The best events in Bristol this year

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Things to do in Bristol

Bristol is a fantastic, vibrant city with so much on. It’s a blessing and a curse – there’s always something exciting to get stuck into, but so much on you might not even know where to begin.

If you’ve been wondering what’s on in Bristol, especially with the holidays coming up, you’re in the right place. Below you’ll find thrilling, educational, and exciting family events. But also events for those moments when you need to let your hair down and indulge in some well-deserved me-time. Let’s have a look…

The Outdoor Cinema in Clifton Downs

When: Friday 5th – Sunday 7th August

Where: Clifton Downs, BS9 1FG, Bristol

As the sun sets on the stunning Clifton Downs, leaving the sky a pastel pink, nothing will beat the feeling of a great film starting as you tuck into a hot snack, sip a glass of wine, and cuddle with the kids under a blanket. Or you could go alone, your shout.

This August, The Downs will see showings of classic films such as Encanto, Rocketman, Mamma Mia!, Pulp Fiction, and West Side Story. Complete with a food and drinks bar, camping chairs, and a specially curated playlist of songs to get you pumped for the film, this outdoor cinema experience will naturally go down a treat.

The Henge Family Show

When: Sunday 30th October

Where: Lost Horizon HQ, BS2 9EH, Bristol

Stick a sieve on your littluns head, paint them green and wrap them in tin foil, because alien fancy dress is essential at The Henge Family Show. Amusing and fun in equal measures, this alien electronic/rock crossover band have extensive experience touring and has captivated audiences far and wide on many festival stages. Running from 2 ‘til 4 pm, it’s a superb afternoon out that’ll get you home in time for bathtime and your favourite show.

The Gin To My Tonic Festival

When: Saturday 3rd September

Where: St George’s Hall, Great George St, BS1 5RR, Bristol

Here’s one for when the kids are with a friend. In September, St George’s Hall will be filled with over 120 gins, including classic G&T, and luscious berry and perky citrus infusions. Drinks will be served in measures of 35ml (more than the standard 25ml) because… well, you deserve it!

Your ticket will also include a gin glass, a stainless steel straw, a gin guide, Fever-Tree mixers, live entertainment, access to rum and vodka, and so much more – a cracking deal. And with two types of tickets – one for the afternoon and the other for the evening – it’s flexible and perfect for busy mums!

Funderworld Theme Park 

When: Friday 8th – Sunday 31st July

Where: Hengrove Park, BS14 0BZ, Bristol

You just can’t go wrong with a theme park, can you? Expect the classics, such as bungee trampolines, dodgems, waltzers, and a funhouse. And what would a theme park be without staple snacks such as hot dogs, slush puppies, and doughnuts? We’ve barely even touched on half the rides that’ll be coming to Hengrove Park, and as UK’s largest mobile theme park, there’s enough to keep you and the kids busy for hours.

Bristol Harbour Festival

When: Friday 15th – Sunday 17th July

Where: Bristol Harbourside

Back for its 50th anniversary, the Bristol Harbour Festival has lots on over three days and is completely free! The range of entertainment on offer that weekend includes live music from a huge range of genres, dance, poetry, activism and more. Celebrating the various cultures of the city, the Bristol Harbour Festival is a cracking day out and a great way to celebrate our differences and learn more about each other.

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

When: Thursday 11th – Sunday 14th August

Where: Ashton Court, Bristol

“What’s on in Bristol”, you wonder. Well, only Europe’s largest annual meeting of hot air balloons! If you think watching hot air balloons drift through the sky isn’t your idea of fun, we get it, it’s somewhat of an acquired taste. But don’t let that put you off because there will also be five bars, over 100 street food stalls and trader stands, live entertainment and family activities to get stuck into. And in the evening, there’ll be fireworks! It’s a solid weekend full of fun for you and the family. Oh, and it’s completely free!

Waste Not Want Not! Future Leap’s Sustainable Food and Drink Evening

When: Tuesday 19th July

Where: Future Leap Bishopston, Gloucester Road, BS7 8AA, Bristol

It’s never a bad time to learn how to be more sustainable and taste test a few delicious foods and drinks! This early evening event opens with drinks, music, and some product testing before moving on to a panel discussion and ending on a high with more drinks, music and product testing.

Answering questions such as “how can bread make chocolate?” and “how can local community groups and food stores work together?”, this event will not only leave your stomach full of tasty treats but teach you how to live more sustainably.

Peppa Pig: My First Concert

When: Monday 25th – Tuesday 26th July

Where: St George’s Hall, Great George St, BS1 5RR, Bristol

What better way to kick off the holidays than with an interactive concert that both you and the kids can enjoy? This Peppa-themed concert will feature songs from the show as well as pieces by Beethoven, Mozart, and Tchaikovsky. Educational too, the concert will teach the littluns about different instruments and how they sound. Finally, the kiddos will be encouraged to join in and make their own music. You might find out you have a little virtuoso on your hands!

Bristol Comedy Cabaret

When: Multiple dates spanning Saturday 9th July – Saturday 24th September

Where: Pryzm, Bristol

If you’re in need of a relaxing night out alone, with your other half, or with the girls, the Bristol Comedy Cabaret is a brilliant choice. Laughter is the best medicine, as they say! At least three top comedians will take to the stage, leaving you laughing so hard you’ll be clapping your hands like an excited seal. As you leave with a new six-pack from constant laughter, you’ll wonder why you didn’t give it a go sooner. And with multiple Saturday dates to choose from, it’s easy to fit into your schedule.

Velociraptor Show

When: Monday 8th August

Where: Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

Can you go wrong with dinosaurs? (The answer’s “no”, by the way.) Effortlessly combining entertainment and education, The Velociraptor Show teaches audiences about the lives of dinosaurs, one of Earth’s most fascinating creatures. With effects, music, a dino booklet, and a dino meet and greet, learning has never been more fun or engaging. Whatsmore, the show has proven to be popular among adults who often leave having learned a thing or two! And thanks to multiple showtimes, you can choose the slot that best suits you.

As always, Bristol is overflowing with cracking events that are perfect for that all-important “me time” but also for fun days out with the family.

Visit Skiddle for more Bristol events, event guides, and inspiration for how to spend that precious free time.


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