If you are bored during the holidays or can’t afford to go too far, don’t underestimate the City if Bristol, because if you look it can yield some real gems.
The City of Bristol Museum is always a safe bet for a rainy day, and during school holidays there is usually a special event going on. It is free entry, and there is a whole host of exhibitions coving three floors to keep young ones amused. Why not wallow in nostalgia as you are reminded of your own childhood wandering amongst the ancient taxidermy animals and the gallery of pianos.
The Egypt exhibit has undergone a radical refurbishment in the last couple of years and has all the vital exhibits and objects of interest with a modern, multi-media feel to it.
Set children a challenge. Give them a piece of paper marked down A – Z. Get them to find an item in the museum for each letter to win a prize at the end.
The Industrial Museum is not open as it is currently undergoing a refurbishment. This doesn’t mean there is nothing to see. The docklands of Bristol is beautiful on a sunny day. Catch a ferry from the centre, or make the walk round the docks taking in the train tracks, boats and cranes. The Arnolfini is also worth a look. Exhibitions are free, the facilities are excellent and the art will always prove a talking point.
Also check out the Bristol City Council website to find out when the steam trains are running on selected weekends through the year. There is a minimal charge for this but the journey is fantastic and choo choo mad children will love this. The trains are listed to be running the Easter weekend. Check council link at bottom of page for more details.
Full day out
It’s easy to forget the SS Great Britain, a familiar sight to those who regularly pass through Hotwells but a real shipshape tourist attraction. Bristol can be quite smug as we house some of Brunel’s spectacular creations, the Britain, Temple Meads, and the Clifton Suspension Bridge.
On first view the ticket price seems quite expensive (£10.95), but this ticket will last you repeated visits throughout the year, as often as you like. On a sunny day this is a grand day out, and no other tourist attraction in Bristol will offer you value for money.
You really don’t have to be an admirer of maritime history to appreciate this ship. The work that has gone into the restoration of this ship is awe-inspiring. It has been lovingly transformed from a rusted wreck into as close to its former glory as possible.
As you wander from deck to cabins, you really can get a feel of what life on board ship was like. There is also a fascinating hands on museum with footage of the ship arriving back in Bristol from the Falklands.
The ship is fully accessible for prams and wheelchairs though if your toddler can walk it would be easier.
Watch out for ghosts too as this ship recently feature on Most Haunted. The steerage section really does have a life of its own and we kept having our clothes tugged at by something that just wasn’t there!
Quite simply the best tourist attraction in Bristol you must go.