Areas of Bristol

The city of Bristol is made up of a series of districts and areas, each with its own unique character and charm.  

You'll find plenty of information and ideas of things to see and do on each of the dedicated pages below. 

Central Bristol 

Only in Bristol for a couple of days? Explore the historic City Centre and Harbourside to find many of Bristol’s top attractions and shopping, with unmissable spots including the quirky stalls at St Nicholas Market, independent traders in shopping containers at Wapping Wharf, and an exciting array of shops, bars and cafes dotted up Park Street & Queens Road

The first district you’ll encounter if you’re arriving by train is Temple Meads, a busy business district surrounding the station, neighboured by Redcliffe, one of Bristol’s oldest neighbourhoods and home to some beautiful medieval and gothic architecture, as well as the revamped riverside area of Finzels Reach, which is home to cocktail and wine bars, cafes, media centres and Left Handed Giant’s huge brewpub.

Bristol Neighbourhoods

Clifton is Bristol’s glamorous Georgian quarter, home to grand architecture, boutique shopping, glamorous bars and restaurants, and the city’s most iconic sight: the Clifton Suspension Bridge

Make a beeline for Gloucester Road and Stokes Croft for independent shopping, live music and street art, while nearby Montpelier is worth exploring for murals and artisan cafes. St Pauls is the place to be for carnival in July, but also has plenty of great places to try Caribbean food year-round. 

Southville and Bedminster are where you’ll find the biggest concentration of shops and restaurants in the south of the city, as well as Tobacco Factory Theatres, markets, breweries and festivals throughout the year. 

Close to Temple Meads Station, you’ll find the historic area of Old Market, packed full of music venues, LGBTQ+ hotspots and cosy pubs, as well as Bristol’s brewery district in nearby St Phillips. 

Heading east, you can explore the green spaces of Arnos Vale, Brislington, and the Frome Valley, or stick to the high streets for shopping and dining in Easton, St George and Fishponds. A little further on will bring you to the scenic Avon Valley and small town of Keynsham, home to Avon Valley Adventure and Wildlife Park and the Avon Valley steam railway

Countryside and towns near Bristol

North Bristol is a mix of large green spaces, exciting attractions and great shopping, where you can spend hours exploring the lush Blaise Estate, shopping at Cribbs Causeway, surfing or bodyboarding at The Wave, or learning about Bristol innovation at Aerospace Bristol. It’s also home to the main University of the West of England (UWE) campus in Frenchay.  

If you’re looking for a rural getaway or day trip from Bristol, South Gloucestershire and the South Cotswolds are on the doorstep of the city, with beautiful countryside, quaint English market towns and traditional country pubs to enjoy a Sunday roast or pint of local ale. You’ll also find a range of options for days out, from nature and wildlife attractions such as Bristol Zoo Project, Westonbirt Arboretum and WWT Slimbridge Wetland Centre, to experiencing centuries of history at Berkeley Castle.  

Spend the day taking in the fresh air in coastal North Somerset, where you can wander or cycle along miles of spectacular coastline and beautiful rural landscapes. Enjoy a fun day out at The Grand Pier or on the beach at Weston-super-Mare, or spend the day in the nearby coastal towns of Clevedon and Portishead, with glorious countryside in-between. 

For breath-taking scenery, you can’t beat the Mendip Hills in rural North Somerset, just a short distance to the south of Bristol and a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). There are also many rural attractions close by, including the magical Wookey Hole Caves, where you can spend a whole day visiting the cave systems and museums on site, with lots of other family entertainment including crazy golf, soft play and a 4D cinema. Other days out in the area include National Trust property Tyntesfield, the stunning Cheddar Gorge & Caves, and award-winning Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm, which is home to elephants, lions and tigers to white rhinos and lots more. 

Bath and beyond 

Did you know that the UNESCO World Heritage City of Bath is just 12 miles from Bristol, or 12 minutes by train? The two cities are linked by the picturesque River Avon and one of the most popular cycling routes in the country, the Bristol and Bath Railway Path. You can explore more of the sights between Bristol and Bath, as well as more from here to London, along the Great West Way

Beyond Bristol

Head out of the city to experience stunning coastline, world-famous countryside and historic towns and villages.

Bath

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Southville & Bedminster

Take a saunter south of the river to find Bedminster, Southville and Totterdown. Full of independent shops, restaurants, bars, markets, urban art, parks and city farms, these lively areas are popular with locals and visitors alike. 

Arnos Vale & Brislington

Heading east out of the city on the main A4 road towards Bath, you'll encounter Arnos Vale, the eastern suburb of Brislington, and scenic countryside. Discover attractions and activities away from the usual tourist hotspots of the city centre, from steam railways to relaxing boat trips to riverside gardens. 

East Bristol

East Bristol acts as the jump-off point from the city into the countryside, mixing different landscapes from park to water to woodland, bursting with wildlife and scenic views and generally being one of the best-kept secrets about the city. 

Walks & Cycle Routes

Bristol is full of great walking and cycling routes which allow you to see more of the city without getting stuck in traffic!

Recommended by locals

Don't take our word for it, get top tips from the people who live in each area!

The local's guide: Portishead

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