Frantic for ideas on what to get your loved ones for Christmas? Worry no more! Visit Bristol’s elves have searched Bristol's sensational shopping selection high and low to sniff out the top Bristol-themed gifts that’ll have your nearest and dearest dancing a Christmas jig for joy. Fact. #MerryBristmas!

Sensational shopping #MerryBristmas artwork by Andy Council

Sensational Shopping #MerryBristmas artwork by Andy Council

Experiences | Bristol souvenirs| Bristmas tipplesFood

  • Bristol Experiences

Whether you're shopping for someone that's in to adventure, nature, history, culture or food, there are Bristol experiences they'll love. Here are ideas to inspire you and them...   

Christmas chill out

Treat someone to a day of pampering and indulgence at one of Bristol’s spas.

Gift vouchers are available from The Lido for all sorts of blissful offerings including a ‘Spa and Dine’ package which allows a one-hour spa treatment, access to the steam room, sauna, open air pool and outdoor hot tub plus a delectable 2-courses at the poolside restaurant. You can also get your hands on their range of spa gifts here.

Bristol Harbour Hotel also offer similar gift experiences for more marvellous wellbeing activities.

Bristol Lido - unusual Christmas gifts from Bristol

Image - Bristol Lido at Christmas

O come all ye fur-ful

Make an animal-lover’s Christmas with an extraordinary ‘hands-on’ experience.

Wild Place Project has several animal experiences to choose from including ‘Cheetah Experience’ (£69 for one person, £99 for two), ‘Gelada Experience’ (£50 for one person £80 for two) and ‘Keeper for the Day’ (£150 for one person, £250 for two, £125 junior). You can also get involved with their Sponsor-a-Plank, which costs £75 for an engraved stainless steel plaque on the raised walkway which guides people through the trees to see bears, lynx, wolverine and wolves in 2019’s newest exhibit, Bear Wood.

Sister site Bristol Zoo Gardens offers ‘Keeper Experiences’ (adult - £250, junior £175) and animal ‘meet and greets’ (penguin -£99, Giant Tortoise - £75). There's also the opportunity to adopt a range of different animals at the zoo - adoptions cost £50 and you receive a special pack containing a ticket to the Zoo, a cuddly toy, an adoption certificate, your name displayed at the exhibit and a fact-file about the animal.

Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm has a variety of ‘Keeper Experiences’ that range from bear encounters to big cat and elephant experiences. It’s also possible to adopt an animal for a year and receive a special adoption pack and cuddly toy. They are offering special Christmas bundles too – packages of animal encounters, adoption packs, tickets and extra goodies (Family Bundle, £165; Bundle for Two, £95).

Bristol Zoo Gardens - the ultimate Bristol Christmas gift guide

Image- Bristol Zoo Gardens

Just the ticket

Bristol’s attractions offer annual membership at fantastic value and are a great way to give a gift that will be used again and again.

Brunel’s SS Great Britain costs £44.65 for a family pass (2 adults and 2 children) and includes unlimited visits for one year.

Annual family membership at We The Curious costs £130 for a family of four and offers speedy entry to the fascinating interactive exhibits, plus discounted shows in the UK’s first 3D Planetarium and lots more.

Return again and again to discover the underwater world with annual membership at Bristol Aquarium (£147.68 for a family of 4). 

Wild Place Project and Bristol Zoo Gardens offer annual membership for their individual attractions (adult £40, child £30 at Wild Place; adult £50 and child £30 between 2-14 years old at Bristol Zoo) as well as unlimited dual entry for both (adult £80, child £50). Membership includes lots of extra perks such as discounted kids' parties and money off in the gift shop and cafes.

A family of four can visit the fascinating Aerospace Bristol, home of the last Concorde ever the be built and fly, for £46 and tickets are valid for a year.

Slimbridge Wetland Centre annual family membership starts at £72 and offers entry to nine wetland centres across the UK.

Westonbirt The National Arboretum offers joint (£76) or single (£36) membership to its magical tree garden, entitling the owner to 364 days of free entry, early bird booking and free entry for kids when with a parent or grandparent member.

Give the 'Gift of Bristol' with gift vouchers for Bristol Insight Bus Tours. The vouchers are flexible, valid for up to a year, and can be bought in any combination of Explorer or Bus/Boat Combo tickets, adult, child or concessions.

We The Curious - ultimate Bristol Christmas gift guide

Image - We The Curious

Hot Air Balloon Flight

Planning something super special? Give someone the unforgettable experience of soaring high above over the city in a hot air balloon. Bailey BalloonsBristol Balloons and Elite Air (UK) Ltd offer flights. Book a private trip, a champagne flight or buy gift vouchers. Read what it’s like to fly in a hot air balloon over Bristol here. Tempted?

hot air balloon ride over Bristol - ultimate Bristol Christmas gift guide

Image - balloon flight over Bristol, credit Angharad Paull

Let it spray, Let it spray, Let it spray

If you're looking for a special gift for a budding Banksy, how about a personalised voucher for a street art workshop and tour? Where the Wall offer gift certificates for stencil art spray sessions or adult, student and young person walking tours or you could check out Graft’s personalised gift vouchers for one-to-one, couples and family workshops graffiti workshops.

