Festivals in Bristol, England Worth Travelling For

festivals in bristol

Don’t you just love England? There is SO MUCH to do in this much-visited country that sometimes it can be difficult to decide what to do to where to go! Among the great cities in England stands Bristol. A city with great historical relevance, outstanding beauty and an ability to come alive through all the events and festivals it hosts each year. If you are into live music, performance and supporting the arts,  then these festivals in Bristol should tickle your fancy! From puppetry to hot air balloons, beer festivals, music, Bristol is the place to be this summer!

Best Festivals in Bristol

1.    Bristol Shakespeare festival: July

The Bristol Shakespeare Festival occurs annually through July. This year the festival is taking place inside Bristol city. The festival is a not to profit event that demonstrates a walk through the life of William Shakespeare. The festival brings together lovers of the art of drama through acting.

The event is still ongoing, and you can book a ticket to be a volunteer through the Bristol Shakespeare festival website.

Bristol Shakespeare Festival

2.    Playhouse Festival

If you like drama and plays, this is an event you don’t want to miss. The Playhouse Festival is made a reality through a national collaboration of five theaters that work together to compose short plays that are performed by small school children –  totally adorable! This year Bristol has had the opportunity to host the event in Bristol Old Vic. The plays to be performed by the children are by Miriam Battye, Oladipo Agboluaje, Nick Lane and Alia Bano.

You can book tickets from the site for either of the plays which are scheduled to run from Monday the 16th of July to 18th Wednesday.

3.    River Town: The Barr Brothers at Thelka

Music lovers you will love the Barr Brothers. The tickets for the River town event in Bristol are still available don’t wait long. When these siblings teamed up in a band, they have been producing breathtaking music ever since. Their mastery of drums, harp, bass, keys, guitar, and xylophone is just magical watching them play live.

The River town event is scheduled to happen at Thelka in Bristol on the 19th of July. The event tickets are going for €15.50 inclusive of the booking fee. You can purchase the tickets at the River town festival website.

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4.    Bristol Harbour festival

The Bristol Harbour festival is one of the largest festivals in Bristol city. The event is usually held every year near the end of July and holds so much historical significance since 1971. The purpose of the event is to celebrate the maritime heritage of Bristol city. This is an event that usually brings visitors from across the world to celebrate.

The event is a mix of different arts such as street dancing, fireworks display, and live music performance hence an invitation to every individual since everyone is assured to have fun. This year’s event will begin on Friday 20th July and run till Sunday 22nd.



5.    Power Eight Sprints Festival

The power eight sprints festival will run within the Bristol Harbour Festival. This event will be on the last day of the harbour festival on the 22nd of July. The game involves a competition on the Bristol harbour water in a rowing competition.

This competition consists of a team of eight people in one boat competing with another team. The two teams will wear contrasting conspicuous clothing to differentiate them. The unique feature of the event is that both the participants and the spectators will equally have fun.



6.    WOMAD festival

The WOMAD festival traces its roots back to the year 1982 to date. Each year the festival tours different countries bringing together artists and fans of different types of genres. So far the festival has gone through 28 countries. 

The Fiesta brings together people from different cultures and traditions to a common platform of food, music, and dance. While this DOES NOT take place in Bristol itself, it’s just a 40 minute drive away! 


7.    Upfest

Upfest is a festival that majorly centers on art as the main event. The Upfest event will be celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. The event is dubbed the largest live street graffiti festival in Europe. Do you know why? I guess you have to be there to find out. However, you should know that a total of 40000 visitors from 45 countries attend this event.

This year the festival takes place in the streets of Bedminster. If you are a fan of contemporary art and graffiti, the Upest festival will blow your mind. Of all the festivals in Bristol, this is probably the best known.


8.    Bristol Festival of Puppetry

The Festival of Puppetry brings people together to celebrate the growth of the puppet industry through the ages. The celebration takes into account both the in screen and on stage puppets. The ceremony takes ten days as people reflect on the earlier days since the puppet industry developed and grew.

There are no age restrictions to this festival and it is open to all. If you have your kid(s) with you, they might have found a heaven in Bristol city through this festival. It usually takes place in September at the tobacco factory theaters.

Bristol Festival of Puppetry


9.    Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

Last, you got to see the amazing view of the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta. And guess what? The festival is expected to be bigger this year since its 40th anniversary. The festival is a very beautiful event that attracts visitors from various countries globally.

This year, the event will be held on August and you don’t have to pay a dime. The only thing going to cost you is parking space. This year it takes place from August 9th – 12th and is one of the most unique festivals in Bristol worth travelling for!

bristol hot air balloon festival


You might be wondering where is the tenth festival in the list, well, it’s there in Bristol City for you to find! There are so many events and festivals happening throughout the summer, you’ll probably find an event every weekend of the year. The architecture and the design of the buildings coupled with the many festivals in store, you are bound to fall in love with this city. Be it art, music or even drama; there is nothing won’t amuse you!