’s diverse food scene on a budget is with street food, and you have plenty of markets to choose from, but the jewel in the crown has to be St Nicholas Market in the city centre. 

With over 60 stalls in total across the market and a large variety of international cuisines on offer, St Nick's is one of the most popular places to eat in Bristol. The streets outside also play host to a vegan food market on Mondays, a farmer's market on Wednesdays, and an extended street food market on Tuesdays and Fridays.

You'll also find a variety of other stalls and cabins around the city centre where you can grab a cheap meal on the go, such as the much-loved Falafel King on the Harbourside, The Kitchen of Anatolia and Edna's Kitchen in Castle Park, and Rana's Dhaba in Broadmead.

The entrance to St Nicholas Market in Bristol's Old City - credit St Nicholas Markets
Image: St Nicholas Market


Another cost-effective way of eating in the city while catering for a variety of tastes is to head to one of Bristol's buffet restaurants.

Cosmo on Clifton Triangle serves up a range of international cuisines including Chinese, Indian, Thai, Mexican and even Japanese teppanyaki. Lunch is priced from £14.99 per person, and dinner from £17.99. Reduced prices for children under 155cm and nominal charge for under-5s.

The huge Za Za Bazaar on the Harbourside conjurs up the vibe of a bustling street market, with several live cooking stations taking you on a tour of five continents, from freshly-made tacos to stir frys, pasta dishes and Indian curries. Enjoy lunch from £12.99 per person, dinner from £18.99, or eat for £18.99 all day on Sundays. Children 11 years and under dine half price, children under five are free. Student discounts are available.

Food being cooked with flames
Image: Cosmo

Special offers

Many of Bristol's restaurants, bars and cafes have discounts for students, families and carers, as well as seasonal deals and offers throughout the year. Head over to our Special Offers page to find out more, otherwise here are a few foodie highlights...

  • The £7.50 lunch at Three Brothers Burgers is great value for unbelievable quality. Enjoy their classic burger (or Portobello mushroom burger) and fries for only £7.50. Available Monday – Sunday until 5pm.
  • Dine in at Fishers seafood restaurant in Clifton after 9pm, Sunday to Thursday, and enjoy any of the delicious fresh catches that are still available on the menu for just £9.
  • Get 50% off sushi on Sundays at Yakinori, or pop in on Mondays to enjoy 50% off dishes from the vegan menu.
  • Get any 2 courses for £10, every Tuesday at No.4 Clifton Village.
  • Combine film and food on Tuesdays at Watershed - any valid cinema ticket holder will be entitled to 30% off any main dishes from Watershed’s menu, and the offer is valid all day.
  • The burgers at Racks in Clifton are usually £10, but on Mondays (from 5pm until 10.30pm) you can buy 2 for the price of 1 - it's up to you whether you bring a friend or have them both though...

See more food and drink deals here.

A burger at Three Brothers Burgers in central Bristol - credit Three Brothers Burgers
Image: Three Brothers Burgers

Early evening and pre-theatre deals

If you're planning on an early dinner or seeing a show and need to eat beforehand, you've got plenty of great value options in the city centre...

  • Drop in to Bambalan any time before or after the show (up until 10pm) and claim 20% off your food bill when you show a valid ticket to any event on that day at any of Bristol’s theatres or music venues.
  • Get 2 courses for £12 between 5.30pm and 6.30pm Monday to Saturday, at The Square Kitchen.
  • Cathay Rendezvous offer a pre-theatre menu of 2 courses for £12.95, or 3 courses for £15.95. Available Sunday-Friday from 5.30-7pm.

Colourful interior of restaurant
Image: Bambalan

See more venues that offer these deals on our Pre-theatre Dining page

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A collage for Bristol on a budget: Food and Drink - Credit Visit West