During the 18th and 19th centuries, wealthy Bristol merchants transformed the former spa resort of Clifton into an elegant hilltop suburb packed with impressive Georgian mansions. Some of the finest examples can be seen along Cornwallis Crescent and Royal York Crescent. These days, Clifton is still the poshest postcode in Bristol, with fancy shops and a villagey atmosphere that's far removed from the rest of the city.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Bristol attractions

1. Clifton Suspension Bridge

0.26 MILES

Clifton's most famous (and photographed) landmark is the 76m-high Clifton Suspension Bridge, which spans the Avon Gorge. It was designed by master…

2. Giant's Cave

0.27 MILES

A natural cavern set beneath the Clifton Observatory & Camera Obscura. The cave mouth is set into the side of the cliff, offering spectacular views over…

3. Clifton Observatory & Camera Obscura

0.27 MILES

Set in a striking 18th-century windmill, Clifton Observatory features a viewing platform, a rare camera obscura and the cliff-side Giant's Cave. Together…

4. The Downs

0.33 MILES

The grassy parks of Clifton Down and Durdham Down (often referred to as just the Downs) fan out from the Clifton Suspension Bridge and make a fine spot…

6. Leigh Woods

0.54 MILES

It may be tiny (under a square mile), but Leigh Woods squeezes a lot into a small space: ancient trees, snaking walking trails and corking Avon Gorge…

7. Cabot Tower

0.66 MILES

Set in the small park of Brandon Hill, this 32m ornate red-brick tower was built between 1896 and 1898 to commemorate John Cabot's pioneering voyage in…

8. Girl with the Pierced Eardrum

0.67 MILES

A 2014 Banksy creation that re-imagines the famous Vermeer portrait, but uses an alarm box instead of the pearl earring. It's a little hard to find – head…