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Bristol Harbour

  • Attractions
Bristol Harbour, Harbourside

Time Out says

If Bristol has a USP, then the floating harbour and docks around which the city has thrived for centuries are surely it

For centuries, Bristol’s greatest asset has been the docks and floating harbour at its very heart. From pirates and sugar traders to the pleasure seekers of today, the waterways that break up the city have drawn trade and talent to Bristol from around the world to help create the city we all know and love today.

The days of huge galleons mooring up in the Bristol's docks have long gone, but the floating harbour and waterways remain, and today provide a unique waterside setting for a very modern city.

For visitors and locals alike, the museums, restaurants, bars, galleries and cafes that fringe the Harbourside area of the city are one of the city’s greatest attractions. The internationally renowned Arnolfini gallery and the Watershed media and arts centre can be found adjacent to the water, as can the M Shed museum, while a multitude of bars and restaurants make up the Waterfront area that stretches from the fountains in the centre out to the floating harbour.

On the water itself, Brunel’s SS Great Britain and The Matthew hark back to Bristol’s seafaring past, while floating pleasure palaces such as the legendary Thekla nightclub and The Apple cider bar can be found dotted along the dockside.

For a unique view of the city, jump on a ferry for a tour of the docks – Bristol Ferry Boats provide regular services around the docks, while Bristol Packet Boats offer private boat hire and trips out into the Avon Gorge and beneath the Suspension Bridge.

Written by Jon Cook


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