If you enjoy period dramas you’ll be sure to recognise some of Bath’s iconic architecture when you visit. From the Roman Baths to the Thermae Bath Spa, Bath has been a wellbeing destination for literally thousands of years- who can argue with that kind of popularity streak? Having the only natural thermal hot springs in the country is what first drew people to Bath but the array of museums, art galleries and the wall to wall history is keeping them coming back, even in modern times.
Before visiting any town or city make sure you know the basics. General details and important information.
- Emergency Services: 999
- Language: English
- Currency: British Pound
- Country Code: GB
- Travel Visa: None required
- Population: 88,859
Researching various official sources, we perceive the risk to holiday makers and travellers are as follows;
Top travel advice and interesting tip bits of information from experienced travellers.
- Sally Lunn’s Eating House is one of the oldest houses in Bath and, as such, has a certain character and atmosphere that is very unique. This tearoom has played host to many famous names (Jane Austen is reported to have been a fan) and is home of the delicious Bath Bun, a brioche like teacake that is served with butter. Prices are no more expensive than any other tearoom in Bath and guests receive free entry to the Sally Lunn museum so you can find out how the buns are made and all about Sally too.
- If you are using a bike in Bath, make sure you house it in a secure location. Despite its overall very safe crime rates, Bath is a place where bike theft specifically can happen quite often.
- It never hurts to be careful with money. When withdrawing cash, try to go inside the bank for the transaction. Try not to withdraw cash from cash points on pedestrian walkways and if you do keep an eye out for the people around you. Try to withdraw small sums and don’t flash your cash around.
For the Emergency services just dial 999 from any phone, for not so serious situations please dial 101.
Visit Bath: 01225 477445
Given that Bath has historically drawn in copious amounts of visitors, there are plenty of travel options. Whilst Bath does not have its own airport, Bristol airport has a bus service into Bath to make that last little part of the journey as easy a possible. There are also frequent trains connecting Bath to the airport. The train station is situated in the centre of the attractions, being just a short walk from the baths, shops and an array of eateries. Both coaches and opened-top buses are available for tours and to get you where you need to go. There are even 3 separate park-and-ride options with which to visit the attractions.
Bristol Airport: Bristol Airport
Bath Train Station: National Rail Enquiries
Where can I keep up with the local news?
What should I look out for?
Since Bath is such a tourist heavy area and there are so many events, tours and just general places to see, there’s a good chance that there are people running scams. Usually by trying to trick people with fake or out of date tickets and surprisingly cheap deals. The best way to avoid this is pre-planning: book tickets online from the official website of the event and be aware of normal pricing (as I’m sure everyone’s mother has told them: if a deal sounds too good to be true- it probably is). The advantage a scammer has over you is that you don’t know any better so read up on events before you go and only buy from official sources.
What are some safety top tips?
Where there is tourism, there are pickpockets waiting to make a profit.
Always be aware of your valuables, keep them in securely closed bags or pockets on the inner parts of your clothes. Keep a look out for a friendly stranger trying to distract you, there may also be someone dipping their hand in your pocket from behind. That being said, you are not in too much danger in Bath so a friendly stranger might be just that- just stay cautious.
Annual events allow a city come together for some amazing experiences. If visiting at this time, make sure you have your accommodation booked and are always aware of your surroundings when travelling around.
Each spring a whole host of authors, poets and playwrights come to Bath to give readings, workshops and talks. Events take place all over the city and have a strong connection with local bookshops. Throughout the 17 day period there are music and literature festival events all over the city. This includes evening events, such as Party in the City- during which there are three different outdoor shindigs going down. At these events there will be musical performances and the opportunity to eat, drink and be merry for all. The last weekend is much more of a music festival, featuring acts such as McFly and Scouting for Girls to play the event to a close.
For lovers of vintage, this free market is well worth a look and can be found every last Sunday of the month in Green Park Station- a disused yet stunning Victorian railway station that is now a listed building. Browse through an array of clothes, records, furniture, antiques and art that range from retro to vintage (yes, there is a difference!). Even if you aren’t struck by any of the material wares, there’s an all-day breakfast available at the café, a BathPizza Co stall or even the option to sample some old style tea and cake.
For 10 days each summer, expect to see lots of people strolling around the streets in period costume, reading novels aloud, acting out the classic stories and celebrating all things Jane Austen. With walking tours, tea parties, Pride and Prejudice style balls and more, this is not to be missed for a fan of the author. Of the 80 events, all welcome participants in Regency attire but for two events it is mandatory: the Grand Regency Promenade and the Masked Ball held in the Pump Rooms. Fear not, however, as the website features guides, advice and links to rent the appropriate outfits. Even if you have no idea where to begin, this event has got you covered.
The Bath Christmas Market is perfect for getting into the holiday spirit with a fantastic atmosphere and a wide range of quality stalls. Gift, decorations, fancy foods you only ever get as a treat (looking at you macrons)- there’s something to make everyone smile. Mainly situated in front of the Abbey, it’s hard to find a better way to take in the city than with a glass of mulled wine in hand. If the cold gets the better of you, pop along to The Lodge just up the street and warm up.
What should I visit?
First opened in 1830 by 11 year old Queen Victoria and home to the iconic Royal Crescent, this public park is an attractive green space perfect for escaping the hustle and bustle of the city. With a botanical garden, 18 hole crazy golf course, bowling green, children’s playground, lake and skatepark, you could fill a whole day just here away from the ‘main attractions’ of the city. The park also hosts outdoor concerts in the bandstand, has BBQ areas and a café.
Don’t forget your change as the toilets charge a 20p entry fee!
Not as scary as you’d think! Hot air balloon rides are the new way to explore a city. There’s always that initial nervousness that comes with big heights but those nerves were soothed by wonderfully professional staff and then entirely whisked away by the views. The complimentary champagne also helped! It is so peaceful and serene once you’re up there and the view of the city and surrounding countryside is just breath-taking. Getting up there makes you never want to come back down. Who knew Bath could be so pretty from all angles?
Displaying everything from Georgian dresses to Regency era outfits to clothes you see people wearing today, this museum offers plenty of style inspiration. It’s so amazing to be looking at clothes that are hundreds of years old and have them appear in such good condition. The audioguide comes very highly recommended as it covers everything! The assembly rooms (that have traditionally been the social hub for fashionable Bath, hosting balls and tea parties for the rich and affluent of history) are so bright and well-maintained; it felt like you could turn a corner and bump into some lords and ladies at any moment.
Can I really go to Bath for a bath?
Enjoy Britain’s original and naturally heated Thermae Spa, make the most of Bath’s heritage by relaxing as the Romans did thousands of years ago. The spa has undergone extensive development in recent years and now offers luxury day spas. By combining the traditional and the modern, Thermae Spa revitalised the spa culture Bath was famous for. Quite pricey (£52 for 3hrs spa + meal and drink, per person) but that is the price for the unique experience of unwinding in a naturally hot outdoor pool overlooking the city.
What’s some sit down entertainment in Bath?
The Theatre Royal consists of three parts:
The Main House- a beautiful 19th century theatre, allegedly one of the most haunted in Britain, and popular for pantomime.
The Ustinov Studio- a small-scale producing theatre that focusses on giving new voices an opportunity to create. It has recently partnered with the Graeae’s Write to Play scheme in a commitment to develop the skills and experience of deaf and disabled writers.
The Egg- not only shows productions tailored towards children and young people but is a place for them to learn as well. Workshops and an academy run to give young people the opportunity to learn professional industry skills required to be part of a theatre production.