Plant life inside your motorhome!

We know that having a plant inside your home can bring lots of benefits.  They can reduce the levels of carbon dioxide, reduce airborn pollutants, keep the temperature down and have been proven to improve general well being.

So why not bring those wonderful benefits into  your Motorhome. Comfort Insurance have created this handy guide for motorhome owners, including advice about which plant life will thrive and which of your house plants are okay to join you for the ride.



Our top picks of small festivals in the UK this summer

Summer is here, the sun is shining (sort of), which can only mean one thing: it’s festival season. If you spent most of Glastonbury Festival on the sofa watching it at home sad that you weren’t there, then why head out for a weekend of fun and partying and try one of these smaller, more intimate and affordable festivals? Not only can you watch an array of amazing live music, but you don’t have to spend hours walking around on miles of muddy grounds! Here are some of our favourite small festivals here in the UK.


Truefest is essentially the biggest and best house party you’ll ever go to. Set at Baskerville Hall near Hay-on-Wye in Wales, this fantastic festival is located in the same grounds that launched both Green Man festival and the Big Chill. This independently run music and arts festival is quickly gaining recognition as one of the friendliest small festivals that the UK has to offer. Previous artists to play at Truefest include Afriquoi, The Future Dub Project, Lazy Habits, The Allergies and Jenna & The G’s.

Think of it as a music festival, an arts event and an epic house party all rolled into one, and you get the idea of the sort of weekend that can be had at Truefest. With a beautiful manor house to explore, indoor and outdoor stages, and even a swimming pool, this festival is like no other. Bringing great live bands, DJ’s and the arts all together under one roof, Truefest is quickly becoming one of the best small festivals in the UK.

When: 4 – 6 August
Where: Baskerville Hall near Hay-on-Wye
How Much: £95


Taking place over two days in the beautiful setting of Dartmoor in Devon, with over 5,000 people attending, Chagstock is a wonderful weekend of fun for the whole family. With a cracking lineup each year, this festival has in the past put on such acts as The Stranglers, Easy Star All Stars, The Blockheads and Donovan.

Not only is this one hell of a party, featuring some huge names, but it’s also a festival with a friendly atmosphere that’s perfect for families thanks to some great kids entertainment. There’s a reason they’ve sold out five years in a row.

When: 21 – 22 July
Where: Dartmoor, Devon
How Much: £90


This amazing small festival is held in the grounds of a beautiful castle and has attracted some huge names in the past including The Correspondents, Admiral Fallow and The SoulJazz Orchestra. This year sees them pull in even bigger artists including Akala, Mr Scruff and The Hot 8 Brass Band.

This colourful festival has many hidden corners from the intimate stages hosting smaller performances to the ‘Neverending Glen’ a trail that takes festival goers through a forest to find some inspiring multimedia art installations, sculptures and other secret events. This is another fabulous festival for families, with plenty for kids to see and do.

When: 30 June – 3 July
Where: Kelburn Castle near Largs
How Much: £114


This tiny festival is made by clubbers for clubbers. It is essentially 700 people decamped in a secret rural spot on the outskirts of London for a weekend of partying. Underground DJs and an easy-going, friendly atmosphere make Field Maneuvres a true hidden gem in the UK festival scene.

The staging is minimal, which means the main focus is on the music, which is always top quality. And whilst it may be small, it’s still easy to get lost in the Sputnik Dome, a tiny smoke-filled sphere where gyrating bodies are carried through to the next dimension. Step outside the dome and there’s a chilled vibe as people interact and enjoy their weekend making new friends every five minutes.

When: 1-3 September
Where: Its a secret!!
How Much: £119

Create a perfect budget diy wedding without looking, well… Cheap!

When it comes down to it, the only thing that really matters is that you’re marrying someone you love, and you want to tell the world that you’e going to be together forever. Everything else is just fluff and glitter. You could get married in just jeans and a tee-shirt if you wanted, who am I to judge? You’d probably pull it off too!

What I’m talking about is those weddings that are supposed to be individual or quirky that end up just looking like you’ve scrimped or your theme was simply a bad idea. The thing is, if you have a budget and you know your limits, you can make a low cost wedding look a million dollars, over-stretch your budget, or your creativity, and it’s going to look like a million dollars that’s already been spent.

If you happen to have a creative mind, you’ll rock the wedding like Rumplestiltskin, spinning straw into gold. You might be the sort of person who looks for inspiration on Pinterest but won’t end up spending a penny because you can create everything yourself. If, given a hot glue gun, a few metres of organza and some sequins and you could turn the most unwelcoming of venues into a fairytale location then a DIY wedding is going to be the best way for you to go, and you will no doubt enjoy the experience of creating your homemade wedding from scratch.

Unfortunately, having creativity isn’t something that you can really fake. You’ll know if you’re what my mum would have called “cack-handed”. Ever since childhood you’ve found that things just won’t hang together for you. You’re not the sort of person who used to take things apart just to see how they worked, and successfully put them back together again. Since you never had that sort of luck, these days you usually prefer to leave that side of things to other people. Not because you’re spoiled, but only because you simply don’t have the knack.

Go easy on yourself. Often the reason why something that you’ve put a lot of effort into won’t quite work isn’t that it was a bad idea. You might have great ideas, it’s simply that translating those ideas into objects that lets you down. There’s only one cure for it: Practice.

If you’re determined to get the most for your money out of your wedding decorations, flowers, stationary and table settings, then you re going to have to work on it. People are creating innovative, handmade weddings all time, and whats great is that many of those creatives want to show you how they got the look. Finding step by step guides on websites like Youtube and Instructables means that you can follow along with projects to achieve your own creations. And who could blame you? Taking a look at the prices vendors and retailers charge for anything wedding related is likely to give you a wobbly moment. Buying the raw materials and spending a few evenings a week perfecting your handicrafts will save you a fortune. You can turn these crafty sessions into social occasions too, spending a bit of extra time with your mum, your aunts and your future mum-in-law. Setting about a task with a common goal really gives you something to bond over.

Here are some really simple things that you can do for your own wedding that cost next to nothing to do at home. A big thanks to Orla James for contributing these ideas.


There’s a lot more paper craft than you might initally think in most weddings. There are invites, gift lists, place settings, seat reservations and orders of service for the ceremony and thank you cards. Professional wedding stationers can charge several hundred pounds even for a small wedding. You can download templates and do it yourself for free or go to a printers and get a great product for just a few pounds.

Bouquets and Buttonholes

Flowers cost a fortune for any occasion, so why not make your own? Crafting flowers out of paper, silk, even shells, sequins and fabric is easy to do and will give you a permanent reminder of your day. You could buy fresh flowers from a local garden centre, which will be much cheaper than using a flower shop or anyone who specialises in occasions.

Signs and Chalkboards

diy wedding

An increasingly popular wedding addition is the use of signs. They’re not only used to give information about seating and a schedule for the day, but also to share mottos and quotes that mean the most to you. Buy cheap framed prints from a charity shop and paint over them with blackboard paint for a boho look and do taste a favour while you’re at it.

Party Props

photo booth

Photobooths are all the rage this season and look set to become a permanent fixture on the wedding party scene. But there’s no need to hire one! Instead, make a fake Polaroid frame that you can hang from the ceiling and stand behind it. With a digital camera on a tripod you can use the timer or a remote control you’ll have a lot more fun for free.

Friday Ad’s Ultimate Guide To Bristol

Expanding a whopping 40 square miles and with a population of 437,500 – the buzzing city of Bristol is the perfect place for a weekend getaway, romantic break or family holiday! And with so much to do and see, it’s unsurprising that many people decide to become full time residents of this West Country metropolis.

Whether you’re a visitor or born-and-bred Bristolian, it can sometimes prove difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for in a city so full of options. But we’ve done the hard work and hand-picked a selection of the very finest Bristol has to offer for a wide variety of ages, interests and personal tastes. Visitors to the city will love our brief run-down of places to stay, as well as recommendations for hen and stag dos. Residents of Bristol are sure to uncover some hidden gems in our ideas on things for couples, families and even free stuff to do!

So take a look below and learn more about this unique and magnificent city!




Bristol plays host to an abundance of eateries serving up a wide variety of different cuisines to suit every taste. Here are our top 5, in no particular order:

Urban Tandoor


Walk down the narrow Small Street in the city centre and you’ll discover this hidden gem. Whilst Bristol has an expansive Indian dining scene, Urban Tandoor sets itself apart by offering diners fresh, authentic Indian food cooked by their skilled chefs. A firm favourite with diners is, of course, their Vindaloo curry – which is expertly balanced and provides a refreshing alternative to the run-of-the-mill curry house version. Diners can also expect attentive service from the staff, who go out of their way to ensure your dining experience is top-notch, and excellent value for money.

