Bristol International Jazz and Blues Festival- an unforgettable journey of culture, fun & entertainment.
Jazz is upon us, Bristol is going to be rocked again by top-notch jazz maestros from 26th March to 29th March. The awe-inspiring event is going to be organised for the eighth time assembled with spectacular gigs at St George’s, Bristol Folk House, Fiddlers, O2 Academy, Bambalan.
There will also be a fantastic number of workshops held at Bristol Folk House, free stages at Bambalan and Colston Hall and films at the Watershed. The finest performers from all over Europe, the USA and the UK will be there to celebrate music. Below are some of the highlights of this spectacular.
Saxophone Legend Pee-wee Elis show
Saxophonist Pee Wee Ellis was the engineer of James Brown’s time characterising soul works of art of the late ’60s, presenting the dynamic game plans and rebuffing rhythms that would characterise the developing language of funk. This great musician will rock the stage in Bristol by playing the Blues. This event will also promote his own selection of archetypal compositions along with a group of performers.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 27th March, 9.30 pm – Venue: St Georges – Tickets: £26, £22, £18 + bf – Genres: Blues
Ronnie Scott’s All-Stars plus UWE Big Band
Real dashing duos are on their way to Bristol for blowing your mind with mesmerisation. Both Ronnie Scott’s All-Stars and Bristol’s very own UWE (University of West England) Big Band are all set to make this festival a memorable one with their charming performances. Both the bands will jointly present some of the best Jazz tracks you have ever heard or seen. Don’t sit idle, get your tickets now!
Concert Info: Date and Time: 26th March, 8 pm – Venue: 1532 Theatre – Tickets: £20, £15, £10 + bf – Genres: Big Band
Paul Jones Big Band Blues Bash
Set yourself up for the splendid show of legendary singer, actor, television presenter Paul Jones. He will be performing for The Blues Band once again backed by the powerhouse stage artists of his own selection. Being a doctor of music (University of Portsmouth), his songs have been recorded by a varied bunch, including early Steppenwolf and Helen Shapiro.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 26th March, 8 pm – Venue: St Georges – Tickets £26, £22, £18 + bf – Genres: Blues, Big Band
The James Bond Concert
Get yourself ready for the jaw-dropping performance of renowned international conductor and music revolutionary Charles Hazlewood at O2 Academy. He will be batoning guest vocalists along with a group of 30 handpicked all-star orchestra. From “Dr. No”(1962) from “Spectre”(2015), all the emblematic tracks of James Bond will be performed to bethink your favourite era of Bond!
Concert Info: Date & Time: 27th March, 8pm – Venue: O2 Academy – Tickets: £25.50, £28.75 – Genres: Big Band, Pop, Special Events
A Bristol Sound
The magnificent WDC (Worm Disco Club) is extremely glad to share what’s potentially the best news yet! ‘Worm Disks’ will be propelled in 2020 with the mission of giving new, contemporary acts from around the UK. They are glad to declare that at the Bristol Jazz and Blues Festival 2020, WDC is tossing a ‘Worm Disks’ mark LAUNCH PARTY including three preferred Bristol-based acts:-
Waldo’s gift – developed as another power in the UK jazz scene. Conceived out of their improvisatory residency at Bristol’s The Gallimaufry, the band immediately picked up a reputation in their old neighbourhood before accomplishing more extensive national consideration.
Snazzback – an 8 piece band, who have been working intimately with vocalist China Bowls for their most recent performances. They pool their diverse tastes and investigate music from around the globe through acts of spontaneity and joint effort. Snazzback’s most recent synthesis consolidates the weight of present-day bass music with dynamic artistic game plans, skirting on punk and free jazz now and again as much as hip-jump and soul.
Run Logan Run – Utilizing roundabout breathing and FX, Run Logan Run makes music that is both ruthless and lovely, without the utilisation of circle pedals or sponsorship tracks. These extraordinary features make them stand out from other bands.
Concert Info: Date & Time: 27th March, 8 pm-2 am – Venue: Fiddlers – Tickets: £10, £12.50 + bf – Genres: Contemporary, Jazz, Special Events, Modern Jazz
Jump Blues with Chris Corcoran-Workshop
Nominated by UK Blues Federation, for Blues Instrumentalist of the year, Chris Corcoran has been titled as “Guitarist of the guitarists”. This man has been performing consistently for more than 20 years across the UK and Europe. His workshop will give you in-depth knowledge about improving your playing style as well as the techniques of driving the audience. Buy your tickets now and grab the opportunity to learn.
Concert Info: Date & Time: 28th March, 12pm-2pm – Venue: The Folk House – Tickets: £20 + bf – Genres: Blues
The Heartthrob Duos Performance: Kairos 4TET + Emilia Martensson
Being the perfect blender of classic and contemporary, Kairos 4TET are quickly turning into a foundation of the British jazz scene. They are unique – overcoming any issues among classic and contemporary; the jazz colloquialism and the genealogy of tune; fierce furrows, consuming spontaneous creations and songs that wait long after the music stops. They will be performing cooperatively with Swedish vocalist Emilia Martensson, who has been associating both as a singer and composer for a long time. Prepare yourself for this greatest Jazz show on earth at St Georges.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 28th March, 2 pm – Venue: St Georges – Tickets: £15 + bf – Genres: Contemporary Jazz, Traditional Jazz
Andy Hague Featuring “The Blues and The Abstract Truth”
Andy Hague is a cult figure renowned for being a Bristol-based trumpeter and drummer. He has also been a performer and an organizer for the past 25 years which makes him an ultimate artist. Along with his fellow musicians Freddie Hubbard, Eric Dolphy, Bill Evans, Paul Chambers and Roy Haynes, he is going to be the spellbinder crackerjack of the day. Try not to be late for purchasing tickets for this choice occasion and appreciate the show with families and companions.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 29th March, 2 pm – Venue: St Georges – Tickets: £15 + bf – Genres: Blues
The Ultimate Jazz Dames Presentation
The theme of Jazz will be redefined by the top class troupe of singers and instrumentalists like Rebecca Nash, Sara Colman, Ruth Hammond, Katya Gorrie as they are back by public demand. Extraordinary voices with, out-of-the world instrumental skills are going to make your evening the best of the bests. Get buckled up and run for tickets so that you can enjoy the exciting event with your family and friends.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 27th March, 7 pm – Venue: St Georges – Tickets: £22, £17, £12 + bf – Genres: Traditional Jazz
Tricia Boutte Cookery Workshop
Rooted in New Orleans, Tricia Boutte aka “Sista Teedy” is one of a kind super talented performer. She is the niece of international Jazz vocalist Lillian Boutte. Teedy has just appreciated a rich vocal vocation acting in an assortment of melodic settings. Her collection covers jazz, principles, R&B, pop, soul, gospel and Caribbean music. That being said, this extremely skilful lady is also a renowned chef. Bring a pen and paper with you because, in this event, you will get to learn the exquisite recipe of Southern State cuisine.
Concert Info: Date & Time: 29th March 10 am- Venue: The Folk House – Tickets: £5 + bf – Genres: Special Events, Workshop
Colston Hall Free Stage Show
The Colston Hall stage is all set to exhibit the brilliant performances of the school and university bands. You will be surely amazed by the superior and engaging acts discharged by these young talents. Get ready and enjoy the bewildering event lined up from 11 am to 4.45 pm.
Concert Info: Date and Time: 29th March, 11 am – Venue: Colston Hall – Genres: Swing, Big Band, Contemporary Jazz, Traditional Jazz, Modern Jazz
To wrap it up, Bristol city is going to have a series of astounding events from 26th March to 29th March. Entertain yourself and your dear ones with the ecstatic joyride. There are so many great things to do in Bristol and this is one of them! The great Bristol International Jazz & Blues Festival awaits you!
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Do you like TV documentaries? Do you listen to Radio 4? Do you read non-fiction? Do you enjoy being told a story? Then I’m confident an informative walking tour would enhance your Bristol City stay.
A web search is your starting point for any number of walking tours, including “Bristol Highlights” (which is the one we took) and others focusing on “Bristol Merchants and The Slave Trade”, or visiting the sites of local-lad Banksy’s murals. (You’d heard rumours Banksy was a girl? Well…on our tour the Guide pointed out his alma mater and assured us many could attest to his identity.)