Graft - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Graft graffiti workshop

A holly jolly Christmas present

Give the gift of side-splitting hilarity with a festival pass to one of the most gigglesome events on the city’s comedy calendar, Bristol Slapstick Festival (23-26 January). The top priced item is the Full Pass, which gets you access to 24 events at Watershed, Bristol Cathedral, Bristol Old Vic and Redgrave Theatre for £160 – almost a 50% saving on full priced individual tickets. Next in line is the Silent Comedy Pass (£82), covering 16 events at Watershed and Bristol Cathedral.

Slapstick festival - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Slapstick Festival

  • Bristol-themed souvenirs

All I want for Bristmas is blue

The city used to be one of the most important glass-making centres in Europe, thanks to its distinctive blue glass which dates back some 300 years. With a Studio Shop in Arnos Vale and a retail outlet next to St Nicholas Market (itself a treasure trove of potential gifts), Bristol Blue Glass continues to make beautiful glassware in the traditional way and offers a collection of classy, glassy gifts - from jewellery and wine glasses to perfume bottles, beads, baubles and bowls. Visit the studio and you can see them being made, or learn to blow one yourself!

Image bristol blue glass - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Bristol Blue Glass

Ship shapes and zoovenirs

The city’s attractions also have excellent gift shops, filled with unique Bristol-inspired gifts.

Brunel's SS Great Britain stocks a boat-load of ship-shape souvenirs, children’s books (look out for The Bristol Giants) as well as maritime prints by local artists, Isambear Kingdom Brunel teddy bears and the Brunel Duck.

Pop into Bristol Museum and Art Gallery for books on Banksy, work by local artists, jewellery, toys and souvenirs inspired by current exhibitions. Similarly, M Shed sells Stokes Croft China, Wallace & Gromit-inspired gifts, children’s toys and books about Bristol, while Arnolfini’s specialist bookshop is a great place for tomes on contemporary art, design and culture. 

There’s a treasure trove of quirky scientific curiosities at We The Curious while Bristol Aquarium‘s under-the sea-inspired gifts will delight all ocean-lovers. Gift shops at Bristol Zoo Gardens and Wild Place Project are also a trove of weird and wonderful creature-tastic zoovenirs.

ssgb duck - ultimate christmas gift guide

Image - Brunel Duck, Brunel's SS Great Britain

Step into Bristmas

Give someone a gurt lush Christmas with Bristol-themed goodies galore from Bristol Tourist Information Centre - many of which can be found at the online shop. Snap up everything from local sweet treats, to mugs bearing Bristol's coloured houses, prints from local artists, street art and a most excellent Bristol advent calendar.  

Bristol Pounds

For those relatives and friends that are difficult to shop for, give them Bristol Pounds - the UK’s first city-wide local currency. One of the best things about our beautifully decorated Bristol cash is that it can only be spent at local independent businesses in the city, so the lucky recipient will discover a whole host of incredible Bristol indies.

Notes can be bought from Bristol Tourist Information Centre on the Harbourside or a number of other retail points around the city (check their website for details or see the Bristol Pound Gloucester Road Map).

Bristol pounds - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Bristol Pounds

Fairytale of Bristol

Discover Banksy’s street art in his fascinating book ‘Wall and Piece’, recreate dishes from your favourite Bristolian restaurants at home with The Bristol Cookbook, wow someone special with Colin Moody’s brand new photography book ‘Stoke’s Croft and Montpelier’, go on a journey through Weird Bristol with Charlie Revelle-Smith’s book and entertain little ones with the legend of The Bristol Giants.  For more literary gift-giving inspiration, check out our blog on 12 brilliant Bristol books.

Bristol Giants save Christmas - ultimate christmas gift guide

Image - Bristol Giants Save Christmas book, by Oliver Rigby, illustrated by Tom Bonson

  • Tasty Bristmas tipples

Have yourself a perry little Christmas

For the best cider and perry in the South West, head to Bristol Cider Shop at Wapping Wharf. Here you’ll find a range of cider gift hampers, including ‘The 12 ciders of Christmas’ and lots more scrump-tious pressies sure to tickle every cider-lover’s taste buds. Other cider-y treasures include books, T-shirts and cider tasting gift vouchers. Check them out in the online shop, or pop in for a browse and a cheery chat before the shop closes its doors on 28 December to focus more on events.the 12 ciders of christmas - ultimate bristol christmas gift list

Image - Bristol Cider Shop

Gin-gle bells gin-gle bells

Boost someone’s Christmas spirit…

...collection with a bottle of 6 O’clock Gin – hand-made and bottled by Bramley & Gage just outside Bristol. Gin gift packs, Copa glasses and fruit liqueurs are all available from their online shop. Or you could treat gin enthusiasts further, by booking a distillery tour which includes a tutored tasting.

