From harbourside restaurants to stunning roof terraces, we've picked out some of the best places to eat al fresco in Bristol when the sun is shining.

By the water

Aqua, Welshback

Whether you're looking for breakfast, lunch or dinner, you can enjoy your food with a view of the water from the sunny terrace, decorated in bright Mediterranean colours.

People sat on terrace Aqua Welshback - credit Aqua Restaurants
Image - Aqua

Harbour House

This award-winning restaurant has a stylish terrace overlooking the colourful houses of Redcliffe, and is a great spot to watch the boats go by while you sip a cocktail or enjoy some of their latest seasonal dishes.

Exterior of the Harbour House restaurant in the Redcliffe area of Bristol - credit Harbour House
Image - Harbour House

No.1 Harbourside

With plenty of room inside as well as seating out on the quayside, No.1 Harbourside is one of the best places to watch the hustle and bustle of this area of Bristol, while tucking into a tasty meal and local beer. The menu is weighted towards brunch and burgers - perfect for enjoying in the sunshine!

Outdoor terrace at No.1 Harbourside - Credit No.1 Harbourside
Image - No.1 Harbourside

Arnolfini Café Bar

One of the most well-known corners of the harbour, the terrace outside Arnolfini has one of the best views going.

If you’re not dangling your legs over the quayside with a beer in hand (the café is managed by Bristol Beer Factory, so there’s usually a strong local offering to choose from), we strongly recommend trying their seasonal menu, ranging from freshly-made sandwiches to frittatas, burgers and salads.

People sitting on the outdoor tables at the Arnolfini Harbourside Bar on Bristol's Harbourside - credit Arnolfini Bristol
Image - Arnolfini

The Stable

Pizzas, pies and cider, all with a strong West Country slant. The Stable is a great place for groups and a quick refuel on the harbourside. Cider newbies and aficionados alike will appreciate the cider tasting flights, allowing you to try several smaller measures at once.

A selection of pizza on a wooden table - Credit The Stable
Image - The Stable

Mud Dock

A staple of the Bristol café scene for almost 30 years, Mud Dock’s balconies have some gorgeous harbour views which you can enjoy while devouring one of their breakfasts, or sipping a cocktail at sunset.

A women wearing a black tank top serving people on a terrace - Credit Mud Dock
Image - Mud Dock


This glass-fronted restaurant is split across two levels, both of which have outdoor balcony seating. The downstairs area is more casual, where you can enjoy brunch, lunch and specially-crafted cocktails, while the upstairs restaurant has a seasonal menu and special dining events throughout the year, collaborating with local producers, breweries and distilleries. 

Exterior of the Riverstation restaurant in the Redcliffe area of Bristol - credit Riverstation
Image - Riverstation

The Ostrich

Boasting one of the largest terraces in the city, The Ostrich is one of the city’s oldest pubs, but has been given a modern revamp, including a menu of small plates, burgers and BBQ in the warmer months. 

People sitting outdoors under the sun by The Ostrich pub in the Redcliffe area of Bristol - credit Mahtola Eagle
Image - The Ostrich, credit: Mahtola Eagle


Wapping Wharf has become a new focal point of dining on Bristol’s harbourside, and Gambas can definitely boast one of the best views of the businesses in the CARGO shipping containers. Enjoy a mix of tapas favourites and seafood specialities along with some summery Spanish drinks and snacks on the terrace.

If it’s too busy, stroll a couple of doors down to sister restaurant CARGO Cantina for tacos, Margaritas and mezcal. It’s worth checking out the other brilliant businesses of Wapping Wharf during your visit, and if you’re keen on a view of the water, go for a veggie-focused dinner at Root, or feast on fish and chips at Salt & Malt downstairs.

People dining alfresco at Wapping Wharf on Bristol's Harbourside - credit Jon Craig
Image - Wapping Wharf. Credit: Jon Craig Photography.


Head to waterside seafood restaurant Noah's for a relaxing meal showcasing the best that the UK shores have to offer, from grilled fish to scallops. Take a seat on their back terrace from end of June if you want to enjoy the sun while you dine.

Harbour Hub

Situated in the picturesque Brunel Quay, Harbour Hub serves up brunch and snacks throughout the week. 

You can catch the cross harbour ferry just outside across to Brunel’s SS Great Britain, where you’ll also find the cute Greenshank boat café, run by Bristol Packet Boat Trips.

The Grain Barge

You’re never far from a bar or restaurant on a boat in Bristol’s Floating Harbour, and The Grain Barge has to be one of the most popular. Sup a cider in the sunshine on the top deck, or get comfy indoors with one of their tasty meal deals, from Pie & a Pint to £12 steak dinners every Wednesday.

An exterior view of The Grain Barge - Credit The Grain Barge
Image - Grain Barge

The Cottage Inn

This cosy pub next to Underfall Yard at the western end of the harbour has a menu of traditional pub favourites – we recommend the fish and chips! If you can’t find a seat directly outside, you can sit on the steps closer to the water and watch the ferries, kayakers and windsurfers.

If you’re looking for a quick coffee and snack, Pickle is a small café with some outdoor seating inside the Underfall Yard visitor centre. 

People sat outside The Cottage Inn
Image - The Cottage Inn

Dine with a view


The biggest roof terrace in the city centre, it always feels like you’re on holiday at Bambalan, from the Mediterranean-inspired mezze to the seasonal cocktails. They also do a fantastic brunch menu, and host terrace parties and special events throughout the year.