The cost varies, but, for example, the 2 hour “Bristol Highlights” tour is conducted by a qualified Blue Badge Guide and costs just £6 per person. Unfortunately, the morning start wasn’t suitable for our group of seven and so I started to explore the possibility of a private, exclusive, tour. I found a number of commercial tour operators but – frankly – the costs were prohibitive, e.g. £29 per person. However, I’m glad I persevered because it seems the Blue Badge Guides are self-employed and can be contracted for private tours. I came to an arrangement with the Blue Badge Guide who had conducted the same “Bristol Highlights” tour that morning for 27(!) “walk-ins” to the Tourist Information Office, to repeat the tour exclusively for us that afternoon at a cost of just £80.
Our Guide – it goes without saying – had the gift of storytelling along with an encyclopaedic knowledge of all the significant dates in Bristol’s history. (He couldn’t fail to impress someone who submitted an entire History examination paper without once referencing a specific date – or indeed the reigning monarch!) He touched on ancient history; the growth of the Bristol docks and trading; Bristol’s role in the Slave Trade (no more, and no less, than a number of other cities heavily involved in overseas trading; both here and in Europe); Bristol Cream Sherry; and good ol’ Isambard Brunel and the railways.
An enthusiastic, knowledgeable and local Guide will not only introduce you to the ‘major’ sites such as Bristol Cathedral – which arguably you might have tripped over unaided – although apparently a lot of people do mistake St Mary Redcliffe Church for Bristol’s cathedral – but point out the less-obvious such as how the whole consists of parts dating back to the 12th century but then the twin towers were completed comparatively recently in 1888 (you can hardly see the joins).
We learned there are underground caverns (inaccessible now) where the warehouses once stood and these proved invaluable in protecting the expensive (and highly flammable) goods destined for import/export and provided a USP (unique selling point) for Bristol Docks. We heard that Cary Grant used to come back to Bristol regularly to visit his Mum.
Whilst I’m sure every Guide has a tried and trusted “script”, a knowledgeable Guide will be quite prepared to answer queries or spend more time on a topic in which people show a particular interest and they are always pleased to receive snippets of knowledge from their visitors which, I’m sure, they add to their own collection. For example our Guide pointed out the Wills Building donated to the University by the tobacco family which employed thousands in the area and I was able to tell him there was also a factory in Swindon where my mother worked in the early ’50s.
If you like a story…if you like learning new facts…consider arranging your own exclusive walking tour whilst you are in Bristol, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.
A special thanks to Anne Brown-Robins, who wrote this post following a recent stay with us at Bury Hill Farm Bristol.
If you are staying in Bristol for a Hen Party or Girls weekend away, here is the best guide with 40 ideas of what to do and where to go in Bristol. From nightclubs, where to eat, afternoon tea, exciting activities and more. It also includes lots of great mobile “in house” activities you can book at your Hen Party Accommodation. Things like customising your shoes, caterers, cocktail classes, life drawing, candle making and so much more.
Bristol has so much to offer. There’s never a dull moment, it’s buzzing all day and night. There is so much to enjoy, the Vibrant Harbourside, massive shopping centre, restaurants, the nightlife is fantastic. Everything in this guide will be suitable for groups of 10 or more.
Best Nightclubs for a Hen Party in Bristol
Pryzm the biggest Nightclub in Bristol
PRYZM is a modern, state of the art, stylish night club, close to the harbourside. A modern-day coliseum consisting of 3 club arenas, luxurious VIP suites and the ultimate chic and sexy bar experience, containing bespoke designer furnishings with a modern twist. With all the biggest brand premium spirits, champagne and prosecco available plus plenty of tasty cocktails and shots to choose from along with some of the best DJs and PAs around, there’s simply no better venue to spend you the evening with friends. PRYZM offers an amazing combination of excitement, atmosphere, elegance and opulence alongside world-class entertainment and service standards. Book your hen party and enjoy the VIP treatment you ladies deserve plus the ultimate clubbing experience you want, all rolled into one for a truly amazing night out.
Dance until the early hours in this popular thriving nightclub in the heart of the City Centre. They play the best and biggest songs from the 80’s, 90’s and upwards. This colourful venue has bookable booths for your VIP experience, with table service throughout the evening. So, whether you are planning a night out with the girls, birthday party or hen party this will be a great place to celebrate. Get the party started with Popworld sharer Cocktails from £9.95, or 4 for £8 on shots or something else from the array of drinks available. Check out the Website for more information.
Lola Lo Nightclub
Another one of Bristol’s popular nightclubs is this intimate Tiki-themed nightclub, spend the evening in this colourful nightclub giving you the feeling of being on holiday with their feature bamboo styled bar, impressive lamplit interior, colourful neon lights and decor and superb cocktails. Get into the spirit and take some selfies at the dressing up box. Playing a mix of music including cheesy and eclectic pool party-worthy dance tunes, this is a great place to party. Book a Tiki Style Cocktail making Masterclass, learn how to create a selection of bespoke cocktails with the added Lola Lo twist. Classes last for 2 hours and prices start from £28.95 per person. Or just book aVIP booth and get your name on the guest list.
Opa – Restaurant and Club
A fabulous Greek Restaurant servicing delicious fresh food but turns into a night club after 10 pm with great music and Weekly Themed Nights. It has an amazing sophisticated, luxurious interior and is set over two floors. Downstairs is where you will find the Bar and dance floor area with bookable VIP booths. They often have guest DJs and sometimes have ticketed nights. They host special packages for Hen Parties, with additional options for food. You can also book a Cocktail Masterclass. Upstairs is where you eat. There are plenty of options to choose from, depending on the size of your group. You could spend the whole evening there as it is open until 3 am. If you are just visiting for the nightclub, you will need your passport for ID as this is a venue for 23 + of age and proof will be required. Get yourself on their Guestlist.
The Old Market Assembly
A great place to spend the evening, with live music every weekend. Its aim is to create an environment where culture, food, drink and music and events connect people from all walks of life. You can book a table for food and then dance the night away from 10.30 pm into the early hours. Enjoy the wide variety of live music usually on Fridays, from local and up and coming bands. Saturdays are a mixture of anything from cabaret, drag queen acts, to club music, with the occasional live band.
Thekla – Harbourside
Thekla is a massive boat. It was originally a floating art gallery and theatre brought to the Mud Dock area back in 1982. In the early 90’s it was transformed into a nightclub, providing performance for Bands such as Massive Attack and Bristol’s Drum and Bass scene. It regularly has live gigs and is a firm favourite for dancing. This is a club that may not appeal to everyone, we would suggest checking what’s on before you go. Find out More.
Cocktails, Gin Tasting and Bottomless Brunch
Bottomless Brunch with Cocktails?
Brunch is very popular in Bristol. Many places are providing great Brunch experiences. How about Brunch with an endless supply of your favour Cocktails at Aluna – 2-hour eating and drinking experience. Choose your Cocktail, and delicious food from the Brunch Menu, one main and one dessert. Dishes range from a traditional breakfast to pancakes or even cheesecake. served every Saturday and Sunday between 11 am and 4 pm. See their full menu and book HERE Aluna is a great place even if you don’t fancy a Bottomless Brunch. They are also very popular for their food and unique amazing cocktails. It’s the perfect place for people looking for something a little bit different in the bustling Broad Quay of Bristol. Why not book a Masterclass? – Cocktail Masterclasses will be a personal guided session with your own bartender, who will show you the basic Aluna techniques to making show-stopping cocktails. Packages start from £22.95 per head up to £39.95 per head, although groups must be a minimum of 4 people and a maximum of 12. Any groups larger than this must be completed in two sessions to ensure the guests receive the best experience with each session lasting roughly 1-3 hours depending on package and group size. Booking in advance is essential due to demand.
Enjoy a masterclass at the Florist, hosted by a Gin expert, for a fun event full of sipping the classy spirt. Learn how to pick out the many flavours of distilled gin, from citrus to fruity and which tonics and garnishes complement them the most. A great way to kick start your weekend. The Florist provides Gin tasting experiences which last for 90 minutes and accommodates up to 12 people. The Florist is a beautifully decorated very popular restaurant in Bristol, so if you are feeling peckish after you can also enjoy a lovely meal. Visit their WEBSITE for dining options or book you Gin Tasting Masterclass.
