A much maligned Bristol

Nothing special to report about the flight from the USA to Frankfurt…….caught up on a couple of movies and then slept.  Frankfurt to London transit was a scurry, but we made it ok, only to spend 90 minutes in the queues for Border Security at Heathrow.  Tip:  apply to be an epassport registered traveller in advance so that you get through the fast lane!

Picking up the Mercedes (woo hoo) car hire was painless, and Murray managed the exit from the airport with only a couple of roundabout reruns….my navigational skills, even with the gps, are a sad hole in my skill sets!  Bristol was a doddle for him 2 hours down the M5 or was that the M4? 😉  The sight of our Georgian garden flat in Clifton was very welcome and the warmth of our host Sarah certainly brightened up the dreary skies.

Jet lag was conquered by a walk around the shops and discovering a local Tesco and home cooked meals for supplies.  Always enjoy being able to self-cater and wash the hard working clothes!

Bristol is our base for the next week, and the stepping-off point for Wales and Somerset, so we decided to get to know our base first.  What a jewel in the west country!  Once the busiest port outside London, and a thriving centre for the tobacco industry, Bristol beckoned!  The local harbourside has a great place to capture some of this atmosphere, and the ferry round trip fitted the bill.  From Shrek’s ears, the many bridges, the variety of boats, the views of the rows of houses and the  paella at the food market at the end of the tour, all was a great experience – the intermittent scudding showers included.

Murray’s highlight was the tour of Brunel’s SS Great Britain which actually sailed from Brisbane in 1863, and upon which his great, great uncle left Victoria in 1868 for the UK and then New York, and seeing the famous Suspension Bridge,

The highlight for me was the city’s emphasis and support for art and artists….Banksy graffiti artist…….learning more about him now…….and the retro vintage clothing shop that caught my eye.


Bristol is well worth a visit.  We are looking forward to returning to base each night and exploring a few more food offerings.