What diners say: “I’ve now eaten here about 10 times, and have never had anything other than a fabulous meal. I’m vegetarian, and there is a great choice for me, but my wife happily eats meat and is equally impressed. The service is wonderful- friendly, relaxed, but never obstructive. We visit Bristol every 2 months, but are remembered every time.” – Gram63 via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:0117 929 9222



Located on the High Street in Westbury Village. The Michelin star awarded Casamia serves only one menu that changes with the seasons and prides itself on using fresh, local produce to create magical dishes that evoke all the senses. As well as dining in Casamia’s intimate main restaurant, customers have the option to book the chef’s table and be witness their highly-skilled staff, who put together each well-balanced dish with the most delicate of touches, in action. The restaurant’s innovative approach to all-things seasonal hasn’t gone unnoticed – in 2014 they were awarded the ‘Best Restaurant’ title at the Bristol Good Food Awards

What diners say: “The food is evolved and complex and has an element of modernist whizz-bangery about it, but never loses sight of the importance of feeding people well. The whole mood of the place – from the cast-iron gateway off the suburban Bristol high street, down the terraced alleyway, heavy with pots of herbs they use in their cookery, to the vaulted dining room – shouts: “We want you to have a nice time,” as does the price tag.– Jay Raynor (food critic) via The Guardian  

Website:            Telephone: 01179 592884

The Burger Joint


Situated on Whiteladies Road just round the corner from Clifton Down station. Diners who walk through the door of The Burger Joint are given an order sheet, on which they tick off what burger, toppings, sides and sauce they want. This ‘build your own’ approach is just one distinguishing feature of this constantly-packed eatery and after ordering customers are treated to their custom-built choice – freshly cooked with high-quality, local ingredients. Their delicious burgers earned the restaurant a mention in Time Out’s guide to burgers in the city, but other sides like the sweet potato chips are an absolute hit with diners too.

What diners say: “Service was very friendly and efficient – the ordering cards are a great idea. I had a double venison burger with blue cheese & onion rings and it was absolutely colossal! Really good quality patties on a brioche bun and the chunky chips were damn good too. The 5 of us went away absolutely stuffed and with big smiles!– SmauelM86 via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone: 01173 290887

Romy’s Kitchen


Situated in the village of Thornbury just outside of Bristol, Romy’s Kitchen offers authentic Indian-inspired food at incredibly good value for money. The vast number of meat-free options on the menu has made the eatery a hit with vegetarians and even earned it the title of ‘Best Vegetarian Restaurant’ at the 2014 Bristol Good Food Awards. Romy’s has also been hailed for its number of gluten-free options, making the restaurant a great place to dine with pretty much anyone. Firm favourites among diners include the vegetarian thali and Kosha Mongnsho (goat curry) – but the attentive service has locals and visitors alike returning again and again.
What diners say: “With main courses costing between £9 and £12, you truly are getting a bargain: dishes are made to order, the quality of the ingredients is high, and Romy’s passion for flavour is evident. It’s not the sort of place you’d visit for a boozy curry night – there are plenty of places in and around Bristol for those. Instead, Romy’s Kitchen is somewhere you go to enjoy an authentic Indian meal with an interesting home cooking/fine dining slant – well worth a visit.Bristol Bites

Website:             Telephone: 01454 416728

The Tube Diner


Located at the Paintworks on Bath Road, the Tube Diner offers American diner style grub inside, of all things, three airstream trailers! The delicious range of lunchtime treats offered everyday include burritos, burgers and pasta dishes and makes this an incredibly popular destination for people who work locally in the area. That said, the Tube’s reputation as a quirky eatery attracts diners from far and wide – and their burger nights over the weekend are astoundingly popular. Also famous are their breakfasts, both American and full-English, which deliver on flavour and authenticity.

What diners say: “I’m a regular customer at The Tube Diner and I plan on being for a long time!!! The food is always second to none, always made with fresh and local ingredients – you’d have to go a long way to beat it!! Especially the hand-made steak mince burgers – a personal favourite of my partner and I. Always met with a warm welcome from The Tube’s owner and staff. Definitely worth a visit, highly recommended!– BCWalker via TripAdvisor

Website:             Email: [email protected]


Those looking for after-hours entertainment are spoilt for choice in Bristol. With a range of unique bars and exciting clubs, there’s something to suit everyone…

Hyde & Co.


You have to be eagle-eyed to spot this little gem, which is undoubtedly one of Bristol’s best kept secrets (until now!). Hyde & Co take the bar’s speakeasy theme very seriously indeed, with customers needing to navigate and ring a doorbell before being checked out through a spy-hole in the door. We’ll stop there with detail about the venue – as we wouldn’t want to spoil the mystery should you ever visit this ace drinking establishment. The cocktails prepared lovingly by their skilled mixologists range from the classics to more innovative creations and are always served strong – just how we like them!

What people say: “As secrets go, a secret room within a secret bar is as secret as you might get. Hyde & Co may be just off the Clifton Triangle, one of Bristol’s busiest nocturnal thoroughfares, near a magic bar and surrounded on almost all sides by kebab shops, but if you didn’t know it existed, you might walk by it blissfully unaware of the delights within.– Betty James via TimeOut

Website:             Telephone:01179 297007

The Syndicate


Located just a stone’s throw away from The Galleries shopping centre on Nelson Street, Syndicate is perfect for keen clubbers looking for a good time. This superclub is truly massive and actually has two rooms. The first is the main room – which consists mostly of party-goers being entertained by world-class DJs, with dancing going on until the early hours. If that’s not your cup of tea there’s also the R&B room which, although still quite big in size, offers a more chilled-out atmosphere. This truly is the perfect night out for club enthusiasts!

What people say: “As soon as you walk through the doors you are immediately taken into the clubs arena based structure, with a huge dance floor and massive speakers hanging down from the ceiling.  You will find dancers on podiums, robots and creatures on stilts crawling around the dance floor and on special occasions highly trained fire artists doing tricks with fire.” Bristol Nightlife

Website:               Telephone:01179 450325



Head to the East Mud Dock just by the picturesque Queen Square and you’ll find a formidable-looking boat called ‘Thekla’. This unique vessel plays host to a wide range of gigs and club nights, and is adored by locals and visitors to Bristol alike. Praised as being somewhere you can both sit and have a relaxed drink or dance the night away, Thekla is particularly popular with music-lovers and students – with the venue receiving a mention in the Bristol Tab’s freshers guide to nightlife in the city.

What people say: “This was my first experience of the Thekla, and I really enjoyed it. My boyfriend loves hard rock, and we saw the Black Spiders, who were absolutely brilliant and put on a fantastic show, with a great supporting act Turbogeist. The tickets were not very expensive, it is easy to park nearby, with lots of places to eat.– Sarahrt2 via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:01179 293301



Offering a clubbing experience that you’d usually have to travel to the capital for, Motion is a skate park by day and a unique superclub by night. Comprised of a network of warehouses with a cobbled front courtyard and a massive outdoor area, this venue offers a variety of rooms with something for every keen clubber. It also plays host to a range of music events including gigs, festivals and massive clubnights (with the likes of promoters Just Jack and Blowpop putting on regular nights here). Locals particularly like the large outdoor smoking area and friendly crowd, which has helped this venue put Bristol well and truly on the clubbing map.

What people say: “With a cavernous main room at the heart of a sprawling complex of smaller spaces, outdoor areas and, occasionally, the adjacent Marble Factory venue, Motion provides a regular home for not just homegrown Bristol nightlife institutions such as The Blast and Futureboogie, but global mega-brands such as Defected and Cocoon too.– Jon Cook via TimeOut

Website:             Telephone:01179 723111


Smoke & Mirrors


If you’re looking for something a bit different head to this boutique pub located on Denmark Street in the city centre. Offering magic shows, live comedy, music and burlesque – this little gem provides an intimate atmosphere that guarantees you a unique night, whether you’re with family or friends. Visitors to the Smoke & Mirrors bar are treated to an engaging evening of high-quality entertainment, as well as friendly staff and reasonably priced drinks. Being so cosy it is recommended you book a table beforehand and you can even pre-order drinks for show intervals!

What people say: “Fantastic intimate venue and top class entertainment. The show is brilliantly presented and superb audience participation. We enjoyed it very much and will go again on future visits to Bristol. I can absolutely guarantee you will not be disappointed if you go along to the show.– Simon Chorsley via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:01179 290362


When making plans for spending time with the family, it can be difficult to find something that suits everyone. Fortunately, Bristol is full of entertaining and versatile attractions to suit all ages…

Jungle Rumble Adventure Golf


Head to the top floor of Cabot Circus and you’ll find Jungle Rumble, which comprises of two crazy-golf courses, a cafe/bar, soft play area and air hockey. This truly is fun for all ages and the challenging themed 18 holes are sure to get your family’s competitive spirit going! It’s location means Jungle Rumble can be easily incorporated into a family day out as a break from shopping at the busy centre below. Prices are reasonable, with offers like 1 round with 2 bottles of beer proving very popular at just £10.