Revolucion de Cuba
A Fabulous Bar and Restaurant right on the harbourside, with an electric atmosphere, tasteful funky Cuban inspired decor and live music during the weekends. This is one of the biggest bars in Bristol and is spread over two floors. Book your Classic Cocktail making Masterclasses, or you can combine the Cocktail Classes with food, such as tapas or deliciously indulgent 2-course meals. There are a few different options. How fab is that, a great Hen Party Weekend starter. Book a Cocktail Masterclass
Set in a historic building, an old tram shed, right in the heart of the great city you will find this stunning restored Building. It has three spacious outdoor terraces to make the most of the summer sunshine and relaxed atmospheric interior. This much loved, marvellous microbrewery, brews its own beer and services deliciously tasty locally sourced food and fabulous cocktails. Zerodegrees serves quality tasty food and has an extensive range of all of your favourite Cocktails, at very reasonable prices. A great place to start your evening out. Find out more on the Website.
A grand venue in the centre of Bristol. Cosy Club is a really stylish bar with a restaurant at the back. It was formerly a bank and has retained all of its character features, with its very elegant and grand high ceilings with an awe-inspiring domed roof and marble flooring. This smart and sophisticated bar makes for a super start to any evening. Serving Brunch, Lunch and Tasty Tapas and Dinner. They have a massive range of Cocktails. Check out there Menus.
Best places to Eat for a Hen Party in Bristol
Italian Restaurant – La Grotta
Being on Union Street right in the Centre of Bristol La Grotta is perfectly situated for either lunchtime visits whilst shopping, early dinner after wandering Broadmead & Cabot Circus, Dinner before venturing out to one of a host of Bristol’s many nightspots, pubs, clubs & Theatres etc or for a Special night out meal. They have a very extensive menu, including the obvious Pasta & Pizzas but also a good range of Fish, Chicken, Meats & Steaks and Daily Specials with an array of homemade desserts to finish your meal. They proudly boast that all meals are prepared with the freshest locally sourced ingredients and all meals are prepared & cooked freshly to order. La Grotta is able to cater for larger groups, Hen Parties, Birthday Parties or Family Gatherings, as well as couples. Highly recommended. Tel – 0117 9290466
Situated on the waterfront, El Puerto is an independently owned restaurant, serving fresh authentic Spanish cuisine as well as signature Sangria, Spanish wines and beer. You can choose from a wide range of food as well as their delicious tapas dishes. This restaurant has a genuine Spanish feel, with a vibrant atmosphere and friendly Spanish staff. They boost to be the only Spanish restaurant in Bristol with fully trained Spanish Chefs. They provide fresh, nutritious flame cooked food from mainly organic local food producers and suppliers. Open 7 days a week 12 pm – 12 am. Check out their Menu. El Puerto caters for large groups, including Hen Parties and has cosy areas for smaller groups as well as couples.
Magic, Food, Music at Smoke and Mirrors
A bar with its own Magic Theatre featuring Close up Magic, Live Music, Stand Up Comedy, Burlesque, Comedy and Magic Shows with inhouse Magicians. Expect to be entertained in the cosy bar with close-up magic from the minute you enter the door. The show starts at 8 pm, you will be welcomed into the theatre to enjoy 2 hours of hilarious comedy and magician acts. Your face will ache from all the laughing during the very entertaining show. After the show, you can relax and enjoy live music in the cosy bar which services a wide variety of drinks and serves pizzas and other delicious bar snacks. Smoke and Mirrors also run Cocktail and Magic Masterclasses. You can learn how to make up to 3 classic cocktails. Classes are run every Saturday from 3 pm to 5 pm and you can not only learn how to make your favourite cocktails, they also teach you some magic tricks so that you can talk away feeling accomplished from your new skills. Booking well in advance is essential. Something quite unique and different for you to enjoy on your girls night out.
Za Za Bazaar – multi-cuisine buffet restaurant
Located right on the Harbourside this restaurant is a world banquet and bar. An “all you can eat” restaurant where you can feast on food for all around the world. Once inside this enormous venue, you feel like you’ve been transported into another world, with big neon lights and a theatrical feeling. This is a self-service venue and has specialist chiefs for each type of cuisine, you can watch the food being created right in front while you wait to load your plate. Each cooking station is run as an individual restaurant and all the food is freshly prepared on-site. A great opportunity to try something you may not normally order in a restaurant. The food choice is huge, food from – Far East, China, Italy, India, Thailand, Mexico and Great Britain Classics. This amazing venue also has a downstairs bar, with plenty of seating and Live Bands on Fridays and Saturdays making it for a great place to get you warmed up before going to a nightclub.
Best Places to go for Afternoon Tea for a Hen Party in Bristol
How about a really special Cream Tea aboard The Matthew
Take in the atmosphere and indulge in a traditional cream tea aboard the magnificent Matthew ship. This reconstruction of the original has been modernised to comply with safety regulations and is a sight to behold. Enjoy scones, beautifully homemade cakes, jam and clotted cream with tea or coffee, while cruising for 1 ½ hours aboard this incredible ship, sedately travelling along the harbour, passing the SS Great Britain along the way.
Vintage Birdcage Cakeryis a really beautifully decorated café and is very popular for Afternoon Tea. Afternoon Tea consists of a variety of freshly made sandwiches, wraps and mini quiches, coleslaw and crisps together with a selection of homemade cakes, mini scones, clotted cream and jam. Prices start from £14.00 per person.
This very popular café is a little gem with a unique personality. They pay great attention to detail the staff are really friendly and everybody talks about their amazing food which caters for all dietary needs. Take a look at their Menu.
They also serve breakfasts, lunch – loaded jacket potatoes, salads, sandwiches, paninis, toasties, baguettes, bespoke homemade cakes, cream tea, milkshakes etc including a children’s menu, the list goes on and caters for everyone. Open every day until 4.30 pm apart from Sunday when it closes at 3 pm. This is situated right next to the lovely Kingsgate Park, if you fancy having a stroll and burning off some calories afterwards.
Old Down Country Estate
Old Down Country Park is set within 66 acres of breath-taking countryside, with beautiful views and gardens. Offering lots of outdoor space to relax in and also their very popular, generously sized afternoon teas.
Afternoon tea is served in the beautifully restored cosy barn café, with a selection of savoury sandwiches, homemade pork pies, scotch eggs, scones with cream & jam, homemade cakes, chocolate covered strawberries, crisps and pots of tea. Prices start from £14.50 per person. Visit the Website to make a booking.
The Bristol – River Grille
With beautiful views of the harbourside, this is a fabulous place for Afternoon tea. Set in a lofty conservatory-style space River Grille has an elegant light and airy, spacious dining room with a relaxed and informal ambience. Afternoon tea consists of freshly made finger sandwiches, homemade cakes, pastries and a selection of fine teas. They also have a full menu and boast about their spectacular steaks and perfectly cooked fish from their award-winning chef.
Do you need somewhere to stay, check availability HERE for affordable accommodation
Activity ideas for your Hen Party in Bristol
Pole Dancing – 360 Pole Dancing
Have a bit of sassy fun with a 2-hour pole dancing class at 360 Pole Dancing Bristol. Classes are held at a glamorous dedicated, mirrored dance studio in Bedminster Bristol. Learn some of the sexiest moves and poses including “The Wrap Around”, “The Fireman”, “The Back Slide” and “Body Wave”. Learn how to make a big entrance. Don’t worry if you don’t have any experience everyone will be able to learn something. Feather Boas props are available to use on the day. Make sure you take your camera and high heels for those sexy photo opportunities. Enjoy a bottle of pink bubbly, a special gift for the bride and sweeties to keep your energy up. Hen Parties on Saturday’s start from 11 am, 1.30 pm or 4 pm. Visit the Website for more information.
Chocolate Making Workshop – The Chocolate Tart
With an “eat as much as you like” policy, this has to be the most heavenly Hen Party activity you can imagine. The ChocolateTart offers a wide variety of workshops to cater for everyone. Classes last from 1 – 3 hours depending on your choice. You can learn how to make a chocolate box and fill it with truffles that you’ve made. Or you can work with a mould to make a coloured hollow figure, such as a Chicken or Dog and then stuff your mould with delicious chocolates and package to take away. Or enjoy a 3-hour workshop learning the art of hand-rolled fresh cream truffles, moulding your own homemade flavoured cream fondant, inside the chocolate shells you’ve made. Work with transfer sheets which embellish edible coloured patterns onto the bottom of your chocolate floretines to give your chocolates the professional look before packaging your chocolates into boxes, ballotins and sachets and decorating with stickers and ribbons. Class prices start from £35 per person. Bespoke packages are available. Visit the Website for more information.
