A Guide to Clifton – Bristol’s most exclusive suburb…
Well where do we start! The choice is fantastic. Bristol is famous for its club scene, if you prefer a night of champagne and cocktails in the vibrant bars, then Clifton has that too. But if you can’t stand the giddy pace of the city, you can always slope off to one of the many wine bars or traditional pubs in the area.
If your after plenty of action and bars packed to the rafters with people that are all intending to head off to the clubs at kicking out time, this is the place to be. It is not so busy from Sunday – Wednesday, but Thursday, Friday and Saturday it can get very busy indeed and on a nice summer evening the bars are often 10 deep. The age range in this area tends to be 20 – 40 because there are a lot of loud bars, but 40 plus, don’t discount this area all together. There are a few gems tucked away if you like your wine bars and a healthy number of good restaurants.
This is the place to go for a slightly quieter evening, but it is still a very busy place on the weekend. There is an even mix of traditional pubs, wine bars and clubs here and all of them have a slightly calmer quality than those of Whiteladies Road. There is no particular age bracket here, for one reason or another everyone seems to enjoy the ambiance and everyone gets on with the important task of socialising, especially in the summer when the streets are buzzing til late in the evening. It is the more expensive part of Clifton if you fancy a night out though, so if money is an issue then go out later in the evening, if it isn’t, have a ball.
The Avon Gorge and Hotwells Road
This is the perimeter of Clifton and although it can be pretty quiet most of the time, it is a great part to explore. There are many real ale pubs tucked away in the narrow streets and its the kind of place you might have a great night out that you had not really planned. The Avon Gorge Hotel has a bar which overlooks the Clifton Suspension Bridge, and on a warm summers evening they often do Pimm’s on the terrace or have a barbecue with stunning views of the Bridge and over the Avon Gorge. It can be very popular though so get there early if you want any chance of a seat.
Stretching from the end of Whiteladies Road and finishing up at the Downs, Blackboy Hill is a relaxed mix of cafes and bars, somewhere you are more likely to go just to escape the hustle and bustle. It tends to be quiet subdued a lot of the time but does have a nice feel about it and there is a fantastic cocktail bar called The Hauss Bar which stays open til the early hours, but be warned it is small and personal, it may be best to ring before you get there to book a table.