What people say: “Both courses at Jungle Rumble look like sets from Tomb Raider with vines and temple ruins. We played both courses on a Sunday morning, so it was quiet with only a few kids around, taking us about an hour in total to complete. It is a great way to have some fun, and if you’re like me, really gets your competitive edge going. The courses are varied, and offer an imaginative and creative mix that are suitable for both adults and younger children.Guide 2 Bristol

Website:               Telephone:01179 297771

Bristol Zoo Gardens


First opened in 1835, Bristol Zoo has entertained and educated locals and tourists for many years. It’s easy to see why this attraction has survived the test of time and has earned a mention in The Guardian’s top 10 for family days out in the city. Visitors can expect a tranquil garden setting on the stunning Clifton Down, as well as a wide variety of wildlife to see. Also on offer are talks or feedings every 15 minutes, which gives spectators the chance to learn about the animals and conservation projects, as well as a vast amount of educational material dotted around the various enclosures. Most importantly, the animals themselves seem content and enclosures are spacious and clean.

What people say: “What a fab day we had! My son is 20 months and loved the animals. We had a picnic on the lawn which was packed but all very child friendly. The car parks were full, but we found a free space along the roadside. The facilities were excellent.– Review via Mumsnet

Website:             Telephone:01179 747399

The Climbing Academy


If your family prefer something a little more white-knuckle, then this large bouldering centre is right up your street! Offering a variety of options to suit all fitness levels, bouldering allows participants to climb without the hindrance of usual climbing equipment. What makes this centre – which is situated in Lawrence Hill – special is the atmosphere and community within the academy. Everyone truly is welcome here and bouldering is a great way to get your loved ones into climbing as a hobby.

What people say: “We really enjoyed ourselves and there was so much to have a go at that we ended up spending the afternoon there. The centre caters for various ages and had a great atmosphere. The staff were really friendly and helpful. They have a great cafe with wifi also available. Excellent place, will look forward to visiting again!” – bluezazzria via TripAdvisor

Website:           Telephone:01179 072956

At-Bristol Science Centre


Also known as At-Bristol, the science centre offers an excellent and educational day out for any family. The vast majority of exhibits are interactive but also informative, and as a result little ones are kept occupied and engaged whilst they learn. Favourites include the animation area, the ‘Build-It’ Zone (where participants are invited to build a house with Lego bricks) and the bubble area. A great opportunity for adults and kids alike to learn about science and experience it first-hand!

What people say: “At Bristol has a huge variety of exhibits that provide young people with a real hands on approach to scientific understanding. My children adored the section looking at the human body. Getting to listen to music through their teeth was fantastic fun and who knew we had such powerful and adaptable body parts. – Lee-Anne McCarthy via What’s Good To Do

Website:             Telephone:08453 451235

Laser Fusion


Action and sci-fi enthusiasts will love this one! Located on Silver Street in the City Centre, Laser Fusion is an alternative way to spend time with the family. Their purpose-built arena is packed full of castle towers, mazes and fog as well as lighting and sound effects. You can either opt to play solo or as a team and once your game is over you can debrief and have some food and drink in the centre’s cafe. Visitors particularly love the staff, who always go the extra mile to make your Laser Fusion experience special.

What people say: “Came here as kids wanted to do this. All in all we had a great time- everybody thoroughly enjoyed themselves. The best bit was that we each had scorecard showing who shot us and who we shot. Brilliant!– mseet via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:01179 293699


If you’re lucky enough to have been selected Maid of Honour it also means you’re blessed with the task of organising a hen do to remember! Don’t panic though, as there are plenty of hen activities in Bristol to suit all ages and tastes…

Cocktail Making at Revolution


Usually, we’re not massive fans of large chains, but Revolution’s cocktail making classes repeatedly deliver and are a great idea to get your hens in the party mood. You and your friends will be given a choice of which cocktails you would like to make – then your allocated mixologist will show you how to perfectly balance all the elements! Your hens will love the friendly and informative staff, as well as the games and shots that are thrown in. Revolution has also received praise for their high-quality food, so you may want to think about arranging something to eat afterwards as well!

What people say: “Cocktail making as a hen party activity sounded like a really good idea, and Revolution Bar didn’t disappoint. There was a party of about 20 to 30 of us for what ended up being a two hour class, where we all got to try several cocktails and make one for ourselves. There was a wide range of cocktails to choose from on the menu, cosmopolitans, martinis and more, and they also provided some nibbles for us to try with the drinks. ihaveshoos via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:01179 304335

Hens With Pens


If your party are looking for something a bit cheeky, life drawing is a creative way for everyone to get to know each other more and have a giggle. Featured in theBristol Vintage Wedding Fair blog,Hens with Pens is a Bristol-based company that aims to make your life drawing experience the very best it can be. One of their highly qualified tutors and models will come to you so you and your hens can relax in the comfort of your own accommodation. The first half of the two-hour experience is allocated to playing games doing drawing exercises to bring the artist out in everyone. Then show off what you’ve learnt and embark on some proper life drawing from a male model!


What people say: “We had a fabulous life drawing class. Everyone felt really at ease and we all picked up some new drawing skills as well as having a giggle. A fantastic night..– Rachel via Hens with Pens website

Website:            Telephone:02032 913651

Spa Days at the Royal Marriott Hotel


Located in the prestigious four-star hotel, which sits right in the city centre, the Spa at the Marriott offers an extensive range of treatments, including packages for hen groups. Also available are facilities including a swimming pool, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi and gym. The variety of treatments are sure to keep everyone happy and give you and the bride-to-be some much needed TLC!

What people say: “My Swedish full body massage, which is ideal for relieving muscle tension and easing problem areas (of which I have many!), was out of this world, with just the right amount of pressure from therapist Zoe. I went in feeling tired and stressed and left floating on air. I’ll be back.– Natalie Banyard, Bristol Post                Telephone:01179 294281

Clifton Cakes


If you’re after something that will tickle everyone’s taste buds, look no further than Clifton Cakes, who are based on St Georges Road in the city centre. On offer are a variety of cupcake and chocolate courses including chocolate shoe making, chocolate tasting and courses on making beautiful handbag themed cakes. The great thing about this activity is it will appeal to all ages groups, and can be a great way to get everyone talking (particularly useful if some members of your hen party don’t know each other). And who doesn’t like chocolate?

What people say: “The course was so much fun and it definitely gave me an appreciation for all the work that goes into producing good quality chocolates not to mention it made me feel a little less begrudged at the price that usually comes with them! Best of all, you get to take all of your creations home with you to share with family and friends.The Wedding Girl

Website:             Telephone:01179 041112

The Showgirl Academy 


If your group want to embrace their inner dancer or burlesque superstar then this is just the thing for you! Located on Portland Square, Showgirl offers fun workshops on burlesque, can-can, charleston, fan dance and 60’s go go dancing especially for hen parties. The workshops focus primarily on having fun whilst getting fit, as well as finding a unique way to bond with your fellow hens. Their professional instructors are friendly, helpful and even accredited by the Ministry of Burlesque – so embrace your inner performer and give it a go!

What people say: “My hen party and I had so much fun giving Burlesque dancing a go on Saturday, it was excellent! Our instructor Sandie was great, and patient with our big group of 19, as well as our giggling!– Katt Neal via Facebook

Website:             Telephone:01779 232358


Best Man? Organising a stag do can be a daunting task, but with so many great things to do in Bristol, you and the lads can have an entertaining and stress-free weekend away…

West Country Go-Karting


Do you and your pals love a bit of competitive spirit? Tear up the tarmac in the beautiful surroundings of West Country Water Park! With a 400m circuit and top range Sodi karts with speeds of up to 50mph, the thrill-seekers in your party will love this challenging but fun activity. The staff are friendly and informative for booking, as well as on the day. On arrival, you receive a safety briefing before being shown to your karts and let loose on the track. May the best man win!

What people say: “Went as part of a stag weekend. Easy to book and subsequent questions answered quickly and honestly. Track was well designed for both novices and experienced karters. Couldn’t recommend enough.– Emoey Cannon-Hartnell, Google

Website:             Telephone: 01454 202666

Bristol Wine School


Hosting many private wine tastings across Bristol and Bath, this wine school is dedicated to providing fun and unstuffy events – perfect for a discerning stag party! For those new to wine there’s the ‘Introduction to Wine Tasting’ which starts at £20 a head and lets you sample 7 different wines. The tasting can hosted anywhere you wish including your own accommodation or they can recommend a venue to match your budget! Bottoms up!

What people say: “Saturdays tasting was a massive hit and far beyond our expectations. Tristan’s knowledge and spirit for the subject shone through without any of the pretence and stuffiness I have encountered with other wine tastings.– Customer via Bristol Wine School website

Website:             Telephone: 01172 140262

Grosvenor Casino


Located on the very central Anchor Road in close proximity to the Floating Harbour, Grosvenor casino is the perfect venue for a bet or two after a night out. This casino in particular has put a lot of work into their poker room, and is billed as the only casino in the UK that runs multi-table live tournaments. If some of your stags are new to poker they can get involved with the Pit Texas Hold’em Cash Game, where free coaching is provided. Also available are the standard casino fixtures like roulette, blackjack and slots.