Wine Tasting Experience
Discover how wine is made at Wine Unearthed, how it affects what you see, smell and taste in your glass. Understand the differences in how white wine, red wine and rose are made. Taste and compare wines side by side to really see the differences in styles. Compare oaked and unoaked white wines – How are ‘unoaked’ wines made and what does ‘oaked’ really mean? Learn how Sparkling wine is made – what gives the wine it’s fizz and why does Champagne differ from Prosecco, Cava etc.
A full Wine-Tasting Experience day, lasting for 5 hours – tasting, learning and talking about wine including a delicious 3 course wine matching lunch. Everything is included and you’ll leave with a ‘World of Wine’ or ‘Vine to Wine’ course book, your wine-tasting notebook, and most importantly increased confidence and a smile on your face! Visit the Website for more information.
Something you probably haven’t thought of– Inland Surfing
Why not try the newest attraction in Bristol? Opening in November 2019, inland surfing at The Wave. Enjoy a 2 hour session with a lesson at the amazing 180 metres long surfing lake. Everything needed will be provided, including wetsuits, boots and board. The venue will be at a beautiful site in Easter Compton and will not only have a wave pool, but it will also have a natural swimming lake, barefoot trails, a rope and tunnels course, foraging areas and gardens of various types, a clubhouse serving delicious food and surf shop. If not all of the group fancies surfing, spectators are welcome for a small fee, to just sit relax and watch all the action. This is sure to be a very popular venue, booking well in advance will be essential. Visit the Website for more information. Open every day of the year, except Christmas day.
Check out this article for everything you need to know
How about a booze cruise with Bristol Ferry Boats?
Bristol Ferry boats offer a variety of options to see the City from a different viewpoint. Take a trip around the harbour on one of their, fully licensed, iconic Blue and Yellow Ferry Boats. Packages include – trips along the dockside pubs and bars – where you have the opportunity to hop on and off of the boat or you can organise Vintage Tea Parties, Bubbly Breakfast or you can create your own bespoke party with them. Daily Cruises are also on offer and can be booked in advance, trips last from 2 to 3 ½ hours. Trips range from Sundown Sailing, Brunel’s Tour, Avon Gorge Trip, Friday trips with to venue with live music and Sunday Riverside Roast trips.
Bristol is very popular for Dance classes for Hen Parties. The Cheerleading Company offer over 30 different dance lessons for hen parties that are held centrally within walking distance of Bristols best attractions for hen dos including Park Street, Whiteladies Rd, and the Waterfront. Just choose which dance class the bride to be would love! Check availability HERE. There are so many Hen Party classes to choose from, here are just a few to give you an idea – Salsa & Latin – Line Dancing – Girl Band – Spice Girls Hen – 50’s Swing Dance – Cheerleading – Single Ladies – Dirty Dancing – 80’s Hen – Charleston – Grease – Bollywood Hen – Burlesque If you prefer, they can provide lessons at your Hen Party Accommodation, so you can have a laugh and a few drinks without having to travel.
Clay Shooting / Archery / Rifle Shooting
Be adventurous and book a session with Bristol Clay Shooting. Where events are tailored to your requirements. They have plenty of options from all day, half-day or even just a few hours of shooting and they supply everything needed.
Your day will start with a safety talk and briefing from their professional CPSA qualified coach. You will learn how to safely handle a shotgun and everything you need to know about cartridges, shooting and target types. Then you will split into smaller groups, each with your own instructor who will show you how to shoot the clays. Bristol Clay Shooting also provides Archery and Air rifles to make your day even more interesting. Prices start from £35 per person, contact them via their Website for a tailor-made package.
Locked in a Room
A live escape room experience. Participants are locked in a room with a series of tests, puzzles and clues that combined, allow the unlocking of the room’s mystery and hopefully a successful escape, challenging you every step of the way. Once the door slams, you’ll need to quickly figure out what lies ahead of you and ensure you have the best-laid plans in order. You’ll need to collect clues, solve riddles and think outside the box in order to escape in time. Teamwork is key!
The games are designed for 3 players or more. You will find yourself submerged into a new world in the heavily themed rooms, there are three to choose from! And be taken on a journey through the world of science and time travel. Faced with non-physical, yet exhilarating, challenges, cryptic clues, tests and puzzles which are aimed at stretching the usual thought processes. Locked in a Room Bristol is the only escape venue in Europe that can enable a large group up to 52 players (up to 72 coming soon!) to race against each other simultaneously. This considerably adds to the pressure, excitement and adrenaline rush, as if it wasn’t tense enough already! Booked your great escape Now!
Fancy an afternoon of fun games in the countryside
West Country Games have it all. Voted Bristol’s no 1 Activity by Tripadvisor. Embrace what the countryside has to offer and take part in 9 totally unique “West Country” themed games. You don’t need to worry about the weather either as you can have use of their indoor activity centre between November and February. Here are just some of the activities. Cider Run – Get your cheeky pint and leg it as far as you can before getting twanged by the bungee. West country skittles with a twist. Bar Skittles with humans on cider kegs, daft and fun, be prepared. Welly Wanging – lobbing your welly boots at a series of fun targets. Pitchfork Duel – Inflatables of course. Vicky Pollard Handbags – Batter the life out of each other in Pollard inflatable suits. West Country Wipeout – Keep jumping and try not to get wiped out by the sweeper arm. This is a great ice breaker if not everyone knows each other that well at your Hen Party a fun experience from start to finish. Your faces will be hurting by the end where you have laughed so much and you will all know each other that little bit more. Check out the WEBSITE for more details.
How about something different? – Quad Biking, Hovercrafts
Based in Bristol near the Massive shopping centre at Cribbs Causeway Max Events has a purpose-built outdoor activity centre providing professional experiences for an actioned pack day. On offer is the widest range of sporting activities found at any venue. You can choose from 1 – 6 activities depending on your budget – Rage Buggies, Quad Biking, Hovercraft, Paint Ball, Zombie Apocalypse – this list goes on and on. They’ve been hosting hen parties in Bristol for over 14 years.
Pottery Class – 3 hour session
Pottery Shed Studio, allows you to make your own pottery in a relaxed atmosphere with professional help and guidance. Using a unique building method you can make your own hand built salad bowl. All oven, microwave and dishwasher safe. The only thing that will limit you will be your imagination. Enjoy a 3 hour taster session full of fun and laughter as you create your own special creation. Contact Brenda to discuss your ideas and requirements.
Not going out? Bring the entertainment to your Hen Party Accommodation
Looking for Hen Party Accommodation at affordable prices, Check availability HERE
Mobile Massage/Beauty Therapist
Pamper Party Angels are a team of highly-skilled, fully insured and qualified, Mobile Massage and Beauty Therapists. Specialising in providing pamper parties in the comfort of your Hen Party Accommodation. They are able to provide all your guests with 30-minute Massage or Beauty treatments including Facials, Pedicures, Manicures and Back, Neck and Shoulder Massages. See their list of treatments HERE
Bling up your shoes
Arriving with plan shoes and taking home a crystal pair, which you’ve designed yourself is a unique hen party activity idea from Rock My Shoes. Taught by an experienced shoe designer, spend 2.5 hours customising your shoes for the big day. Learn how to design with unlimited amounts of crystals and pearls. Add to any style of shoes, flats, high heels or trainers. If you’re not a shoe person, that’s not a problem you can still add some sparkle to your bag or a purse.
This is the perfect opportunity to bling up your favourite comfy shoes for the big day, its free for the bride to be and she will also receive a surprise crystal gift. Check out the Website for more information.
