Bristol’s Hidden Gems: 5 must-see attractions nobody is talking about

Snapshot-ready architecture, vibrant street art, intriguing art galleries and incredible shopping experiences – there are so many reasons to visit Bristol. But in this blog, we’ll share the reasons you’re likely less familiar with. Get ready to learn all about Bristol’s hidden gems!

1. Clifton Suspension Bridge hidden vaults

Once thought to be made of solid stone, the vaults hidden beneath the Clifton Suspension Bridge were only discovered in 2002 by local contractors providing maintenance work. After being cleared out, incredible, towering structures filled with eerie-looking stalagmites and stalactites were revealed. Fancy a trip? Tourists and locals alike can explore the vaults on a tour organised by the Clifton Suspension Bridge Trust. You’ll learn all about the history of this famous landmark before taking a peek inside two of the twelve secret chambers disguised below!

2. Bristol Lido

Located just outside Bristol in the historic town of Clifton is the Bristol Lido. Known for being a super-cool urban oasis, this is the ideal spot to take some time out by yourself or with loved ones. The Lido Restaurant certainly deserves a visit even if that’s all you do at the venue. Comprising a vibrant menu of Spanish, Moroccan, and Turkish food amongst many other cuisines, all ingredients are sourced locally. Visitors can also take a dip in the heated swimming pool before visiting the hot tub, sauna, and steam room to unwind. And with a spa onsite, it would be rude not to indulge in a dreamy massage or facial treatment, concluding a luxurious day of well-deserved relaxation.

3. Clifton Arcade

For those with a desire to support local independent businesses, Clifton Arcade is the place to be. First opened in 1878, this Victorian arcade never quite gained traction as a shopping venue. But the building was later restored and has been an integral part of Bristol ever since. Visitors will find a unique collection of gifts, antiques, jewellery, and more inside the arcade. Plus, there are hairdressers, art galleries, and the popular Primrose Cafe – ideal for a bite to eat or a warming drink. Not only is this the ultimate shopper’s paradise, but it certainly makes for a fun-filled day out!

4. Temple Quay and Valentine Bridge

Boasting green spaces, bustling bars, must-visit eateries, and more nestled amongst property developments and business hotspots, Temple Quay provides plenty of excitement for visitors. The Valentine Bridge, which was named on February 14th, snakes in fascinating fashion across the Floating Harbour in the heart of Temple Quay. It presents a unique way to get from one side of the water to the other, with superb views of the area. Especially during the summer months, a casual stroll along the riverside goes down a treat!

5. Christmas Steps

No matter how you choose to spend your time in Bristol, you can’t leave without a trip to the Christmas Steps. A steep street nestled in the heart of this south-western city, it’s full of unique history, signposted by helpful plaques. And although you may think this attraction has links to Christmas, it’s lined from top to bottom with independent shops, pubs, and much more. Without a doubt, this quirky, Instagram-worthy street has something for everyone. And for those who struggle with the climb, there are even alcoves at the top providing a welcome seat for a moment’s relaxation.