What it has to offer:
A world heritage site since 1987, Bath is steeped in rich spa history dating as far back as 8000 BC. Full of impressive Georgian buildings made up of its very own Bath stone, this city offers great food, shopping, rolling hills and is one of the 11 UNESCO Great Spa Towns of Europe.
Whether you want to laze in the gorgeous parks, go on a historic literature tour, or simply relax in a rooftop spa, Bath is a city with something for everyone.
Where to stay:
Bath has a plethora of wonderful spots to stay in and explore such as The Royal Crescent, but tucked behind it you’ll find number 17, The Queensberry Hotel. With 29 rooms on offer, this unique hotel not only has a place to rest your head, but also serves some of the best food in the area.
The website says, ‘if you are looking for luxury and impeccable service, and bold, individual style, housed in a characterful Georgian townhouse, right in the centre of our stunning, little city, then you are absolutely in the right place’.
A little further out of town in Freshford you’ll find number 28, Homewood. A Georgian country house filled with creative artworks and ultra-modern indulgences including a spa and heated outdoor swimming pool.
From comfy doubles to hot tub suites, you can get some well needed R&R in both the main house and the ravishing Mallingford Mews.
Where to eat:
Of course, you could dine where you’re staying, especially at The Queenberry, which is home to one Michelin Star, the Olive Tree Restaurant. Head Chef Chris Cleghorn and his team offer two tasting menus, the SIX and the NINE which are comprised of beautiful, fresh, seasonal dishes. Both can be enjoyed in a welcoming, chic atmosphere of de-formalised fine dining.
If you’re looking for exceptional Italian dining, then Sotto Sotto might just be the place for you. The name Sotto Sotto literally translates as ‘underneath underneath’ which is exactly where you’ll fine this eatery. Nestled down a metal spial staircase, this stone-welled venue serves classic Italian dishes at a reasonable price.
For a more casual day time dining experience then Green Park Station Market is a must-visit. Make the most of local suppliers, chefs and producers at this converted train station indoor market. From pizza to goulash, there’s wonderful food to be enjoyed by all in between your walks or shopping trips.
Where to drink:
If you’re on the hunt for a dram of whisky or a perfectly poured cocktail in the heart of the city, then The Hideout is for you. Bath’s favoured cocktail bar lives in a once forgotten about building and serves the classics alongside a menu of in-house specials made from few, but flavourful ingredients.
For gin fans you’ll be able to enjoy an array of over 250 gins including some being distilled in house at The Canary Gin Bar. Enjoy them with your favourite tonic or mixed into a cocktail after a long day exploring. Why not book in for a gin distillery experience where you can learn about the history of gin and how they became the first distillery in Bath in over 250 years.
Sights to visit:
You can’t visit Bath without a trip to The Roman Baths at Thermae Bath Spa where you can bathe in the same mineral-rich thermal springs that soothed the Romans 2,000 years ago. Between 23 July - 31 August you can experience the baths by torchlight. Take a look at the museum to learn about the rich history of the city and iconic venue or have a more modernised experience and take a dip in the rooftop pool.
Bath Abbey is a sight to behold in the heart of the town centre. Not just for worship, this landmark is open for all to enjoy for an array of activities and events all year round.
The website says ‘A moment of stillness in the beating heart of a vibrant city. A space that’s alive with music and prayer, art and history. A place where awe-inspiring architecture lifts the eyes – and raises the spirit’.
For budding fashionistas why not visit the Fashion Museum? Located in the Assembly Rooms, the museum holds a world-class collection of contemporary and historic dress, from Georgian gowns to cutting-edge fashion from leading designers.
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Events not to miss:
Literature lovers from all over the UK gather for the 10-day celebration at the annual Jane Austen Festival. Hosting guided walks, costumed balls, theatrical performances, talks and more across the city from 9 – 18 September.
Foodies can enjoy The Great Bath Feast 23 – 25 September this year. Milsom Street fills up with stall after stall of food & drink pop-ups.
The website says, ‘The gastronomic festival celebrates the best food and drink in the Southwest, as well as taste-sensations from further afield, appealing to culinary connoisseurs everywhere’.
If you’re planning a winter visit, then a trip to the Bath Christmas Markets is essential. From 24 November – 11 December you can browse and shop some of the best crafters that the Southwest and beyond has to offer.