10 best things to do in Bristol as a student

There is a reason why Bristol has been regularly named as one of the best cities to live in. Whether you enjoy more fast-paced activities or calming ones, there is so much variation in the things you can get up to. So, if you are a new student at Bristol, here is a sneak peek at the 10 best things to do.

1. Visit the famous Clifton Suspension Bridge and Observatory

student activities bristol
Source: Trainline

Address: Litfield Rd, Clifton, Bristol BS8 3LT

What is it?

An iconic suspension bridge with gorgeous views

Why go?

As a student at Bristol you cannot miss going to see the iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge – we guarantee you that it will become a site you often visit with your friends when strolling around Clifton or when going to see the sunset. You can also walk along the bridge to get to Leigh Woods, a vast wooded area where you can escape the busy city and go on a relaxing walk.

Whilst you are at the Suspension Bridge, why not also go and check out the Clifton Observatory. Dating back to 1766, its roof has recently been converted into a 360-degree bar, making it a prime spot to sip on some drinks and have some nibbles whilst looking over the bridge and city. It will be a great way to spice up your student experience if you fancy being a bit classier with your friends or on a date – but do not worry as this ‘fancier’ experience will not break the bank.

How much?

£5 – £20, depending on what you order at the cafe.

2. Enjoy some happy hour cocktails at Flipside Cocktail Club

cocktail bars in Bristol for students
Source: Hire Space

Address: 109 Whiteladies Rd, Redland, Bristol BS8 2PB

What is it? 

One of the best cocktail bars in Bristol.

Why go? 

As a student, there is no doubt that you will have to budget. This means that you will be looking out for the most efficient ways to spend your money; going to bars’ happy hours is the best way to do just that. Flipside Cocktail Club is a great bar to go to as its interior is lavished with green and gold furniture, making it a super chic venue. Their happy hours are between Monday and Thursday, where you can get 2 for £10 cocktails. They also have a fun menu, with one of the drinks called the Cuban Missile Crisis with Havana rum, orange and blackberry liqueur, mint, passion fruit, vanilla and lime. Flipside Cocktail Club is also situated on Whiteladies road, which means that you can hop between bars easily without worrying about travel expenses.

How much?

£4 – £20 depending on what you order

3. Go out to Thekla

clubs for students in bristol
Source: Thekla

Address: The Grove, East Mud Dock, Bristol BS1 4RB

What is it?

A popular student club.

Why go? 

There is no question that going out is a part of student life, so if you want to experience the number one most Bristol night out, then head down to Thekla. It is a one of a kind club as it is situated right on the Harbourside due to the club itself being a docked boat! They host a number of artists to perform concerts as well as putting on their weekly club nights of pop confessional and drum n bass.

How much? 

Entry tickets start around £4 on their website

4. Let off some steam at Kongs of King Street

bars for students in bristol
Source: Design my night

Address: 13-15 King St, Bristol BS1 4EF

What is it?

A gaming bar

Why go? 

Kongs of King Street is one of the most adrenaline-pumping ways to spend an evening with your friends. The venue is decked with numerous retro arcade games such as Street Fighter II, Double Dragon and PacMan. If arcade games aren’t quite to your taste, then they also have games such as ping pong, table tennis and football. What’s more, Kongs of King Street offers a wide selection of drinks which you can enjoy whilst you play, with some even from locally sourced breweries. So, if you want a change of scenery when enjoying a drink, Kongs of King Street will not disappoint.

5. Fine-tune your tactical thinking skills at Chance & Counters

cafes for students in bristol
Source: Chance & Counters

Address: 20 Christmas Steps, Bristol BS1 5BS

What is it? 

A boardgame cafe

Why go? 

If you enjoy playing board games and getting your thinking hat on, then Chance & Counters is the place to be. They offer all the games you could think of and more, with walls covered with entertaining, teamwork and tactical board games. This means that you will never be bored or reach a point where you have no other new games to play – a great challenge to set yourself and some friends. Chance & Counters also serve non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks and nibbles such as grilled halloumi, dirty fries and nachos to indulge in whilst fueling your brain. Open till 11 pm at night, you will never have to worry about rushing to play in a set time frame.

How much?

Food and drinks range from £3 to £11, and booking will require a £5 booking fee for a four hour session

6. Admire the beautiful Harbourside

places to go as a student in bristol
Source: The Times

What is it? 

A scenic spot to hang out

Why go? 

Another picturesque (and free) site in Bristol is its famous harbour. When the weather is nice, you can spend a lovely calm day just sitting by the harbour and admiring the view. There are also many things to discover right by the harbour, such as the independent cinema Watershed, cafes and bars including Riverside and St Nicholas Market.

How much?

Free!

7. Grab some food at Wapping Wharf

what to do as a student
Source: Visit Bristol

Address: Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RW

What is it? 

A vibrant group of cafes, restaurants, and food stalls.

Why go? 

Although Wapping Wharf may just look like lots of cargos stacked on top of each other when you enter, you will find some of the best restaurants and food stalls Bristol has to offer. The restaurants they offer include my personal favourite, Woky Ko, Pizzarova and The Athenian. Not only is Wapping Wharf a different way to enjoy your food, but as it is right by the harbour, you can also soak up the view whilst eating to your heart’s content.

How much? 

Free to visit, the pries depend on where you end up!

8. Visit Bristol’s history at M shed

museums for students in bristol
Source: Bristol Museums

Address: Princes Wharf, Wapping Rd, Bristol BS1 4RN

What is it?

One of Bristol’s best known museums.

Why go? 

For those of you who are history-loving students, M Shed is a free museum where you can discover over 200 years of Bristol’s history. Originally a 1950s transit shed, M Shed was converted to host many exhibits. One of their most recent additions was the showcasing of the Colston Statute, making M Shed a great way to also immerse yourself in current events, which will no doubt become historical artefacts.

How much? 

Free!

9. Ride along the Bristol to Bath cycle path

where to cycle in bristol
Source: Cycling Weekly

What is it? 

A scenic long cycle route connecting the two historic cities.

Why go? 

If you enjoy the outdoors and fancy an activity outside of the bustling city, then why not try cycling from Bristol to Bath. The Bristol and Bath Railway Path is a 24-kilometer cycleway established in the 1960s. The route starts from Lawrence Hill and goes through Easton, Fishponds and Staple Hill in Bristol, finishing at Newbridge in Bath. Riding along the cycle path will make for a fun day trip and a way to get out and exercise. It also means that you can go and discover nearby Bath and its features such as the Royal Crescent and Roman Baths. As a student,you may not own a bike. However, that is no reason to stop you from your adventures as you can hire one from shops in central Bristol such as Bristol Electric Bike Hire and Cycle the City.

How much?

Free!

10. Go along and enjoy the Bristol film festival

festivals for students in bristol
Source: Bristol Film Festival

What is it? 

A community film festival.

Why go? 

For those students who love films – and who doesn’t? – then, be sure to check out the Bristol Film Festival. The event hosts much loved films such as Interstellar, Wall-E, Edward Scissorhands and Batman at Bristol’s most famous but unusual film screening sites. The locations include Aerospace Bristol, the Arnos Vale cemetery (a Halloween special), Bristol Cathedral, the Planetarium at We the Curious, the Redcliffe caves and the Clifton Observatory. The event is such a unique way to experience the ‘cinema’ and city, you have to make sure not to miss it.

How much? 

£15 per movie ticket

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