Bristol - England's Gateway To The South West

Bristol, the premier city for the South West of England, serves as the gateway to some of the UK's most beautiful locations including Cornwall, Devon and Wales.

Boasting the fifth largest population in England as well as a rich and eventful history, Bristol has more recently transformed into a vibrant, modern European city packed with places to go and things to see to suit for every kind of visitor .

The original town was listed in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle of 1051 as a trading port and the city's maritime herita ge is highlighted by the achievements of Bristol's most famous son, the great Victorian inventor I sambard Kingdom Brunel. It was Brunel who the SS Great Britain which became the first iron-hulled, propeller-driven ship to cross the Atlantic and, of course, the world famous Clifton Suspension Bridge with its breathtaking view of the city.

For the dedicated 'shopaholic', the new Cabot Circus shopping complex has propelled Bristol into the top 10 list of UK shopping destinations. With over 120 new shops, including major flagship stores, restaurants, cafes and delis, and a state-of-the-art 13-screen Showcase Cinema de Lux, this impressive construction brings a whole new dimension to shopping in Bristol.

Stroll a short distance from the bus y shopping areas and you'll find yourself surrounded by the incredible old buildings and relics of the past in Bristol's original Old City. The co bbled streets of Broad Street, Corn Street, St Nicholas Market and King Street remain much the same toda y as they were centuries ago. Don't miss the majestic Corn E xchang e or the quirky old Llandoger Trow pub on King Street.

One of the most significant change s to Bristol over recent decades has been the transformation of the city's habourside from busy commercial dock to an attractive development filled with restaurants, bars, shops and a range of hotels to suit every visitors pocket . Key attractions to look out for include Explore-At-Bristol, The Hippodrome, Bristol City Football Club and the Watershed Media Centre . Hop on a Bristol Ferry for a great way to see the harbour and extended city boundaries from a different perspective, with stops at key points along the waters' edge.

Or why not t ake a pleasant stroll up Park Street towards Clifton village with a great selection of boutique clothing stores and classy restaurants. For something a little different, why not pay a visit to Bristol Zoo Gardens, with over 450 rare and endangered species and plenty of activities for kids of all ages.

Written by Shaun Parker for Cheap Hotel Chains


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