Last minute ideas for Valentine’s Day in Bristol
THERE are just a handful of days left in order to plan the wooing of your sweetheart or a romantic proposal if February 14 is to be the first day of the rest of your life with a loved one.
It is full of historic sites as well as beautiful scenic areas where you could capture your loved one's heart – and don't forget as it's leap year women can propose too although it's traditional to wait until February 29.
There's also the unusual type of gift available as you could adopt an animal at Bristol Zoo or perhaps a Hot Air Balloon flight complete with Champagne may be in order.
And according to Bristol University the city is 'the foremost city of the English Romantic movement'.
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It has a Centre for Romantic Studies as part of the Department of English and says its conference Bristol: Romantic City in 1998 'comprehensively demonstrated the significance of Bristol cultural life to Romantic culture, broadly conceived as running from 1750-1850'.
It states: "As Thomas Chatterton's city, and also the place where William Wordsworth first met Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Bristol has a unique claim to the genesis of Romantic poetry.
"Moreover, alongside literature and radical politics, Bristol was also the intellectual crucible for figures such as Thomas Beddoes, Edward Jenner, and Humphry Davy: scientists who worked alongside poets.
"This collective arts and science collaboration was set against the local background of debate over the slave trade. The Centre for Romantic Studies is therefore building on the Romantic City conference in order to extend the definition of 'Romanticism' into areas as diverse as medicine, science, human rights, and folklore."
So given you're in the romantic city – here's 10 things you could do if you've left the planning to the last-minutes.
1. 4500 Miles from Delhi - Discover two romantic stories from Punjabi this Valentine's Day as the tales have inspired the chefs at this restaurant to develop one-off menus. Owner Nav Kandola said: "We all know that Valentine's Day is one of the most popular times for people to express their love towards each other. The idea to base our menus on the stories of Heer Ranjha and Mirza Sahiban adds a beautiful Punjabi element to this special day and intertwines romantic elements from East and West. We've also included parts of the story on the actual menus so diners will be able to read for themselves and get an understanding of Indian folklore based on stories of true love."
4500 Miles from Dehli, 8 Colston Avenue, Bristol, BS1 4ST T: 0117 929 2224
2. Trip to the movies - Escape the sugary sweet side of Valentines with a Folk House Film Presentation of How to Murder Your Wife – a screening of the 1965 film starring Jack Lemmon and Terry Thomas. Tickets cost £3 and are available at Bristol Folk House or by calling 0117 926 2987. Or cuddle -up to a loved one in one of the many cinemas we have in the city as you watch a modern-day movie.
Bristol Folk House, 40a Park Street, Bristol, BS1 5JG T: 0117 926 2986 – film screening February 14.
3. Valentine's Night at the Museum – The Royal West of England Academy is holding this event where visitors can view the current exhibitions and meet other art-lovers. Tickets can be booked online or by calling 0117 973 3171
The Royal West of England Academy, Queen's Road, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1PX T: 0117 973 5129
4. Take a walk – explore the National Trust's Tyntesfield just seven miles outside Bristol hand-in-hand with your loved one and enjoy the great outdoors. The estates and gardens are open daily although the house is closed until March 10 2012. Tyntesfield estate features a Victorian country house created by William Gibbs, who built his fortune on fertiliser. Terraced lawns, parkland and a walled kitchen garden feature on the estate.
Tyntesfield, Wraxall, Bristol, BS48 1NX T: 01275 461900
5. Fashion - shopping or art? Whether you're after the jewel of an engagement ring or a new celebration outfit then head for Broadmead and Cabot Circus in the heart of the city or try some of the smaller malls in the suburbs and if you're interested in design check out the exhibition at Bristol's M Shed – An Eye for Fashion Norman Parkinson Photographs British Designers 1954 – 1964 which runs until April 15.
M Shed, Princes Wharf, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RN T: 0117 352 6600
6. Cook yourself? There are different options to explore here – find a butcher and get a heart-shaped loin of pork as promoted by Molesworth of Henleaze, a family butchers; or get a takeaway from the many outlets promoting this type of food or splash out on a hamper created by Carluccio's
Molesworth of Henleaze, 101 Henleaze Road, Bristol, T: 0117 962 1095
Carluccio's, Quakers Friars, BS1 3BU T: 0117 933 8538
7. Book a night away – hotels are offering a myriad of packages to tempt love birds to treat their loved one. The Radisson Blu Bristol – the city's tallest hotel - has put together a package for February 10 to 18 which includes a three course dinner, overnight stay, breakfast for two and a tour of the city in a private Rickshaw. Prices from £150 for The Bristol Tour D'Amour.
Radisson Blu Bristol, Broad Quay, Bristol, BS1 4BY T: 0117 934 9500
8. Ahoy m'hearties and book a cruise – Bristol Ferry Boat Company offer bespoke cruises around the harbour and beyond as well as running regular ferries. During February ferries are running weekends only along with adhoc details but call for further information.
Bristol Ferry Boat Company, No 1 Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5UH T 0117 927 3416
9. Look at the stars – There can be nothing quite as romantic as gazing at the stars with your loved one so either take a night time walk or pop into At-Bristol. It is holding a winter night sky Planetarium show at regular intervals throughout the day until March 5 but does stress visitors should phone to check times and availability. At At-Bristol you can enjoy a tour of the night sky with a presenter-led show – and maybe then you could impress your sweetheart while out walking?
At-Bristol, Anchor Road, Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5DB T: 0845 345 1235
10. Foodie treat – chocolates have always been associated with Valentine's Day and with Bristol. Guilbert's has been creating and selling chocolate in the city for more than 100 years with every chocolate and fondant hand made and hand dipped using recipes handed down the generations. But Bristol is also home to Pieminister – a family run business which makes all its products inhouse with a host of different fillings. Like the chocolates the pies can be bought online. The pies are also on sale at pubs, shops, markets across the city and beyond.
Guilbert's, 16/17 Small Street, Bristol, BS1 1EA T: 01761 451122
Pieminister, PMHQ, Pieminister Kitchen, Charlton Road, Bristol, BS10 6NF T: 0117 950 4563