pub crawl bristol

The Very Best Bristol Pub Crawls

Think you know Bristol? Well, you’ve not really got a grip on what thnis city is about until you’ve visited its various localities, and what better way to do that than sampling a few pubs along the way? Here are the routes I think are particularly good for that time old tradition of pub crawling.

Harbourside

The original, and arguably still the best. The harbour boasts some of the city’s best watering holes coupled with some great views (I mean, who doesn’t love boats and multicoloured houses?).

Suggested route:

1. The Ostrich 

Take advantage of that big terrace overlooking the water

2. The Orchard

Try to pick from their extensive cider selection

3. The Cottage

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Beautiful autumn evening! #butcombepubs #awesome

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What this pub lacks in space inside, it more than makes up for outside – try beating that view!

4. The Nova Scotia

Cosy and traditional inside, with their small terrace overlooking the Cumberland Basin outside.

5. The Pump House

Top notch food, another great terrace and the biggest gin stash in Bristol.

6. The Grain Barge

A bar on a boat! And they do music! And good grub! What more do you need?

See the full Harbourside route: http://lifelessorganised.com/2013/05/01/walk-bristol-1-the-harbour/

St Michael’s Hill

A more condensed route, but the clue’s in the name here – it’s on a steep bloody hill, so make sure you start at the top.

1. The Highbury Vaults 

A cosy ale pub with good pub grub, real ales and a great garden out back, plus a bar billiards table, in case you’re feeling competitive!

2. Beerd

A craft beer bar with a large selection of beers, which also serves tasty pizza.

3. The White Bear

A large and comfortable pub with boardgames and plenty of cosy corners.

4. The Robin Hood 

This pub may be small, but it’s packed with interesting beers and often has a good pop-up in the kitchen.

4.b The Green Man

Not technically St Michael’s Hill, but it’s such a good pub and tucked around the back, so worth popping around before rejoining the hill!

5. The Colston Arms

End your jaunt with a top traditional local. They show sports, have a cute beer garden and do top roasts too.

See the full St Michael’s Hill route: http://lifelessorganised.com/2013/05/10/walk-bristol-2-st-michaels-hill/

Stokes Croft

An edgier route but arguably more ‘culturally enriching’, ie. you can look at some good graffiti and buy a PRSC mug. The pubs here all a bit different and it’s worth veering into Montpelier for some extra hidden treats!

1. The Full Moon 

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Lagunitas collaboration

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A proper party pub with a huge front terrace and shisha garden!

2. The Bell

A quirky little pub with home cooked food & a cute garden out back, plus DJs at the weekend.

3. Canteen

The cultural hub of Stokes Croft, with excellent food & live music and a good front terrace for people watching.

4. The Crofters Rights

A fun craft beer and live music bar, it also has Ray’s Pizza in the kitchen if you’re in need of stodge.

5. The Hare on the Hill

Two minutes up the hill behind The Crofters, but worth the detour. Great ales & they usually have an interesting pop-up in the kitchen, plus events on throughout the week.

6. The Hillgrove

If you made it to the Hare on the Hill, walk a few doors down and you’ll find one of the city’s best pubs (in my opinion). They’ve got a ridiculous amount of beers on tap for such a small pub, including a great range of real ales and local craft beer.

See the full Stokes Croft route: http://lifelessorganised.com/2013/06/04/pub-crawl-bristol-3-stokes-croft-the-urban-art-scene/

Gloucester Road

The most ambitious pub crawl there is – I’ve yet to meet anyone who has completed the whole stretch from Horfield Common down to the Arches (around 20 pubs, eeek). Still, it’s arguably the best single stretch for eating and drinking in the city. 

I’ve started this crawl from about halfway down, so just the Bishopston section – but I’d recommend a visit to The Royal Oak, Sportsman and Inn on the Green further up!

1. The Golden Lion

A small and lively pub with a great mural out front. Keep an eye out for their gig listings!

3. The Grace

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Did someone say beer garden?? 🌞🌞

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A sophisticated pub which can feel more restaurant-like inside, but their large beer garden is brilliant in summer.

3. The Flyer

Spacious and comfy, with a decent bar selection too. They have a bar and BBQ in their garden in summer, handy!

4. The Cider Press

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– Bristol – My kinda bar 🍏

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More of a chain pub but cheap and cheerful, plus they have live bands on at weekends if you want to get in the party spirit.

5. Gloucester Road Ale House

A harmless enough pub to break up the middle part of the crawl, with some good beers on tap.

6. The Hobgoblin

If you’re in need of some hearty food at this point in the pub crawl, the mighty burgers and dirty fries here should sort you out!

7. The Gallimaufry

A friendly lounge bar with excellent food, a sunny front terrace and free live music every night.

8. The Prince of Wales

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6 nations #6nations

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A good little pub to end on, with a nice relaxed atmosphere and some solid beers & ciders on tap.

See the full Gloucester Road route: http://lifelessorganised.com/2013/09/30/pub-crawl-bristol-4-gloucester-road-and-bishopston/

North Street, Bedminster

A more residential area, but made more lively recently by an influx of top notch bars and restaurants.

1. The Coronation

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Waiting for a pint…

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This is a proper local pub to kick off with, they have pub cats and Natch in cans!

2. The Steam Crane

A large pub with board games and an impressive beer list, plus live music at weekends.

3. Kask

More of a wine bar than pub, but it’s still well worth popping in and trying a glass or two!

4. The Old Bookshop

A weird and wonderful bar; the food is as impressive as the décor, and they’ve usually got fun events on throughout the week. The roasts are great too.

5. The Spotted Cow

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Blessed by rain 🌈🌦

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A good all-rounder; good drinks, great food and a huuuge sunny garden.

See the full North Street route: http://lifelessorganised.com/2014/05/06/pub-crawl-5-north-street-bedminster/

Next on my list of pub crawl routes to conquer are Totterdown and Clifton Village – wish me luck on my daring quest!

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Often to be found propping up a bar and eyeing up its rum selection, Shonette is an avid Bristol explorer and food muncher - take a look at her blog A Life Less Organised for her guides to the city's best pub crawls, roasts and more.

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