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        About Bristol

        Bristol is a city in southwest England and is England’s sixth-most populous city. Bristol was founded by the Saxons around AD 835 and was initially called “Brycgstow”, meaning “the place at the bridge”. The town increased during the medieval period and became a wealthy trading port due to its location at the convergence of the River Avon and the River Frome. During the 18th century, Bristol began to decline as a maritime trading port owing to competition from other ports such as Liverpool. However, it remained an important manufacturing centre until the mid-20th century. Bristol is a vibrant and cosmopolitan city with a rich cultural heritage today. It is home to two universities – the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England – and is also an important centre for the creative industries, with a powerful film and music scene. Bristol is well worth a visit, whether interested in its history or contemporary culture.

        Basic info and car hire in Bristol

        • Location: United Kingdom.
        • Population: 465,900.
        • Official language: English.
        • Currency: Pounds Sterling (GBP).
        • Weather: The weather in Bristol, UK, is mild and often sunny. The average high temperature in summer is 21°C (70°F), and the average low temperature in winter is three °C (37°F). Rainfall is moderate. Bristol enjoys a temperate climate, and the Gulf Stream flows past the city, bringing warm water from the Gulf of Mexico. As a result, Bristol rarely experiences the cold winters and hot summers that are common elsewhere in the country. Despite its mild climate, Bristol does see some rain – particularly during the autumn and winter. The wettest month on average in December. When you visit Bristol, pack a coat or umbrella – but don't forget your sunscreen! The city sees an average of 62 days of sunshine per year.
        • Internet coverage: Hotels, bars, restaurants and cafes offer Wi-Fi.
        • Road conditions: The roads in Bristol are generally in good condition, but some areas can be problematic. The most significant problem areas are around the city centre and inner-city suburbs. There are a lot of potholes and uneven surfaces, which can make driving difficult. In addition, traffic can be hefty at peak times, making it hard to get around. However, there are plenty of parking spaces available.
        • Car hire in Bristol: Hiring a car at Bristol Airport with Orbit Car Hire gives you plenty of freedom to get around Bristol and the UK. With a wide range of vehicles to choose from, you can be sure to find the one that suits your needs and gives you the most benefit on your trip.

        Driving in Bristol

        Bristol is a great city for driving. The roads are well-maintained, and there is plenty of parking. Going to Bristol is a great way to see the city and its surroundings. However, there are a few things to remember when driving in Bristol. First, be aware of the city's congestion charges. Driving into the city centre during peak times, you'll need to pay a congestion charge. Secondly, be mindful of the one-way streets. Many of the roads in Bristol are one-way, so be sure to pay attention to the signs. Finally, park wisely. Parking can be expensive in Bristol, so be sure to find a cheap or free spot before leaving your car. Overall, driving in Bristol is a great experience. Just be sure to keep the congestion charges and one-way streets in mind. You'll have no trouble getting around the city with some planning.

        • Age limits: The age limit is between 21 and 25, depending on the car rental agency. Many agencies will either charge a young driver fee if you are under this age or not allow you to rent the car.
        • International Driving Permit: Yes, if your driver's license is not identifiable as Driving License, for example, if it is written in a non-Latin alphabet (e.g. Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese).
        • Additional papers: Identification (passport), a valid driver's license, and valid proof of insurance. (It is advisable to take out insurance with the car rental company if your policy does not cover you when driving in the UK).
        • Additional requirements: Warning triangles, spare wheels and a hands-free kit with hearing aids are required if you are talking on the phone while driving.
        • Children in the car: All vehicle occupants must wear a seat belt. Children under twelve years of age or over 5 feet tall may ride in the front passenger seat.
        • Driving side of the road: Left.
        • Lights: Headlights must be on at all times (day and night).
        • General speed limits: 80 mph / 130 km/h on motorways, 49 mph / 80 km/h on main roads outside built-up areas and 31 mph/50 km/h inside built-up areas.
        • Parking suggestions: Almost all car parks are metered, and the average price per hour is around GBP 1.90/ € 2.20.