Delightful Buffet delivered to your door
Vanilla Blue Catering offers superb buffets delivered to your accommodation. Put together with Love and attention on every plate. Sit back, relax and enjoy this very delicious tasty food with the best service from a local provider. On offer is a range of options from sandwich platters, canapes, sharing platters, finger buffets, fork buffets and more as well as some delicious desserts. Finger buffet prices range from £6.25 to £10.75 per person. For more information visit the Website
Candle Making Workshops
Enjoy a fun and relaxing 3-hour candle making workshop in the comfort of your Hen Party Accommodation with Mount Cottage Crafts. Learn all the basic skills of Soy Wax candle making, the difference fragrance options, wick types, how to measure wax and put fragrance and dye into candles and the best combination for the perfect creation.
Takeaway your candles for your special day or give as a perfect gift. You can choose from making one large candle with one fragrance or 3 medium candles with 2 fragrance. All tools and equipment are provided. Prices start from £29 per person. Booking well in advance is essential. Visit the Website for more information.
Mobile Cocktail Workshop
The Bartender Hire Company provides premium cocktails for premium hen parties and can offer the very best tailor-made drinks packages, in the comfort of your Hen Party Accommodation. There are a number of options for these afternoon activities. Cocktail Clinic is a fun training session where you learn all about cocktails and how to make them, this is the original and best cocktail workshop. All-inclusive packages – a hassle-free option where your cocktail bartender provides and serves you with a choice of four superb cocktails from their menu. You can also upgrade to butlers in the buff or a flair bartender. Gin and Teatime – learn the intricacies of gin and taste some great gin cocktails all served by your bartender. If you like gin this is the best way to get ready for your evening out. Everything is provided, glasses, drinks all the ingredients including ice, just choose the best package for you. Prices range between £25 & £30 per person and last for between 2 and 2 ½ hours depending on the package. Choose your package.
Cake Decorating Party
Have a fun, unique afternoon cake decorating with Custom Cake Classes in the comfort of you Hen Party accommodation. All the ingredients together with 6 freshly baked vanilla cupcakes per person and equipment, including tablecloths, aprons and cake cutters are provided. No experience is needed as you will be guided throughout the class and learn how to make pretty decorations, including making handmade roses, learn how to colour sugar paste and how to pipe soft butter cream swirls.
Classes last for approximately 2 hours and you will be given a pretty presentation box to put your decorated cupcakes in. To discuss your requirements and find our more visit the Website.
Hot tub Hire
Pepper Bells Glamping are a Bristol Company who hire out hot tubs as well as glamping tents. They are a friendly family owned local business. They offer luxury premium quality Canadian Swift hot tubs, which are the deepest tubs available. Their tubs have a rigid outer shell offering greater insulation and support. They can also provide gazebos, which come with fairy light for a small fee. These Hot tubs are available to hire for weekends and are very affordable. Discounts also available if ordering more than one. Contact them for availability – Website
The Crafty Hen
Have some fun with a Hen Party Workshop in the comfort of your Hen Party Accommodation. The Crafty Hen is a Bristol based company with plenty of packages to choose from. Parties for creative Brides and friends working together to create bespoke wedding day keepsakes for the big day or for a unique hen party experience, they have it all. Choose from the many workshop options available or contact them with your own ideas. Tried and tested workshops include – Flower Crown making, Ceramic Painting, Patchwork Party, Jewellery making, Fascinator making and Nipple Tassels, Bunting making, Knicker Customisation, Garter making, and many more. These are super workshops, lasting for up to 3 hours, crack open the bubbly, be inspired and get ready for lots of laughs along the way. Check out the Website for more information.
Life Drawings – Cheekyart Party
Enjoy a bit a Cheeky Fun with a Nude Life Drawing class at your accommodation with Cheekart Party. A fun and tasteful form of entertainment that’s classier than a stripper. Your professional model, will make you feel at ease, give you instructions and guidance throughout and all the supplies needed for you to create your masterpiece. Classic Cheeky Packages last for approx. 60 minutes and includes all art supplies, full guided instructions, group photo with the model and a keepsake branded folder to keep all of those cheeky drawings in. Or there’s an Ultimate Cheeky Package for 90 a minute session, which includes all of the above plus extra party games and bride and with model poses for sketches. Giggles are guaranteed at these sessions prices start from £19.95 per person. See the Website for more information.
Tailored made therapies from a Holistic Therapist
Treat yourself to relaxing spa treatments in the comfort of your accommodation, with Royall Holistics. Nicky specialises in Reflexology, Reiki, Swedish, Hot Stone and Deep Tissue Massage. Enjoy an afternoon of treatments and relax and unwind before hitting the town for the evening.
Nicky is a very experienced and professional therapist who will tailor treatments to your needs. She comes highly recommended and has Hen Party packages, prices range from £17 – £25 per person. Visit the Website for more information. Or call Nicky for a friendly chat 07786 407297.
Afternoon Tea – Heartfelt Vintage
Afternoon Tea makes for a fun activity for your Hen Party. Heartfelt Vintage does it in style, their passion is all things vintage with a good old-fashioned Afternoon Tea. They have 3 different packages. The most popular option is to simply take delivery at your accommodation and enjoy the freshly homemade baked scones with a choice of homemade clotted cream and jam, 4 different types of fingers sandwiches, a centrepiece cake decorated with flowers, 2 scrumptious traybakes and a selection of 3 different teas. You also have the option to have all the lovely things as described above as well as hiring their vintage china, which is delivered and collected. Or just go the whole shebang, let them do all the work, sit back and relax whilst they serve you and then clear up. Prices start from £17.95 per person. Visit the Website for more information.
Thanks for reading, we hope you enjoy the content and find the information useful. If you are looking for somewhere to stay, our Holiday Let sleeps 12 and is just 15 mins to Bristol and Bath. We would love you to come and stay. Check our Website for availability or email me email@example.com
We can provide this guide as a pdf if you have booked with us.
From today the much-anticipated opening day of The Wave, Bristol, is available to book. The first sessions for the general public start on 18th November 2019 and you can book them now. The Wave is an inland surf destination that allows people to surf on consistent safe waves all year round, without having to go to the sea.
Every aspect of The Wave has been designed to give the maximum amount of fun for everyone. Whether you are a beginner or an accomplished surfer this will be the safe place to go. The ground-breaking technology can create up to an amazing 1,000 quality waves per hour, that’s one every 10 seconds, ranging from 50cm to 2m in height in this massive 180 metres-long surfing lake.
The Wave will be at a beautiful site in Easter Compton, Bristol and will not only have a wave pool, but it will also include a natural swimming lake, barefoot trails, a rope and tunnels course, foraging areas and gardens of various types including sensory, healing, culinary and herbs gardens. There will also be a clubhouse serving delicious food and surf shop. Making it a great space where people can become happier by connecting with water, nature, each other and themselves.
All levels of ability can enjoy this great experience, whether it’s a child getting on a board for the first time or a professional surfer training for the Olympics. Sessions can be booked according to your experience.
Learn to surf in a supportive environment, with 2-hour sessions. Everything that you will need is provided – wetsuits, boots and surfboards. Learn about water safety, surf equipment, body positioning etc and then experience the fantastic rush of surfing along a wave. The coaches will be with you for the duration. Prices start from £55 – Adults, £45 – 6 – 16 years. Lessons for more advanced surfers are also available at these prices.
Or if you are more experienced they have sessions for intermediate and advanced surfers – just catch some waves with a 1-hour session. Prices start from £40 -Adults, £35 – 6 – 16 years. All the booking information is on the website.
Spectators are welcome to join you and watch the action. Prices are £5 – Adults, 6-16 years – £2.50 and under 6’s are free.
If you are interested in the History of The Wave, where the idea came from and how it works, where all the Wave locations are, watch this interesting video.
I can’t wait for this to be open. This is going to be a great asset to Bristol. I’ve already booked my session and I am really looking forward to it. The Wave is just 6.7 miles away from our Self-Catering Accommodation, Bury Hill Farm Bristol. If you are visiting and looking for accommodation check out our website www.buryhillfarmbristol.com or check availability
Thanks for reading, we hope you enjoy the content – Whilst visiting Bristol you may also find the following useful.
The Bristol Harbour Festival is back this weekend – Friday 19th July to Sunday 21st July. Celebrating its 47th year, this free festival brings over 250,000 people together and is held annually to celebrate the city’s maritime heritage and the importance of Bristol’s docks and harbour.
Most of the activities are free, including live music, street performances, dance acts, interactive theatre, international circus acts, daredevil stunts and a variety of other live entertainments which are held on or near the waterfront of Bristol Harbour.
