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The Rife Team

A city novice’s guide to thriving in Bristol

Bristol newcomer Qezz curates her tips for the best city experience possible

It’s hard to pinpoint whether it’s the artist in me that craves creatively-gratifying environments or it’s just a fire sign trait to love places that are full of stuff to explore, but I always want to be in places that feel exuberant.

I knew I was destined to spend my adult years in an active city. My hope was to live anywhere with an appreciation for culture, music and art, so when it came to choosing where to move, Bristol instantly came to mind. As a teenager, I would visit for school trips and the Christmas markets, then as a young adult, I would come for music events and to visit friends. Now, as an adult, I decided to leave my hometown and ultimately move to the city of Banksy and cider. I moved here three months ago with my three best friends.

As a newcomer to Bristol I am still discovering hidden gems every day. Here’s my list of a few places you’ll love and tricks you’ll need to thrive and survive in Bristol as a novice.


The Arnolfini is located on the Harbourside and is one place I go to feel inspired when I hit an artistic block. This three-story arts centre and gallery caters for everybody’s interests. Expect to see thoughtful exhibitions and art installations which will encourage you to create your own art, or simply appreciate others work. I believe that surrounding yourself around environments like this always make your creative abilities feel refreshed.


Bristol is resident to a top selection of UK’s leading musicians and DJs. The Fruit Machine is a  music label and an artist collective that allows both bands and audience members to perform and showcase their artistry. Mr. Wolfs in the centre and The Social on Stokes Croft are two places I have attended with friends and seen the concept in action. It’s  a great opportunity for musicians and singers to get involved in the scene and gain confidence as a performer.


Thrifting is a fantastic way to become your best eco-friendly self in Bristol. In this climate of fast fashion and mass-produced items it’s important to step back and make use of second-hand items and promote ethical companies. Bristol’s Kilo Sale is a great start – I encourage everyone to visit if you’d like to save your coins and become the owner of affordable retro and vintage finds. Facebook Marketplace is a digital market where people can sell and buy items around your area. It’s another great platform for being eco-friendly. The ever-updating posts of cheap and sometimes free items is joyous. Students, creatives, parents and just straight-up free things enthusiasts, this is your time to capitalise on all things bargainous.


 Fights against financial ruin and a frantic look for jobs are to be expected when you’re moving to a new city. Use your phone to your advantage. Catapult is an agency workforce app which collaborates with retail and hospitality companies to employ staff in cities all over the UK. I downloaded this app to make money while applying for proper jobs and found it incredibly helpful. The flexibility of the programme allows students and freelancers to work on their terms and make money on the side without committing to one company and a set contract.

On a much lighter note, never be afraid of using a harmless dating app to find your next Friday night motive. In cities, boys you’ve found on Hinge and Tinder will slowly become your tour guides and potential dates. More importantly, locals will have better idea of events and key places to visit.


Surrounding yourself with likeminded individuals leads to inevitable prosperity.  When we moved here as young creatives from Dorset we took a brave move and committed to not limiting our opportunities. This city is becoming an inspiration to us every day, and the active music and arts scene is a constant reminder that self-expression and freedom remains active here.

Moving out and leaving your home is an exciting adventure – you’ll start to get to grips with adulthood and you’ll build your own perspective. If you’ve thought about wanting to start your creative journey and move away from the hometown you’ve outgrown, I would definitely endorse this city. Bristol caters for entrepreneurs, musicians, coffee enthusiasts, nature lovers, filmmakers and many more. The future is now, and it is yours to create.

What would you add to this list? Let us know on our social media.