City Guide // Bristol Harbour Festival…

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

This weekend, Dan was away, up in Leeds helping his brother landscape his garden.  As hard work as that was/sounds, I still feel my weekend was harder!  Yeah yeah, I know, I go away leaving the kids and Dan all the time! I know.  This time it was my turn to solo parent, and blimey I found it exhausting.  It might have had something to do with the fact I drank far too much wine – but lets gloss over that.

Thankfully, this weekend in Bristol it was the Harbour Festival.  It seems like the whole of the City flocks dockside to witness displays on the water, huge tall ships and Naval vessels and of course there was live music and circus acts and all manner of food stalls and displays happening around the City centre.

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

Actually, I forgot it was on.  Intending to take the boys out to catch some Pokemon around the docks and grab a bite to eat, we were hit full frontal with the spectacle of it all.  The boys, fascinated by it, desperate to join in, I couldn’t refuse and went with the flow.

Along the Mshed we watched guys dive into the water, and do acrobatic displays with water jets strapped to their feet.  Brave or mental, as I wouldn’t want to swim in that water.  All to the sound track of many a Bond theme tune – Skyfall, Diamonds are Forever and so on.

Further on, Charlie spotted the Naval ship, HMS Atherstone, desperate to go aboard we headed towards it, only to be told that the harbour had a one way system in place, to keep the flow of thousands of people moving.  So a long detour round, past Charlie’s scout hut who were raising money for their new building.

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

For a small donation, the boys made paper sails to attach to small wooden boats to race.  The race was along two plastic rain gutters filled with water.  Hilariously, and with a bit of cheating, the boys blew into the paper sails to propel the boats forward.  Rufus won (with a bit of help) much to Charlie’s annoyance.

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016
PF (Potato Face) apparently!

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

Finally we made it the Naval ship, boarding Charlie was desperate to see the engines and how the ship worked. Now this is where Dan is the best parent to have, and Charlie knows this. He kept huffing and puffing as I stopped to take photos of the view, using the ship purely as a great view point to see the rest of the festival.  He on the other hand wanted to talk about engines and guns, neither of which I have any interest. He kept saying, ‘I wish Daddy was here’ – yeah kiddo, me too. I’m just not a machines kinda gal!

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

After the Naval ship we walked back into Queens Square to enjoy a German sausage from the European food market, and a game of spot the helium balloon.  I won, choosing the Unicorn balloon, there were hundreds.

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

Lou Archell harbour festival July 2016

Our first festival of the season, done. Without having to get our tent out. We wandered back home for tea and welcome Dan back home.


Bristol Harbour Festival

15th – 17th July 2016

Website:  www.bristolharbourfestival.co.uk