Bristol is a grand city made famous by its rich history as a port and trading hub. It is widely known that in 1837 Bristol born engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel launched the famous Great Western steamship that was built in the city’s harbour. But as with many other cities, these famous tales often overshadow things that might otherwise take prominence. For example, as well as being a historic and creative city, Bristol has an array of natural attractions including parks, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens and more. Check out some of these enjoyable nature activities in Bristol!
University of Bristol Botanical Gardens
The University of Bristol’s botanical gardens were opened in 1882 by Adolf Leipner – the Lecturer of Botany at the time – for a mere £15. Since then the gardens have seen many thousands of visitors every year and continue to thrive. With four impressive plant collections and a further four greenhouses filled with tropical and sub-tropical plants, there is no shortage of interesting things to see. Opening times from April – September are from 10:00am – 4:30pm and it costs £3.50 to get in at the time of writing. School age kids go free.
Avon Valley Adventure and Wildlife Park
Avon Valley is the perfect place to take the kids during the summer holiday, as there are plenty of attractions and events to fill a whole day (perhaps even two). Attractions include a huge indoor soft play arena, pet’s corner, quad bikes and boat rides. One of the park’s great selling points is that it gets the kids out in the fresh air and away from the television. The main park is open from the 23rd March (opening times are 10:00am – 6:00pm, Mon – Sun). It costs £8.00 for an adult and £7.50 for concessions and children. Kids under 2 go free.
The Bristol Aquarium is home to a wide array of sea life including sharks, rays and a multitude of species that are native to the UK. As if the resident giant octopus wasn’t enough, there is also an underwater tunnel constructed with 2 inch thick glass which houses puffer fish, butterfly fish and wrasse among others. The aquarium opens 7 days a week from 10am – 5pm and a one day adult ticket costs £13.00. Child tickets are £9.00, Senior and Student tickets are £12.00 and family tickets are available for £38.50 (2 adults & 2 children)
If you’re looking for a Bristol hotel, consider staying somewhere quite central, as the city itself is quite big and can be difficult to navigate if you don’t have a car. The Bristol Mercure is very conveniently placed and has the added benefit of a spa to rest your weary body after a day of exploration.
If you haven’t yet, check out our Bristol Travel Guide as well for even more great things to do!