The outside venues include Queen Square, Lloyds Amphitheatre, Narrow Quay, Merchants, Quay, Hannover Quay, Millennium Square and Cathedral Walk, with seagoing vessels moored nearby. The liveliest part of the festival is quayside and the main attractions are entertainment designed to engage all the communities of Bristol, as well as entertain the thousands of visitors to the city.
Find your way around the Bristol Harbour Festival’s Performance Areas – Downloadable Map See the program of events further down the page.
The City has hosted the festival since 1971, when it was started as part of an, ultimately successful, attempt to save the docks from being filled in. In 2012, the festival attracted over 200,000 visitors, its highest ever attendance at that time, with the Irene and the Matthew being two of the tall ships in attendance that year.
The festival is held every year in July over a weekend and many of the bar and restaurants put on extra entertainment to keep visitors happy during the late evenings. In 2018 visitors were be able to watch for the first time, the Power8 rowing sprints battle it out on the water, as teams from eight cities compete to be the best.
The highlight of this year’s festival will be the arrival of three very special tall ships – The Etoile Molence, Irene and Iris. Also Power8 Sprints will also be headlining with their 350 metre, high octane rowing action on the water.
More than 250 boats of varying shapes and sizes will be tied up at every available mooring along a four-mile stretch of the Harbourside, with familiar sights such as the SS Great Britain and the Matthew all set to appear.
There’s so much entertainment to keep you engaged, including music at the huge outdoor concert area “the Lloyds Amphitheatre”, top quality circus and street theatre acts from Circus Bijou. Western Boat Show, showcasing all kinds of sailing boats and power boats, rowing competitions, general fun and games in the water, dedicated family areas, plus the Continental Food Market at Queens Square, a fantastic line-up from across France, Italy, Spain and Germany providing olives, cheese, crepes and more, an experience for the taste buds together with traditional gifts and crafts and lots of Harbourside fun for everyone.
Travel – Head for the City Centre, follow signs for Harbour Festival. Further travel info Here.
There is plenty of parking and it is advised to arrive early to get as close as possible to the available Harbourside Parking. You will also find parking within a short walking distance of the Harbour at the following places –
Entertainment, fun for the family, food and Music all day from – 11.00 am – 4.00 pm.
Avon Wildlife Trust, Avon Valley Adventure and Wildlife Park, Bubblina – Family entertainment with bubbles, Sound right phonics Bristol, Circomedia – Circus Workshops – Great Family Fun, Traditional Japanese Drumming, A.P.E Project CIC – Mobile Adventure Playground, Marky Jay – Street Theatre, Bocadalupa Arts – Bee Garden and much more.
Thanks for reading, we hope you enjoy the content – Whilst visiting Bristol you may also find the following useful
La Grotta is situated in the very heart of Bristol’s City Center and Shopping area and is definitely a Family Affair – originally opened in 1981 by Alfonso Merlino and his wife Anita and passed on to their son Andrea in 2015, who has worked in the restaurant since a child, there are waiters and chefs that have also been working there for going on 30 years.
It is not just one of the oldest restaurants in Bristol but also the only independent Italian Restaurant in the City Centre serving both the residents of Bristol and visitors from far and wide authentic Italian cuisine for over 38 years !
Being on Union Street right in the Centre of Bristol La Grotta is perfectly situated for either lunchtime visits whilst shopping, early dinner after wandering Broadmead & Cabot Circus, Dinner before venturing out to one of a host of Bristol’s many night spots, pubs, clubs & Theatres etc or for a Special night out meal.
Once inside the arched ceilings, décor and ambience give the feeling that you could actually be Italy, with customers chatting & laughing making for a lively but comfortable atmosphere.
Winners of numerous awards including “Best Pizza in the Bristol Good Food Awards” and is a Trip Advisor Recommended Restaurant with over 500 reviews.
They have a very extensive menu, including the obvious Pasta & Pizzas but also a good range of Fish, Chicken, Meats & Steaks and Daily Specials with an array of homemade desserts to finish your meal. There is also a Lunchtime & Early Evening Special menu and a Children’s menu. La Grotta is very proud that all meals are prepared with the freshest locally sourced ingredients and all meals are prepared & cooked freshly to order.
We have visited La Grotta numerous times (we have been fairly regular customers since the late 1980’s) so upon our most recent visit, I knew what to expect, from the friendly welcome by waiters Romeo & Simone to the quality of the food prepared by the resident Chef Richard.
I opted for a bowl of olives and Garlic & Cheese Pizza and my wife her favourite Funghi Dolcelatte (Sautéed mushrooms in a creamy Dolcelatte sauce with a splash of white wine served on toasted Ciabatta bread) for starters, followed by Fillet Steak with Pepe Nero (pepper) sauce, with generous fresh side salad and Chips (this is one of very few places I will eat steak as we produce our own beef on the farm and find it very difficult to find anywhere that supplies steak anywhere near as good as our own).
As usual the steak was cooked to perfection, tender & juicy, the salad fresh & crispy, the pepper sauce tasty & peppery enough to make my lips tingle and the chips fresh & crunchy.
Fortunately there is such a comfortable relaxed atmosphere we were in no rush to leave, we sat happily chatting after our meal that there was enough time for the steak to go down making space for a dessert, this time one of Andrea’s fantastic Cheesecakes, which are homemade and different every week – this weeks was a tangy Apple Crumble Cheesecake, which although sounds a strange combination was absolutely delightful and we finished off the evening with a zesty Limoncello. If you are too full after your meal the Cheesecake is available as a takeaway, which I have done on several occasions and is recommended, you really don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to try the Cheesecake.
La Grotta is able to cater for larger groups as well as couples so are an ideal venue not only for a romantic dinner with a loved one, Hen Party, Birthday Party or Family Gathering and I would not hesitate to recommend them very highly.
A visit to La Grotta is more than a meal but more of an experience, Andrea and his staff are so friendly and welcoming they really do want you to have a great time and leave feeling like part of the family. Visit their website for more information.
Address – 9 Union Street, Broadmead, Bristol BS1 2DD Tel – 0117 9290466
Opening Hours – Monday to Friday – Lunch 11.45am – 2pm, Monday to Thursday – Evenings 5.15 pm – 10.30pm, Friday 5pm – Late, Saturday open all day until late. View Menu
Independent Review –2 months ago
Fantastic food at an attractive price at Bristols pizza gem. Went for a quick dinner before the cinema and wasn’t disappointed. The pizza was absolutely perfect as was the service. They have some great deals going on there all the time. There’s a reason this place has won an award for pizza place of the year! Recommend big time.
You may also be interested in the following – Great places to eat in Bristol
Looking for accommodation in Bristol? – check availability HERE or email for more information.
Great Self-Catering Accommodation in Bristol – Perfect for Families and Hen Parties
I enjoyed a fabulous day out on Bank Holiday Monday 6th May, at The North Somerset Agricultural Show at Bathing Ponds Fields in Wraxall, Bristol. It was an early start as I wanted to watch the cattle showing and take lots of photos as this, for me, is the star of the whole show and my family were showing our Jersey and Hereford cattle. It was a very successful day (although tiring for the team) with great results – 4-second places, 3-first places and Reserve Champion, what a great way to start the year, at the first show of the season.
The Show is on the first Bank Holiday Monday in May and is run by The North Somerset Agricultural Society, formed out of the North Somerset Ploughing Society in 1840 by a small group of farmers. Its sole purpose was to further agricultural development by communicating agricultural issues and providing a showpiece to the general public.
This popular event attracts over 20,000 people and showcases local agriculture, food and farming as well as country crafts and pursuits. Show stoppers are tractor pulling, livestock showing and horse show jumping. This year was its 160th show.
North Somerset Show is massive, with so many sporting activities to partake in or to watch. I think my favourite (after the livestock) was the dog agility competitions, they had 3 rings for different levels of difficulty. It’s super competitive and the dogs absolutely love it, with some of them barking around the whole course.
