Oh, how I do like a little trip to our neighbouring city of Bristol, rife with eclecticism and colourful characters. If you're planning on going, this is the way to do it, for sure. Hop off the number nine at Broadmead and take a short stroll through the subway to Stokes Croft where walls play canvas to colourful murals and roundabouts host strange artsy contraptions. But keep your wits about you.
After perusing the Here gallery (which currently hosts a very lovely show by Lizzy Stewart and Christopher Bettig...lots of lovely wonky handdrawn buildings and shaggy bears) and its shop brimming with gorgeous books and zines, take a little seat at The Arts House next door and enjoy a steaming brew in a hand painted mug. The homemade complementary biscuit is delicious too. As coincidence had it (I had excitedly picked up a flyer at the Little Theatre some time before and stuffed it away somewhere and forgotten about it), Jamie Hewlett's beautiful watercolour series exploring the effects of climate change in Bangladesh was showing here, gracing the wood panels in striking deep orangey hues. This is a unique cosy little coffee spot where the very tables your feet nestle below are a sales piece for a woodsy craftsman, and the cups, a local potter.
On your way to Park Street, a delightful hill sporting a cluster of shops filled with vintage gems and artschool fashions (BS8 is a favourite, a department store divided by bright patchwork floors), take a final peek at the enchanting and bizarre side streets of the Croft. Next, head to the Clifton Arcade in Clifton Village, stopping off at the tiny but very cute Soma Gallery, for a look at some of Rob Ryan's finest papercuts or an Amelia anthology, and the gift-come-clothes-shop with the pretty dress in the window.
The raspberry and chocolate flapjacks at Boston (above) are to die for by the way. Grab one of these on your way to the Clifton Suspension Bridge, a perfect place to take photos in the dusky afternoon sun where we conclude our Bristol adventure for today.