Want to whisk your family away for a fun break during the Easter holidays? It’s an egg-cellent time to explore Bristol, with an events calendar fuller than the Easter Bunny's basket and spring sunshine (hopefully!) bathing the city.

Let us inspire you to book a Bristol break this Easter with our rundown of where to stay, what to eat and some of the top things to do for families.  

Where to stay

You’ll have no trouble finding a family room in Bristol. Book direct for the best value rates, often with extra perks like parking and breakfast included.

For a central hotel with many of Bristol’s top sights, places to eat and shopping areas on the doorstep, Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel is hard to beat. Future Inns is also conveniently located right next to shopping centre Cabot Circus, home of favourite high street stores and restaurants.

Double bed with artwork above at Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel

Image - Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel, credit Jose Coello

At Novotel Bristol Centre, located near Bristol Temple Meads train station, you can book a second room for the kids at 50% off.

Up for a surfing break? Yep, you can do that in Bristol. Book The Camp at The Wave and you’ll stay in spacious safari tents metres away from the surfing lake, where you can catch waves during the day. Nearby Mollie’s Motel is another option, with bunk beds for kids and a 1950s classic American Diner.

Another way to start your Easter break with a splash is to check in at a hotel with a swimming pool.

If the flexibility and extra space of self-catering accommodation would suit you better, there are plenty of swish family-friendly serviced apartments on offer, including the conviently located Premier Suites in Cabot Circus and Redcliffe

Safari tent accommodation at The Camp at The Wave

Image - The Camp at The Wave, credit tomgphoto

Things to do during Easter in Bristol

Easter family fun

Plan Easter days out at Bristol’s family attractions. You can dive into an aquatic adventure at Bristol Aquarium, where they’ve got special talks, activities and an Easter egg hunt lined up.

Step aboard a history-making steam ship at Brunel’s SS Great Britain, where they have A Scent-sational Voyage featuring good, bad and ugly odours from its time at sea. Other events in the holidays include a Calm Sensory Session on 19 April for families who’d prefer a calmer background to their visit and a Lyra Bristol Poetry Festival performance from Michael Rosen on 21 April.

Boy climbing on beds in steerage on the SS Great Britain

Image - Brunel's SS Great Britain

Fly through Bristol’s aeronautical history at Aerospace Bristol (and check out their great programme of events throughout the Easter holidays).

Journey back to 1642 and the start of the English Civil War at Berkeley Castle, where the For King & Parliament living-history event is running all Easter weekend. Or pop into Blaise Castle House Museum for Easter basket making, egg-cellent crafts and more family fun. 

If your family are fans of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler books, don’t miss Zog and the Flying Doctors at Bristol Old Vic, which is on from 19 to 24 April.

Unfortunately We The Curious and its planetarium will be closed over the Easter holidays, please check their website or social media for their latest updates on reopening information.

Aerospace Bristol and Concorde

Image - Aerospace Bristol

Easter trails

Bristol Zoo and Wild Place Project each have a cracking Easter trail for you to follow in between animal spotting. 

Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm has hidden eggs to find and a code to crack, with exotic animals to admire and adorable new arrivals to ‘aww’ at along the way. Likewise, WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre is challenging you to ‘quack the case’ on their Easter Duck Trail.  

Red panda at Bristol Zoo

Image - Bristol Zoo Gardens

Adventure around the old arboretum on the Superworm Trail at Westonbirt, which lifts the lid of the world of small-but-mighty minibeasts. 

In the city centre, there’s a mob of magnificent meerkats on the loose around Bristol Shopping Quarter – see how many you can find in shop windows. Over at Wapping Wharf, join the hunt for brightly coloured cut-out eggs among the indie shops and restaurants. The Park Street Easter Hunt invites families to find giant letters painted by a selection of famous Bristol artists, with a special Easter Egg reward, on Friday 15 and Saturday 16 April.

Child playing with Superworm illustration board at Westonbirt

Image - Superworm Trail at Westonbirt

More springtime activities in Bristol

See Bristol in bloom with a wander in the city’s gorgeous gardens and parks. Easter falls in the six-week opening of Bowood House’s magical Woodland Garden, which is blanketed in bluebells, rhododendrons, magnolias, azaleas and general springtime loveliness. Check out our rundown of spring walks for more places to stretch your legs and get a dose of greenery. 

With the weather warming up, it’s the perfect time to dip your toe into Bristol’s water-based activities. Hit the harbour for paddleboarding and kayaking with SUP Bristol, have a surf lesson at The Wave or enjoy the water while you stay dry on a boat trip.

Person paddleboarding on Bristol harbour

Image - SUP Bristol

When the sun isn’t playing ball, AirHop is one place to burn off energy, as the world’s biggest family-friendly trampoline park.

For a cultural experience, how about stepping inside Van Gogh artworks? An immersive experience featuring 300 of the artist’s sketches, drawings and paintings opens at Propyard from the 9 April.

If in doubt, delve into the virtual treasure trove of Bristol experiences that is Yuup. Search by day or by interest to find activities you’ll love – from modelmaking with legendary animation studio Aardman, to street art workshops with Where the Wall or Graft.  

Spray painting in Graft workshop

Image - Graft

Family-friendly food and drink

Hungry bellies will soon be satisfied at Bristol’s restaurants, where you can find all kinds of favourite family dishes. Chomp on delicious pizzas at Bocabar in Paintworks or Finzels Reach; European-influenced dishes at Aqua in Welsh Back or Clifton; fish and chips at FiSH; mezze and wraps at The Real Greek; award-winning pies at Pieminister; and bangers and mash at The Clifton Sausage.

At Future Inns’ Chophouse Restaurant, your little ones can eat free when you buy an adult meal during the Easter holidays.

Selection of dishes at Za Za Bazaar

Image - Za Za Bazaar

If there’s some debate about what cuisine to go for, Za Za Bazaar is the answer. The all-you-can-eat restaurant is the biggest in the country and serves food from around the globe, from Indian to Tex Mex to Caribbean.

It’s not Easter without a few treats. See what spring delights Bristol’s top bakeries are whipping up while you’re here, or track down other indulgent snacks with our guide to local sweet treats.

Three cones with Swoon gelato

Image - Swoon

Getting to Bristol

It's easy to get to Bristol by public transport, with rail one of the most convenient and green options. Temple Meads Station the largest rail hub in the west of England, with direct services from London, Scotland, Wales, Manchester and Birmingham.

Book a GWR Family Ticket in advance and up to two adults and four children (or a minimum of one adult + one child) can travel from London Paddington to Bristol for £39 per family one-way.

Alternatively, hop on a coach service from National Express, Megabus, FlixBus and Falcon. If you're thinking of bringing the car, consider using the Park & Ride services for day trips.

Kids pulling suitcases at train station

Image - GWR 

More inspiration for a family break in Bristol: