Romantic Things To Do In Bristol
Bristol is a popular destination with tourists and families, many attracted by the re-developed waterfront area, and lovely victorian architecture.
But Bristol is also popular with couples, and makes an ideal destination for a short break or weekend away together. Here are just a few ideas for romantic things to do in Bristol:
Clifton Suspension Bridge
You can simply marvel at the spectacular views of, and from, this famous structure, or if you want to find out more, there's a Visitor Centre open daily, or free guided tours at weekends and bank holidays.
Why not walk across the bridge for a fantastic view of the river - and you might bump into one of the bridge's "explainers" who will be happy to answer any questions you have.
The Bridge is also spectacular at night, thanks to the illuminations, switched on from half an hour before sunset until midnight.
Bristol Zoo GardensIf your loved one likes cute animals - (and who doesn't?) then a stroll around Bristol Zoo gardens is sure to be well received.
Look out for the Meerkats which score highly for cuteness - but there's plenty of traditional zoo favourites to enjoy, including lions, gorillas, penguins, seals, flamingos and lots more.
But there's more to the zoo than just animals - there's 12 acres of award-winning gardens to enjoy too - the perfect place for a romantic stroll.
Brunel's ss Great Britain
What could be more romantic than a return to the golden age when steam ships were the fastest way to travel the world?
There's a cafe bar alongside with great views of the ship, for those in need of refreshment.
If you've a head for heights (or simply want to show off), you can even go aloft, and climb 30 metres into the rigging! (Re-opens spring 2015).
ss Great Britain is displayed in an innovative dry dock with a glass sea - which allows you explore beneath the waterline and see a view of the ship that would normally be hidden from view.
For your very own voyage of discovery, while you're in the harbour area, check out The Matthew - a faithful reproduction of the ship John Cabot used when he discovered Newfoundland in 1497.
If you're mobile and don't mind leaving the city for a few hours - there are a couple of romantic attractions nearby:
A castle must be one of the most romantic places - especially a genuine Norman castle, with battlements and a keep, where the same family have lived since the 12th century?
With all the features you'd expect from a historic castle including huge fireplaces, a grand staircase, vaulted cellars, a tower room as well as terraced gardens and beautiful views of Berkeley Vale, it's perfect for a memorable visit.
Sometimes the most romantic thing of all is a gentle walk in a beautiful place - and there are few places more suitable than the National Arboretum at Westonbirt.
Especially spectacular as the leaves turn in autumn, Westonbirt also offers superb displays of Rhododendrons and Azaleas in spring - but is a great place to visit at any time of year.
Hot Air Balloon Flight
Of all the things for couples to do in Bristol, one of the most romantic must be a tranquil flight above the city suspended below a hot air balloon!
Bristol is well known for hosting Europe's biggest hot air balloon event - but even if your visit doesn't coincide with the Balloon Fiesta - you can still enjoy the romance of the Hot Air Balloon with your very own flight - surely the most romantic way to travel - even if you're never quite certain where you'll end up!
First Flight and Bailey Balloons are both local firms with a good reputation:
Why not find out more about Bristol and its history by taking a walking tour of the city?
Walking Bristol tours are popular and highly-rated. The tours run on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays starting at 11am at the Cascade Steps by the harbourside. You'll find out all about Bristol's amazing past including Brunel, exciting tales of pirates and the story of John Cabot.
For something a bit more contemporary, there's an excellent Street Art Tour where you can see around 50 of the best street artworks Bristol has to offer - including some of Banksy's most famous artworks:
Luxury Spa Break
Relax and allow yourselves to be pampered at the luxurious Spa Naturel located in the Mercure Bristol Holland House Hotel and Spa.
Offering a host of treatments, and catering for men as well as women, it's the perfect way to leave the stresses and strains of everyday life behind and focus on just being together.
From single treatments to the fabulous "Spa Escape Together" package which includes an overnight stay, you're certain to leave feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
If you can time your visit to Bristol to coincide with the International Balloon Fiesta in August, then you're guaranteed to see some amazing sights.
It's hard to imagine a more romantic spectacle than a host of hot air ballons of all different colours and shapes drifting serenely through the sky. You'll have to be ok with early starts though - the "Mass Ascents" start at 6am.
For the more down-to-earth, the Balloon Fiesta is also a great place for a picnic.
Music and Shows
Fancy taking in a show? The Bristol Hippodrome has a varied calendar of events, including ballets, operas, musicals, comedians and West End shows.
St George's Bristol
Bristol has a great variety of restaurants and cafes, so there's plenty of choice - here are just a few of the highlights:
There aren't many more romantic places to eat than a floating restaurant. If you visit the Glassboat Restaurant, you can enjoy excellent food, with a great view of the river too - definitely an evening to remember.
The Grain Barge
With two bars, and a panoramic harbour view from the upper deck, it's a great place for a night out.
The Lido Restaurant
Another restaurant with an interesting view is the Bristol Lido Restaurant - which as you'd expect overlooks the Lido so you can watch energetic people swimming while you enjoy the culinary delights on offer.
Why not try their "Birdfood" tasting menu and try some of everything?
Romantic Places to Stay
Bristol is understandably popular with tourists - so there's a wide choice of places to stay, to suit any budget. Here are a few of the most interesting:
The Coach House
For Bed and Breakfast accommodation with a bit of style, try The Coach House, which offers chic accommodation in a beautifully converted former coach house which was built in 1750. Situated in the Hambrook conservation area it's a great base for exploring the city.
Alternatively Ferndale Mews offers compact but well appointed rooms in a family home in a quiet area, which nevertheless offers a good variety of cafes, restaurants and pubs.
Hotel du Vin
Bristol is a fascinating and beautiful city with a rich history, and many things to see and do.
Hopefully we've given you some interesting ideas for romantic things to do in Bristol, but there's lots more to discover when you visit.
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