days out parenting

24 hours in Bristol with kids!

24 hours in Bristol with kids!

Do you ever have those crazy ideas where you say, let’s stop off on our long journey over the Bank Holiday weekend? As if the traffic isn’t usually bad enough over a BH weekend we broke our journey to south Devon in Bristol. It’s one of my favourite cities and one we rarely go to since we had our kids. I have such happy memories of exploring Bristol with my husband and longed to re-visit some of our old haunts. So we booked into the Bristol Marriot Royal Hotel for a whistle-stop adventure in Bristol as a family of four.

We’ve stayed in the Bristol Marriot Royal Hotel a few times and it’s the perfect location, right in the heart of the city. We checked into the hotel, dumped our bags and went out exploring. We had less than 24 hours so decided to concentrate on things which the kids would enjoy.

24 hours in Bristol with kids

We walked along to the Harbourside and visited the Tourist Information Centre. We picked up a few leaflets which helped us decide what to do. The kids love boat trips so we chose to go on a 45 minute Bristol Packet Boat Trip. This was the perfect way to find out more about Bristol and we got to see some amazing sites, such as the SS Great Britain and the Matthew of Bristol.

on the Bristol Packet Boat Trip

Then it was on to explore some of the city by foot. We really wanted to visit At-Bristol Science Centre but we couldn’t justify the price of a ticket as we didn’t have much time. Instead we explored the area around it, Millennium Square. There was a large water feature which the children really wanted to paddle in but sadly we didn’t have time. The weather was lovely and it was full of kids splashing around. Instead we walked around and looked at the statues of famous Bristolians such as Cary Grant, William Penn, William Tyndale and Thomas Chatterton.

I had picked up a walking map of the street art around Bristol and we decided to visit a few. We walked over to M Shed to see Banksy’s Grim Reaper which was taken from the side of the ship Thekla. The museum looked amazing, and was free, so we definitely want to go back.

Banksy's Grim Reaper M Shed Bristol

We walked back past our hotel to go in search of more Banksy and street art. We found Banksy’s Well Hung Lover, which I just *loved* explaining to the kids.

Banksy's Well Hung Lover

Then walked over to the Banksy behind Bristol Library which has sadly been half knocked down with a door put through it. After that it was time to head off and meet some old friends for dinner.

Banksy You Don't Need Planning Permission Bristol Library

The next day we were able to visit the Clifton Suspension Bridge and Observatory. I love Clifton but had forgotten how hilly it was! Thankfully it helped walk off some of the breakfast we had indulged in at our hotel! We climbed up to the Observatory, past a little play park which thankfully the children didn’t spot. You can climb up as there is a lovely little cafe at the top, a brilliant place to stop and admire the view.

Clifton Suspension Bridge and Observatory

We had a brilliant time, albeit a little rushed and short. There were so many things we could have done, like re-visit the SS Great Britain. My 5 year old saw a Bristol Pirate Walk taking place which we’ve promised we’ll do next time. We’ve been lucky enough to visit when Bristol Doors Open Days takes place and seen inside some amazing buildings which are not normally open. There are so many things I love about Bristol that I’m sure we’ll be back for a longer visit soon.


  • Reply
    August 27, 2017 at 10:17 am

    Bristol is a city I’d love to visit, we have lots of family who live there so we’ve got no excuse other than time and distance. It does sound like there’s so much to do for families and the hotel is in the perfect location!

  • Reply
    Flavour Seeker
    August 27, 2017 at 11:14 am

    Lovely post, you’ve inspired me to revisit Bristol.

  • Reply
    Cottage Garden Trio
    August 27, 2017 at 7:45 pm

    I live in Bristol and this sounds like a good way to spend 24 hours here. I also recommend some of the larger animal parks around Bristol if you’re ever staying for longer

  • Reply
    Lynne Harper
    August 27, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    I have never been to Bristol but it looks like you guys had fun. It’s always great exploring new places 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah | A Few Favourite Things
    August 27, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    Bristol is on my UK bucket list. I keep seeing new places to visit there, that I might have to stay for more than a few days to fit is all in

  • Reply
    Monday happy things {Week 152} -
    August 28, 2017 at 8:58 am

    […] On Thursday we headed off to Bristol. We stayed at the Bristol Marriott Royal and did a little bit of sightseeing as well as dinner with friends. You can check out my post on 24 hours in Bristol with kids. […]

  • Reply
    Laura H
    August 30, 2017 at 12:24 am

    I’ve only been to Bristol once but it seemed like a really great city! Didn’t get to do much tourism as I was there to see a friend but now I want to head back to check this stuff out!

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