        Car Hire in Bristol

        Most popular car hire at Bristol

        The most selected hire car in Bristol is the Toyota Aygo, with the Peugeot 208 and Kia Rio also popular options. The mini and economy car categories are the most popular car types in Bristol. 

        Popular Driving Routes

        Popular One-Way car hire from Bristol

        Do you want to rent a car for a one-way trip? No problem! Orbit Car Hire offers a variety of one-way rentals in many locations outside of Bristol. A one-way rental is ideal for travelling across town or the country and saves you time by not having to return to your original site.
        Bristol is in the southwest region of England, and it is exciting to travel beyond Bristol. There are many fascinating cities to drive to with your hired car, such as London, Birmingham, Brighton, Liverpool, Manchester and many more! With permission of the car hire company you work with, you can even take your rental car to other places like Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales and start your little UK trip. The possibilities are endless!

        Start your reservation with Orbit Car Hire and find excellent options for one-way car hire locations all over the UK.

        Popular day trips from Bristol

        There are plenty of great day trips that you can take from Bristol. Whether you’re looking to explore the countryside, visit a charming town or city, or want to spend some time outdoors, there’s something for everyone within reach of Bristol.

        Cotswolds
        If you’re looking for a taste of the English countryside, head to the Cotswolds. This picturesque region is full of quaint towns, villages, rolling hills, and green fields. You could easily spend a day (or more) exploring all the Cotswolds offer.

        Bath
        If you’d prefer to stay closer to the city, why not visit Bath? This beautiful city is just a short drive from Bristol and is well worth a visit. Bath is home to some incredible architecture, including the ancient Roman baths and plenty of great shops and restaurants.

        Glastonbury
        If you’re looking for a day trip with a bit more of an adventure, why not head to Glastonbury? This small town is located in Somerset, just outside of Bristol. It’s best known for its annual music festival, but there’s plenty to see and do here all year round. From exploring the mystical Glastonbury Tor to visiting the many charming shops and cafes, you’ll find plenty to keep you busy in Glastonbury.

        These are just a few great day trips you can take from Bristol, UK. So get out there and explore all this wonderful country has to offer! 

        What to see in Bristol

        There's plenty to do and see in Bristol, whether you're a history buff or looking for some modern fun. For those interested in the city's past, there are plenty of ancient buildings and landmarks to explore, including St Mary Redcliffe Church, the Clifton Suspension Bridge and Bristol Cathedral. 

        Aerospace Bristol
        Aerospace Bristol museum houses over 200 aircraft and aviation-related items, making it the most extensive collection of historic aircraft in the United Kingdom. Visitors to the museum can learn about the history of aviation in Bristol and see some of the city's most famous aircraft up close. The museum is also home to several interactive exhibits, which allow visitors to get hands-on with some of the equipment used by pilots and engineers. Aerospace Bristol is a great day out for anyone interested in aviation or engineering and will leave you feeling inspired. 

        Bristol Museum & Art Gallery
        Bristol Museum & Art Gallery is a large museum and art. The museum has many collections, including archaeology, natural history, Egyptian antiquities, ethnography, geology and numismatics. It also houses the world's most extensive collection of works by the British artist John Constable. The museum is open to the public seven days a week and offers free admission. There is also a café and a shop on site.

        Bowood House and Gardens
        Bowood House and Gardens is a popular tourist destination in Bristol. The house was built in the 18th century, and the gardens date back to the 17th century. The house is open to the public for tours, and the gardens are available for picnics, walks, and events. In addition, the house has been used as a filming location for many movies and TV shows, including Pride and Prejudice and Sherlock Holmes.

        If you're after something more contemporary, you can enjoy a spot shopping at Cabot Circus or head to one of the many hip bars and clubs dotted around town. And don't forget to check out Bristol's famous street art – there are some truly incredible pieces to be seen all over the city.

