A Trip to Bath
James and I have visited Bath twice now, once as a day trip on our own and once with our residence life at Exeter. Both times it exceeded our expectations and we had a wonderful time on our trips to Bath.
Trip to Bath #1
On our first trip we acquired round trip tickets from Exeter St. David’s to Bath for £15 ea.
Trip to Bath #2
The second time a roundtrip private coach provided by the residence life cost us £5 ea.
Time of Year
Trip to Bath #1
The first time we went it was the middle of March. Fortunately, the weather was pleasant enough and we got by with just a simple jumper and jeans, no heavy coats necessary. Being the off season we were treated with an almost empty city.
Trip to Bath #2
The second time we were there it was the start of December and we were bundled up like you couldn’t imagine. Winter coats, hats, scarves and gloves. Bath has one of the most popular Christmas Markets in England and thus it is extremely crowded in December.
You could barely walk in the narrow streets of Bath without being shoved around. I was glad we had visited in March because Bath has such beautiful architecture in its city, and it’s impossible to view and appreciate the beauty of the town with roves of people.
Funny story: during our first trip to Bath, a massive wasp decided to attach itself to my sweatshirt. Cue me freaking out and James doing nothing because as he said, “Uh-uh, I don’t want to get stung!” The machismo of my boyfriend ladies and gents.
During both our trips to Bath we more or less explored many of the same areas. We didn’t pay to do the Roman Baths a second time however.
The Roman Baths
If you EVER visit Bath you absolutely need to visit The Roman Baths. Tickets are about £15, or you could purchase a Saver ticket for about £20 and get access to the Roman Baths, the Victoria Art Gallery, and The Fashion Museum. James and I opted for the Saver Ticket.
Following the Roman Baths, we visited the Bath Abbey. This cathedral is impressive both from the outside and the inside. Free to visit, though donations are always recommended!
The Circus is essentially four semi-circle shaped apartment buildings arranged into a circle. In Latin, “circus” means circle, so thus it was named The Circus. It is really cool to look at when you’re standing in the middle of it, but I imagine an aerial view is much more stunning.
According to a local we met and some extra research on good old google, The Circus was constructed because the architect believed that Bath was the main site of Druid activity in Britain. Since Druid activity is entwined with Stonehenge he wanted to construct a building that represented Stonehenge. The diameter of Stonehenge and The Circus are the same (318 feet).
The Royal Crescent
Attached to The Circus is another semi-circle building dubbed The Royal Crescent. This building is also a semi-circle shaped residence building, however it is much longer than those of The Circus. If you have ever seen the movie The Duchess featuring Kiera Knightley you will likely recognize The Royal Crescent.
Many notable people once resided at the Crescent ranging from singers to writers and MP’s. The house located at No. 1 Royal Crescent is actually a museum where you can see how the wealthy of the 18th century lived. We explored this historic house on our first trip to Bath and it was fascinating to see how the homes were furnished and what luxuries they had.
Just behind the railway station lies the suburbs of Bath and in those suburbs lies Alexandra Park. If you’re looking for some killer views of Bath this is the place to be. However, be forewarned it’s quite a steep climb. If you read my post about Bristol and the trek to the Clifton Suspension Bridge, that PALES in comparison to this hike. We were huffing and panting the entire way up. On top of that, the steps were so tall, that I almost needed to jump up to get over them.
When we were going up I saw an elderly lady making her way down, and the entire climb up I kept telling myself, Michelle if she can do it there’s no excuse for you, man up. As we were nearing the top and came around a corner we got to a sign that said 40 more steps. I’m like okay that’s fine I can do this, well I’m calling B.S. on the municipal city of Bath. The steps went from steps to paver stones It took us maybe half a minute to cross ONE step. While I complain now and certainly complained during the entire hike I will admit the view at the top was worth the trouble.
Gallery & Museums
As part of our Saver ticket we had access to the Art Gallery and the Fashion Museum. I’m not sure James was thrilled about the fashion museum but it was extremely interesting to see how fashion had evolved over time. We also made a visit to the Holbourne Museum which was free to enter. The Holbourne Museum sits at the end of a road lined by residential homes on either side and if you venture to the third floor of the museum it makes for a great view of that street out of the windows.
Fans of the movie Les Miserables will recognize this bridge as it was used in many scenes.
Eating in Bath
Trip to Bath #1
The Bridge Coffee Shop
We actually found a lovely coffee shop right on the bridge that was offering a great deal. £5 for a pot of tea and two scones with clotted cream and jam.
Yak Yeti Yak
James and I had time spare before our train left so we decided to have a nice little dinner at a Nepalese Restaurant. If you’ve never had Nepalese, it’s delicious. It’s quite similar to Indian food, yet different in its own way.
Trip to Bath #2
Jamie Oliver’s Italian
In an effort to avoid the massive crowd we spent some time exploring an indoor shopping mall and came across a Jamie Oliver’s Italian. Turns out I had received a voucher for Jamie Oliver’s and we ended up sharing a hot chocolate to escape the cold and the crowd.
P.S. my voucher had £2.10 on it and hot chocolate cost £2.10, SCORE.
All in all, visiting Bath during two periods of the year was extremely interesting, but I think I prefer Bath without the crowds. Both the first and second day trip to Bath were quite enjoyable and I hope we can return to this city once more!
Total Cost Trip #1: £122
Cost Breakdown Trip 1
- Transport: £30
- Train Tickets: £15 per person = £30 total
- Attractions: £57
- Saver Tickets (Roman Baths/Fashion Museum/Victoria&Albert Gallery): £18.50 @ student price = per person = £37 total
- No 1. Royal Crescent Museum: £10 per person = £20 total
- Food: £35
- Nepalese Dinner: £30 total
- High Tea: £5 total
Total Cost Trip #2: £10
Cost Breakdown Trip 2
- Transport: £10
- Bus tickets: £5 per person = total £10
- Voucher used: £2.10
LOVE THIS POST?! PIN AND SHARE IT NOW!