Bristol Cathedral

1000 Reviews

Star Travel Rating


Review type

Things to do


Date of travel

June, 2021

Product name

Product country

Product city

Travelled with


Reasons for trip

Having visited “York Minster”: and “Canterbury Cathedral”: on previous city breaks, we wanted to visit “Bristol Cathedral”: Walking past it, we had seen a sign for the daily services which included Morning Prayer at 9.30am, Lunchtime Eucharist 12.30pm and Choral Evensong at 5.15pm. We decided Evensong fitted in best with our sightseeing programme.

It would have been a small congregation of about 20, but it was a special service with various members of the local Canonbury. The service, with the lovely choir doing all the singing, lasted around 45 minutes so we returned the following day for a more in-depth look around.

Surprisingly entrance was free, although donations were encouraged either by a traditional jar for cash or via a “tap of your card” machine. Mary, a volunteer who greeted us, gave us a brief history of the Cathedral, presented us with a map and brochure and asked if were happy to just wander, which of course we were.
Originally an Augustine Abbey, dissolved during the Henry VIII reformation, part of the original abbey became a Cathedral in 1542. We had seen the relatively modern stained-glass windows in the North Nave Aisle depicting the contribution of the various civilian forces during World War 2 which had been produced following the damage caused to the original windows. One of a nurse, had a small boy in a red dressing gown by her side, and according to Mary, during the Blitz, he’d hidden under his bed and everyone thought he’d died until he reappeared unscathed the next day. She told us he is said to be still alive and living in Bristol. She didn’t know if it was true, but it made a good anecdote for guides.

As well as traditional windows, in the South Choir Aisle was a more modern and colourful window erected in 1965, which we read was an abstract image portraying the Holy Spirit.

One of the most interesting parts for me was the long Cloister with eye level stained-glass windows, something you only usually see at high level. It was more atmospheric as a soprano was belting out scales from the nearby song room. At the end of the corridor was the café with both indoor seating and an outdoor terrace which led onto stunning gardens, planted with a huge array of colourful plants and a cross shaped into a hedge. There were lots of seats dedicated to a range of people, and it was a very calming and pleasant place for reflection.

We visited the toilets, where, in the ladies, I spotted a poster saying the toilets were twinned with one in Uganda as part of a toilet twinning “project”: which brings toilet transformation to some of the poorest places on the planet.

Helen Jackson

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.