What people say: “If you fancy good food (reasonably priced) and a bit of a flutter then this is the place to go for something different! Even the bar prices are great and they even offer valet parking and being Bristol that’s a welcome bonus– User via TripAdvisor

Website:               Telephone: 01779 292932

Weston Lodge Shooting Ground


Offering competition-standard equipment and high quality guidance from their expert instructors, the clay pigeon shooting at Weston Lodge is the perfect activity for stag groups looking to do a bit of manly bonding. The woodland setting also has a large capacity for shooting, so even if you’re in a very large group there will be no need to be split up. Whether your group are shooting novices or seasoned country bumpkins, you’re sure to have an excellent and enjoyable day here!

What people say: “The setting of the lodge was fantastic, and the views looking down to the water at Portishead were breathtaking. Clay pigeon shooting provides a medium rush of adrenalin for those that are not quite adventurous, but is varied and competitive enough for those with more of an appetite for action sports.What’s On Bath

Website:            Telephone: 01275 842225

It’s a Knockout

It's a Knockout


With all the same props, costumes and inflatables used in the original BBC show – It’s a Knockout allows you and your stags to have some daft fun outdoors. Any fitness level can take part and the wacky challenges are sure to get your group’s sense of teamwork going – which is the perfect way to let everyone get to know each other. The staff can also help you organise other activities to do in the evening, which will make your role as Best Man much less stressful!

What people say: “We opted for It’s a Knockout as part of our hen weekend and were not sure what to expect. But we all had a fantastic time and spent the whole afternoon laughing! We didn’t realise how competitive we were and were amazed to come 4th out of 30 teams. All the activities were well supervised and organised.– Mandy via Freedom Ltd

Website:             Telephone: 01773 766053


In Bristol but completely skint? Have no fear, the city is brimming with things to do that are absolutely free of charge. So you can have fun, even when it’s just before payday…

M Shed


If you have a couple of hours to spare, why not head to Wapping Road by the harbour and take advantage of the free entry at M Shed? Packed with interesting information and displays about Bristol’s rich history, it’s very easy to lose track of time in this well laid-out establishment. Spanning over three floors, there’s something here for everyone – making it a perfect day out whether it’s for a couple, family or group of friends. And once you’ve learnt more about city you can enjoy stunning views of the harbour and visit their cafe for a coffee.

What people say: “M Shed’s unique selling point is that it is a “people’s museum”, valuing all contributions to Bristol equally, be they old or new, grand or small. It’s inclusive approach to framing Bristol’s history offers an unpretentious and vastly enjoyable narrative of the city.– James Lachno, The Telegraph

Website:              Telephone:01173 526600

Banksy Tours


Bristol is a city synonymous with graffiti and street art – most famously, the works of Banksy are dotted around the city. For cultural enthusiasts, the perfect free day out can be easily put together by doing your research on the internet and hitting the street in pursuit of his most famous works. Where the Wall offers an excellent run down of locations, and their extensive knowledge of all things street art has earned them a mention in the Bristol Post.

What people say: “I always find it a good way to get to know the city and places you would never go if it wasnt for the street art. And, although Banksy was my reason to go, I became a fan of other artists too! – User via TripAdvisor

Website:             Facebook: /wherethewall

St Weburghs City Farm


Having a small farm holding in the middle of a city might seem slightly strange, but St Weburghs is exactly that, and offers a great opportunity to learn about where our food comes from. With a wide range of animals including pigs, sheep, goats and chickens, as well as an award-winning cafe – this is a great day out for all the family. Note that although they do not charge entry, St Werburghs is a charity and gratefully accept any donations!

What people say: “As we live so close by, we often come here when money is a little tight or the kids are in need of cheering up. The goats cheer my daughters up every time without fail! Free entry although a donation is expected and we give what we can every time. Cafe is lovely, we often go for the posh fish finger sandwich as it’s really rather yummy.– User via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone:01179 428241

Clifton Suspension Bridge


Venture just slightly out of the city centre and you’ll come across this formidable monument – which has become a symbol of Bristol and the South West over the years. Sweeping across the Avon Gorge, a walk on a sunny day offers stunning views of the Clifton Downs and a stroll at sunrise or sunset in the right conditions makes for a spectacular experience. Keen photographers will love this, so remember to bring your camera!

What people say: “The Clifton Suspension Bridge is the top sight for visitors in Bristol. For me it’s like the Golden Gate for San Francisco. High over the Avon River, at 75meters, it spans the Avon Gorge. It’s a beautiful bridge that becomes more beautiful during the night when it’s all lit up.Virtual Tourist

Website:             Telephone:01179 744664

St Andrews Park


Containing a park, playground and paddling pool this is the perfect place to get some fresh air – whether you’re exercising, spending time with the kids or just sitting and watching the world go by! As well as the generous green space, which serves as the perfect location for a bit of frisbee or football, there is a cafe serving up a variety of delicious treats. Well worth a visit!

What people say: “We were there hours and hours, it was such a lovely atmosphere. The park has a sand area with lots of things to climb on, and then at the back for the older kiddies is a large wooden climbing frame. There is lots of green space onsite, perfect for cricket, football, frisbee etc!– Kelly via Netmums

Website:               Telephone: 01779 223719

Bristol is a buzzing city that plays host to a variety of massive events every year. Whether you’re into food, music or cars – you can be sure there will be something for you! Here are our top picks, in no particular order…



The ultimate weekender for Volkswagen fans everywhere, this festival has gone from strength-to-strength since it started and now attracts over 10,000 car lovers every year. At just £30 for a weekend ticket, it stands up as one of the best value for money festivals out there, and prides itself on being family-friendly with something for everyone. VW enthusiasts will love their show and shine displays, and keen music-lovers will greatly enjoy Brisfest on the Sunday – featuring loads of live bands. Also on offer is a range of delicious food and drink, dog agility, kids zone and art displays.

What people say: “One of last season’s real belters was Bristol Volksfest. From its small beginnings this cornerstone dub show is now in its 22nd year… and in that time it has evolved and grown into epic proportions!VW Vibe Magazine (on Volksfest 2014)

Website:              Telephone: 07581 377856

Bristol Harbour Festival


Attracting hundreds of thousands of people to the Bristol waterfront every year, Bristol Harbour Festival is one of a kind and plays host to a range of attractions. Visitors can expect live music, street artists and circus acts as well as a market in Queen Square and, of course, plenty of boat-based attractions too. This massive event is incredibly popular with locals and visitors to Bristol alike, and has even earned a mention in the Bristol Post.

What people say: “At Bristol Harbour festival, I spent a lot of time at Queen Square, listening to the bands and sampling the drinks and food. Every year this is one of the venues for the festival and is attended by all kinds of entrepreneurs, offering a variety of food and drink.– Michael Devon via TripAdvisor

Website:             Twitter: @BristolHarbFest


Grillstock Bristol


Taking place on the 11th and 12th July in Lloyds Amphitheatre on Bristol Harbourside, Grillstock’s reputation as the ultimate BBQ festival has earned it a mention in The Guardian. Visitors will be treated to a variety of entertainment including live music, ‘King of the Grill’ competitions, BBQ masterclasses and eating competitions. A ticket not only grants you access to all of this but lets you sample some of the food produced at these attractions. There’s also a dedicated children’s activity area, so those of you with little ones needn’t miss out on the fun.

What people say: “Overall, I would say the festival is good value for money at £30.00 for a weekend ticket. We had a wonderful day out as a family and would definitely recommend it as it appeals to a wide range of ages.– Lora Hole, What’s good to do

Website:              Twitter:@grillstock

Bristol Comedy Garden


If you’re a comedy fan, then this is right up your street! Taking place in Queen Square, this funny festival runs between the 8th – 12th July and features an array of big names include Sean Locke, Stewart Lee and Bristol-born Mark Watson. And if that wasn’t enough already, the festival will be bursting with bars, live music and street food – so you’ll be well and truly spoilt for choice once you’ve laughed up an appetite. A great event for couples or groups of friends looking for a good time.

What people say: “The inaugural Bristol Comedy Garden was such a success that it’s a wonder nobody thought of the idea before. Erect a big top in Queen Square, fill it with some of the best comedians in the country, and watch the punters come in droves and laugh themselves silly.Bristol Culture

Website:            Twitter: @comedygarden

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta


We couldn’t do a section on Bristolian events without mentioning this world-famous ballooning festival, which is the largest of it’s kind in Europe. Starting in 1979, the International Balloon Fiesta now attracts over 500,000 people and 100 hot air balloons – which makes for an incredible spectacle, particularly at night, when they take to the sky. Also at the festival is a bandstand hosting a wide variety of music, local producers offering food and drink and the opportunity to book hot air balloon flights, including voyages on glass-bottomed ones for the daring! And, best of all, entrance to the Fiesta is absolutely FREE.

What people say: “Nothing better than driving to work on a summer’s morning and seeing several balloons floating along. The night glow before the Balloon Fiesta is really lovely. Some years we’re lucky enough to have them sail over our house, often low enough to talk tothe people in the baskets!– User via Virtual Tourist

Website:             Telephone: 09067 112191


Whether its for a romantic weekend away or a longer stay with friends or family, Bristol has a range of accommodation on tap to suit all budgets and preferences – so look below for our top picks…

Hotel Du Vin


With large, loft-style bedrooms and a unique setting within a Grade II listed building – Hotel Du Vin offers guests a high-quality, luxurious stay. Despite being part of a chain, visitors enjoy the attentive staff, exceptional customer service and original architecture – which stems from the restored building’s former use as a sugar warehouse. In terms of room features the generous beds and complimentary Nespresso machines are a big hit and you also don’t have to go far to enjoy some top-notch food, as their well-regarded restaurant is situated inside the hotel.

