Before we had small people in our lives, I worked in the travel industry for many years as a Marketing Account Manager for the biggest online hotel website. Basically to cut a really long and boring story short, this meant I was responsible for all the hotels within a designated area. My area was the South West of the country and as part of my contract I was contracted to work away a week of the month and visit some of my hotels. One of the areas I looked after was Bristol and so I often went down there for a visit.
It was always one of those places I really enjoyed visiting- it’s a really diverse and cultural city, plus it’s ridiculously colourful and stylish. I hadn’t been in a few years so when Visit Bristol invited us to stay for the weekend to see what the city had to offer for famillies, I couldn’t wait to start planning.
On Friday afternoon we excitedly packed up our Subaru XV (perfect boot space for all our bags!) and headed off with two hyper little ladies. Unfortunately we couldn’t have picked a worse weekend to go- from the second we arrived it basically rained non stop. It wasn’t just rain however, it was full on gale force winds too. I wouldn’t say it put a dampner on our weekend as we still had an amazing time, but it definitely meant we didn’t see as much of Bristol as we liked. What we did find however, were some fantastic indoor activities for familiies- there is literally so much to do in all kinds of weather.
We actually started our weekend off on Friday evening when Mr E finished work (his last ever day at his job- eek!) and headed to Oxford which is half way between us and Bristol, just to stay in a Premier Inn for the evening. We did that usual parent thing of hiding out in the bathroom eating chocolate while the girls slept! Then it was up and off to Bristol first thing on Saturday morning.
I didn’t think I had taken many photos due to the aforementioned weather, but in actual fact on inspection of my memory cards I found quite a few. Here is the first part of our weekend in Bristol in photos and a little video…
On arrival in Bristol we headed over to Clifton, a cute little suburb, to have some brunch. We found a cute little cafe called The Farm. (which just happened to be in front of us when it was torrential rain)
We have a tradition of having pancakes when we eat breakfast out so we all shared this stack of pancakes with maple syrup, fresh fruit and natural yoghurt- they were delicious.
While I had the chorizo eggs.
We checked into our room at the Marriott City Centre Hotel (where I actually had been to before as I had to give a presentation to over 70 people in my previous job- it bought back scary memories!) and the girls were really excited to be given some bags of popcorn by the hotel staff as there was a traditional old machine in the foyer. The Saturday afternoon was mainly spent dodging the rain and mooching round the shops.
After a quick change we headed out to dinner.
We headed to Glassboat for dinner, which is exactly that- a glassboat serving European cuisine offering panoramic views of the river. It was absolutely stunning inside and the girls were so excited to be eating dinner on a boat.
Posing outside the restaurant.
We had an early reservation meaning that we were able to watch the sun go down, which was gorgeous. The restaurant was lovely, but I wouldn’t say it was massively child focused- they didn’t have a separate children’s menu but they did kindly do us a smaller plate of the butternut squash risotto for the girls. As it got later it became quite a romantic venue being that it was Saturday night, and they were the only little people in there. It didn’t bother us as our girls are used to eating out and don’t get up from the table but it’s worth bearing in mind.
For my main I had the butternut squash en croute, roast chicory with a roquefort sauce, which was delicious.
On Sunday as the weather was dreadful we decided to head to At Bristol– an interactive science museum. We weren’t sure whether it was going to be too old for the girls, but it turns out they absolutely loved it. There’s so many hands on things for them to do and they loved playing with all the experiments. I love this photo of the wonder on their faces as they took turns in building a parachute and letting it fall to the ground. Their other favourites were the giant bubbles and the way you could milk a cow. You easily could spend a whole day there- it was brilliant.
After a morning at At Bristol we headed to a restaurant called Bordeaux Quay for lunch, which was a lovely deli, restaurant, bakery and cookery school on the harbourside. I love this photo of LL and Mr E doing a spot of colouring!
Testing her knowledge of all the Mr Men characters!
I had the pulled pork bun which was so yummy.
Followed by the creme brulee for pudding. I have this obsession for creme brulee at the moment which doesn’t appear to be doing my fitness mission much good!
After lunch we headed to the Bristol Aquarium to check out some fishies!
LL was fascinated by the fish and learnt two new words while we there- ‘fishies’ and ‘turtle’. Her speech is still taking a while to come along but when she does say things it’s the cutest thing ever.
After a busy day we headed back to the hotel. The girls and Mr E got room service while I went out for dinner with two of my favourite blogging friends Fritha and Lori, who live in Bristol. It was lovely to be able to get the chance to see them while we were down here, and we laughed all night long.
Here is a little video of our time in Bristol….
Part Two of our weekend coming soon!
NB: Visit Bristol invited us to stay for the weekend and gave us a media pass to enter some of the attractions. Although they gave us lots of information about Bristol, what we chose to do was up to us, and all thoughts and opinions are our own.