Fun things to do in Bristol with Virgin Red

An image showing the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol
by Limara Salt
17 August 2023

Packed with art, culture and adventure, it’s no wonder Bristol is consistently voted one of the best places to live in the UK and one of the coolest cities in Europe. But if you can’t pack your bags and move there a long weekend is a great way to get a taste of everything Bristol has to offer.  

Officially made a city in 1542, Bristol has cemented itself as one of the UK’s best cities for art, creativity and education. Famous Bristolians include Cary Grant, Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams, music collective Massive Attack and Aardman Animations, the creators of Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep.  

Bristol is a fantastic place to visit, and Virgin Red members can use Virgin Points to unlock discounts when booking their journey with Virgin Trains Ticketing. Better yet, you can enter the prize draw to win one million points with every booking until 27 August 2023!* 

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Book with Virgin Trains Ticketing

Need help planning your trip? No problem – here are some fun things to do in Bristol.  

Walk around Wapping Wharf  

Situated on the waterfront, Wapping Wharf is popular with locals and visitors alike thanks to its independent shops, bars and restaurants. Walk off some proper fish and chips from Salt & Malt as you peruse the latest releases in bookworm’s heaven, bookhaus, before enjoying dessert from Swoon, a gelato shop worthy of its name.  

If you fancy a drink while in the Old City area, check out The Apple, a cider bar on a 1930s Dutch barge serving the finest cider in Bristol. Located on the end of King Street you’ll have a fabulous view of the harbour as you drink with regulars. 

Brew like a Bristolian 

With its flourishing nightlife and penchant for a festival or two, it’s no surprise that many beer companies opened their doors in Bristol. From Moor Beer to Wiper and True, there’s no shortage of brewery tours to experience during your stay. Discover how they make their locally produced beer and if you’re lucky, you’ll even get to taste some afterwards.  

An image of someone axe throwing as Whistle Punks
Virgin Experience Days

If you fancy a pint with a fun activity, Whistle Punks in Bristol gives two people the chance to partake in urban axe throwing with Virgin Experience Days. After some one-on-one tuition with an instructor, participants will compete to be crowned champion – book now with Virgin Red to earn points.  

Shop to it 

If your luggage has room to spare there’s every chance you’ll find something to your tastes in Bristol’s sprawling markets and legendary vintage shops. As well as the shopping quarter heaving with high street brands and department stores like Harvey Nichols, stop by St Nicholas Market for an abundance of independent shops selling food, fashion, and florals.  

For a smashing secondhand purchase, stop by Beyond Retro, RePsycho, Loot Vintage, and Rag Trade Boutique for a one-of-a-kind item to take home.  

Behold some Banksy on a street art tour 

Born and raised in the city, Banksy’s artistic style was developed in the Bristol underground scene before receiving global attention in the ‘90s. From Balloon Girl to Flower Thrower, his work is instantly recognisable and with many pieces dotted around Bristol, the best way to see them is with a walking tour.  

But it’s not just Banksy – Bristol streets and buildings are adorned with work from artists hailing from around the world. Some tours can be done with maps available online or you can book with a knowledgeable host to share fun facts as you walk around the city. Either way, it’s a great way to see the best of Bristolian art.  

Indulge in coffee and cake 

There’s no shortage of options for coffee lovers in Bristol, with cafés and bakeries dotted throughout Old City and beyond. Spicer+Cole serves a wide range of brunch with freshly baked pastries and sourdough bread while the delectable cakes in the window of Ahh Toots will stop you in your tracks.   

An image showing the spread of a vegan afternoon tea served in Eden Café
Virgin Experience Days

There are also several options for a unique afternoon tea, with Revolución de Cuba putting a Cuban spin on the English classic with patatas bravas and quesadillas replacing sandwiches and scones. Vegans can head to Eden Café to enjoy a spread of plant-based delights topped off with bottomless tea or coffee – book your experience with Virgin Red to earn 10 points per £1.  

Climb the Clifton Suspension Bridge 

Designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the Clifton Suspension Bridge is arguably the most recognisable structure in the city. The Grade 1 bridge is over 300 feet high, took over 30 years to be completed, and remains free to walk and cycle across for incredible views of Avon Gorge and city skyline.

An image of the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol

If crossing the bridge itself isn’t for you, visit the Clifton Observatory for the café, museum, and a perfect view of the bridge.

What are you waiting for? Sign up to Virgin Red and book your train ticket with Virgin Trains Ticketing for a trip to remember.  

P.S. We always do our best to include the most up-to-date information but Virgin Red offers do change from time to time. Click on each offer for the current points rate and all the details. 

Terms and Conditions   

*Full terms and conditions apply. Please see here the key terms and conditions:   

Prize draw promotion runs until 23:59 on 27.08.23. 18+ UK resident only. Virgin Red membership required. For full T&Cs visit Promoter: Virgin Red Limited, 66 Porchester Road, London W2 6ET   

The Virgin Red Programme terms and conditions apply to the use of Virgin Points.   

Purchase of rail tickets is governed by the VTT Terms and Conditions.   

All train ticket bookings will be governed by the National Rail Conditions of Travel.