You can easily spend a whole day here and be constantly entertained, there are displays and competitions going on all at the same time in different areas of the show. I wandered for hours and enjoyed every single minute of shopping at the trade stands. They have all your country needs, including clothing and gifts, crafts, art, photography, pet supplies etc. A vast array of food stalls inside and out. All of this is amongst the different arena displays showcasing, sheep shearing, falconry, motor bike displays, strongest man event, Vintage Tractor displays, Clay Pigeon Shooting, Archery, Air Rifle Shooting, Blacksmith Competitions, pony games, motorbike displays, the list just goes on and on.
A Great day out – put the date in your diary for next year!
Gates open to the public at 9.am and close at 5pm – Car parking is free. Dogs are welcome.
Tickets – Adults £18, Children (15 & under) £8, Children under 5 go free, Family (2 adults & 2 children) £45
Independent Review – May 2019
North Somerset Show Bristol, the first of the new season green field experiences this local family friendly show is the perfect size to get around in a day, see old faces, learn new ideas, inspire the next generation and generally appreciate how lucky we all are to live locally in the beautiful farmer-friendly county of Somerset … whether you like tractors, animals, games, sports, shopping, eating, drinking, chatting, bartering … watching or doing it you can pretty much do all of this with the whole family in tow !
What’s on in Bristol – We have a jammed packed May ahead of us. Here are some of my personal favorites.
Fun things to do Bristol
BADMINTON HORSE TRIALS – 1st May – 5th May 2019
Staged within the beautiful grounds of the Badminton Estate in South Gloucestershire this top-level equestrian sports Weekend kicks off on Wednesday 1st May, where visitors can browse over 500 trade stands in the vast shopping village. Exhibitors cover all shopping tastes, from Animal & Pet Feed, Art, Books, Toys and Country clothing to all equestrian needs and even Garden Equipment & Machinery. You can also explore the grounds and stroll along the cross country course. See the Site Plan for Tradestands and Food & Bars.
Thursday and Friday continue with Dressage, Saturday is Cross Country day, famous for its size and level of difficulty and Sunday sees the end of the competition with Showjumping. See the full timetable.
The annual event attracts thousands of visitors from all over the world. It offers a great family day out, where children and dogs are welcome. The weather this year is set to be great, making this amazing weekend something to really look forward to.
Live TV coverage of every day of the Horse Trials will be available around the world via Badminton Livestream. You can also watch the highlights on BBC On demand.
For visitors who will be purchasing tickets at the gate please follow appropriate AA Signage from Stroud, Cirencester, Chippenham or the M4 J15, J17 and J18. Your satnav system will not take into account the traffic management that will be in place during this event. For more information visit their WEBSITE
More fun things to do Bristol
North Somerset Show – 6th May 2019
The North Somerset Agricultural Show is on the first Bank Holiday Monday in May at Bathing Ponds Fields in Wraxall. This popular event attracts over 20,000 people and showcases local agriculture, food and farming as well as country crafts and pursuits. Show stoppers are tractor pulling, livestock showing and horse show jumping.
The show is run by The North Somerset Agricultural Society and was formed out of the North Somerset Ploughing Society in 1840 by a small group of farmers. Its sole purpose was to further agricultural development by communicating agricultural issues and providing a showpiece to the general public.
Traditionally, the North Somerset Show takes place in May and since the early 1900′s it was held at Ashton Court near Bristol. In 2002 the Society purchased a 130 acre site in Wraxall near Bristol. This year is its 160th show.
What to expect – Inside and outside trade stands, with all your country needs including crafts, art, photography, clothing, pet supplies, food halls. Arena displays including sheep shearing, falconry, dog agility, pony games, motor bike displays. Vintage Tractor Parade, Clay Pigeon Shooting, Archery, Air Rifle Shooting, Blacksmith Competitions and so much more.
Watch the skillful showing of all farm animals and once the competitions have finished, get up close and see all the different breeds that have been in the competitions.
Foodie Festival Durham Down – 10th – 12th May 2019
The UK’s biggest food festival returns to Durham Downs with top chefs and MasterChef winners cooking live, try sweet treats with Bake Off winners and top bakers, sample new wines, champagnes and cocktails, eat delicious street food from around the world, taste new flavours, meet artisan producers, have fun all day with chilli eating competitions and food challenges and live music.
What to expect – Luxury VIP Tent, Street Food, Vintage Cider Tent, Live Music Stage, Healthy Living Show, Cakes and Desserts Theatre, Chefs Theatre, Kids Cookery Theatre, Restaurant Tens and more.
Children under 12 and dogs are free entry. Opening times: Friday 12pm – 9pm, Saturday 11am – 9pm, Sunday 11am – 6pm
FREE THINGS TO DO BRISTOL
South Glos Food and Drink FREE Festival – 17th – 19th May 2019
Returning to the Lawns at Bristol and Bath Science Park in Emersons Green for it’s second year, the festival provides a whole weekend celebrating our two favourite things, food and drink, together with music from local artists.
What to Expect – So many stalls, something for everyone
Food Stalls – Fuffle from Fudgeheaven, the Jerk Yard, in Tents Catering, Thomas Cookie Co, Jethros Marinades and Sauces, Free Range Pies, Flapjackery, Glastonbury Cheese, The Parsons Nose, Rad Burger, Chockshop, Signore Twister, Chanbury’s Woodfired, Dutch Cheeseman, Cohens Sausages, and many more.
Drinks – Hullabaloos Lemonade, Hay Wines Ice Cold Slush, Gillow Cider, English Spirit, Edinburgh Gin, ABK Beer, Cohens Coffee, Cusan Welsh Cream Liqueur, Eccentric Gin, Bubblebird Horsebox Bar, Pulpt, the list goes on and on.
Music – Rock Choir, The Bad Dads, Limited Edition, Richard Friend, The African Sambistas
Open from 10am – 4pm – Free Entry and Free Parking
Love Saves the Day – 25th – 26th May 2019
Love Saves the Day returns to Eastville Park for the 8th time and promises to be even bigger and better than ever. This year will see several brand new areas showcasing a diverse range of genres and music styles on some of the most ambitious stages builds to date.
The festival started from humble beginnings as a one-day event and has now expanded into an eclectic weekend festival. New stages have been added showcasing a diverse range of genres and music styles as Love Saves the Day continues with its aims to combine the best of Bristol’s thriving underground scene with pioneering artists across the globe in one buzzing, open space.
The emphasis is on great music but a following from all of the creativity and live entertainment that occurs throughout the festival, expect the spectacular. Over 300 acts performing across 12 stages, Love Saves the Day’s music line-up is second to none, but the festival has much more to offer, roller skating, ball pits, face painting/ jewelling, circus acts, fairground rides, displays and food and drink stalls. Love Saves the Day just keeps getting bigger and better every year.
If you’re a Mini enthusiast, you are going to be overwhelmed with hundreds of Mini’s invading Bristol for the world’s biggest meeting of the Mini club scene, in August 2019.
The International Mini Meeting is an annual event which originated in 1978 in Germany. It started out as a small 3-day camp event on the Whitsun weekend. After several years its popularity had grown, even over the German borders and this resulted in an International event which takes place every year in a different country, defying language barriers and creating a foundation of appreciation like no other. Every 5 years it celebrates the Mini in England where the IMM takes place around the Minis birthday in August.
International Mini Meeting Bristol 2019 is a 5 day festival style 1980s themed event for all ages, and welcomes both classic minis and new MINIs as well as their derivatives. The event opens at mid-day on Thursday 8th August, at Washingpool Farm, Easter Compton, Bristol, with a gentle build up to the official opening ceremony on Friday night, by which point most of the participants have arrived.
If you’ve booked for the weekend there will be plenty of things to do and see, including traders, mini displays, street food and drink vendors and meeting points. From Friday there will also be live music/acts throughout the day on the outdoor and indoor stages, plus rides and children’s entertainment. On Friday evening the event is officially opened, with a special opening ceremony. Different activities will be organised for Mini drivers and Mini Clubs during the rest of the weekend, including an open topped bus tour, rocker cover racing, club competitions including Sinclair C5 racing and a mini run.
Examples on show will span the entire mini family tree from pristine 1959 originals and Marcos coupes through to the second generation of John Cooper Works GPs, together with many wild and wacky restorations.
The Mini came into existence in England in 1959 and remained in production until 2000 in one form or another. BMW picked up the MINI name in 1994. While the German automaker wound down the British version of the car, it began designing the car that would become the new MINI in 2000. These days, the so-called MINI is a proper modern hatchback — big enough to swallow up the iconic 1960s version.