What people say: “This is a lovely hotel, from the start all staff was helpful, our room was beautiful and quite unique given the monotony of a lot of hotels these days it is always nice to see individual style touches. We stayed with friends and their rooms were equally lovely and different. Will definitely be back!– Mick Bryd via TripAdvisor

Website:            Telephone: 08719 430345

Thirty Eight


Located in the beautiful setting of the Bristol Downs in the picturesque Clifton village, this establishment goes beyond your bog-standard bed and breakfast. On arrival the elegance of the Georgian townhouse makes an outstanding impression which is upheld throughout it’s boutique-style interior. Bedrooms offer guests not only a high-quality array of fixtures and artwork, but stunning views of the Downs and city in the distance. Food-wise, delicious cream teas and divine breakfasts are on offer, which can be enjoyed in the intimate lounge room or outside on the terrace – perfect for the summer.

What people say: “Bristol’s been crying out for an upmarket b&b for years, and this double-fronted townhouse definitely fits the bill. Billed as a ‘boutique and breakfast’, it’s all clean lines, muted colours and minimal clutter. The 10 bedrooms, all different, all have a designer touch. It feels like a chic Parisian pied-à-terre: wood-panelled walls are painted in shades of duck-egg blue and slate grey (from Farrow & Ball, of course), and retro lamps.– Oliver Berry, The Telegraph

Website:             Telephone: 01179 466905

Future Inn, Cabot Circus


Offering guests a basic but still very comfortable stay, this Future Inn is located just 30 seconds away from the bustling shopping centre of Cabot Circus. Despite being situated in the city centre at a cheaper price than the norm, rooms are spacious and clean with friendly and attentive staff. Free parking for guests is a massive benefit, as parking in the area otherwise is nearly impossible. Free Wifi is also included – which is particularly useful if you are in the city on business.

What people say: “We have just here stayed for 1 night myself, partner and our 7 yr old son, and found this to be a lovely hotel. Very clean, nice large room with 2 queen size beds and an ensuite with shower/bath. dressing gowns and slippers also included. We were overlooking the front of the hotel on floor 2 but didnt notice any traffic noise and had a lovely sleep. – Maxine via Expedia

Website:             Telephone: 01179 049698

Brooks Guesthouse Bristol


Situated bang in the city centre just a stone’s-away from St Nicholas market and the harbour, Brooks was once a hostel and has been since revamped into a boutique guesthouse. Twin and triple rooms are on offer here, which although compact are very high-spec – making this an ideal choice of accommodation for family and friends. The homely but stylish feel, as well as the wide range of high-quality food available for breakfast has earned this establishment a mention in The Guardian, so it’s well worth checking out.

What people say: “The rooms are light and clean, the perfect haven in which to drop after a day spent exploring the city. The staff are friendly, the beds are soft, and the hotel makes an unfussy bed and breakfast in Bristol feel like a luxurious home from home. Neat, sweet, and unassumingly chic.Red Online

Website:            Telephone: 01179 300066

DoubleTree by Hilton


Located on Redcliffe Way in the city centre, the DoubleTree offers guest executive-style rooms and serves as an excellent choice of hotel whether you’re in Bristol for business or pleasure. Guests will love the professional but friendly hotel staff, as well as the delicious range of food on offer in the hotel restaurant. Being part of the Hilton brand, there are often good last-minute deals on offer – so its well worth looking online to see if you can find yourself a few nights’ accommodation at a steal.

What people say: “The hotel was very clean and had lovely decor throughout. Breakfast was fantastic with a nice long time to enjoy it so we didn’t feel rushed!– Hayley via

Website:             Telephone: 01779 260041

Sometimes when visiting a city it’s tempting to restrict your retail therapy to the nearest large shopping centre. But Bristol has so much more than that to offer, so venture to the below for a truly unique shopping experience…



Located on Gloucester Road, Fig is a truly original little shop set up by six artists who make a range of gifts and jewellery, as well as limited edition prints and cards. Their selection of gorgeous trinkets, which include silver charms, fabric embroideries and hand-stitched portraits, are perfect to brighten up your home with or as a gift for someone special. Their wares have earned Fig a mentioned in The Guardian. If you’d like to see more about Fig before you visits, their blog is full of updates on these six creative ladies’ latest projects.

What people say: “Having only been in the area since June this shop, run by a six strong craft collective is a unique glimpse at the production of some beautiful products. I think it’s the shop split in half that makes Fig such an enjoyable place to poke my head in: half the shop given to racks for gifts and cards and the other half to the in house artists.– User via Yelp

Website:            Telephone: 01179 244898

Park Street


With it’s massive selection of boutiques, vintage shops and art galleries – it’s no surprise that Park Street was shortlisted for the Great British High Street of the Year Award in 2014. Located in Bristol’s West End, it plays host to well-known brands like Cath Kidston but also showcases a variety of hidden gems where you can pick up something really unique. Among these are shops providing vintage goodies like The Boot Room and BS8, as well as independent shoe store Fifty Fifty. And once you’ve worked up an appetite there’s a wide array of eateries too!

What people say: “Park Street does not just entice with quirky shops and culinary delights but also with great vistas and a beautiful Georgian setting. Stroll up the hill, admire the architecture, treat yourself to a new pair of shoes on the way up, and enjoy the reward of a nice cup of coffee and spectacular views over the city at the end of it..Visit Bristol

Website:             Twitter: @BrisParkStreet


Anna Falcke


With over 15 years experience in fabric design, the team at Anna Falcke offer beautiful hand-crafted women’s accessories, including scarves and gloves which have been recommended in the Bristol Post. Certain collections – like the Devoré Scarves – are designed and individually hand painted by Anna Falcke herself and so make a wonderful gift for someone special. That said, their Wristees – which are stylish fingerless gloves – are high-quality and very popular with their many satisfied customers!

What people say: “I have purchased several pairs of Wristees since my neighbour was spotted wearing a lovely turquoise pair. Some I bought from Bath Christmas Market where I was able to chat to Anna and some by mail order. I was delighted with instant delivery accompanied by a handwritten note by Anna.– Louisa W via Anna Falcke website

Website:             Telephone: 01179 049698

Cabot Circus


If you are shopping with family or a large group of friends, dragging them between independent shops, how ever lovely, may become tiresome. As shopping centres go Cabot Circus does an excellent job of being accessible to all but also providing a few unique stores as well. One such example is Colonel Mustard – three floors of high-end menswear with a barber shop on the second floor. Also available are a wide variety of eateries, well-known high street brands and Jungle Rumble Adventure Golf on the top floor!

What people say: “As we were in the area we decided to do a spot of shopping, have something to eat & go to the cinema. Cabot circus couldn’t be more perfect for doing all those things in one place. Car parking was easy and not too expensive. And everything was so close and had everything you could need. Great for a Saturday…– Emily P via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone: 01179 529361

Cox & Baloney


Wonder down Cheltenham Road and you’ll come across this little gem of a shop, which stocks a variety of vintage goodies including upcycled furniture, homeware and crockery. All the items on offer have lovingly hand-picked by their team, which means visitors to the shop get only the very best. And once you’ve found yourself something really unique, you can unwind in their lovely tearooms – which upkeep the vintage theme with their decor and ambience.

What people say: “This is a gorgeous vintage boutique selling clothing, accessories and furniture. The thing I love most about this boutique is that I can browse for my next vintage piece followed by delicious tea and cake in their tea room.– Niki Whittle, Guide 2 Bristol

Website:              Telephone: 01779 443100


Spending quality time with your other half is essential for keeping the relationship fresh. Luckily Bristol is chock-a-block with fun things to do as a couple…

Lido Spa


Located in the picturesque village of Clifton, the Grade II listed Lido Spa dates back to 1849. Facilities include an outdoor heated pool, hot tub, sauna and steam room, as well as a tearoom and restaurant. Full day spa packages start at £92 but given how popular their skilled therapists are with guests it’s worth every penny. A swim in the outdoor pool offers a unique experience and the restaurant serves high-quality ingredients cooked to perfection. Perfect for a day of TLC with your loved one.

What people say: “I was very well looked after during my full body massage and left to relax afterwards in the tea room overlooking the pool. And then, what better than a cake and a cup of tea in the café (or a glass of wine and some tapas in the bar)? It’s a quirky and sophisticated set-up where you will feel sufficiently spoiled.– Emily Koch, Bristol Post

Website:            Telephone: 01179 339530

The Matthew


The Matthew docked at Bristol is a replica of the same ship that John Cabot and his crew sailed to and discovered America (not Christopher Columbus as most believe). Although to have a look around the boat and dock is free, a boat trip is a nice way to hear about the history of the ship and see the city at the same time. For some romantic sightseeing, opt for the Avon Gorge trip – which is a three to four hour cruise down the Avon, under the Clifton Suspension Bridge to Pill and back. The perfect daytime activity with your loved one.

