When the temperature rises in the city, it’s hard to beat a rooftop watering hole for an awesome view and glass of something chilled. Here are ten of Bristol’s best rooftop bars:

The White Lion Bar 

Home to one of the most iconic views in Bristol, The White Lion Bar (part of the Avon Gorge by Hotel Du Vin) is a sun-worshippers dream. Perched on the edge of the Avon Gorge, the huge terrace has prime viewing position of Clifton Suspension Bridge on the right, Leigh Woods across the way and out to the Mendip Hills on the left - pretty unbeatable on a hot summery day. If you can’t get enough of the backdrop, stay a while – many of the hotel’s rooms have the same awe-inspiring vista.

White Lion bar roof terrace - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - White Lion Bar


While away a sunny afternoon on one of the biggest sun-trapping terraces in central Bristol, Bambalan. Serving up summery cocktails alongside daily happy hours (4pm-9pm), Mediterranean bites and regular DJ beats, there’s a touch of Ibiza about this lively bar. Play ping-pong, toe-tap to the music or just lap up the views over the centre to the bustling waterfront.

Bambalan - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - Bambalan

Clifton Observatory

Below, Cliffside caves swirl with legend of Bristol’s giants and one of the UK’s last remaining camera obscura’s holds one of the city’s most prime positions. Above, an open air bar spoils it customers with one of the most breath-taking views in the world – a 360 degree panoramic view over the Clifton Suspension Bridge, Avon Gorge and North Somerset countryside beyond. An alfresco drinking spot for the bucket list.

Clifton Observatory - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - taken from Clifton Observatory Facebook page, Ardbeg Whisky tasting event, credit Gareth Aldridge

Grain Barge

Bask in the sunshine on the top deck of a converted 1930s barge while admiring Brunel’s SS Great Britain just across the water. Run by Bristol Beer Factory, you can expect flavoursome craft beers, heavenly pies, lagers and ciders from some of the UK’s best independent breweries and lots of local produce. Boats busy themselves in the Floating Harbour, while you soak up rays and Harbour views.

Grain Barge - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - Grain Barge

Urban roof terrace Bristol Marriott City Centre

Surrounded by street art from Bristol artist Cheo, twinkly lights and city buildings, this wooden-decked bar comes complete with (artificial) lawn to give it a ‘back garden’ vibe. There’s bean bags to loll on, deck chairs to chill in and ping pong for summer outdoorsy feels in an inner city environment.

Urban roof terrace marriott city centre - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - Urban roof terrace, Bristol Marriott City Centre

Old Market Assembly

This exciting cultural space wears many hats – a restaurant, artisan bakery, café, live music venue, home to The Wardrobe Theatre, a cocktail bar and its very own sun-catching roof terrace. Catch some sunshine while sipping on tipples from Bristol’s finest local brewers, winemakers, cider producers and distillers. They’ve even got their own gin (made by Bristol’s own Psychopomp) – it would be rude not to!

Old Market Assembly

Image - Old Market Assembly


Cross-artform venue Watershed’s Café/Bar sits smack bang on Bristol’s Floating Harbour. With boats to-ing and fro-ing, passing entertainment-seeking hoards, busy commuters and city sun-seekers, to call this area ‘buzzing’ is an understatement when the weather heats up. Bag a spot on the al fresco sun terrace to drink in the waterfront views and vibrant atmosphere when summer strikes. There’s also organic food to feast on and the odd gin giveaway!

Watershed - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - Watershed

Mud Dock Café Bar 

Mud Dock Café Bar sits in a former warehouse, right on the water’s edge. Its outdoor terrace has glorious views across to Redcliffe’s multi-coloured houses (and Blackbeard’s former hideout in the caves below), St Mary Redcliffe ChurchM Shed and the Floating Harbour. Super cycle-friendly thanks to the Mud Dock Cycleworks below, it’s a great spot to refuel after a hot ride. Make the most of the outdoor space for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner when the weather is fine or just pop in for drinks in the balmy evening sun.

Mud Dock - 10 rooftops bars perfect for summer drinking in Bristol

Image - Mud Dock Café Bar

Zerodegrees Microbrewery

To feel the sun on your face while gazing over city rooftops, make your way to one of Zerodegrees’ three pint-sized balconies within their gigantic industrial-style bar. Being a microbrewery, beer is a big draw for drinkers here, with their seasonal Mango flavour ruling the roost in the summer thirst-quenching stakes.

Under the Stars

With a prohibition era-esque cocktail menu and local craft beers and ciders, the top deck of this relaxed 20s style boat is a lively little summer drinks spot. On the water, right in the heart of central Bristol, this is a brilliant people-watching spot on a sunshiney day.

Let us know how your #SummerInBristol is going!

Join in the conversation with Visit Bristol on social media (TwitterFacebook and Instagram) and tag your posts, photos and videos of you having fun in the city this season with #SummerInBristol.  

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10 rooftop bars for summer drinking in Bristol


The White Lion Bar
The White Lion Bar

Restaurant with a private terrace overlooking the Clifton Suspension Bridge

Bambalan Bristol brunch

The latest venture from the Hyde & Co group, Bambalan burst onto the Bristol food scene in May 2016 and has fast become a firm favourite for laid back drinking and dining ever since!

Watershed Bristol Harbourside

Enjoy a lively programme of independent film, digital media and events at this fantastic media centre in the heart of the Harbourside

Mud Dock Cycleworks and Cafe
Mud Dock interior

Over the last 25 years, Mud Dock Café has evolved to become one of Bristol’s most successful independent restaurants.

Clifton Observatory
Clifton Observatory and Suspension Bridge

The Bristol tourist attraction features a Camera Obscura and Cave and sits above the Avon Gorge offering superb views of Bristol.