If you’re seeking a short break in the countryside, or a weekend adventure to mark a special occasion, there are plenty of getaways that are an hour from Bristol by car, train or plane. Find our pick of the 10 best below.

The Best Getaways Within An Hour Of Bristol By Road

1. Road Trip to the Roman Ruins in Caerleon

35 minutes from Brabazon by road

Embark on a road trip from Bristol to uncover the Roman ruins of Caerleon in South Wales. 

If you've been captivated by the Roman heritage of nearby Bath and are looking to find out more, Caerleon is the perfect destination to delve deeper into this fascinating chapter of our history.

From Roman fortifications to grand bathhouses and even a well-preserved amphitheatre, there's a wealth of historical treasures to discover. You can even immerse yourself in the stories of the Roman soldiers who once called Caerleon home. 

Rest assured, your accommodation options in this charming corner of the Southern Usk River Valley are far more comfortable than a Roman cell. You will have a selection of some of South Wales' finest boutique hotels, guesthouses, and apartments to choose from, providing a cosy haven after a day of exploration.

2. Country Escapes in the Cotswolds

40 minutes from Brabazon by road

Escape to the Cotswolds for a country retreat that’s under an hour away from the bustling city. 

This picturesque region is celebrated for its charming villages, cosy country pubs, and distinctive golden Cotswold stone architecture, making it a top choice for UK getaways.

Whether you're a foodie, nature lover, or adventure seeker, the Cotswolds has something to offer everyone. Delight in delectable dining experiences, meander through scenic countryside trails, and enjoy a wide range of exciting adventures. 

3. Meander Around the Mendip Hills

50 minutes from Brabazon by car

We're blessed with stunning natural landscapes in the South West, and one of the finest weekend escapes is nestled in the lush, rolling hills of the Mendips.

Stretching from Weston Down to Wells, the Mendip Hills rank among the most breathtaking natural wonders in the South West.

To fully immerse yourself in the beauty of this region, consider packing up your camping gear and opting for one of the hillside campsites. Savour the simple pleasures of a toasted marshmallow over an open fire, and if you're fortunate enough to experience a clear night, indulge in some stargazing.

4. Hiking on the Blackdown Hills

1 hour from Brabazon by car

Journeying south from Bristol, you'll unveil the hidden gem that is the Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, nestled along the border of Devon and Somerset. 

Untouched by mass tourism, this region boasts a captivating landscape of steep valleys, woodlands, farmland, and meandering waterways. It's a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers with superb opportunities for cycling, hiking, and horseback riding. Scattered throughout the hills are charming villages, where a warm welcome and delicious country cooking await.

The Best Getaways Within An Hour Of Bristol By Train

5. City Sightseeing in Cardiff 

32 minutes from Bristol Parkway by train

Just over half an hour away from Bristol by train, the capital of Wales offers a perfect day trip. It seamlessly combines the vibrancy of a capital city with a welcoming small-town feel. 

Cardiff caters to a variety of travellers – from couples and friends enjoying the social scene to families seeking child-friendly activities.

Explore its high street shops, boutiques, bustling bars, restaurants, and the historic Cardiff Castle. Enjoy a boat tour of Cardiff Bay, uncover famous film locations, or enjoy the atmosphere at Cardiff Arms Park or the Principality Stadium on a matchday. For foodies, a Cardiff food-tasting tour lets you sample the city's culinary delights and famous sights.

6. Regency Charm in Cheltenham

28 minutes from Bristol Parkway by train

Cheltenham is a town that beckons with its distinctive Regency architecture and vibrant artistic community. Situated within easy reach of Bristol, it's a place where history, culture and cuisine converge to offer a wide range of activities for visitors of all ages.

For the horse racing aficionados, Cheltenham Racecourse is a premier destination, hosting several prestigious racing events throughout the year. It also boasts Jazz, Science, Music and Literature festivals for all artistic tastes, ensuring a memorable visit when you travel by train from Bristol to Cheltenham.

7. Spectacular Stonework at Sailsbury and Stonehenge

1 hour 10 mins from Bristol Temple Meads by train

For a captivating blend of mediaeval architecture and enchanting landscapes, look no further than Salisbury.

The imposing Gothic cathedral presiding over the city houses the world's best-preserved Magna Carta.

Wander through the town centre and you'll discover independent shops offering everything from handmade clothing to artisan bread. Salisbury is also the gateway to Stonehenge, making it the perfect starting point for a day of exploration amidst these enigmatic Neolithic monuments. To reach the main Stonehenge site from Salisbury train station, simply board the Stonehenge tour bus, departing approximately every hour.

The Best Getaways One-Hour Plus From Bristol By Air

8. Catch a Flight to the Emerald Isle

1 hour from Bristol Airport by air

Dublin, the lively capital of Ireland, is just a short flight away from Bristol and offers a perfect mix of rich history, lively culture, and warm Irish hospitality.

The city is a treasure trove of historical landmarks, from the majestic Dublin Castle to the iconic Trinity College, home to the famous Book of Kells. You can stroll along the cobbled streets of Temple Bar, Dublin's cultural quarter, and immerse yourself in its lively arts scene, with galleries, theatres, and live music venues awaiting your exploration.

Dublin is also renowned for its legendary pub culture. Enjoy a pint of the famous Guinness in an authentic Irish pub, sample hearty traditional dishes like Irish stew or fish and chips, and engage in lively conversations with the locals. 

9. Guernsey

1 hour 5 minutes from Bristol Airport by air

A delightful island nestled in the English Channel, Guernsey offers natural beauty, rich history, and a relaxed island atmosphere. 

With quick and convenient flights from Bristol, you'll find yourself in a world where stunning beaches, rocky cliffs, and lush landscapes await exploration.

Explore the network of scenic coastal paths and serene coves, perfect for hiking, cycling, and water sports. And visit St. Peter Port or any of the island’s other quaint villages, to take in the colourful houses, narrow winding streets, and a delightful array of shops and cafes. 

10. Scotland’s Enchanting Capital

1 hour 15 minutes from Bristol Airport by air

Edinburgh boasts a unique blend of mediaeval and neoclassical architecture.

With must-visit attractions such as Edinburgh Castle and the historic Royal Mile, wandering through the charming Old Town's alleyways and hidden courtyards is a journey into Scotland's rich history.

Edinburgh is also a city famous for its festivals, including the renowned Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. Art lovers can explore the Scottish National Gallery and the Museum of Scotland, while outdoor enthusiasts can hike Arthur's Seat - an extinct volcano in the city centre - for panoramic views. Edinburgh's mix of history, culture, and natural beauty promises an enriching and memorable experience just a short journey from Bristol.

So, whether you're seeking the thrill of a road trip to an enchanting Cotswold town, an adventure on hiking trails through the dramatic landscapes of the Mendips, or taking to the skies for a quick flight to the historic and cultural delights of Edinburgh, Bristol is the perfect starting point for unforgettable weekends away.

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