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Best Things To Do In Bath

Bath is one of the best places to visit in England. With beautiful Georgian architecture, many independent boutiques and historical attractions, this Somerset city has it all. The Roman Baths and the Royal Crescent are rightly famous. There are many other fun things to do during your visit, with most of the sights only walking distance from each other. The city has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.

Here are the most luxurious Bath attractions, from museums to shopping and places to eat. If this is your first Bath sightseeing visit, we recommend starting with a famous Bath landmark.

1. The Roman Baths

One of the most visited tourist attractions in England, dating from Roman times. Admire the natural thermal springs, temple courtyard and Roman artifacts including a bronze head and silver coins.

Head to the adjacent Pump Room for afternoon tea or to try the hot spa water containing 43 minerals.

The Great Bath

2. The Royal Crescent

One of the best places to visit in Bath, this magnificent row of 30 Georgian houses was built from 1767 to 1775. Designed by John Wood the Younger, the Royal Crescent is a great example of Palladian style.

It was the first crescent of terraced houses to be built. There are 110 ionic columns adorning the honey-colored buildings. Each one has a great view of the parkland opposite.

The Royal Crescent, Bath

3. Pulteney Bridge

Designed by famous architect Robert Adam in 1769, this is one of only four bridges worldwide to have shops across its full length on both sides. Completed in 1774, the bridge is a fine example of Palladian architecture.

You can get a nice view of the River Avon from the Bridge Coffee Shop.

Pulteney Bridge in Bath

4. Bath Abbey

A former Benedictine monastery, it has stunning stained glass windows inside and distinctive Ladders of Angels on the exterior. The original building dated from the 7th century and was rebuilt in the 12th and 16th centuries.

The famous British architect Sir George Gilbert Scott then restored the Abbey further in the 1860s. Take a Tower Tour any day except Sunday for panoramic views of Bath.

Bath Abbey

5. Thermae Bath Spa

The only naturally warm British thermal spa, it has a spectacular rooftop pool. Guests can enjoy a Wellness Suite with a Georgian inspired steam room, ice chamber, Roman inspired steam room, celestial relaxation room and experience showers.

There’s also the Minerva Bath, with a lazy river, massage jet and whirlpool. For refreshments, Springs Café Restaurant has a good selection of light bites, smoothies and sweet treats.

Thermae Bath Spa

6. No. 1 Royal Crescent

An inside glimpse at life in an 18th century townhouse, No. 1 Royal Crescent is decorated with antique furniture of the period. The building was designed by John Wood the Younger in Palladian Revival style.

7. The Assembly Rooms

Dating from 1769 and designed by John Wood the Younger, it was a popular meeting place in the 18th century. The Fashion Museum has an extensive collection of historical clothing and you can even try some outfits on.

There are over 160 figures dressed in clothes spanning 400 years. This is one of the best things to do in Bath for those with an interest in fashion.

Bath Fashion Museum

8. The Circus

Another triumph of Georgian architecture, designed by John Wood the Elder and completed by his son John Wood the Younger. The Circus is designed with the same diameter as Stonehenge.

This elegant Bath building is said to be joined to the Royal Crescent by an ancient ley line. If you stand right in the centre of the Circus and clap, you will hear an echo!

The Circus, Bath

9. Parks in Bath

There are lots of green spaces in Bath such as Parade Gardens, Royal Victoria Park below the Royal Crescent and Sydney Gardens next to the Kennet and Avon Canal. Head to the Lookout vantage point in Alexandra Park for far reaching views of the city.

The Kennet and Avon Canal in Bath

10. The Holburne Museum

The first public art gallery in Bath, this Grade I listed building features the collections of Sir William Holburne. There’s a pleasant cafe with an outdoor terrace to the rear.

The Holburne Museum is one of the top Bridgerton filming locations. In the popular Netflix show, the museum is shown as the facade of Lady Danbury’s house.

Holburne Museum, Bath

11. The Jane Austen Centre

The famous author lived in Bath for five years and this exhibition tells the story of her time here. The museum has a Regency tearoom on the first floor.