        Harbourside in Bristol, UK

        Clifton Suspension Bridge at Bristol, UK

        Where to eat, drink, and party in Bristol

        Bristol is home to some of the best food and drink in the country. The city has a thriving culinary scene, with top chefs opening new restaurants and bars. As a result, there are plenty of great places to eat and drink in Bristol, whether you're looking for a quick bite or a sit-down meal. Instead, head to one of the city's many cafes or bakeries for a quick snack. For something more substantial, there are plenty of great restaurants to choose from, serving everything from traditional British fare to international cuisine. And, of course, no visit to Bristol would be complete without sampling some of the local cider!

        If you're looking for a place to grab a bite before heading out for the night, why not try one of Bristol's many pubs? They offer a great selection of food and a wide range of drinks. And if you're looking for somewhere to dance the night away, Bristol has plenty of clubs. Whatever your taste, you're sure to find somewhere to eat and drink in Bristol that suits you.

        Best restaurants and bars in Bristol

        Paco Tapas
        Paco Tapas is a restaurant in Bristol that serves Spanish food. The menu includes tapas, paella, and other traditional Spanish dishes. The restaurant has a casual atmosphere, and the prices are reasonable. Paco Tapas is excellent for a hearty meal with friends or family. The service is friendly and efficient, and the food is delicious. Paco Tapas is recommended to anyone looking for an excellent Spanish meal in Bristol.

        Casamia
        Casamia is a family-run restaurant that offers a unique dining experience. The menu features seasonal, locally sourced produce and the chefs aim to create simple yet creative dishes full of flavour. The restaurant has won numerous awards, including a Michelin star, and featured in The Good Food Guide and The Sunday Times. Casamia is the perfect place to enjoy a special meal with friends or family or to celebrate a special occasion. Reservations are recommended.

        Bulrush
        Bulrush is a small, cosy restaurant in the heart of Bristol. The menu is based around seasonal, locally sourced produce and changes regularly. There is a strong focus on vegetarian and vegan dishes, but meat and fish options are also available. The wine list is also all-vegan. The atmosphere at Bulrush is relaxed and friendly, and the service is attentive without being intrusive. The restaurant has a small number of tables, so booking in advance is recommended. Whether you're looking for a romantic dinner for two or a night out with friends, Bulrush is the perfect spot for an intimate dining experience. And with its delicious food and impressive wine list, you will have a memorable meal.

        The Ox
        If you're looking for a great steak in Bristol, The Ox is just the place. The restaurant sources its beef from local farms, so you can be sure you're getting a quality piece of meat. The menu features several cuts of steak and other hearty dishes like lamb shank and venison pie. There's also a good selection of wines, making The Ox the perfect spot for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends.

        Klosterhaus
        Klosterhaus is a German restaurant in Bristol, located in the city centre. The restaurant offers a wide range of German dishes and a selection of beers and wines. Klosterhaus also has a terrace area where guests can enjoy the city view.

        The Milk Thistle
        The Milk Thistle is a vegan-friendly bar located in the heart of Bristol. They offer a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages and a selection of vegan-friendly snacks. The Milk Thistle is the perfect place to relax and unwind with friends or to enjoy a night out on the town. So whether you're looking for a place to have a few drinks or want to dance the night away, The Milk Thistle is sure to please.

        The Wellhead
        The Wellhead bar is a popular destination for locals and tourists in Bristol. This cosy spot is perfect for enjoying a pint or two, and the friendly atmosphere makes it a great place to socialise. The pub also serves food, and a large outdoor seating area is perfect for summer days. The Wellhead bar is located in the Clifton area of Bristol and is just a short walk from the city centre.

