Bristol’s habourside is a historic gem that is steeped in maritime history. From the 13th century until the present day, the city’s port has played a vital role in the UK’s trade and commerce. Today, Bristol’s harbourside is a bustling hub of activity with cafes, restaurants, bars and museums.
Below, we will take you on a self-guided walking tour of Bristol’s historic harbourside. From the SS Great Britain to the M Shed Museum, we will explore the city’s past and present on foot.
Starting at the SS Great Britain
The SS Great Britain is one of Bristol’s most famous landmarks. This steamship was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel and launched in 1843. Today, it is a museum that tells the story of its life at sea and its restoration.
Start your walking tour at the SS Great Britain and take a tour of the ship. You can see the original features such as its steam engines and learn about life on board for the crew and passengers. After your tour, stroll along the harbourside and take in the wonderful views of the water.
Bristol’s Floating Harbour
Bristol’s Floating Harbour was created in 1809 to allow ships to access the city at high tide. The harbour is still used today, with a mix of leisure and commercial boats moored alongside the quays.
Walk along the harbour and take in the sights and sounds of the bustling area. You’ll see street performers, cafes, and restaurants and if you have time, you can even take a boat tour of the harbour.
Bristol’s Old City
Bristol’s Old City is a maze of narrow streets and alleyways that date back to medieval times. This area is home to some of the city’s oldest buildings, including St Nicholas Market and the Corn Exchange.
Take a stroll through the Old City and stop at some of the independent shops and cafes that line its streets. You’ll also get to see some of Bristol’s famous street art, including works from famous graffiti artist Banksy.
M Shed Museum
The M Shed Museum is located on the harbourside and tells the story of Bristol’s history through its people and places. The museum has a range of exhibits, including photographs, objects, and interactive displays.
Take some time to explore the M Shed Museum and learn all about Bristol’s past and present. You can also enjoy a coffee and a bite to eat at the museums cafe, which overlooks the harbour.
Bristol’s historic harbourside is a facinating area to explore on foot. From the SS Great Britain to the M Shed Museum, there is so much to see and do. Whether you’re interested in maritime history, art, or food, you’re sure to find something to enjoy in thie vibrant part of the city.
To make the most of your walking tour, wear comfortable shoes and make sure to bring a camera to capture the sights, especially on a sunny day! Whether you’re a local or a vistor, Bristol’s historic harbourside is a must-see destination.