There’s also the Jane Austen Centre gift shop, which has a lovely range of vintage inspired nightwear, decorative teapots and luxury hardback books.

The Jane Austen Centre

12. The Palladian Arch on York Street

Hot water was transported in pipes through the viaduct from the Queen’s Bath to Bath City Laundry.

York Street Palladian Arch

Further from the centre, you’ll find some Bath hidden gems such as:

13. The American Museum and Gardens

A 10 minute drive from the centre in Claverton Down. This is the finest collection of Americana outside of the USA, housed within 18th century Claverton Manor.

14. Prior Park Landscape Gardens

A 30 minute walk from the centre or 7 minutes by car. Designed by Alexander Pope and Capability Brown, these National Trust gardens are famous for their Palladian bridge.

15. Luxury Shopping in Bath

Bath is blessed with lots of luxury home and fashion boutiques. If you’re visiting in Winter, don’t miss award-winning Bath Christmas Market.

Abbey Green

This picturesque square in Bath city centre is paved with cobblestones. Come here for the hand painted clothing and artisan ceramics by Waller & Wood, as well as fun gifts from Bath Retro Store.

Bath Retro Store

Just next to Abbey Green, you’ll find Charlotte Brunswick Chocolates.

Charlotte Brunswick Chocolates

Bartlett Quarter

This pedestrianized area has some charming stores such as Loft, which sells stylish homeware and has a popular Bath cafe.

Bartlett Street Quarter

Bath Guildhall Market

The oldest shopping area in Bath has 20 stalls including a cool espresso bar, a cheese shop, and Gillards of Bath, the tea and coffee specialist, founded in 1886. Don’t miss the 18th century pillar known as The Nail, where transactions took place. It’s believed to be the origin of the saying “pay on the nail”.

George Street

In Bath Upper City, there are beautiful shops such as V V Rouleaux for fabric and ribbons, Topping & Company for books and The Italian Food Hall. Circo Bar is popular for cocktails.

Milsom Place

Jolly’s on Milsom Street is the oldest department store in the UK. In Milsom Place itself, there are some charming shops including Chanii B for Portugese designer shoes and handbags.

The Artisan Quarter

Centred around London Road and Walcot Street. Head to Verve Living for designer furniture and Bath Antique and Flea Market, held every Saturday.

Where to Eat in Bath

There are lots of great restaurants in Bath.

Abbey Hotel Kitchen

Located in a stunning Georgian building, this brasserie has attractive banquette seats and marble tables. In the evenings, guests dine by candlelight, adding to the ambiance.

The menu is a mix of British and French classics, combined with great wines and cocktails.

Koffman and Mr White restaurant in Bath

Sally Lunn’s Historic Eating House & Museum

The oldest house in Bath is famous for its Sally Lunn bun. These can be eaten with sweet or savoury toppings.

Sally Lunns buns at the oldest building in Bath

The Circus Restaurant

A cosy bistro situated on Brock Street. Chef Ali Golden specializes in seasonal British cooking.

The Giggling Squid

This Instagrammable Bath restaurant with flower bowers and very friendly staff serves up tasty Thai food.

The Giggling Squid, Bath

The Ivy Bath Brasserie

Located in a beautiful Georgian building, The Ivy is popular for its rooftop terrace restaurant and cocktails.

The Ivy Bath Brasserie

There are many good coffee and tea shops in Bath. Here are some favourites:

Comins Tea

This Japanese inspired tearoom on Monmouth Street has specially designed tea tables with gutters for the dregs.

Comins tea, Bath

Maison Georges Larnicol

Known for its artisan chocolates, macarons and Breton cakes. Upstairs, Café Oulala is a beautiful place that feels like you’re sitting in someone’s very stylish home.

Maison Georges Lornicol in Bath

Sweet Little Things

This tea shop and bakery on Lower Borough Walls could well be the most Instagrammable place in Bath. There’s a floral wall upstairs and a swing downstairs and they serve delicious cupcakes.

Sweet Little Things bakery

Getting to Bath

The easiest way to get to Bath (& avoid the clean air zone) is to use the park & ride, detailed in one of our maps.

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