        Bocabar Paintworks
        Bocabar Paintworks is a bar located in Bristol, England. The bar is known for its wide range of drinks and relaxed atmosphere. The bar has a large selection of beers, wines, spirits, and cocktails and a menu of small plates and sharing boards. The bar also has several TVs which show sports games and other events.

        The Clockwork Rose
        The Clockwork Rose is a bar known for its unique atmosphere and wide selection of drinks. The Clockwork Rose is also known for its live music, which often includes local bands. The bar has a capacity of 200 people and is open from 7 pm to 2 am on Fridays and Saturdays. The bar is located in the centre of Bristol, near the University of Bristol.

        FAQ

        What you need to know about renting a car

        faq
        What do I need to rent a car in the United Kingdom?

        credit card in the name of the main driver needs to be presented. A security deposit may be required while renting a car so the credit card must have sufficient funds. You can find details about the security deposit listed while booking the vehicle as well as on your voucher. It is important to have a valid driving license with the name of the main driver as well as additional drivers when it applies. An International Driving Permit is required in addition to a National Driving License if the National Driving License you or any of the Additional Drivers hold is not clearly identifiable as a Driving License, eg, it is in a non-Latin alphabet (eg Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese). It can also depend on the country or car rental company you are renting with. If you have found a car on our website, you can press the rental terms link from the supplier for more information about driving license requirements. You will need to have identification with you such as a passport and ID cards. When you pick up your rental car you need to have your voucher with you.

        How old do I need to be to rent a car in the United Kingdom?

        The minimum age to rent a car is 25 years old and with some suppliers for people over 75 years of age. Young driver surcharges may apply to many car rental companies for people under 25 years of age. This information is visible in the search engine with Orbit Car Hire.

        Do I need car insurance in the UK?

        Insurances are very important when renting a car and can be different between countries. When renting a car in the United Kingdom with Orbit Car Hire the prices will include mandatory insurances in the country.

        Do I need a credit card to rent a car in the United Kingdom?

        In most cases, a credit card is required to be presented in the name of the main driver. A security deposit may be required when renting a car so it is important to have sufficient funds on the credit card. When searching for a car at Orbit you can see credit card requirements from all our suppliers.

        Do I need an international driving license in the UK?

        An International Driving Permit is required in addition to a National Driving License if the National Driving License you or any of the Additional Drivers hold is not clearly identifiable as a Driving License, eg, it is in a non-Latin alphabet (eg Arabic, Chinese, Cyrillic, Japanese). If you have found a car on our website, you can press the rental terms link from the supplier for more information about driving license requirements.

        How do I get the cheapest car in the United Kingdom?

        You can find cheap car hire by comparing prices with all major car rentals at Orbit. A good idea can be to book in advance as the prices can increase closer to the travel period.

        What is the cheapest rental car in the UK?

        You will find the mini car category or economy cars to be the cheapest car categories. Vehicles such as Toyota Yaris and Vauxhall Corsa often provide the best prices. 

        What is the best car rental company in the United Kingdom?

        You may find excellent service provided by companies such as Enterprise Rent a Car, Alamo Rent a Car, National Car Rental, Europcar Rent a Car and Green motion.

        What types and makes of rental car deals can I find in the United Kingdom?

        You will find car types such as mini, economy, compact, Full-Size, and luxury cars. Popular rental cars are Vauxhall Corsa, Ford Focus, Volvo XC 60.

        Does my rental car have unlimited mileage when I book it for the UK?

        Most car rentals in the UK offer unlimited mileage in their offers. 

        How old to hiring a car in the UK?

        It depends on the car hire company. The most common age is from 21to 25. 

        Find The Best Car Hire Companies In Bristol

        • Ace Rent A Car
        • Alamo Car Hire
        • Budget Car Hire
        • Car Hire with Keddy by Europcar
        • Easirent Car Hire
        • Enterprise Rent a Car
        • Europcar
        • Green Motion Car Rental
        • National
        • Routes
        • Sixt Rent a Car
        • SurPrice

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