Shopping and Eating in Bristol, U.K.
Bristol is one of the largest cities in the country of U.K..
Shopping in Bristol
Shoppers have it very easy and convenient in Bristol defined by AbbreviationFinder. Not only is there a good selection, but the main shopping districts are also close to each other. And with a record low pound rate, it’s easy to pull the Visa card an extra time.
Broadmead is located in the heart of Bristol city center, just northeast of Old Town, and is a magnet for shopping enthusiasts from across south-west Britain. Here is The Mall Galleries, a huge shopping center with over a hundred stores on three floors, including Marks & Spencer, Debenhams, House of Fraser and Boots.
Plus on the streets around The Mall, such as Broadmead itself, Merchant Street, Wine Street, Union Street and The Horsefair, you have over 300 shops to explore.
Other major shopping centers in Bristol
The other major shopping center is The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, which on its 4 floors has around 135 shops and 17 restaurants. This is just off Bristol, on the M5 and is open every day. At the time of writing, it is under construction to have a new shopping center ready for opening in the fall of 2008. Cabot Circus will be the name, and it will have around 230 stores, including a large four-storey House Of Fraser. This is located just east of Templemead.
Are you looking for the more fashionable designer brand stores, then head for the steep Park Street. Or you can head to the west of Clifton, where most of Bristol’s galleries, antique shops and wine bars have gathered around Clifton Village and Whiteladies Road. This is a finer old residential area with many Georgian mansions and villas, and you can combine this with the obligatory visit to Bristol’s foremost tourist attraction, the Clifton Suspension Bridge Bridge.
Markets in Bristol
If you enjoy markets better than department stores, you can look forward to Saint Nicholas Market, which is open six days a week. Here are a plethora of specialty retail stores under roof between St Nicholas Street and Corn Street. The market is located in the middle of the old town and has been a permanent feature of the cityscape since 1743. In addition, every Wednesday there is a Farmers Market that sells locally produced food, and on Fridays and Saturdays there are lively street markets in Corn Street. The first Sunday of the month is a Slow Food Market, a dream for every food lover.
You should also look at the special Christmas Steps, which was once a steep and narrow street between Colston Street and Lewins Mead. There are several small specialty shops, galleries, cafes and craft shops where you can find gift items out of the ordinary. And, as a matter of fact, the most special thing you can bring home from Somerset is undoubtedly Bristol Blue Glass products. Bristol Blue Glass is a glass factory that has a retail center right where you can see the products being produced on site by traditional glassmakers performing their craft.
The stores are generally open from 10am. 0900 to 1700 or 1800 Monday to Saturday, often with a long day on Thursdays. Most shops in Broadmead and The Mall Galleries are also open on Sundays. And don’t forget that for larger purchases you can get a refund of 17.5% VAT at the airport upon departure. Not all stores have this scheme, so feel free to ask first, or look for the Tax Free Shopping sign at the entrance.
Eating in Bristol
England is not primarily known for its contributions to international haute cuisine. The most famous English dishes are probably Yorkshire pudding and fish & chips, but today you will find very few restaurants in Bristol serving exclusively English fare.
Multiethnic food traditions in Bristol
Due to its centuries-old history as one of the most important port cities in England, Bristol has a more multi-ethnic population than most other cities, which contributes significantly to a good and varied selection of restaurant services. However, Bristol’s immigrants are also more integrated than in other cities, and for that reason you will not find your own Chinatown or Little India in Bristol such as you. do in London, Manchester or Liverpool.
Among the better and most romantic restaurants in Bristol, we highlight The Glassboat, a 1924 boat that has been at Welsh Back, right on the Bristol Bridge for the past twenty years.
Here you will find European-inspired food, mainly French cuisine with English ingredients for candlelight and a brilliant view. The Swedish flag hanging on the back of the boat is due to the owner’s nationality.
A little further down the street, in The Grove, is the modern Severnshed restaurant in an old boat house built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel in the 19th century. It also Visit the restaurant’s rotating bar.
We can recommend the Nepali / Indian Kathmandu restaurant located in Colston Street. It is very popular and table booking is a good idea, especially for weekend dinners. Bristol’s restaurant offerings are constantly evolving, so check out the latest additions to our Bristol holiday links page.
Beverages and nightlife in Bristol
As for drinks, Bristol, like the rest of the UK, has a lively pub culture. But where other cities pay tribute to their ale, lager or stout, cider is the focus of Bristol and the rest of southwest England. The world’s second largest cider producer, Gaymer, is based in Somerset, making local favorites including Blackthorn and Olde English. Also try Scrumpy Jack, which is significantly more tasteful, and stronger, than the other ciders.
Bristol has an exceptionally exuberant nightlife that we in Travelplanet have hardly seen since the time we visited Dublin. On weekends, the pubs are full of mornings if there is football on TV, and in the evenings, it is teeming with cheerful stag parties, most wearing more or less dressy Playbunny or pirate costumes. Pubs and clubs can be found just about everywhere, but most draw to the lively pub streets of King Street and Corn Street, or to the slightly more fashionable Park Street and Whiteladies Road. And, of course, the countless cafes and restaurants at Harborside are popular.