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Things to do in

Bristol

Our most recommended things to do in Bristol

Bristol: Bristol's Darkest Secrets

1. Bristol: Bristol's Darkest Secrets

Plunge into the darkest depths of Bristol's history on a chilling evening tour of the city's darker side. Explore sites of paranormal activity and hear about local urban legends. Let your guide captivate you with a mix of ghost stories, true crime, and local history.

Bristol: Clifton Suspension Bridge Vaults Experiences

2. Bristol: Clifton Suspension Bridge Vaults Experiences

Explore two of the twelve impressive stone vaults that support the Clifton Suspension Bridge. Discovered just 20 years ago, the largest chamber is 11-meters-high and covered in incredible stalactites and was built by famous Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel. All ticket holders must be aged 7 years or over, and must wear sturdy shoes with good grip. Hard Hat Tour One Hour. £15 General Admission This is your chance to take a look inside Brunel’s hidden vaults, rediscovered by an intrepid team of engineers and construction workers in 2002. Our knowledgeable volunteer guides will explain how the design of Brunel’s bridge was shaped by the influence of others, and how the young newcomer was able to make his name. You’ll hear all about the people who built and rediscovered the vaults before donning a hard hat, descending a ladder and taking a look for yourself. Vaults Visit One Hour. Adults £10, Children £8 Our Vaults Visits are a family-friendly way to explore inside the Leigh Woods Vaults. Put on your hard hat, climb down the ladder and follow our sensory map as you explore the largest and most significant of the twelve stone vaults – an impressive underground echo chamber 11 metres high and festooned in stalactites. IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION Please ensure that all members of your group are aware of the following restrictions. For safety reasons, we may not be able to allow members of your party to access the vaults if they have not complied with the following: • Tours are suitable for age 7+ and under 18s must be accompanied by an adult. For school and youth groups we’d recommend a ratio of 1:5, but if you’re planning a friends and family trip parents/guardians should be responsible for the safety of their own children. Ideally a ratio of 1 adult to every 2 children is preferred. • There is a minimum height limit of 1.2m. • Please wear sturdy shoes with good grip such as hiking boots or trainers. You will not be allowed to join the tour in heels or open-toed shoes. • This tour includes climbing a vertical ladder and passing through a low corridor. Please ensure that you are physically capable of doing so. Find more information at https://cliftonbridge.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Access-Guide.pdf • Please ensure that any camera, phone, or device you bring will fit in your pocket or bag so that you have two hands free to climb the ladder. • Only small rucksack type bags worn over both shoulders or bags with cross-body straps will be permitted inside the vaults. Large bags, handbags, umbrellas and so on can be stored securely at the Visitor Centre during your tour. • Be aware that the vaults can be wet and/or muddy inside, particularly after heavy rain. Please wear suitable clothing and ensure that cameras or mobile phones are protected from the calcite saturated water which may fall from the ceiling.

Bristol: Self-Guided Sightseeing Audio Tour

3. Bristol: Self-Guided Sightseeing Audio Tour

The tour begins on Bristol Bridge and tells the story of Bristol’s beginnings. Learn how the city got its name, then stroll to Castle Park, the site of the original Anglo-Saxon settlement. Arrive in the Old City area of Bristol next, and learn about its fascinating history. Explore the charming Saint Nicholas Markets then pass through the only remaining city gate. Check out the area where the See No Evil Street Festival was held, and admire the gray buildings that have been brightened up by artists from across the world. Continue onto the Christmas Steps and then Colston Hall. Arrive at Bristol’s oldest pub, then pass by two of Banksy’s most famous pieces of street art. Stop by Bristol Cathedral, followed by a stroll around the College Green. Continue onto the historic Bristol Docks, then visit the famous Old Vic where you can grab a bite to eat. Along the way, listen to your audio guide’s fascinating stories about local history and culture, as well as recommendations for the best spots to visit on your stay.

Bristol: Bansky & Street Art City Exploration Game

4. Bristol: Bansky & Street Art City Exploration Game

Explore the wonderful street art that makes Bristol so vibrant with this exciting interactive experience. Play as a travel blogger that is back in your home city and looking for a lost love. Decipher graffiti messages to find the renowned and secretive street artist, known as 4D, who is your long lost love. Solve challenges to be guided to your next location. Starts at the Mercure Bristol Grand Hotel and be immersed in this experience for 1.5-2 hours. Pause and save the game to explore at your own pace. Finish the activity at Charlotte Street. Play in a large group or in several smaller groups that compete against each other. Combine a love for art and travel with a fun game with this unique app.

Bristol: Old Market Self-Guided Craft Beer Tour

5. Bristol: Old Market Self-Guided Craft Beer Tour

Take up to five friends along on this mystery self-guided pub tour. Your tour begins at Moor brewery taproom, where you will have a guided tasting of three delicious beers brewed on the premises. Here you will be given your welcome bag too. This contains a craft beer map of Bristol, walking snacks, tokens to exchange for drinks later on, and a sheet with interesting facts about Old Market. Ask the staff about the story behind the brewery and learn about the beer that they proudly serve. Follow your map and venture to 3 other brilliant, independent locations in the area: a traditional pub with outdoor space, a bar, a cafe, and a craft beer bar. There's a Bristol brewed beer or two at each venue included in the price (just hand over your token), but feel free to stay for more. Enjoy a laid-back tour that you can do at your own pace.