What people say: “This trip is great for spotting wildlife and not just birds, we also saw a deer. The crew are volunteers but are skilled at sailing this replica sailing ship, always ready to answer any question you may have. You can get a cup of tea or coffee and light refreshments during the trip.– Colin M via TripAdvisor

Website:            Telephone: 01179 276868

Bristol Hippodrome


The grade II listed Bristol Hippodrome offers visitors the chance to revel in the building’s history whilst enjoying the wide variety of entertainment on offer. Whether you’re into ballets, comedy, opera or theatre – there’s something for everyone here. For the perfect romantic evening enjoy a pre-theatre meal out at one of the many nearby restaurants and head to the Hippodrome to see a show. Long-running favourites include Halfway to Paradise and Oklahoma.

What people say: “Saw Wicked last night and it was just that! An amazing show, a beautiful theatre – we were looked after so very well by Hannah the duty manager and her team. And the performances were outstanding. Thank you Bristol Hippodrome. A truly memorable night!– Debbie Redmond via Facebook

Website:            Telephone: 08448 713012

First Flight


If you and your other half are keen adventurers and have always wanted to see Bristol from above this is a great way to do it! On offer are champagne flights where you travel in a small group with other people or, if you’re looking for something really special, premier flights where you and your significant other get the balloon all to yourselves! You can fly from multiple locations and previous customers love the knowledge, organisation and consideration to locals demonstrated by the staff, as well as how intimate and personal the flights feel. Don’t forget to look out for First Flight at this year’s International Balloon Fiesta!

What people say: “After deciding to pop the question in a hot air balloon and quick Google search later, I found First Flight. The personal service provided from the initial call to the actual flight was fantastic, in the week prior to the flight. Nigel was very flexible and kept me updated on the best weather conditions and ideal flight times. The flight itself was a truly amazing experience.– Imesh P via TripAdvisor

Website:           Telephone: 01934 852



If you’re after something a bit different and love a high-adrenaline challenge, this is perfect for you! Located in an inconspicuous building on Midland Road, Puzzlair is a real-life 4D escape game where you have 60 minutes to work your way out by collecting evidence, solving codes and finding hidden secrets. Participants will enjoy friendly and knowledgeable staff and two rooms to choose from – meaning you can return and experience something completely different next time! This clever and unique experience will certainly bring you and your beau closer together and has earned Puzzlair a mention inThe Bristol Post.

What people say: “Fantastic hour trying to solve the mystery and find the clues. We didn’t succeed but it was great fun. Staff were very helpful. Fantastic birthday present. Would highly recommend this if you want something completely different to do.– Pete H via TripAdvisor

Website:             Telephone: 07706 053498

We hope you enjoyed our Ultimate Guide to Bristol and have found something new within this marvelous city. Remember that there is always more to be discovered, so if you think you’ve come across a hidden gem we’ve missed why not share it with us on our Facebook or Twitter pages?

If you’re new to or visiting Bristol, our community and events  page is the perfect place to get involved with what’s going on in the local area. And don’t forget that you can list your own event FOR FREE too!

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Our tips for Bristolians to beat those mid-January blues!

It’s the middle of January. The fond memories of Christmas are now distant and you’re back into the full swing of work. It’s getting even colder and it’s going to be a good few months until you can bust out your shorts and sunnies. Getting out of bed and up for the miserable morning commute has never been harder. January sucks… or does it? Read our top tips on how to beat those mid-January blues!

  1. Join a gym or if you already have, mix up your workout to make it fun! If you cannot afford a gym membership then workout from home.

Exercise releases the happy hormone serotonin so no matter what type of exercise you are doing it will make you feel better about yourself! How many of you reading this said “My new year’s resolution is to get fit and healthy”? Well, if you haven’t already, it’s time to adhere to that promise!

If you haven’t already joined a gym then join one now. There are plenty in and around Bristol to suit your needs. If you want something that is cheap yet well equipped then The Gym in Cabot Circus is definitely for you. Or if you enjoy your luxury then Nuffield Health on Queens Road will have everything that you could ever want. Still not convinced? Well a quick Google search reveals that you are spoilt for choice when choosing a place to get your sweat on.

Not a fan of the gym? No problem, we have you covered. If you own a smartphone with iOS or Android then there are hundreds of apps that will give you a good word out… even if you don’t own any equipment. Try Freeletics, for example. Or if you fancy setting up your home gym then you can find plenty of cheap sports equipment here on Friday Ad. The point is that in the age of the digital, exercising has never been easier.

So you’ve decided where you’re going to workout but now what? Well this workout routine for beginners takes 4 weeks and has proven to show great results. Or if you are bored of your current workout plan then mix it up. Try running instead of lifting weights. Lift weights  instead of running. Try a yoga class. Pilates is always fun. Whatever you decide to do, keep it varied so you don’t get bored and demotivate yourself! Plus, there are loads of fitness class listings on Friday Ad, so why not head over there now and see what takes your fancy?

To sum up, if you exercised a couple of times a week over the next couple of weeks you will feel a lot better about yourself and you might even lose that extra bit of weight the Christmas turkey so kindly gave you!

“Can Friday Ad help me with my fitness?”

Yes, we certainly can! We have a lot of fitness related items listed on our website and just because they are second hand, it doesn’t mean that the quality is bad! The equipment you use in a gym is used all day, everyday, and by a lot of different people – in fact, second hand gym equipment from a private seller is likely to have seen less use than your standard gym equipment!

Click here to find the gym equipment we have on sale – from treadmills, to dumbbells to weight machines!

Click here to see what gym classes and training we have on offer – from yoga to 1-on-1 personal training.

  1. Plan a holiday, trip, event, or anything – it will give you something to look forward to!

On the build up to Christmas you had so much to look forward to – giving and opening presents, seeing family and friends, precious time off work, enjoying a few too many beers, and so forth. What do you have now? Months and months of work until summer comes along. Months and months of nothing. It doesn’t have to be like that… honest! If you set your sights on planning a trip now – no matter how far away the trip might be – the months leading up to it will fly by.

Now, we understand that you might be skint after Christmas, but not all trips have to be expensive. There are loads of cheap holiday options over on Friday Ad. And there are always last minute options going for next to nothing over on the aptly titled Whatever you’re looking for you’re bound to find it, whether it’s soaking up the sun in Barcelona or hitting up the slopes in Switzerland. Plus, if you’re planning on going on a beach holiday we’re pretty sure you’ll want the body to match, which ties in nicely with point number one: plan your holiday, get fit and then reap the rewards. January will be gone before you know it.

If you really can’t go away for a few days then don’t worry, not all hope is lost! Plan an event instead… buy tickets for a gig, see your favourite theatre show, join a cause, heck… even plan the cinema for next week! You could also check out the events page on Friday Ad. No matter how big or small it is, having something to look forward to will make those miserable January days fly by.

“Can Friday Ad help me find an event or holiday?”

Yes we can! Our sellers are always listing events and holidays at home and abroad. From intimate gigs to holiday homes, we have it all on Friday Ad!

Click here to see what travel options are currently on offer.

Click here to see What’s On in your local area

  1. Be sociable: join an interest or activity group, or even try something new – it will keep you occupied.

A lot of us get into the habit of coming home from work and spending the rest of our spare time in front of a computer or television screen. This is absolutely fine… in moderation! Too much time doing this will result in lethargy and even loneliness! No matter how intrusive the age of the digital is becoming in our everyday lives, it is always better to communicate in person than through a screen… so go outside and do something!

Set one day a week where you partake in an unusual activity (and when we say unusual it doesn’t have to be something completely out of the box, just something you might not normally do!). Join an interest club. Interested in poetry? Bristol has you covered. Ever imagined yourself as an actor? Here you go. We also have a tonne of listings on Friday Ad… from a dub club, to a singles party night and even a peace zone meetup! And what about going to a gym? Exercising can be a social event too – a great way to meet new and likeminded people, especially if you go to a specified gym class such as yoga, pilates and circuits.

The point we’re making is… simply get out of the house (going to work doesn’t count) and try, try, try. You might find something new and unexpected that you are passionate about. Heck, you might even be extremely talented at something you never even considered trying before. So go ahead and take those guitar lessons, join a choir or even start boxing! Buy a bike and go wherever the wind takes you. You never know how much you might like or dislike something until you actually do it yourself.

And after all that trying, January will be over, summer will be closer, and you will find that you are a far more happier, rounded and sociable human being.

“Can Friday Ad help me be more sociable!”

Of course we can! We have loads of things on our site that will help you get out and about.

Click here to see our leisure section.

Click here to buy tickets for an event.

Click here to join a club, society or team.

So what do YOU think? Have these tips helped you beat those mid-January blues? Or have you got some tips of your own? Tell us in the comments section below!

Top ten collectors items

People collect all sorts of things from expensive art to second hand junk. The next time you go to throw something away, whatever it is, it’s worth remembering that there might be someone out there who is collecting it. Owning a substantial collection of anything can be satisfying especially when you think back to the day you began your collection. So, if you don’t have a collection but are interested in beginning one here are a few things that are great to collect.

