Bath & Bristol

(Last Updated On: 23rd April 2020)

Bath & Bristol Area Sightseeing & Activities Guide

All the events, activities, places to visit and things to do in this Bath & Bristol guide are less than an hour’s drive from Tythe Farm, The Old Oak House, Stable Cottage, Meadow View, The Dovecote and the Shepherd’s Hut our Avon Farm Estate Holiday Cottages.

Events

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta (August)

http://bristolballoonfiesta.co.uk/

This is Europe’s largest annual meeting of hot air balloons, attracting over 130 from across the globe. A spectacular free event featuring hot air balloons taking off at dawn and dusk. Taking place at Ashton Court, the event is free, but parking is charged for and can be pre-booked.

 O2 Academy – Bristol

https://academymusicgroup.com/o2academybristol/events/all

Bristol is renowned for its vibrant music scene attracting bands and performers from far and wide.  The Academy hosts a wide range of live shows from the latest acts and classical performers, to nights from the biggest club brands.

Valley Fest (August) – Bristol

https://valleyfest.co.uk/

A family friendly festival, in a stunning location overlooking Chew Valley Lake. The festival celebrates organic food and farming, as well as a wide variety of live music.

Bristol Harbour Festival (July)

https://www.bristolharbourfestival.co.uk/

Showcasing Bristol’s maritime heritage, the festival celebrates the historic floating harbour’s rich history, with free family-friendly activities programmed on the water’s edge. This is a unique opportunity to explore the culture of Bristol. 

Jane Austen Festival (September) – Bath

https://www.janeaustenfestivalbath.co.uk/

Celebrating the life of Jane Austen, the festival features a range of talks and workshops that take place in various venues across the city. 

Bath Carnival (July)

https://www.bathcarnival.co.uk/

An unmissable annual spectacle of sequins, feathers and tassels, with music that is guaranteed to make you swing and sway all day long. The carnival also has workshops, kids’ activities and plenty of food and drink stalls to enjoy. 

The Bath Festival (May)

https://bathfestivals.org.uk/the-bath-festival/

A multi-arts celebration of all things music and literature. 160 events are spread over more than 2 weeks. It features many genres of music, including rock, classical and world music.

Bath Christmas Market (December)

https://bathchristmasmarket.co.uk/

The award-winning market takes place over 18 days and features over 150 chalets – festooned with twinkling, festive lights. If you want to get in the Christmas mood, this is the place to visit! Food and drink stalls serve delicious, seasonally inspired goodies, including glühwein, Christmas cookies and hot chocolate.

For Big & Little Kids 

Avon Valley Adventure and Wildlife Park – Bath

https://www.avonvalley.co.uk/

An adventure park for children of all ages, with many activities to choose from and just 2.5 miles from Avon Farm Estate. Children can enjoy the unique indoor and outdoor activities that the park has to offer, including the new Mini Jeep Safari, as well as, of course, the diverse range of wildlife.

AirHop Bristol

https://www.airhop-bristol.com/

The largest trampoline park in the world with over 177 trampolines! A perfect activity for kids and (big kids) of all ages – there’s a wide variety of activities such as a Wipeout Zone, Dodgeball courts, Battle Beams and foam pits. 

We The Curious – Bristol

https://www.wethecurious.org/

We The Curious has over 300 science-related exhibits, each taking visitors on journey to explore the inner workings of the world around us. The events and activities aim to stoke curiosity in everyone. The organisers sum it up as a place where “Boundaries are removed between science, art, people and ideas… DO touch the exhibits, DO use your phone, DO laugh out loud – bring your kids, friends, grandparents or come and escape on your own.” 

Bristol Blue Glass

https://www.bristol-glass.co.uk/

Visit the studios of the James Adlington and Peter St Clair who make fabulous blue glass and also run blue bauble making classes for adults and children. Go and watch the glass being blown or take part and make something blue yourself.

Avon River Boat Trip – Bath

https://riveradventures.co.uk/

View the beautiful regency city of Bath from a different perspective and enjoy a boat tour along the River Avon.

Clifton Observatory – Bristol

cliftonobservatory.com/

Formerly a mill, this historic 1766 building is now an observatory. It offers superb views of the City of Bristol and features a Camera Obscura.

Time To Relax 

Thermae Bath Spa – Bath

www.thermaebathspa.com/

This wonderful spa, fed by naturally warm, mineral-rich water, is set in one of the most aesthetically pleasing settings in the UK. Plenty of spa treatments and experiences to choose from plus a restaurant and visitor centre to enjoy. The spa is next to the Roman Spa museum, one of the best interactive museums in the country!

Bristol Lido & Spa

www.lidobristol.com/

For a unique spa experience head to Bristol Lido in the heart of Clifton, which features a restored Victorian swimming pool, café and restaurant and wonderful spa that uses their unique Lido Spa products.

Nature-Lovers

Bristol Zoo

https://www.bristolzoo.org.uk/

Bristol Zoo Gardens is the fifth oldest zoo in the world and is a fantastic place to visit for both adults and children. The zoo is part of Bristol Zoological Society, a conservation and education charity, which runs and operates Bristol Zoo Gardens and the Wild Place Project. 

Prior Park Landscape Garden – Bath

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/prior-park-landscape-garden

If you’re visiting Bath for the day but feel the need to get out in the open, head to this 18th-century landscape garden in the city, created by local entrepreneur Ralph Allen, with advice from ‘Capability’ Brown and the poet Alexander Pope. It is a place to take a walk and experience the beautiful nature and landscapes that Bath offers. 

Dyrham Park

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/dyrham-park

The sumptuous National Trust-owned, 17th-century Dyrham Park house is set in a beautiful, ancient deer park. The gardens have many stunning plants and wildlife, while the housing interior includes 17th century paintings and furniture. There is also a children’s play area at Old Lodge, providing space for little ones to burn off some energy.

