And Jones, who has skippered Wales on more occasions than any other player having worn the armband 33 times, admits that opting to end a decade-long association with the Liberty Stadium outfit has been the most difficult call of his stellar career to date.
"This has definitely been the toughest decision I've ever had to make, but it's one that I'm making for my family. I've had a fantastic 10 years with the Ospreys and will leave with so many good memories to treasure," said Jones, who has won four Celtic League crowns and an Anglo-Welsh Cup since joining from the Celtic Warriors in 2004.
"I'm immensely proud of everything we've achieved as a group, with five trophies to look back on, and that success has enabled me to enjoy significant success at international level as well. It's truly been a fantastic journey. Hopefully, I can use the momentum from this fresh challenge to enable me to continue my international career.
"I've got so many good friends here, and I'm extremely grateful to all the team-mates, coaches, management and directors at the Ospreys for their backing over the last 10 years. Most importantly of all, I'd like to say a very big thank you to the magnificent supporters at the Liberty Stadium who have always been fantastic to me."
Jones will link up with former Ospreys boss Sean Holley and ex-Scotland supremo Andy Robinson at Bristol on a two-year deal, with the West Country side hoping for a return to the Aviva Premiership next term. Bristol currently sit top of the RFU Championship, three points clear of London Welsh, but with a play-off system still ahead of them in their quest for a place at English rugby's top table for the first time since the 2008/09 campaign.
But, while his work will be moving eastwards, Jones insists his family life will be staying in Swansea, with the proximity of Bristol to Wales one of the reasons why he opted for the Memorial Stadium when choosing a new challenge.
"There were a number of options available to me, but this move gives me that security and offers me a new challenge, while allowing me to stay in Ospreylia, which is my region," added Jones.
"Swansea is my family home now. It's not just my wife and children who are here, but my parents and sister also live here. With only a year remaining on my contract at the Ospreys, this deal offers me longer-term security."
Jones will join fellow Wales veteran and Sale scrum half Dwayne Peel and Ospreys fly half Matthew Morgan in linking up with Bristol at the end of the current campaign, while former Wales playmaker Nicky Robinson is already with the club.