Bath, one of the loveliest cities in England, has for centuries welcomed visitors, who came for the restorative powers of its famous mineral waters. The Romans built a magnificent temple and bathing complex that still flows with natural hot water. If you too would like to sample the waters, there is a new Thermae Bath Spa right in the city built just for that purpose. A world Heritage site, the city is a pedestrian delight; cobbled streets, charming Regency buildings and to add to the charm, the Avon River runs right through the center of town.
Bath Abbey stands at the heart of the city of Bath, England; during the past twelve and a half centuries, three different churches have occupied this site. The present Abbey begun in 1499, is the last of the great medieval churches of England. You can take a tour of the tower. Here is a video giving you a glimpse of what the tour offers.
If you are a Jane Austin fan, you can enjoy walking the streets where she herself has walked and where her characters from Persuasion and others of her books lived. The Jane Austin Center offers a snapshot of life during Regency times and explores how living in this magnificent city affected Jane Austen’s life and writing. There is a nice tea room and gift shop at the Jane Austin Center as well.
There are several museums worth exploring in Bath, England. The American Museum shows, largely by way of period rooms, how Americans lived from the early New England Settlers to the eve of the Civil War.
The Fashion Museum tells the story of fashion over the last 400 years. It is the finest museum of fashionable garments in the world.
Housed in a beautiful gothic chapel, the Building of Bath Museum shows how Georgian Bath was developed, built, decorated and lived in.
The Holburne Museum of Art was founded to display the collection of Sir William Holburne, a sailor who grew up in Bath and spent his long retirement here. Since Sir William’s time the collection has been greatly expanded and now includes landscapes by Guardi and Turner and outstanding portraits by Stubbs, Ramsay, Raeburn, Zoffany and Bath’s own artists Thomas Gainsborough, William Hoare and the Barkers of Bath.
Number One Royal Crescent was the first house to be built in the magnificent Royal Crescent, John Wood’s masterpiece of Palladian design. The restored and authentically furnished town house creates a picture of fashionable life in 18th century Bath, including a superbly appointed dining room, elegant drawing room, a feminine bedroom and a typical Georgian kitchen.
If you are wondering where to stay in Bath, here are our recommendations for the best accommodations in Bath at all price points.
Bath Tourist Information Center
Tel: UK callers: 0906 711 2000 (50p/min), Overseas callers: +44 (0)870 444 6442
Bath Flea Market (Walcott St. Saturday Market)
The Old Cattle Market
Saturdays 9 to 4pm
Bath Farmer’s Market
Held at Green Park Station in central Bath every Saturday. A wide variety of local produce, all goods come from under 40 miles away and sold direct by the people who produced them.
Saturday mornings 8.30am-1.30pm
Nearby Bath Attractions:
Bath is surrounded by distinctive English landscapes: the hills and honey-stoned villages of the Cotswolds and South Gloucestershire and Wessex’s wide open spaces and ancient sites.
The Cotswolds and South Gloucestershire are what you imagine when you think of charming English villages dotting rolling hills with little rock walls. A day trip to such little tows as Cirencester, one of the oldest and most beautiful market towns in the country; Tetbury, filled with antique shops, and Castle Combe, called the prettiest village in England, will be enough to make you want to come back for more.
The gentle hills of the Chew Valley make for excellent walking countryside. Riverside walks, field walks, woodland walks and hill walks all feature in the huge number of footpaths which criss cross the area. Bath Tourist Information Center stocks a free leaflet on the 3 Peaks Circular Walk, a beautiful circular walk taking in the villages of Pensford, Clutton and Chew Magna.
A trip to Bath, the Cotswolds and Wessex country will be one you will treasure forever.
Written by Terri Fogarty for EuropeUpClose.com