Bristol Accommodation Guide

Photo: Derek Finch (Flickr Commons)

Bristol is a large cosmopolitan city and a designated county in its own right. Bristol is famous for its long standing maritime history, underground music scene, avant-garde art galleries and its International Balloon Fiesta.

Bristol is situated on the extreme eastern fringes of England near the border with Wales on the other side of the River Severn Estuary. The city shares a border with Gloucestershire to the north and Somerset to the south.

With a wealth of attractions, Bristol is one of the UK’s most popular tourist destinations. The city was voted “Best city in Britain in which to live” in both 2014 and 2017. As a forward thinking environmentally focused city, it also won the covered “European Green Capital Award” in 2015. In this guide we will exhibit some of Bristol’s best accommodation choices and also explore some of the city’s finest attractions.

Once a part of Gloucestershire, Bristol became a separate county in 1373 due to the city’s rapid mercantile growth and its importance as an international seaport. Bristol played a key role in the industrial revolution and its international trade routes extended all across the world.

There is much contention as to whether the first Europeans to discover the Americas left from Bristol. Under the commission of King Henry VII of England, John Cabot set off from Bristol in 1497 to discover the New World. At that time, Bristol was the second largest seaport in England. However, in 1960 evidence was found that Norse vikings had actually reached Newfoundland in the 10th century.

One of Bristol’s most famous ships, the SS Great Britain, can still be visited today. Launched in 1843 the ship took thousands of people from the UK to both America and Australia.  Tourists can also visit a replica of The Matthew, the ship that took John Cabot to the New World in the late 1400s.

And if these attractions are not enough to satisfy your thirst for maritime history, you can always visit ‘Thekla’, Bristol’s live music venue on a converted German cargo ship. Alternatively visit ‘The Grain Barge’, a converted grain carrier for a scrumptious dinner!

Finally, Bristol is one of the few cities in the UK that has a large number of floating accommodation options. From converted barges to house boats, visitors can wake up with the sound of water lapping against their bedroom!

Bristol / Tourist Information

  • County Town: Bristol
  • Land Area: 3,150 km2 (1,220 sq mi)
  • Population: 1,006,600 (2017)
  • Population Density: 3,892/km2 (10,080/square mile)
  • Average Temperature: (Summer 21 °C)
  • Days Of Rain: 127 days of rain / 238 dry days per year

Best Attractions In Bristol

SS Great Britain: Designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the SS Great Britain is one of the most famous passenger steam ships in British history. When launched in 1843, Great Britain was the largest ship afloat – it is now a dedicated museum. Visitors can see what life would have been like onboard when crossing the Atlantic in the mid 19th century.

Clifton Suspension Bridge: Another one of Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s creations, this majestic bridge is notable for standing 76 metres (250 feet) above the floor of the Avon gorge. Incredibly, the chains which support the bridge extend 20 miles underground! Opened in 1864, the bridge is best viewed from the Clifton Observatory (a former mill). Visitors should also visit St Vincent’s Cave which opens 27 metres (90 feet) onto St Vincent’s Rocks below.

Bristol Museum And Art Gallery: Boasting collections on archaeology, geology and fossils, this incredible museum is open six days per week and is free to enter. The museum famously hosted an unpublicised exhibition by famous street artist Banksy in 2009 which went on to worldwide acclaim. Banksy is one of a long list of famous artists who have lived in Bristol at one time including Thomas Danby, Mary Godwin and Samuel Jackson.

Best Accommodation In the Bristol

The Coach House, Bitton, BristolThe Coach House (Bitton): A former coach house, this quaint little holiday cottage is situated near both Bristol and Bath. Perfect for couples, this lovely holiday house is positioned on the edge of the Cotswolds AONB and the Mendip Hills.

Avonside Cottage, Pill, SomersetAvonside Cottage (Pill): This unique cottage is nestled in the historic village of Pill on the bank of the River Avon in Somerset. Sleeping 4 people across 2 bedrooms this cottage also has an amazing terrace which affords incredible views across the river. Bristol is an easy drive and you are also ideally placed to venture across the Welsh border from here too.

Boundary-Barn, Dundry, BristolBoundary Barn (Dundry): The views form this quaint little holiday cottage can only be described as spectacular thanks to its position overlooking the spectacular Chew Valley. Sleeping 4 people across 2 bedrooms, the accommodation is all on the ground floor although some steps are present at the barn’s entrance.

Walnut-Lodge, East Dundry, BristolWalnut Lodge (East Dundry): Another holiday cottage in the stunning hamlet of East Dundry, Walnut Lodge provides accommodation for 5 people across 3 bedrooms. With awe-inspiring views of the nearby Mendip Hills, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, this wonderful holiday cottage makes for a relaxing retreat at any time of the year.

The Lodge Family Accommodation, BristolThe Lodge (Bristol): Located on the outskirts of Bristol with easy access to the city centre, this wooden clad barn is perfect for young families who are looking for affordable accommodation in this cosmopolitan city. Sleeping 4 people across 2 bedrooms, there is also a games room with pool table and table tennis.

Kyle Blue (Wapping Wharf): Kyle Blue is a converted barge which offers basic accmommodation for groups of up to 30 people across 9 cabins. This houseboat is situated right in the centre of Bristol and is only a stone’s throw from the SS Great Britain and the MShed Museum.

Worle Cottage (Winterbourne Down): Located just 6 miles from central Bristol, this lovely cottage provides accommodation for 6 people across 3 bedrooms. There is a fantastic garden and patio area here with a nice pond too! This is the perfect base to explore both Bristol and the Southern Cotswolds area. The seaside town of Weston-super-Mare is easily accessible by car as well.

More coming soon…

Stay In Britain is the ultimate guide to places to stay and things to do in Great Britain. Whether you are looking for a luxury self-catering cottage, a cheap B&B for a weekend stay, a short break in a caravan park or a business-friendly hotel in the Bristol area, we have everything you need. Enjoy your stay in Britain!