1 – Action figures

Some people think that action figures are strictly for children. However, if you own a large collection of figurines that are in good condition and have never been removed from their boxes, you could just be sitting on a gold mine. Some people collect older figures from years gone by, which aren’t cheap, but you could always begin a new collection. Just remember as long as you keep them in their boxes and keep their boxes in good condition; one day they may be worth a penny or two.

2 – Stamps

This seems like it is the cliche of collectors items and is usually used as a synonym for boredom, but collecting stamps can actually be extremely fun. Collecting these, just like collecting anything really, is a slow and steady process, but it is something that you can easily continue to do well into your retirement. You could try to find to get a stamp from each country, or focus on the UK, it really is up to you, but this is one of the more fun collections to begin.

3 – Memorabilia

Choose your favourite movie or film franchise and spend your days collecting everything you can find relating to that subject. I had a friend who loved the movies of Steven Segal and he went nuts on his collection, he owned Steven Segal mugs; tea pots; toilet seats; t-shirts; DVDs; signed photographs; and many many more things related to the action hero. It did become a bit much in the end, so if you are thinking of collecting memorabilia, it is always a good idea to focus on a film rather than one person.

4 – Autographs

There are two types of people who collect signatures; armchair collectors and autograph hunters. The first of these two, the armchair collectors, trawl the internet and shops looking to buy as many signed photographs a they can to add to their ever growing collection. The second one, the autograph hunter has a more hands on approach. They like to get out there and collect the signatures first hand, so if you choose to collect this way then you need to be committed and you need to ensure that you don’t hassle people too much in order to get their autograph.

5 – Music

Collecting vinyl, CDs or cassettes can be very rewarding and is most certainly my favourite thing to collect. It is great to have a huge music collection which you can go back to over and over again and always find something you haven’t heard in a while. Also, unlike most other things that people collect, if you collect music you can actually get plenty of use out of your collection. You can gain joy from building a great collection but you can also find pleasure in the actual act of listening to some wonderful music along the way.

6 – Antiques

Antiques are certainly not the cheapest collectors items in the world and not everyone will be able to afford to collect them, but if you can then you should. Think of them as mini investments as well as a great hobby. If you have been collecting for a while you can develop a good eye for spotting something of value and once you have this fantastic ability every car boot sale you stumble upon is a potential gold mine. There are a plethora of antiques out there to be collected from antique furniture to jewellery so the possibilities are truly endless.

7 – Coins

If you collect coins for long enough, one day your collection could be worth a lot of money. I know it might seem odd collecting money to make money, but there really is a wide variety of old coins from across the globe which can all be added to a wonderful collection. You can impress your friends by showing them your ancient Roman coins or you original Yankee Dollar and you can learn a lot about the history behind them whilst you are collecting.

8 – Art

This one is similar to the antiques, in that it is one of the more expensive collections to acquire. However owning a large collection of fabulous artwork is something which appeals to me and a lot of other people. You could concentrate on a single artists or go for an entire movement, or if you want just collect paintings which you like. It is up to you.

9 – Stuffed animals

One of the more unusual hobbies is taxidermy and the collection of stuffed animals. Some people enjoy the process of stuffing the animal themselves and others like to buy them pre-stuffed and fill their houses with weird and wonderful creatures. Though this is not everyone’s cup of tea, stuffed animals are collected around the world.


10 – Odd items

If none of the above really appeals to you then why not start collecting something that no one else you know collects and build a truly personal and individual collection. For example the actor Tom Hanks collects typewriters and film director Quentin Tarantino collects board games. But you could collect anything you can think of or even something which you already own a pair of, because you only need two for it to be a collection.

Start your own collection today with our collectibles and antiques section!

Top 5 car boot sales in the South West

Looking for a place in the South West where you can sell your clutter and make money at the same time? Car boot sales are the perfect opportunity and you’ll be surprised what sort of items people are looking for. Below is a list of car boot sales in Bristol and the surrounding areas…


Clifton Car Boot Sale

Where? The Clanage, Clanage Road, Bower Ashton, Bristol, BS3 2JX.

When? Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays, March – November.

Seller’s fees? Yes, £10 for car entry, £15 for van entry.

Entry fee? £1 for adults, children go free.


Gloucester Road Car Boot Sale

Where? The Memorial Stadium, Filton Avenue, Gloucester Road, Bristol, BS7 0BD.

When? Saturdays, March – September.

Seller’s fees? Yes, £10 for car entry, £15 for van entry.

Entry fee? £1 for adults, children go free.

Wotton Monster Boot Sale


Where? New Road, Wooton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire, GL12 8JW

When? Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays

Seller’s fees? Yes, £6 for car entry, £8 small vans and £10 large vans.

Entry fee? 20p for adult, children and dogs go free.


Avonmouth Car Boot Sale


Where? Barracks Lane, Avonmouth, Bristol, BS11 9NG.

When? Saturday, June to September.

Seller’s fees? Yes, £5 for car entry and £5 for vans.

Entry fee? 50p for adults, children go free.


Whitchurch Car Boot Sale

Where? Hengrove Park, Bamfield, Bristol

When? Saturdays & Bank Holiday Mondays, April – December.

Seller’s fees? Yes, cars £10, van £15 and van with trailer £20.

Entry fee? Free


Remember, any items you don’t sell at the car boot can be listed on Friday Ad for FREE. So why not place an ad today and cash in on your clutter?


Motorbiker’s guide to the web

motorbiker resource guide to the web

It’s estimated that there are around 1.2 million active motorbike riders in the UK, and the web is a great place to become a part of this huge community. It is also a useful place for getting information, inspiration & trading motorbike goods. With this in mind, we have sought out the best online resources for the motorbiking community and have brought them to you in this handy guide…

1 – Finding & mapping motorbike rides
2 – Where to find the motorbike community online
3 – Motorbike journeys to inspire
4 – Finding motorbike events, shows, ride-outs & rallies
5 – Researching a new motorbike purchase online
6 – Buying & selling your motorbike online

Free motorbike maps, routes & rides

It’s important as a biker that you make the most of your rides (after all, riding is more about the journey than the destination). There are a lot of biking navigation apps out there but many are badly built and unreliable. These apps should help you easily find, create and navigate some fantastic rides…


MotoGoLoco provides a mapping tool for motorcyclists helping them plan out and download routes across any part of the world – although the map has been built for the UK & Ireland and so is more suited to rides in these areas.

As the app uses the Google Maps API, the map creator tool is extremely easy to use and has lots of other useful features.

 Motorbike forums - MotoGoLoco

The Create Your Own Route tool allows you to set a start and end point for your journey and then edit your route directly on the map. You can do this by dragging your planned route to add additional “Via” points focusing on the locations you want to pass through and the distance you want to ride.

A really nice, unique feature of this motorbike route planner is the ability to view motorbike friendly hotels and hostels across the UK on the map. What’s more, every one of the hotels, hostels or B&B’s on the site has been visited, checked and approved by a member of the MotoGoLoco team, meaning you have some strong reassurances about being welcomed into any of these places.

Pheasant-Inn_ASjpeg_4The MotoGoLocco map app includes a preplanned set of routes across the UK & Europe with each map including distance, miles and like ratings from other users.

Motorbike route planning - MotoGoLoco

Another nice touch with built in routes include the “Perfect for” and “Route Type” section. These show you which bike type is most suitable for the ride and they also give you some idea about the type of route.

—Best Biking Roads—

This website is a necessary resource for any biker looking for tried and tested routes across every continent of the globe. It allows its 28,000 members to upload their own routes either by drawing on a map, or uploading their GPS data.

Most of the routes on this website are given a star rating for key biking elements including corners, straights, scenery, road surface, visibility, police presence(!) and hazards.

All maps can be downloaded as GPX files which means they can be uploaded to most good sat navs like the TomTom Rider All Garmin Zumo GPS.

Best Biking roads have also recently launched Best Biking Roads app for Android and Apple.

Best motorbike forums online

Whether you are a newbie to the motorcycle world, or a veteran of two wheels, online motorbike forums are the best place to speak to other bikers and allow you to offer up or receive useful motorbiking information.

Here are a couple of the best, and most active biking forums online…

—The HUBB—

The HUBB is a forum built onto the motorbike travel blog Horizons Unlimited (which is also a fantastic resource for bikers), and currently has a large number of worldwide members. It was started by two motorbike travelers, Grant & Susan in 1997, and the website and forum have grown and developed into the site you see now over the last 17 years.

If you’re going on a big trip and want to share your story with your family, or the rest of the biking community, the site allows you to create your own mini blog where you can upload photos and text, sharing your journey with anyone who’s interested!

The forum is incredibly active with new posts being added, or questions being answered by the community throughout the day. Discussions on the forum include planning routes, finding other bikers to travel with, travelling stories, motorbiking events, and specific topics about travelling in certain countries and travelling equipment. Although the topics on the site primarily revolve around motorbike travelling, there are also a dedicated sections to repairs & buying & selling.

The forum has lots of glowing testimonials from loyal members who rely on the site to indulge in their hobby.

