Explore Bristol: Your guide to Clifton

By Yuup

Last updated on Tuesday 16 April 2024

Go to Clifton for its beautiful architecture and iconic Bristol sights, then stay for the incredible food and experiences this area has to offer. 

Clifton is filled with amazing indie businesses, with the Clifton Downs to the north and the Clifton Suspension Bridge just a stroll away. Here’s our guide to just some of the exciting things you can do in this area of Bristol…

Experiences for food lovers

Foodies also won’t want to miss the exceptional gastro experiences Clifton has to offer. On Whiteladies Road, the legendary Ruby & White will take you behind the scenes of their butchers and food hall, where you can roll your sleeves up and try your hand at butchery. From concocting your own flavours as you try sausage making to a one-off discover butchery experience, where you’ll learn about a variety of meat cuts with their chief butcher and take a selection of fresh cuts home with you. 

Nearby on Chandos Road you’ll also find Cooking It, who have a whole host of cooking evenings, like Spanish tapas and authentic Sri Lankan dishes. Their experiences are perfect for anyone who wants to try cooking up new recipes, then most importantly, you'll devour your handy work with a glass of wine or two afterwards. We also recommend their cupcake baking and decorating for anyone with a sweet tooth!

Ruby and White in Bristol
Where to eat

Coffee in Clifton
You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to indie cafes and restaurants in and around Clifton. If you’re looking for a coffee head just off Whiteladies Road to Burra, Bristol’s newest antipodean cafe, or drop into Bakesmiths at the other end of Whiteladies Road where you’ll find divine cakes, pastries and homemade salads as well as delicious coffees. 

East Village Cafe CliftonPhoto credit: East Village Cafe  

Clifton food
Over in Clifton Village Fishers Restaurant has the finest fresh fish, and possibly the best fishcakes in town - or if you fancy a top fish and chip takeaway, head down the road to Clifton Village Fish Bar. The independent East Village Cafe has pastel-coloured vegan cakes covered, as well as hot chocolate and even vegan ice cream for a sunny day. The newly opened Sunday General is also filled with fresh bread, specialty chocolates and wines, and lined with deli treats for hungry stomachs. Head to The Mall for a delicious curry at Nutmeg, or if you’re an ale drinker, Nettle & Rye has all the craft beer you could wish for with food to boot. Back on Whiteladies Road you’ll find Bosco Pizza with a menu packed full of pizza, pasta and small plates like arancini and wild boar ragu.

If you're on the lookout for unique wines, drop into DBM Wines on Princess Victoria Street where you'll find a whole range of great value grapes from owners Richard, Aidan and Susan. Susan is actually one of only 300 Masters of Wine in the world, so we can guarantee you'll be in good hands whatever you're looking for!

Foodies will love getting in the kitchen with Cooking It on Chandos Road

Where to visit

Clifton Suspension Bridge
A visit to Clifton wouldn’t be complete without a wander to Bristol’s iconic Clifton Suspension Bridge. If you’re keen to delve a little deeper in the bridge and Clifton’s history, why not book crime and crinolines in Clifton, a walking experience with the incredible Show of Strength. This experience will take you back in time as you walk in the footsteps of the area's most famous residents and marvel at its mysteries. 

Clifton Suspension Bridge

The Downs and Clifton Observatory
On the sprawling Clifton Downs you’ll find incredible views from the Clifton Observatory and you might even spot a goat or two on as you walk along the Avon Gorge paths. With a coffee shop sitting centrally on the Downs, it’s the perfect spot for a long wander with dreamy Bristol views. For the summer, you’ll find Breaking Bread back in their spot on the Downs for drinks and some of the best food in town. If you want to try something new while you’re there, why not book an Afrofusion dance fitness experience, which happens outdoors on the Downs (sequins are always welcome at this dance party with a twist!). Or experience the trapeze in an outdoor aerial arts workshop hosted by the talented Lavrak Circus - also outdoors and guaranteed to be lots of fun!

Giants Cave
From the observatory, you can walk into Giant’s Cave, or Ghyston’s Cave as it’s often called. This natural limestone cave in the cliffs of the Avon Gorge will take you 200 feet down to an opening in the Avon Gorge and the most beautiful Bristol views. 

What to do

Clifton life coaching adventure walk
Explore the beautiful streets of Clifton on this mini life adventure coaching walk whilst getting a deeper understanding of your authentic self, your purpose and your many possibilities! Your host, Claire, will lead you on a creative journey of discovery as you explore with fellow adventurers, draw, take notes and realise your truest self.

Life coaching walk in Clifton

Improv for beginners
Bristol Improv Theatre have been masters of entertainment and fun over Zoom during  the last year, but you can now join them round the corner from Bristol Improv HQ in an improv for beginners workshop. In Clifton’s leafy Arlington Gardens you’ll play games to spark creativity and fire up your imagination, making the great outdoors your stage!

Folktrails story walk in Leigh Woods
Cross the bridge and go a little further and you’ll reach Leigh Woods, where you can explore folklore, storytelling and nature in a Folktrails story walk. Take in the beauty of these peaceful woods just a stone's throw from the city and discover species and stories you won’t forget.

Outdoor aerial arts workshop
Join your professional aerialist host for a one hour, fun-filled aerial arts experience on the Clifton Downs. You’ll be able to choose from trying aerial silks, aerial hoop, dance trapeze or a bit of all three!

Crime and crinolines in Clifton
From Brunel's Suspension Bridge to Birdcage Walk, discover the many hidden stories held in the streets of Clifton in Show of Strength's crime and crinolines in Clifton walking experience. 

Dance fitness
Dancing on the Clifton Downs, this Afrofusion dance fitness experience is a mixture of dance steps and high energy fitness moves. The two will be combined to create fun choreography and a lively experience that you’ll love!

Creativity club with Chandos Atelier
Throw yourself into two hours of unbridled creativity in this adult art club experience with Emma, from Chandos Atelier. Let your inner artist out as you enjoy the freedom of making whatever you fancy on the day.

Chandos Atelier creative club in Clifton

Where are your favourite spots in Bristol? Get to know the city more this summer and discover new experiences available to book now in Clifton, Redland and Cotham and beyond...

Find more experiences in Clifton, Redland and Cotham

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