Posted 31st March 2012
When it comes to hen dos everyone wants something different – below are a selection of some of the best activities and restaurants to go for a hen do in Bristol.
For girls who just wanna have fun
Open contemporary looking restaurant decorated in a pink and purple theme – very female friendly. Food is good and reasonably priced especially if you can get there early enough to take advantage of the set menu. Smack bang in the centre of town so easy access for bars, clubs etc.
Shanghai Nights & Kobe Karaoke
Eat chinese in the sophisticated Shanghai Nights followed by Karaoke at Kobe Karaoke. You have your own private room equipped with two mikes, a tambourine and a fantastic catalogue of songs – from Cheryl Cole, to Kate Bush, Arctic Monkeys to Ace of Base. Brilliant fun – when you’re not singing you’ll be laughing and dancing the night away!
No food but a good fun bar with magicians and live magic, a live pianist playing all the classic and “magic wand” cocktail taps which stand at 3ft +. A bit silly but great fun all the same! Just over the road from Zizzi, and Wagamama, the Botanist and Browns are all less than 5 minutes walk away.
If you are a group of die hard food lovers at heart who enjoy fine dining then this isn’t for you. If you’re looking for a low cost restaurant with something for everyone to line stomachs before hitting the town, then you’ve found it.
For those looking to eat, drink and get hands on!
Devilled Egg Kitchen Academy
For those who enjoy cooking, drinking and all round girly fun in search of something a bit out of the ordinary. Barbora from Devilled Egg will look after you and ensure your hen night is a huge success and that everyone is kept well fed and watered.
Vodka Revolution Cocktail Making
I’m not usually a fan of chains so was initially sceptical of Vodka Rev’s. This is however brilliant fun and excellent value for money. For £25 we had bellinis, 3 full cocktails each countless cocktail tasters and at least 3 shots (lost count after the third). Its a relaxed vibe so silly hen outfits are fine too! Rev’s food is pretty good too, pizzas, wedges, salads and burgers – perfect stomach liners!
From pole dancing taster sessions to MC Hammer style dancing – there are dancing workshops across the city which are a great ice breaker for before you hit the town. Fitness 4 less hosted one I went to recently, and yes we did do our MC Hammer routine in Oceana. *hangs head in shame*
Cupcake and Chocolate courses with Clifton Cakes
Women love chocolate, and love shoes – so why not indulge in a chocolate shoe making course with the fabulous Clifton Cakes? Clifton Cakes also have chocolate tasting and courses on making cupcakes and handbag themed cakes. Perfect for a girly day of fun!
A touch of class
For those looking for something a bit more chilled out and sophisticated.
Brilliant early evening menu which is fixed price (great for groups). We really enjoyed hen-dos at Goldbrick. Nice large restaurant and excellent cocktails. It’s fairly up market so definitely one for groups looking for a more civilised evening.
Many cocktail bars have a “no hen, no stag but we sometimes make exceptions” policy. (talk about sitting on the fence!) It’s worth checking out our best cocktail places post and ringing some of the bars. Other options are somewhere like the Botanist, Goldbrick (above), Browns, or Severn Shed for cocktails. (plus everyone knows that cocktail waiters usually make pretty good eye candy)
Great spa day packages, a beautiful victorian swimming pool and an excellent restaurant with renowned chef Freddie Bird. The Lido do “Swim and dine” offers for £30-£35 per head so affordable yet still in a beautiful setting.
Hen Party Tips
Some tips for people not from Bristol visiting for a hen party. Different parts of Bristol have very different vibes below should help you plan your night out.
Clifton Village – Beautiful restaurants, sophisticated and upmarket. Lovely for shopping or lunch, not so great if you want to dress up and are looking a big night out. If you are looking for a quieter evening though, perfect.
Whiteladies Road – A trendy area with some great independent restaurants and a good fun vibe. A good selection of bars however they may not take kindly to fancy dress. A couple of different clubs to attend and only about 10 minute walk from Clifton Triangle (see below).
Clifton Triangle & Park Street – Everything that you need all on one road. Lots of independent bars, clubs and some restaurants. Most will take hen parties and you make special treatment if you ring in advance, some may turn away those in fancy dress but unlikely. Don’t let the steep hill put you off – a few wines and you’ll breeze it no problem.
Harbourside / Waterfront – Here you will find ZaZa Bazaar our all-you-can-eat super restaurant here as well a Lloyds Bar, las Iguanas, Pitcher and Piano and some more independent bars. Oceana is just on the waterfront too – a club with multiple rooms and different music for each. A trendy area which attracts the younger crowd – 18-23 year olds so if that what you are after this is for you.
City Centre – a real mix, some independent cocktail bars and teeny clubs which are quirky and cool as well as places like the Big Chill Bar which have funk and soul DJs, Rockabilly and other alternative music genres on. This is the area to be if you want to head to head to old school nightclubs like reflex (80s) or rewind (90s). There’s also some of your larger chain bars such as Vodka Revolution, Walkabout, Slug & Lettuce and Weatherspoons.
Waterfront & Kings Street – Still in the city centre but just by the river. Home to Bristol’s cider bar, The Apple as well as some brilliant pubs such as the Old Duke which plays live jazz and some great restaurants. Head to Renatos for Pizza, Cathay Rendezvous for Chinese.
Gloucester Road – One of Bristol’s most bohemian nights out. Good restaurants, great bars and a very relaxed atmosphere. Not great for huge groups or fancy dress. A great area if you are looking for something a bit more quirky however stay in the centre if you want something more conventional.