“Thank you! The website, The travels, The insight, The inspiration, Everything, just thanks.” Colin Askey, UK

Membership to the community is free, although you are able to upgrade your membership privileges with a donation to the running of the site.

—ADV Rider—

ADV Rider is a hub of information from motorbike riders and enthusiasts based around the globe. The ADV Rider forum has nearly 300,000 worldwide members and forums topics are split into four groups:

RIDING: Containing discussions about motorbike rides, routes, racing and buddy-ups

Riding Alps July 9-16. Anyone else going?

BIKES: This section generally contains discussions about motorbikes, motorbike parts, motorbike problems and how to fix them, as well as members sharing pictures of their motorbikes and updates on motorbike fix-ups or conversions.

Multistrada 1200 – Has anyone solved the wind issue?

GEAR: This section contains discussions about specific products available to motorbikers and recommendations of motorbike kit. There’s also a vendor’s section which allows vendors to post information about their products and services.

AMC-400 Motorcycle Hitch Carrier review

Although the site is international the travel section does contains specific area information for those wishing to narrow down their search. The filters are split up into Americas – which shows post from North, Central and South America; EMEA – displaying posts posts from Europe, Middle East and Africa; and Asia Pacific – which shows posts from Asia and Australia.

—UK Bike Forum—

UK Bike Forum is a community based biking forum which allows users to submit topics and respond to discussions. This forum is dedicated to UK bikers only and has around 1,400 active members who engage with the site regularly.

Topics include riding skills, motorbike maintenance, ride-outs and meets, as well a a few other subjects which are unrelated to motorbiking.

Best motorbike jounrnies and motorbike blogs

Many motorbikers record their travels across the world through online blogs, meaning others have the opportunity to follow their journey, read about their experiences and even pick up tips for their own rides. We have picked a couple that could inspire even a non-biker to get on the open road on two wheels…


This blog consists of a thorough account of two friends’ travels across the globe on Suzuki DRz 400 S bikes. The boys spent 2 long months of research on many of the forums mentioned above selecting the bikes that would be good enough. They then modified their bikes to prepare them for the ride and set off on their adventures.

The journey lasted around 8 months, starting in the UK and took the pair through Europe, Russia, South Korea and then over to Alaska where they rode their bikes south to their finishing point in Argentina.

Motorbike travel inspiration - Tough Miles

The documentation of their trip is extremely thorough and written with great passion, humor and charm. The blog and includes detailed accounts of problems they ran into with the bikes, as well as how they overcame them.

tough miles bam road

“The BAM road is not just about motorcycling skill, it is a real test of physical and mental endurance. It is impossible to portray how tough this route really is, and once finally over it is far too easy to forget the pain each kilometer can bring. To ride it you need pure grit and determination.”

toughmiles in Bolivia2

“The ride towards El Rosario was fairly uneventful, and soon the weather became so hot that riding in just a t-shirt was the only option. This makes for a cracking riding tan, and the trademark two-tone arm of an adventure rider.”

As well as the riding and the roads they encounter, the pair recount their experiences with the locals, the food, the authorities and other riders they met along the way.

—Austin Vince—

Austin Vince is widely known among the motorbike community as the one of the most inspiring motorcycling adventurers in the world.


Austin’s most famed tour was the ‘Mondo Enduro’ – an around the world adventure motorcycle tour which took place from 1995-1996. The journey saw Austin and others travel 40,000 miles across the globe on 350cc dirt bikes. His website also contains details of another trip named ‘Mondo Sahara’, which took Austin across Spain, Morocco and the Western Sahara.

The blog contains some fantastic video footage of both trips, as well as information about orienteering trips that Austin and Lois organise themselves.


Created by motorbike enthusiast turned writer Lois Pryce (also the wife of biker Austin Vince above), Lois on the Loose is a website dedicated to her love affair with bikes and her travels on her various rides over the years. Now a celebrity within motorcycling communities, Lois continues to record her rides on her website, taking different bikes and friends with her on every adventure.

As you read about each adventure you’re introduced to the motorbike Lois took on her journey and the other characters who went along for the ride. Lois provides a concise description of each trip, including her experiences with the places she went and the people her tour encountered.


Lois’ inspiring trips include a solo two month ride around Iran on a Yamaha TTR250, a 1500 mile trip around Brazil with a group of female riders from various countries across the globe, a 6000 mile trip around the USA in a Ural side car with her husband, and a handful of other inspiring journeys.

—A blind woman, two wheels and 25,000 miles—

Touching The World is a website containing biking stories from bikers Cathy Burchall & Bernard Smith. In 2008, Cathy Birchall and partner Bernard Smith began their own world tour on a 1990 BMW R100T names “Bertha”.

The most inspiring part of this story is that Cathy lost her eyesight in her 20’s and was completely blind. Cathy rode pillion with Bernard and the pair documented every part of their journey with blog posts, images and videos.


As well as being the first blind women to bike around the world, Cathy also became the first blind person to climb Huayna Picchu in Peru. Cathy and Bernard had a large fan following before, during, and after their trip, and the pair’s journey is well known in motorcycling communities. Tragically Cathy passed away in early 2013 after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Her partner Bernard continues to ride Bertha, the bike the was taken on their worldwide tour.

The pair kept their website constantly updated during their tour, so other riders will find lots of useful information about the places they went to, the issues they encountered as well as some fantastic photos of the trip.

—C90 Adventures—

This blog contains the motorbiking travels of Ed March – who has “a passion to show the world that you don’t need a £15,000 BMW GS1200 to travel”. Ed March has already completed a trip from Mongolia to the UU, Malaysia to the UK and a trip around the Arctic on his Honda C90. He started another tour from Alaska to Argentina in July 2014 with his girlfriend.


Ed March is incredibly passionate about, and loyal to, his Honda C90 Motorbike, and his posts contain not only information about his travels, but also the problems he ran into with the bike, and how he remedied them.

India is difficult, dirty and dangerous. But in a weird sadistic way I kind of enjoyed it. I’d liken it to a marathon; it’s bloody hard work and if you just avoided the whole thing then your life would be so much easier. But once you’ve done it, you’re glad you’ve experienced it and know what it’s like for yourself.

The website contains written posts about his travels on his honda C90 as well as fun videos of each of his journeys set to funky music.

Motorbike shows, rallies, events and rideouts

With such a huge community of motorbikers across the UK, there are motorbiking event, trials and shows on just about every weekend of the year. These websites should help you to identify motorbike events happening in your area…

—The Biker Guide Events—

The Biker Guide to Events and Rallies provides a fantastic resource, listing biking events across every month in the UK. Listings include information about rallies, shows, ride-outs, runs and parties across the UK, and anyone hosting their own motorbiking event can list it for free.


Bennetts social pages include a map of events running through the year. The interface allows users to filter by the type of event listings; Racing, Track dates, Shows, Meet-Ups and Ride Outs.


The map includes a feature which allows users to search by location, which is a handy feature if you’re looking for events close to a certain area.

Finding good motorbike reviews online

Whether you’re buying a new or used bike, a bit of research is important. Each motorbiker is unique, and we all have different needs, so getting advice from professionals and other bikers will help you find a bike that suits you and your ambitions…

—MCN Motorbike Reviews—

Magazine site Motorcycle News hosts a large database of reviews for around 800 bike models. As well as containing a score from the MCN review, owners can also able to rate the bike and leave feedback, meaning that you get a broader spectrum of opinion about each model.mcn motorbike revies
Each review provides a new andused price for each model meaning biker buyers can get some idea of what to expect to pay for their chosen model.

—VisorDown Motorbike Reviews—

Visor down contains over 1,000 motorbike reviews, which can be easily sorted by type (sports bikes, off road, tourers etc).

The bikes are reviewed and rated by Visor Down, as well as fellow bike owners. Each of the motorbike reviews contains plenty of detail, including a full spec of the bike and a summary of its pros and cons.

—Looking at Forums for advice—

Another option for those looking to seek out information about a bike model, is to use the bike forums mentioned above (ADV Rider & HUBB). If information about your chosen model doesn’t already exist on these sites, posting a question to the community is bound to bring back some useful answers.

Top webistes to buy or sell your motorbike

Whether you are buying your motorbike from a dealer or a private seller, it’s important to shop around. There are a large number of motorbike classified sites which trade & private sellers use to list their motorbikes for sale to the public.


The Friday-Ad motoring section advertises thousands of listings for used and new motorbikes from both private advertisers and motorbike dealers across the UK.

Insert ad detail page from new site here

The Friday-Ad search function enables user to filter the listing based on a particular make or model, or specific motorbike properties like engine size, registration year, mileage and condition. (insert picture of motorbike filter here).

And of course, as well as buying – the Friday-Ad also allows you to list your motorbikes for free.

Other motorbike classified sites include:

MCN Classifieds
Exchange & Mart

When engaging with buying and selling online (especially something as expensive and important as a motorbike),  don’t be afraid to ask plenty of questions and avoid paying the seller any money until you have met the seller and inspected the motorcycles. For more info in buying or selling motor vehicles safely online check out GetsafeOnline