It was around Easter-time a couple of years ago that I got my offer from the University of Bristol – the fifth and final uni to respond to my application – and I sure am glad I did. I loved Bristol straight away upon visiting for the first time, but I wasn’t by any means always certain it’d be my top choice.

For a long time I was completely stuck between Bristol and King’s College London and just couldn’t decided which one I’d prefer to study at for four years of my life – as you’d expect from yours truly, a very detailed (and colour-coded) pros and cons table was drawn up. Eventually I decided on Bristol, and it may just have been the best decision of my life thus far. I LOVE BRISTOL!Here’s a fun fact for you: The University of Bristol was the first higher education institution in Britain to admit female and male students on an equal basis. Good work, Bris.

I imagine many a sixth form pupil have now got their university offers, and as I remember wanting to hear genuine students’ views on their unis, I’m here to tell you just why I love being at Bristol so much. I haven’t been asked to write this for the uni, nor is this the type of thing you’ll find in the prospectus, it’s just me: a second year student studying French and German, and absolutely loving it.

The City
One of the main reasons I chose Bristol over KCL is the chances are I’ll live in London later in my life, but if I hadn’t moved to Bristol for uni, it’s unlikely that I ever would have. That would have been a grandiose shame, as Bristol is fabulous. As the capital of the South-West (for real, I didn’t make that up), Bristol is big enough to have loads going on, but not so big as to be overwhelming. It’s sufficiently studenty, but not like one of those cities where the students pretty much are the majority of the inhabitants. Durham, I’m looking at you.

I never wanted to go to a campus uni, and one of the things I particularly love about Bristol is the fact that the uni is actually in the city. I mean properly in the central zone. This means I get to walk through Bristol’s bustling centre among beautiful buildings pretty much every day. I love the buzz of the city, and I think it has a really youthful, exciting vibe which you don’t find everywhere.

I’m not going to be a tourist guide here, but Bristol does have everything on offer: high street shops, a ridiculous number of vintage shops, markets, clubs, green spaces, theatres, cinemas, intimate music venues, big music arenas, snazzy restaurants (for when your parents are visiting, obvs), adorable independent cafés, museums, galleries (not to mention Banksy artwork to look out for on the streets)… You name it, we’ve got it. And our version is probably cooler. Bristol’s pretty edgy like that. No, really. I’ve never seen so many café-vintageshop-musicvenue combos in one city. And as there are a lot of students in Bristol, there are a lot of student discounts. HOORAH! Also, both Ribena and the world’s first chocolate bar were invented in Bristol. Pretty cool, eh?

The People
I can’t deny that the majority of Bristol students seem to come from London – most people consider me a Northerner, despite being from the Midlands *gasp* – but there really are people from all over. Although that’s the case at most unis, I’m not sure every uni has the same type of student. Allow me to explain…

As Bristol really is one of the UK’s (and – as I’m deffos not biased – I’m going to even say the world’s) best universities, all the students have at least a few brain cells up in their noggins, and a work ethic to match. Sure, just like pretty much every other student in the UK, we can be lazy, we like to party etc etc, but I think at the end of the day and when it really comes down to it, Bristol students put the work in when it counts. Come exam time, everyone knuckles down and works really hard. I think this is a jolly good thing.Oh, and everyone I’ve met has been just down right LOVELY.

The Standards
I’ve kinda already said this, but you know you’re getting a high-quality education from top researchers/lecturers/professors, as well as super duper facilities at Bristol. Meh. Go and read the prospectus for more.

The Activities
THERE’S SO MUCH COOL INTERESTING FUN STUFF TO GET INVOLVED WITH I WISH I COULD DO IT ALL! Sorry, I got a bit too excited there. But I just can’t help it. As I walk round uni and see all the posters up advertising shows, societies, events, clubs, sports, new publications, one-off lectures and goodness knows what else, I’m just blown away. I know a lot of universities have lots going on too, but I reckon we have some of the best to offer.

As university students we have a wealth of opportunities right on our doorstep, and there’s no better time or easier way to try new things. So even if you don’t choose Bristol (I’m genuinely not trying to sell it to you, I just have a lot of love for the place), I encourage you to make the most of your time at uni, wherever you are. (Just check out my message to Freshers here.) Oh, I feel I should also add that it rains a lot in Bristol, which kinda sucks. BUT everything else is AWESOME so it’s fine.

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