Bristol: City Waterfront Exploration Game

6. Bristol: City Waterfront Exploration Game

Explore Bristol's charming waterfront on a city exploration game solving puzzles to unlock location clues via an app on your phone. Reenact the role of a person who has to put together a mysterious photo album, truly engaging in the game. Have fun with the whole family or as a group of friends. Start your game at The Lookout Lectern and head off on your adventure. Solve challenges and watch as the story unfolds on your app, with exact directions on your phone guiding you to your next location. Best of all, play the game at your own pace, pausing it whenever you feel like a coffee or meal break and resuming anytime from the location where you paused it.

Bristol: Self-Guided Sabotaged Balloon City Treasure Hunt

7. Bristol: Self-Guided Sabotaged Balloon City Treasure Hunt

Explore Bristol in a unique way with this self-guided treasure hunt in the city center. Crack the case using a booklet containing a fascinating story, cryptic clues to solve, amazing local history, and colorful maps to follow.  Begin your adventure at Bristol's oldest coffee house where you can collect your booklet and embark on a quest to unravel the mystery of Archie Russell and his amazing flying machine. When Archie Russell came crashing to the ground, the police discovered a steering rope was cut.  Follow a trail of clues left by the villain that cut the rope. Go on an exciting puzzle adventure through the heart of historic Bristol, as you follow the maps, unlock the clues, and unravel the epic tale. Track down hidden objects, decode symbols, and uncover hidden messages, as you eliminate suspects and gradually solve the case. Make it to the end and experience the amazing wow moment when the villain is revealed.

Gloucester and Lacock Harry Potter Day Tour

8. Gloucester and Lacock Harry Potter Day Tour

The Harry Potter Tour of Gloucester and Lacock is a magical adventure to some of England's most historic places and scenic countryside. See filming locations, including sites used in actual scenes from Hogwarts School, or which served as an inspiration to the filmmakers. On the Harry Potter tour, experience one of the most beautiful villages in England and get a guided tour around the ancient streets and its local abbey. Stretch your legs and soak up the history of this picturesque village before a visit to the cathedral city of the Cotswolds. Visit the magnificent cathedral which doubled as Hogwarts School. Learn how the films were made, discuss the books and hear trivia about the magical world of Harry Potter. Have the chance to walk around the locations you visit, take pictures, and re-create some of the scenes from the films.  Feel free to dress up as Harry or any other character in the series! On the tour, Harry Potter trivia questions will be asked, so keep your spell book handy to test your knowledge of spells and see how well you know Harry, Ron and Hermione. 

Bristol: Self-Guided Smartphone Treasure Hunt

9. Bristol: Self-Guided Smartphone Treasure Hunt

Embark on a self-guided treasure hunt adventure through the streets of Bristol with this weblink-based smartphone game. Interact with a screen layout that is easy-to-use. Make your way through the city with the help of interesting characters, a treasure map, and your own sense of adventure.  Get to know facinating characters like Captain Bess, a snarky pirate that is testing out new recruits to join her ship. Follow the directions that Bess gives you on a carefully designed route through the city. Start amid the greenery of Castle Park and pass through ancient alleyways, covered markets, elaborate squares and the vibrant harbor. Finish the game just minutes away from where you began. Use the treasure maps to get to each destination. Decipher clues at each location with your friends or complete the challenge on your own. See things you’d never normally notice as you search high and low for the answer. Ask for hints if you get stuck. Unlock interesting facts and stories along the way about each location and get a better understanding of the facinating history of Bristol.

Bristol: Self-Guided Craft Beer Tour with Optional Tasting

10. Bristol: Self-Guided Craft Beer Tour with Optional Tasting

Did you know Bristol has more breweries per capita than any other English city? There is so much to learn about Bristol's beer scene and an audio tour has been made so that you can discover it for yourself, at your own pace, with all the insider knowledge. The tour begins at the historic Bristol Temple Meads train station. As you walk, you'll first hear the story behind Isambard Kingdom Brunel's engineering achievement before being introduced to the scale of Bristol's beer scene. As you slowly build up your thirst, learn about the first stop, a little brewpub in a railway arch. Feel free to pop inside and continue the tour at your leisure. Enjoy a beer brewed on-site or choose from an excellent selection of beers in a variety of styles such as Pale Ales, IPAs, sours, and stouts. Continue to your next stop, Bristol's first brewery taproom, and learn about why it is unique and important to the current beer scene. If you book the guided beer tasting option, this will take place. Otherwise, arrive at your leisure and relax inside or in the sunny beer garden. On your way to the next taproom, discover why breweries are commonly found in industrial estates, learn about the brewing process, and be fully armed with information about the brewery you are about to arrive at. Here you will find traditional cask ales alongside modern craft beer styles. Next up is an award-winning traditional English pub, owned by a Bristol brewery. There's a fire for colder days and a beer garden for the warmer months. If you choose to stop here, you won't be disappointed as this local pub has a drink for everyone's tastes. Before reaching the next cluster of breweries, your audio guide will tell you about and describe how to reach other taprooms and brilliant local bars for another time or after your tour. You will also learn some interesting history about the Old Market area. If you are still after another little rest, there are two taprooms within just a minute of each other. So, after being shown the Bristol and Bath railway path and hearing some local's tales, discover the background story of both breweries and you can decide in what order, if any, to finish your evening.

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What people are saying about Bristol

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 162 reviews

This was a great activity to explore the heart of Bristol and learn a bit of history. HIGHLY RECOMMEND The clues a good difficulty level. You can also make this a pub crawl if you want. Did this by myself and still thought it was pretty fun. Took about 2.5hrs total.

We did one loop of the tour and enjoyed it so much we switched sides of the bus and stayed on for another tour. After travelling to Bristol it was lovely to be able to sit and relax while someone else did the driving

Superb! Loved it! Saw different sides of Bristol and a great choice of bars!

Great experience very interesting with a very knowledgeable guide.

Easy to navigate and brilliantly explained. Insightful.