People sitting under the sun on the roof terrace at the Bambalan restaurant, central Bristol - credit Bambalan
Image - Bambalan

Goram & Vincent at the Avon Gorge

You won’t find a more iconic view in the city than from the terrace and restaurant of the Avon Gorge hotel – a breath-taking vista of the Clifton Suspension Bridge and Avon Gorge below. The menu at Goram & Vincent is a mix of classics such as steak and baked scallops through to dishes from their BBQ smoker such as beef brisket or pastrami.

If you’re looking for a bite and a few drinks, The White Lion Bar next door shares the same stunning view.

View from Goram & Vincent restaurant at Avon Gorge by Hotel du Vin
Image - Avon Gorge by Hotel du Vin


While the view may not be of gorgeous greenery or cityscapes, the restaurant at Bristol Lido has its own special view over the outdoor pool, which provides a relaxing vista while you’re waiting for your lunch or dinner.

The menu is a mix of tapas and Middle Eastern-inspired dishes, so between that and watching the swimmers do their lengths, you’ll struggle to remember that you’re still in the middle of the city!

The dining area at Clifton Lido in West Bristol - credit Clifton Lido
Image - Lido Bristol

Gardens and terraces


The terrace at Racks in Clifton is quite the suntrap, with plenty of seating and space, in contrast to the quirky alcoves of the bar indoors. Racks boasts a great range of offers, from their £6 lunch menu to Prosecco for just £3 a glass every day from 5pm - 7pm.

The outdoor terrace at the Racks restaurant in Clifton, West Bristol - credit Racks Bristol
Image - Racks

The Square Kitchen

Not far from Racks and run by the same team, The Square Kitchen also has a secluded garden if you’re looking for a quiet bite to eat. Their Secret Garden is fully heated and covered, so even on chillier evenings it’s a great place to hang out.

A covered garden seating area - Credit Evoke Pictures
Image - The Secret Garden at The Square Kitchen

The Metropolitan

Take a seat in the secluded back garden at this Clifton restaurant if you want to escape the bustle of the main restaurant.

Bocabar, Finzels Reach

Get into the summer festival vibe on Bocabar's large terrace, which overlooks the main square in Finzels Reach. Choose from burgers, wraps and lush salads or one of their popular Boca pizzas for lunch or dinner.

Terrace at Bocabar in Finzels Reach - credit Bocabar
Image - Bocabar


This contemporary Mexican restaurant on Whiteladies Road has a suntrap front terrace where you can enjoy their cocktail with an array of delicious small plates.

Channing Hotel

Channings Hotel in Clifton serves a varied menu of pub classics all day every day, including brunch, Sunday lunch and special vegan and gluten free menus.

Large empty pub garden surrounded by trees
Image - Channings Hotel 

Pizza on the Park

Another spot for al fresco pizza is Pizza on the Park, which has a handful of tables in their suntrap outdoor space. Tuck into thin and crispy Roman-style pizzas with a local beer or a cocktail. 

Pizza and cocktails on a table outside at Pizza on the Park - Credit Pizza on the Park
Image - Pizza on the Park

The Gallimaufry

The Galli on Gloucester Road may be best-known for its live music every day of the week, but the front terrace is just as much of a draw. Great for people-watching along the busy street, it's also a lovely spot for enjoying their popular small plates or a pint of local beer.

The Forge & Fern

Staple Hill restaurant and bar The Forge & Fern is big on supporting local producers, through the ingredients they source and the drinks stocked in the bar. They have a large garden as well as a dog-friendly terrace. Your pooch can even enjoy a Marshfield Scoop dog ice cream!

A chocolate dessert on a white plate - Credit Forge and Fern
Image - The Forge & Fern

The King Street Brew House

Take a seat at one of the largest and liveliest beer gardens in Bristol, where you can also enjoy a 14-inch pizza, with plenty of choice for vegetarians and vegans. Gluten free options are also available.

A view of the eastern end of King Street in central Bristol, with the historic Llandoger Trow pub on the left and the modern King Street Brew House on the right
Image - King Street Brew House

Chez Marcel

Grab a sunny seat outside theis French Creperie and tuck into a savoury galette or sweets crepe. You can match your food with a Breton cider, French wine, coffee or even an Aperol spritz.

The Canteen

One of the most popular places to eat on Stokes Croft, The Canteen has a great value menu of seasonal and locally-sourced dishes, which you can enjoy in the main bar area, or people watch from their front terrace. Sister venue The Old Market Assembly also has its own popular outdoor space - a large roof terrace!

The garden at The Canteen - Credit The Canteen
Image - Canteen

Tobacco Factory

This popular café-bar in Southville is as large on the outside as it is inside, with a huge outdoor area which plays host to a large food & crafts market every Sunday. Choose from cakes, snacks and seasonal main menu dishes at the main bar, or there’s a pizza bar in the outdoor courtyard. 

St George's Bristol Cafe

St George’s café has a light and airy interior, as well as seating in the garden out front. The breakfast and lunch menus are very popular, although you’ll want to save room for the tempting cakes on offer too. A beautiful and tranquil spot away from the bustle of the city centre just a few minute’s walk away.

Street food

Bristol also has more than its fair share of markets, pop-ups and street food events. Don’t miss St Nicholas Market, which has a selection of fantastic food stalls, ranging from pies and Persian wraps through to Caribbean curries, tacos, spicy Szechuan noodles and Japanese gyoza.

The interior of St Nicholas Market in Bristol's Old City - credit St Nicholas Markets
Credit: St Nicholas Market

Other street food markets worth checking out include the extensive Harbourside Market, Finzels Reach Market every Wednesday and Friday lunchtime, Temple Quay Market every Tuesday and Thursday, and the Tobacco Factory Sunday Market

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A Pinterest image for Al Fresco dining in Bristol - Credit Visit Bristol