Averys Wine Merchants have a gin made especially for them by the team behind Smeaton’s Bristol Method Dry Gin (who spent 10 years re-creating an original handwritten recipe for Bristol Method Dry Gin from the 1870s).

There are some equally delectable tipples to treat lucky nearest and dearest to from Espensen Spirit, including a 'Boozebuster Box' gift set containing two of their gins in a classic VHS tape box. They also make donations to six small local charities from the sale of their bottles, so it’s a win all round. 

Prohibition-style speakeasy bar Hyde & Co sell gift vouchers for all of their food and drink establishments. Indulge loved ones with an exquisite dining or drinking experiences (including cocktail tours and spirit society) at The Ox, Pata Negra, Bambalan, The Milk Thistle and Noche Negra.

6 O Clock gin - Bristol Christmas gift guide

Image - 6 O'Clock sloe gin

Ding dong Moor-ily on high

Treat your beloved beer lover to a ‘hoppy’ Christmas with a mixed can gift pack customised to their preferred tastes from Bristol’s Moor Beer. Visit Moor Beer’s Tap Room and brewery on Days Road, St Philip’s, to select the goodies.

Bristol Beer Factory also stock their own bottled beer, gift packs, mini kegs, T-shirts and other merchandise in their shop. Or treat a devoted beer aficionado to Beer Club membership, which includes a brewery tour, a mixed case of beers, T-shirt plus special discounts and events throughout the year.

Treat someone to a Bristol Hoppers craft beer walking tour for a taste (literally – walkers get to try seven different drinks from a selection of microbreweries, pubs and tap rooms) of Bristol’s fantastic craft beer scene and brush up on your Bristol knowledge as you go. Gift vouchers start at £25 and are available online.

Give the gift of beer adventure with Bristol Brewery Tours, who have several gift vouchers available. Choose from a tasting tour at three Bristol brewery taprooms, the best cider venues in the city or a beer and boat tour aboard private Bristol ferry, HMS Hops, to give someone a beery merry Christmas.

Let someone become wise in the ways of Bath Ales with a Bath Ales Brewery Tour. They'll discover how they create Gem, Wild Hare and Special Pale Ale from malt, hops and water. Tours include a generous tasting of their beers and a goodie bag.

Moor Beer gift box - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Moor Beer gift pack

Wine Wonderland

Make someone’s Christmas extra merry and rustle up a Christmas hamper from Averys Wine Merchants. Basket goodies include seasonal festive treats and wine, of course!

Averys wine hamper - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Averys Wine Merchants

  • Food

It's beginning to look a lot like Chocolate

‘Tis the season for indulging in one-too-many chocolatey treats and Bristol is the perfect place to get your choccie from – after all, this is where the very first chocolate bar was made! The city’s oldest remaining chocolatier, Guilberts, has been making luxury hand-dipped chocolates and confectionery using traditional techniques since 1910. Best-sellers include fruity Crystallised Fondants or gift boxes of Violet Creams. Visit the shop in the Old City, or find them in the Bristol Tourist Information Centre on the Harbourside (where you’ll find even more yummy locally-produced chocolate).

Guilbert's chocolate - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Guilbert's Chocolates

Christmas Pies

The next best thing to Santa whooshing down your chimney with a stocking full of presents has got to be Pieminister turning up at your door with pie gifts. Hand-pick the perfect selection through their online shop

There are also gift ideas for pie-fanatic family and friends – pick up pie chutney, tea-towels, mugs, aprons, a pie cookbook, oven gloves or a pie-making kit here. All are British and ethically made, just like the pies!

Pieminister pie range - ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

Image - Pieminister Christmas Pie range

Foodie lovers feast

Source Food Hall, based in St Nick’s Market is a one-stop shop for quality food – free range meat, fresh fish, artisan cheese, fruit, veggies and cakes. Treat someone to a foodie feast with their bespoke hamper service (pop in for a chat or give them a call to tailor it to your giftee’s tastes) and they’ll also wrap it for you. Or you can simply order a Bristol Gift Hamper from them online. They also offer gift vouchers for the shop and their courses (which include basic charcuterie, basic butchery and fish filleting).

Please the cheese lovers in your life by popping into Wapping Wharf’s Bristol Cheese shop for local, seasonal cheeses by artisan producers. Pick up some 100% pasture-fed organic meat as well as charcuterie and hams from ethical butchers Meatbox, also in Wapping Wharf.   

cheese counter source - bristol christmas gift guide

Image - cheese counter, Source

The Bristol Food Tour    

Culinary stop-offs, independent producers, mouthwatering foods, and local cultural and historical knowledge are rolled into three-hour(ish) foodie adventures by the Bristol Food Tour. A delicious gift for anyone up for exploring Bristol's award-winning food scene, order a voucher that can be used to book one of the regular tours in three areas – Stokes Croft, South of the River, and East to West. 

Get the rest of your gift shopping done with help from our guide to Bristol’s many Christmas Markets or places to stay in the city’s sensational shopping areas.

More ways to have a #MerryBristmas:

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Ultimate bristol christmas gift guide

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