Bristol Aquarium at the Harbourside

https://www.bristolaquarium.co.uk/

A fabulous showcase of tropical, marine and freshwater creatures from around the world in natural-inspired habitats. Great for all ages and situated in the Bristol Harbourside area where there are lots of other sights and activities to visit, including the Bristol M- Shed, We the Curious (see above), the Harbourside Festival (July) and Brunel’s SS Great Britain and lots of waterside restaurants.

Cheddar Gorge

https://www.cheddargorge.co.uk/

Though neither in Bristol or Bath, this spectacular 400ft deep and three-mile long gorge is only 40 minutes’ drive from the estate and well worth a visit, so it just had to be included in our guide! 

The Kennet and Avon Canal

https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/enjoy-the-waterways/canal-and-river-network/kennet-and-avon-canal

This 87-mile long waterway links London with the Bristol Channel and is less than a mile walk from Avon Farm Estate, just down Avon Lane. Explore this incredibly diverse waterway on foot or by bicycle – at a leisurely pace though, this is not the place to set your PB!

Walks

Footpaths and bridleways (bike/horse-riding paths) lead directly from the estate – the owners are happy to point you in the right direction. You will also find a copy of the local map ‘Saltford on Foot’ at the cottage. The Bristol & Bath Railway Path (see below) is a stone’s throw from Avon Farm Estate and can be joined near the Bird in Hand pub, just half a mile down Avon Lane.   

Harbour Heritage Trails – Bristol

http://www.bristolfloatingharbour.org.uk/harbour-trails/heritage-trails/

For a really interesting insight into Bristol’s heritage, it’s well worth exploring the city’s Floating Harbour – nearly eight miles of waterways packed into three miles across the city. There are seven heritage trails to follow, which delve into Bristol shipping, explorer, and aviation history. Fantastic for all ages! 

Theatre & Culture

American Museum and Gardens – Bath

https://americanmuseum.org/

Home to the only collection of Americana outside of the United States. The museum is host to an interactive American heritage exhibition and period rooms from the colonial times and the Civil War. It shows the diverse and complex nature of American traditions. 

The Historic Roman Baths – Bath

https://www.romanbaths.co.uk/

One of the greatest, and most well-preserved religious spas and sites of historic interest in Northern Europe. The unique thermal springs rise at the Baths, which now sit well-below the modern-day street level. Visitors can experience the baths as they were in Roman times through an audio-visual tour, costumed characters and a great activity trail for children. 

Holburne Museum – Bath

https://www.holburne.org/

The museum features exhibitions extraordinary paintings and works of art collected by Sir William Holburne (1793-1874), fifth baronet of Menstrie. 

No.1 Royal Crescent – Bath

http://no1royalcrescent.org.uk/

Now a museum, No.1 Royal Crescent is furnished like it was in 1776-96. The museum is a perfect example of Georgian architecture and Bath stone, it also shows the different cultures within Bath in different time periods. 

Bristol Hippodrome

https://visitbristol.co.uk/things-to-do/the-bristol-hippodrome-p24301

One of the UK’s top, family-friendly provincial theatres, staging West End and Broadway productions from The Lion King to Beautiful – The Carole King Musical. The theatre performs musicals, ballet, concerts, comedians and children’s shows. 

Bristol Old Vic

https://bristololdvic.org.uk/

The oldest continuously working theatre in the English-speaking world. The theatre offers a wide range of performances from different genres. 

Aerospace Bristol

http://aerospacebristol.org/

A new industrial heritage museum that explores the story of Bristol’s world-class aerospace industry and…step aboard the last Concorde ever to fly! Lots to do with children of all ages. 

Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

https://www.bristolmuseums.org.uk/bristol-museum-and-art-gallery/

An exquisite collection of art, nature and history, including the history of how people lived in the past compared to the present day. The museum explores cultures of different nations, in order to educate about how different lives for others were, for example the museum explores Japanese culture and history. A museum that’s the perfect size for young visitors – not too little but not too much either! 

Avon Valley Railway

https://www.avonvalleyrailway.org/

The railway has been preserved by a hands-on group of volunteers. Steam locomotives and their carriages have been restored and three miles of track re-laid. Come and experience an historic railway, like no other, hold a birthday party, learn to drive a steam locomotive or step on board the Santa Special. 

Jane Austen Centre – Bath

https://www.janeausten.co.uk/

A permanent exhibition situated in a traditional and original Georgian townhouse. The Centre tells the story of Jane’s time in Bath, while also explaining the effect that living in Bath had on her writing and on herself. There are also walking tours of Georgian and Regency Bath.

Big Kids Only 

Bath Ales Brewery Tours

https://bathales.com/

Take guided tour of the Bath Ales Hare Brewery, which combines state-of-the-art technology with traditional artisan methods. There will be a guided sampling session and two half pints at the taproom, after the guided tour of the brewhouse. The tours must be pre-booked in advance. 

The 6 o’clock Gin Distillery Tour – Bristol

https://www.6oclockgin.com/product/distillery-tours/

With the help of an expert guide, you can experience the wonders of the process of gin making, from botanicals to bottling. It is also possible to find out about how to craft the artisan whole-fruit liqueurs. There will be a tutored tasting and a glassful of “Ginspiration”. 

Bristol Hoppers tours

https://www.bristolhoppers.co.uk/

The Hoppers Walking Tour is a great way to enjoy a wide selection of Bristol’s best beers. The tour takes you through Bristol’s docks and old town, with four stops along the way to quench your thirst with a fine craft beer. On each tour you’ll enjoy a minimum of seven delicious local beers, all included in the price.

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