Food and Drink in Bristol (Avonmouth)
Bristol is a city that loves its food, so you'll definitely be spoilt for choice when it comes to fuelling yourself for sightseeing. As a culturally diverse city, its different areas are known for different cuisines. St Mark's Road in Easton (East Bristol, where the city meets the countryside) is known for its Asian and Middle Eastern restaurants, while elegant Clifton dishes up perfectly presented traditionally British cuisine. If you want a really great burger, Park Street and the Triangle, in the Shopping Quarter, are the places to go.
While you can easily eat your way around the world, the city takes inspiration from its position in the South West of England, with some really good spots to take afternoon 'Devonshire Cream' teas -- including scones with cream and jam, and tea served in proper tea pots -- tuck into a Cornish pasty -- a pastry parcel stuffed with minced beef and vegetables.
St Nicholas Markets: This central collection of markets (known as St Nicks), is held in the beautiful Exchange Building and on the streets and squares surrounding it, and is a buzzing place to be, whatever day you visit. Foodies won't want to miss the Friday Food Market on Wine Street, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., but you'll always find plenty of street food and quick eats here. (Glass Arcade; Monday to Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday breakfast, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
Watershed: The Watershed is a culture hub at the Harbourside that also benefits from a cafe/bar that's a cut above the usual city centre chains. Food is fresh, local and seasonal, the coffee and cakes are always good, and the waterside views are unbeatable. (1 Canons Road, Harbourside; 0044-117-927-5101; Monday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesday to Friday, 9.30 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.).
La Casbah: Head to St Mark's Road in Easton and you'll be spoilt for choice if you like spicy food. La Casbah is a little different though, as a much-loved Moroccan and Mediterranean eatery. Try the lamb tagine followed by mint tea and sticky baklava pastries for a taste of exotic Morocco in Bristol. (96 St Mark's Road; 0044-117-939-8804; Monday to Thursday, 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., Sunday, 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.).
Azuzu Coffee Shop: This smart independent coffee shop boasts a brilliant position in the historic Almshouse at the entrance to The Galleries shopping centre -- a perfect place for a pit stop when you're laden down with shopping bags. (19/21 Merchant Street; 0044-117-927-9810; Monday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
Greens: If fine dining with an incredibly affordable price tag appeals to you then Greens will be right up your street. The bargain lunch menu is available Tuesday to Saturday, and typically includes tempting options such as ham hash cake with poached eggs for starters, and roast pork belly or smoked haddock mains. (25 Zetland Road; 0044-117-924-6437; lunch, Tuesday to Saturday 12 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.).
Riverstation: This modern waterside restaurant boasts great harbour views and a fresh, light and airy feel, thanks to a large outdoor terrace and huge glass windows. You can eat there for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner -- or just pull up a chair on the terrace for drinks from the impressive cocktail menu. (Monday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Friday, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
Maitreya Social: Vegetarians simply have to try this very highly rated restaurant on ethnic-hub St Mark's Road. This restaurant/bar/art gallery/live music venue is a lively and exciting place to be, and that's reflected in its meat-free menus which boast seasonal, local and, where possible, organic ingredients. (89 St Mark's Road; 0044-117-951-0100; Tuesday to Thursday, 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
Bar Chocolate: If you're planning on a wander around smart Clifton village, make sure you pop into Bar Chocolate to satisfy a sweet tooth. The hot chocolates are legendary here! (19 The Mall, Clifton Village; 0044-117-974-7000; Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.).
Don't Miss in Bristol (Avonmouth)
Blackbeard to Banksy, The Ultimate Bristol Walking Tour: This fun and kooky two-hour tour is a great way to get an easy-going grounding of what Bristol is all about. As well as showing you Bristol's best street art, your enthusiastic tour guide will walk you through Bristol's past, spinning tales of pirates, smugglers, Blitz raids and more. (Tours leave outside the Cathedral main entrance; 0044-7909-221-684; Thursday to Sunday, 11:30 a.m.).
Bristol Museum and Art Gallery: This free museum boasts a brilliant collection of exhibits, with something to interest everyone, including Egyptian mummies, the Bristol dinosaur and the famous gorilla 'Alfred' to excite the kids, and a good collection of paintings, pottery and glass for grown-up art lovers. (Queens Road; 0044-117-922-3571; Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).
M Shed: Another free attraction, this art museum and media centre has a great position beside Bristol's floating harbour, and always has an exciting collection of exhibits, including film, photography, art and more. (Princes Wharf; 0044-117-352-6600; Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.).
Clifton Suspension Bridge: This world famous bridge is one of Bristol's best-loved landmarks, designed by Victorian engineer Brunel. Set into the cliffs of the Avon Gorge, it's quite a sight and sits alongside pretty Clifton village, a great spot for independent shops. (Clifton Bridge Visitor Centre; Leigh Woods; Daily, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
Brunel's ss Great Britain: This award-winning Bristol visitor attraction is known as "the ship that changed the world", and was the first of its kind, as designed by master engineer Brunel. (Great Western Dockyard; 0044-117-926-0680; spring/summer opening, daily, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., autumn/winter opening, daily, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.).
Cabot Tower: This gothic-style tower sits in picturesque Brandon Hill, which is the oldest park in Bristol, and offers visitors great views over the city -- if they're willing to climb its steep spiral staircase. (Brandon Hill Park, Park Street; 0044-117-922-3719; open early morning, usually 8 a.m., until dusk; free entry).
Queen Square: This elegant garden square occupies the heart of the city, between the charming Old City and the revamped Harbourside. (Old City; 0044-117-903-1484).
Cabot Circus: Cabot Circus is part of Bristol's Shopping Quarter, with over 120 shops and stores, including Harvey Nichols and House of Fraser, under a shell-shaped glass roof.
Arnolfini: This international contemporary arts centre and gallery sits at the waterfront in Bristol's bustling Harbourside and has everything going on from video installations and sculpture to theatrical performances and live music. (16 Narrow Quay; 44-00-117-917-2300; Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.).
Stonehenge: If you've got an interest in Neolithic history, archaeology or spiritualism, the prehistoric stone circle at Stonehenge is well worth the 90-minute trip from Bristol. (Near Amesbury; 0044-370 333-1181; winter opening times, daily, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., summer opening times, daily 9:30 a.m. to 7 or 8 p.m.).