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Summer in Bristol 2024

From soaring hot air balloons to bustling Harbourside festivals, incredible live music to new cultural event spaces, food festivals to family fun at award-winning attractions; there’s something very special about summer in Bristol! See Visit Bristol’s latest round-up of this season’s hottest picks.

Bristol Sounds
(Bristol Sounds, photo credit Paul Box)

We the Curious

2 July onwards

Bristol’s science centre We the Curious is reopening on 2 July with over 200 features to explore, including Project What If. Inspired by seven intriguing questions from the people of Bristol, from the science of happiness to the nature of time, you’ll find some of life’s biggest mysteries and be able to make yourself invisible, peer into the TARDIS, and even stop time while exploring them. We the Curious is also home to UK’s only 3D planetarium, located on Bristol’s bustling Harbourside; it’s a must-visit this summer.


Feast On

26-28 July

Brand new food festival Feast On comes to The Downs in Bristol bringing together the city’s top restaurants and chefs, showcasing their signature dishes, coveted classics and new flavours. Alongside the food offerings, there will be wine tastings, food sustainability talks, live cooking demos over fire, live music, family-friendly spots and a communal banqueting area.


Bristol Pride
(Bristol Pride)

Bristol Pride Day

13 July

Bristol Pride Day 2024 will take place on Saturday 13 July, with headliners including The Human League, Ladytron, Claire Richards from STEPS and indie pop sensation Georgia, plus performances from local artists and community groups. There are numerous events taking place 29 June – 13 July all celebrating our diverse LGBTQ+ community as part of the wider Bristol Pride programme.


Wake the tiger
(Wake the Tiger)

Sundust Secrets at Wake the Tiger

Now-1 September

Visit the UK’s largest immersive art experience this summer and embark on a summer adventure with Sundust Secrets at Wake the Tiger. There are seven notes hidden in the alternative world of Meridia and the OUTERverse. Find the notes and solve the word riddle to unlock the Top Secret box! Free activity included in price on entry ticket (family discounts available, under 5s go free).


Bristol Harbour Festival

19-21 July

One of the city's flagship free events, Bristol Harbour Festival attracts over 250,000 visitors with a jam-packed programme of music, dance, circus performances, maritime displays, visiting vessels, on-water activities and some new VIP areas and experiences this year. There are five performance areas around the harbour, bringing beats, boats and backflips to the summer extravaganza.


Bristol International Balloon Fiesta
(Bristol International Balloon Fiesta, photo credit Plaster)

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

9-11 August

One of the highlights of the summer calendar, Bristol International Balloon Fiesta is a free three-day family-friendly event - the largest of its kind in Europe - with mass ascents of over 100 hot air balloons scheduled for early morning and early evening each day (weather permitting), plus Night Glow shows. As well as the planned ascents and Night Glow shows, every day fiesta visitors can look forward to fairground rides, entertainment, live music and awe-inspiring aerial displays, all set in the beautiful grounds of Ashton Court Estate. New this year, sees Bristol favourite restaurant Pasture providing a dedicated onsite restaurant on the edge of the main balloon launch arena, open for breakfast, lunch and evening meals so visitors can try the city’s finest food, alongside its flagship fiesta. Another new addition in 2024 sees a limited number of exclusive paid-for tickets for Sky Lounge, enabling people to access the launch field during the Night Glow sessions.


Summer Lates at Bristol Zoo Project

Summer 2024

Experience the Zoo like you never have before as it opens its doors over selected summer evenings. See what the animals get up to after hours and soak up the atmosphere with Bristol Symphony Orchestra playing on 12 July and performance entertainment from stilt artists, live acrobatics, aerial silk performers on 9 August.  A brand-new three-storey conservation inspired play area called Explorers Basecamp opens this July too (with wheelchair accessible swings and roundabout), and work is also starting on the ambitious Central African Forest area which when built will be home to Critically Endangered western lowland gorillas.


UK’s first ever Surf Show, kids’ trail and after-dark surfing at The Wave

13-14 July

The first ever Surf Show takes place on the weekend of 13-14 July at The Wave, celebrating all things surfing. Check out – and try out – latest products, surfboard demo sessions, panel discussions, film screening and surf with some of the best UK surfers at this free event. Also on this summer at The Wave is new surfing after dark sessions in evenings from mid-August, powered by new outdoor lighting supported by Good Energy, The Wave’s official renewable energy partner.


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