This event is only open to Day Visitors on Sunday 11th August, tickets will be available to purchase on the gate. If you want to attend any other day you will need to purchase a weekend Ticket.
Location – Washingpool Farm, the home of IMM 2019 and Easter Compton Farm Shop. Located just 5 minutes from junction 17 of the M5 motorway in the midst of beautiful south west England countryside.
Want more information about this great event – Visit their Website
Fancy a Boat Trip with Bristol Ferry Boats? – Bristol Ferry Boats offer a number of different trips, a great way to see the City from a different viewpoint. Bristol Ferry Boats has been running since 1977. The iconic blue and yellow Ferry Boats can be seen travelling around the harbour almost every day of the year. They provide a community focused, friendly ferry service and pride themselves on their unrivalled reliability. Visitors are safe in the knowledge that they run their service every day except Christmas day, come rain or shine. You will always receive a warm Bristol welcome their staff.
Wednesday Sundown Sailings – A lovely cruise around the Harbour, listening to music, watching the sun go down. The trip includes tapas and cheese to complement two drinks of either Gin, Sherry or Rum (drinks depend on dates booked). There are two departure times from the City Centre at 7pm and 9pm the trip lasts for 2 hours. Tickets are £20 per person.
Brunel’s Bristol Boat Tour – A comprehensive tour of Brunel’s famous Bristol Landmarks. Departing from Bristol Temple Meads, sailing past the SS Great Britain and on toward the historic lock gates, where Brunel’s other Bridge is laid. Traveling away from the harbour along the Avon Gorge underneath the famous Clifton Suspension Bristol and then returning back to the Bristol Floating Harbour. A great way to see some of Bristol’s Landmarks. This trip lasts for 2 hours and 40 minutes. Tickets – Adults £15, Children £12, Concessions £12 or Family of 5 £45.
Avon Gorge Trip – An exciting cruise along the Avon Gorge, with commentary throughout. Departing from SS Great Britain leaving the floating harbour, along the Avon Gorge, underneath the amazing Clifton Suspension Bridge, Passing the ancient port of Sea Mills and the Village of Pill and onto Avonmouth (if the tide allows) and then returning back to the floating harbour. This trip lasts for 3.5 hours. Tickets – Adults £18.50, Children £16.50, Concessions £16.50 or Family of 5 £55.
Booze Cruises and Boat Parties – Private Hire – There is a variety of packages on offer – Vintage Tea Party, Bubbly Breakfast, Booze Cruises and Party Packages offering trips to dockside pubs and bars. Catering for parties ranging from 25 to 45 people, with fully licensed CASH ONLY bars and music. You have the opportunity to hop on and off of the boat and visit a wide range of Bars and Pubs. These are fantastic trips, perfect for any celebration and for Hen Parties, a great way to start your weekend visit to Bristol. There are many options available to create a bespoke party. Find out more HERE.
Sunday Riverside Roast – A lazy cruise along the River Avon, departing from Welsh Back. This is a very relaxed river cruise, after sailing through the City, see Bristol’s countryside from the water as it travels along the feeder canal and through Netham Lock along the riverbanks of St Anne’s and Conham River Park. Enjoy the wildlife, you may see Otters, Swans, Deer, Foxes, Squirrels, Kingsfishers, Ducks etc. Gently cruising onto the very popular Beese’s Riverside Tea Rooms to enjoy a delicious roast dinner and then have time to enjoy the beautiful grounds of the Tea Rooms until it’s time to make the journey back to Bristol. This trip lasts (including your meal) for 3 hours. Ticketprices include your food – Adults £25.00, Concessions £19.00. Advance Bookings are essential as these trips are very popular.
Friday trip to Beese’s with live music – A Great way to start the weekend, departing from Welshback, a super river cruise sailing from Bristol, through the countryside to the very popular Beese’s Riverside Tea Rooms, where you can enjoy a meal and watch a live band most Fridays. Some Fridays the tide doesn’t allow for these trips, but that’s only a few. Drinks are available to buy (cash only) onboard during your trip. This is a one-way trip, so that you can enjoy the whole evening dancing, you will need to book a taxi for the return journey. Ticket prices include entry and food at Beese’s – Adults £21.00. Advance bookings are essential.
Band line ups for these trips for 2019 :-
26th April Belle Rose
3rd May Fiesta Latina
10th May Dysfunktional
24th May The Mayfair Players
31st May Funk Husky
7th June Soul Reason
14th June The Bad Losers
21st June The Jumps
28th June Dukes of Mumbai
12th July Finger Buffet
19th July Dappa Don & The Playaz
26th July Fromage en Feu
9th August Stiff Upper Lips
16th August JJ Gatsby
23rd August The Jumps
6th September Natty Daps
More about Beese’s Riverside Tea Rooms
Beese’s Riverside Tea Rooms is a hidden treasure, set beside a pleasantly wooded stretch of the river Avon. For some, a haven of tranquillity, where generations of city dwellers would put their cares of the city behind them for a time. Visitors range from families, ramblers, cyclists, dog walkers and, of course, river-users swimming or rowing leisurely by.
In more recent years, Beese’s can be a lively place, whether it’s a friends’ get-together, a birthday or wedding celebration, or one of Beese’s music nights.
Beese’s is open each year for the spring and summer. They have live music most Friday evenings, including a mix of known Bristol bands and visitors from afar. There has been an annual beer festival since 2009. Visit their Website for more information.
Back to Bristol Ferry Boats – There are 5 Ferry Boats all painted in iconic yellow and blue colours.
Margaret was built in 1952 and acquired in 1977 she has capacity for 28 passengers. She has a wooden hulled open launch and was Built in Appledore for service in Lynmouth to replace a vessel wrecked in the flood of 1952 and later used as a ferry across the Avon between Shirehampton and Pill.
Independence was built in 1927 and acquired in 1980 she has capacity for 46 passengers. With a wooden hulled open launch and was previously used on the Severn and Wye, and on the Erewash Canal.
Emily was built in 1927 and acquired in 1992 she has capacity for 48 passengers. With a wooden hulled enclosed launch. Built in Bideford and was previously used at Scarborough and in Gloucester Docks.
Matilda was built and acquired in 1997 and has a capacity for 50 passengers. With a Steel hulled enclosed launch, with a length of 14.02 m (46.0 ft) and a beam of 4.61 m (15.1 ft). Purpose built for Bristol Ferry Boats.
Brigantia was built and acquired in 2006 and has a capacity for 50 passengers. With a Steel hulled enclosed launch. Purpose built for Bristol Ferry and based on the design for Matilda but equipped with a retractable wheelhouse and a wheelchair lift.
Both Matilda and Brigantia are licensed to operate on the tidal Avon downstream from Bristol through the Avon Gorge to Avonmouth, as well as throughout Bristol Harbour and on the Avon upstream to the city of Bath. The other vessels are restricted to Bristol Harbour and the upstream Avon. Margret is the original yellow and blue ferry boat and is a true west country survivor.
Visit their Website for more information or check out their Timetable for Ferry’s.
Bristol Ferry Boats – A great way to tour the historic harbour. Friendly staff, great value.
Having had a less than successful trip to We the Curious, we saw the yellow boat arrive and jumped on board. The full tour takes you from the City Centre to Hotwells and back, and then goes off in the other direction to Temple Meads and back. You can choose the full 80 minute tour, a 40 minute (half tour) or simply use the craft as a taxi or bus in the harbour area. We chose the 40 minute trip to Hotwells and back and saw Bristol from a viewpoint I had never experienced before. You travel past The Matthew and The Great Britain, have a good view of the cathedral, the harbour-side industries and the old pubs, with a great view of the multi-coloured buildings of Hotwells. A very friendly crewman was there to help people on and off and call out the stops and sell the tickets. We will definitely go back and do the full tour (ticket lasts a day and lets you hop on and off) when the weather is a bit warmer. Great fun and great value.
Beese’s Riverside Bar and Tea Rooms
This is a great little quirky place next to the river. If you are used to eating in chain establishments it may not be for you as it is quite ‘characterful’. We only had a cream tea but the Sunday lunches that people were tucking in to looked good too. The walk along the river and ferry across added to the charm.
More things to do in Bristol, near the harbourside.