The month of July sees the return of St Pauls Carnival, an event which celebrates the African Caribbean and a multicultural society. The carnival started back in 1968 and has gone on to attract visitor numbers of over 70,000. The main attraction of the day is the parade itself, taking place in the Bristol suburb of St Pauls. Dancers, musicians, street entertainers and decorated floats travel the streets as part of the masquerade procession. Local venues work together to provide additional musical events, along with an outdoor stage. The history of Bristol’s Caribbean roots are traced back to 1948 and the arrival of the Empire Windrush cruise ship.
The event is free to attend and St Pauls is in the heart of the city making it easy to reach the carnival. It is a 10-minute walk from Bristol Temple Meads train station, or you can drive into the city centre. Bristol International Airport offers a Flyer Express bus link, so again straight forward for those flying in. During the build-up to the carnival itself, there are other African Caribbean events held around the city. The timings of the St Pauls Carnival are announced nearer the event, but expect the procession to take place during the afternoon.
With part of the festival ethos stemming from improving local relationships, it is for the whole city and not just those of African Caribbean descent. The carnival has grown to include visitors from further afield and is also very much a family orientated event. If you are in the St Pauls area prior to carnival day, check local listings for other related events. On the actual day, be sure not to miss the procession and also check out the entertainment at the Windrush outdoor stage. If you wish to join the in as an artist/performer, or hold a market stall contact the festival organisers.
If you are planning to visit Bristol for the carnival, choose from a selection of houses, flats, Bed & Breakfasts, spare rooms and other private rentals in the suburb of St Pauls. If you are staying elsewhere, there are various public transport options available. Check our Check our accommodation in Bristol.
World famous graffiti artist Banksy is believed to be from Bristol, Search the streets for examples of his work. Visit some of the cities museums and art galleries, walk over the iconic Clifton Bridge or board the SS Great Britain steamship.
Find out more about the carnival including, news and information, the history of St Pauls Carnival, winning awards and education surrounding the event, sponsorship opportunities, getting involved as an artist/performer, fundraising or market stalls, photo galleries and contact information at the official website.
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