Bristol Guide – The Best Ways to Get to Know the City

From street art to bridges, markets to museums and churches to castles, this Bristol covers all the top sights and must-see attractions. Discover a small-town vibe with an international twist and a tangible history that’s home to both Hollywood screen legend Cary Grant and thought-provoking street artist Banksy.

Bristol Uncovered: Exploring the City’s Hidden Gems

The best way to get to know Bristol is on a guided tour with one of the city’s Blue Badge guides. The most popular tours include Bristol Old Town, where you’ll see the Corn Exchange dating from 1743 and the Gothic Norman Bristol Cathedral, as well as a visit to the infamous Clifton Suspension Bridge. You’ll also learn about the city’s past as a major port, setting sail for voyages of exploration and engaging in the slave trade. Engineering marvels like the Floating Harbour and Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s pioneering steamship the SS Great Britain are key points of interest, while M Shed and the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery offer more cultural highlights.

Another great option is to join a free walking tour, which are offered year-round. The official Visit Bristol website offers downloadable maps that cover the city center and Harbourside, or you can pick up one of the distinctive blue A3 tourist maps at the visitor information centre on the harborside or at locations including libraries, hotels, Temple Meads railway station, shops and the YHA hostel. Alternatively, take a daily harbor tour (including a gin cruise) or hop aboard The Matthew, a replica of John Cabot’s 1497 ship that he used to discover Newfoundland.

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