Things to do outdoors in Bristol
If you love being outdoors or want to avoid crowded indoor spaces in this COVID-19 era, our things to do outdoors in Bristol guide will keep you busy. Bristol has a vast range of outdoor activities to explore.
Heading outdoors seems more appealing than ever. Even though Bristol is a city, it is closely surrounded by glorious countryside. Bristol is great for walking and cycling enthusiasts. Bristol is renowned for its vibrancy and creativity. There are plenty of opportunities to explore its numerous attractions.
A visit to Bristol is not complete without a trip across the multi-award-winning Clifton Suspension Bridge. It is a sightseeing must-see. You can walk across the bridge and take in the magnificent views. Suspension bridges are designed to be flexible, so you may feel it move. Take the time to climb Observatory Hill, where there is a spectacular view of the bridge itself. If you feel brave, you can zoom back down on the Rock Slide, which has been polished smooth by Bristolians over hundreds of years.
The best way to visit Leigh Woods is to walk from the city centre across the Clifton Suspension Bridge. The woodland has two different walks to explore. In spring the pathways lead you through an abundance of bluebells and wildflowers, and in autumn it is washed with reds, ambers and yellows. The woods are home to plants and wildlife, including grazing animals such as cows and deer. You will feel like you are miles away from the bustling city centre of Bristol when in reality it is beyond the trees.
A cemetery visit may not be your first thought when looking for things to do outdoors in Bristol. The Arnos Vale Cemetery is on 45 acres of greenery. It is internationally recognised as one of Britain's best examples of a Victorian garden cemetery. You can discover classic buildings and historic monuments whilst on the leafy walkways. The graveyard is described as a sanctuary of peace in a busy part of the city.
Ashton Court has been the site of a manor house since the 11th Century. It was even used as a military hospital during WW1 and an army transit camp in WW2. Here there are 850 acres of woodland and grassland. A big highlight of the estate is the deer who wander and graze on the parkland. There is also two 18-hole pitch and put golf courses, orienteering, mountain bike trails, a miniature railway and plenty of open space ideal for picnics. Special events are held here throughout the year including the world-renowned International Balloon Fiesta.
The estate at Blaise Castle is in 650 acres of parkland. Alongside the museum and castle, there is lots to do outside. There is a children's play area, benches and picnic areas, and a lily pond. Activities include horse riding, orienteering and several walking routes. The Castle Walk takes 40 minutes, Gorge Walk takes 50 minutes, Kings Weston Down Walk is 35 minutes and takes you to an Iron Age hill fort. Plus, the Rhododendron Walk takes 1 hour 45 minutes, and The Royals and St Mary's Church Walk, which is 50 minutes.
Once a busy dock where sailors and merchants would trade goods and set sail for voyages of discovery. Bristol's Harbourside is now a modern development with restaurants, bars and shops. The area becomes alive when The Market is open, Wednesday and Thursdays at lunch, and every weekend between 11am-4pm. Makers, musicians and artists give you a safe space to shop and eat some incredible street food. You can do other things outside here; yachting, paddle boarding, cycling, rowing, and strolling around the water's edge. Many of Bristol's top tourist attractions are found here too; Millennium Square, Brunel's SS Great Britain, We The Curious, Bristol Aquarium and M Shed.
Wild Place Project is a fun family attraction that provides outdoor adventure, play and learning. You can meet amazing animals from across the world; including giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, lemurs, meerkats and brown bears. There are 50 beautiful acres to explore, including woodlands, gardens and meadows.
You do not have to walk far in Bristol to discover cutting-edge pieces of graffiti art decorating the walls. Along narrow alleys, down side-streets, across building walls and boldly displayed on bridges. Many of the pieces are by world-famous artist Banksy, who hails from Bristol. You can download the fantastic Banksy Bristol Trail smartphone app, featuring an interactive map that guides you to each of Banksy's remaining pieces in Bristol. It is also packed with in-depth features on Banksy, his work and his formative years in Bristol.
Looking to experience new surroundings, great outdoor spaces, or even culture and history? Bristol is fantastic for exploring National Trust properties. Just a stone's throw from Bristol is the Tyntesfield House and Gardens. It holds National Trusts most extensive collection, with over 60,000 catalogued items in the house. Attached to the house is a Victorian gothic chapel. You can also walk amongst flower-filled terraces and woodlands, as the home sits within 150 acres of parkland. Don't forget to explore the rose garden, summer houses, the aviary and an orangery.
Opened in March 1929, Clevedon Marine Lake is the world's largest seawater infinity pool. It is the size of two football pitches, where you can take a dip in the waters, paddleboard or canoe, go crabbing in the rock pools or enjoy the panoramic views. There's no booking or entrance fee; however, the lake costs £20,000 per year to maintain, so donations are welcome. It is open all year round, with no opening or closing times.
If reading this has left you feeling tempted to book your trip, then look no further than Future Inn Bristol. In the heart of the city centre, the hotel is close to the popular tourist attractions and is opposite Cabot Circus Shopping Centre.
Alongside parking for £9 per night and free WiFi, there is a whole host of home comforts, with bedrooms that can sleep up to four, which are ideal for families. Under 12's even stay for free! Plus, you can even dine on homemade, fresh, local food in Chophouse Restaurant.
Many new or improved procedures have been introduced with our safeguarding measures, and we are welcoming guests safely. You can also book with confidence, with our super flexible hotel rates.