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Bristol city guide: the best places to eat, drink and stay in the UK’s greenest city

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Megan Murray
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Welcome to our Bristol city guide with recommendations of the best places to stay, eat, drink and things to do. 

Bristol is already adored for its creative vibe and experimental food scene, but it seems there’s plenty more strings to its bow than that.

Although we’re sure the residents would be happy to tell you that sustainability is a big focus of the community, this has been officially recognised in research which has crowned Bristol as the greenest city in the UK.

The Bristol Post reported last year that a Compare the Market study named Bristol locals as the most eco-minded in the country using a number of factors such as recycling use, air quality, Google searches for ‘recycling centre’ and ‘electric cars’ and green spaces. 

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But this isn’t the only title that’s putting Bristol on the map, and ahead of the rest of the UK. The south-western city has also been recognised as the kindest place to be, which is pretty lovely, isn’t it?

A study that was conducted as part of partnership between 52 Lives and Gala Bingo looked at how many Bristolians would give money to the homeless, help a stranger in need, support a loved one and pick up rubbish, and were found to be the most kind-hearted people in the country.

So, with buckets of culture, plenty to see and do, and some of the nicest people you could hope to meet – what’s stopping you taking a trip to Bristol?

Here, we’ve gathered together some tried and tested recommendations of the best places to eat, drink and stay in Brighton. 

Where to stay:

  • The Bristol

    Best place to stay in Bristol: The Bristol

    This modern hotel is in one of the best spots in the city, sitting right on the waterfront and looking out across Bristol’s harbour. Its central location means you’re in the thick of it (in a good way), and not far from the buzzy bars and restaurants.

    Spacious and comfortable, The Bristol is a lovely place to stay for the weekend and its staff are especially friendly, happy to do their absolute best to make your stay go as smoothly as possible.

    The hotel has deliberately opted for understated but refined décor, making it universally appealing. Its rooms are flooded with natural light, some with harbour views. 

Where to eat:

  • Bravas

    Best place to eat in Bristol: Bravas

    We have it on good authority that this authentic tapas restaurant serves “the best tapas of all time” and does so in an informal and atmospheric setting.

    The owners say that the inspiration behind the restaurant came after frequent trips to Spain, where they observed the delightfully unpretentious nature of tapas restaurants. Keen to replicate this easy-going vibe back at home, they created Bravas, which is all about good food and simple surroundings.

    The menu is full of treats such as fried aubergine with molasses, Catalan lamb bombas and chorizo cooked in cider, so we don’t think you’ll struggle to pick something to your liking.

Where to drink:

  • Under the Stars Bar

    Best place to drink in Bristol: Under the Stars

    Under the Stars is a stylishly rustic bar and kitchen situated below deck on a boat in Narrow Quay.

    The creative cocktail menu has a 1920s theme with drinks like the Charlie Chaplin (a mix of vodka, passionfruit liqueur, elderflower, lemon and prosecco) and Rock the Cazcabel (honey tequila, cider brandy, zubrowka vodka, lemon, sugar and orange bitters) gracing its pages.

    We love the intimate vibe and décor touches like bare wooden floorboards, retro lightbulbs and cosy bench seating. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a few libations in the summer, watching the sun set on the water. 

Things to do:

  • St Nicholas Market

    If there’s one thing you must do in Bristol, it’s take it slow and appreciate the pure joy of ambling around. From the masses of beautiful, old churches to gaze at, hidden places to sit and watch the world go by like Queen Square to the street art that’s dotted all over the city, the best thing to do is just walk.

    But you may want to centre your walk, or at least pass through, St Nicholas Market which is a bustling, Georgian arcade filled with interesting shops. Here you’ll find a mix of independent shops, stalls and food choices that will make your day a little sweeter. 

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Megan Murray

Megan Murray is a digital journalist for stylist.co.uk, who enjoys writing about London happenings, beautiful places, delicious morsels and generally spreading sparkle wherever she can.

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