Bristol – The Place to be at Christmas

Whether you already live in, near, or are thinking about moving to Bristol we thought it would be a great idea to show off just how great this city is, especially at Christmas time.

As ever there is plenty going on all over Bristol during December, whether you are looking to shop for presents, just a have a day out exploring what the city has to offer, entertain the whole family with some Christmas themed fun or find somewhere for an office Christmas party then Bristol is the place to be.

Christmas Markets & Shopping

Bristol Christmas Shopping and MarketsBristol is full of a fantastic array of shops perfect for anyone in desperate need of doing some present buying. But at this time of year Bristol has given you even more gift choices as the Christmas markets are now in full swing!

Christmas markets are becoming ever increasingly popular here in Britain, but Germany still do some of the best Christmas markets in the world. For the 6th year Bristol have taken a little bit of Germany and set it up in Broadmead, part of the Bristol Shopping Quarter. The German Christmas Market will feature traditional stalls selling decorations, jewellery, delicious festive food and drink, and much more.

There is plenty for kids to do at the market; as well as the ice rink, one of the main attractions, is a giant advent calendar. Each day leading up to Christmas Santa will be opening a door at 4pm and will also be giving away free presents to some lucky children. This all sounds like some fantastic Christmas fun to us, definitely worth a visit. As well as the stalls and everything for children, the market also features a beer garden, perfect for the adults who want to try some Bavarian beers and maybe take a break from over excited children that have visited Father Christmas and received an early Christmas present.

Most cities usually have just one Christmas Market. But you are in for a treat in Bristol with a second market at the Harbourside Saturday and Sundays during December. The Harbourside Market wants to promote independent, local businesses as an alternative to the high street. So don’t miss on a great selection of locally sourced and made products that could make great gifts for your family, friends or even yourself

Christmas is a Time to Eat, Drink & be Merry

Whether you are visiting Bristol for the day to do some shopping or maybe you’re planning a Christmas party there are some great restaurants and cafes in Bristol with some fantastic Christmas food and warming treats. Here are some of the best we found.

If you are looking for somewhere to take a break from all the shopping and enjoy a coffee and a cake then you can’t get much better than Full Court Press Speciality Coffee. This is the place for any coffee lover. Enjoy some of the best coffee with a range of cakes and pastries, including a gluten-free selection.

But we all know that a favourite warming drink to enjoy at Christmas is hot chocolate, Santa’s favourite warming tipple, and in Bristol there is nowhere better than Bar Chocolat in Clifton. This is chocolate heaven; they take great care in creating speciality hot chocolate drinks with actual melted chocolate, sounds delicious and decadent. You could enjoy your amazing hot chocolate alongside some more fabulous chocolate desserts or a simple lunch. We wonder if Santa Clause has tried the hot chocolate here!?

Bristol food, drink and Christmas dinnerIf you love traditional British food then why not try The TownHouse, winner of the Bristol Good Food Best British Award 2014. You could enjoy a three course set lunch menu for just £10, wow was our first reaction. Or alternatively you can have a go at their Christmas menu for a delicious Christmas Office Party. On top of this have you ever fancied having a break from cooking on Christmas day? Well The TownHouse are opening their doors on Christmas Day and serving a delicious sounding 3 course meal with all the trimmings, plus no washing up!

Finally for a delicious and festive Christmas lunch why not head over to Gourmet Burger Kitchen in Cabot Circus or Park Street. In addition to already a fantastic collection of burgers they have created the ‘Blitzen’ Burger Bundle, a 6oz beef or chicken burger topped with bacon, Mrs Claus burger sauce, deep fried camembert, spiced cranberry ketchup & baby spinach. Sounds absolutely delicious to us!

Christmas Family Fun

The phrases “it’s behind you” and “oh yes I can!” will be bellowed towards stages all across the UK over the Christmas period. The Pantomime is a beloved Christmas tradition for many families and one of the best, Dick Whittington, is being performed at the fantastic Bristol Hippodrome this year. The cast are joined this year by Britain’s Got Talent winners Ashleigh and Pudsey the dog. Pantomime is a must have at Christmas so why not enjoy a spectacular showing in a spectacular venue.

Christmas Family Fun in BristolNew to Bristol this year is a Giant Snow Globe. From 14th November to 22nd December you will be able to step inside a the Snow Globe and have a family picture taken, perfect to make in Christmas cards or just to keep as a souvenir.

If you don’t fancy heading into Bristol City centre to do some shopping and have loads of Christmas fun why not check out The Mall at Cribbs Causeway where you and your family will find Santa’s Enchanted Ice Castle and Christmas Train Rides. The Mall has created their very own magical winter wonderland. Your children can enjoy a visit to the Enchanted Ice Castle where they can meet the Ice Queen and her Ice Fairies before walking through the castle to meet Father Christmas of course. On top of all this you can go ice skating on the South West’s largest Ice Rink. Sounds like a very magical day out.

As an alternative to shopping and city centre life, if you want to get outside and enjoy some of the fresh, crisp winter air but still enjoy the magic of Christmas then why not travel 30 minutes outside of Bristol to the magnificent Westonbirt Arboretum, which every year creates an enchanted Christmas trail for all the family to enjoy. Westonbirt spectacularly illuminate 1 mile of their trees which looks fantastic against the winter night sky, perfect family outing or even a romantic stroll for loved up couples.

Is Bristol the Place to be?

So what do you think? There is certainly a lot going on in Bristol this Christmas, you couldn’t get bored; the wide variety of festive fun will suit just about everyone we think.  Bristol really does embrace the Christmas spirit, so why not check out what Bristol has to offer at this magical time of year.

And even if the shopping, activities, restaurants & cafes we have mentioned here aren’t for you Bristol still has so much to offer and discover. Who knows maybe next year all of this Christmas fun will be right on the door step of your brand new home.

Green Spinnaker are property developers in central Bristol – if you are looking to buy a stylish new apartment in the backdrop of this amazing city have a look at our developments at Smarts Quarter and email us at for further information.