Beautiful Bath… heralded as the finest Georgian city in Britain, Bath is (without sounding too cliché) is a sight to see. Attracting the likes of Lady Emma Hamilton, Jane Austen (albeit reluctantly at first), William Wordsworth and King Louis XVIII of France, Bath is so much more than just a convalescent stopover.
Bath is the next stop on our British Heritage Tour. Our first stop was Oxford and now we’re heading west. Whether you’re travelling from London or elsewhere in Britain, the easiest way to reach Bath is with a UK car hire. People have been travelling to Bath for more than 2,000 years at first for a taste of it’s curing waters and then to enjoy the splendour of this great city. The Roman Baths and grand Pump Room are essential stops, as is the 15th century Abbey and the elegant Royal Crescent.
Jane Austen’s Bath
There’s no hiding that Jane Austen is a huge draw for Bath. The Jane Austen Centre is the first-stop on the Austen trail. It offers fans of the period a chance to see inside what Jane Austen’s Bath might have been like. A spot of tea at the Jane Austen Regency Tea Rooms is a must. You may as well go to whole mile if you’re here, right?
The Assembly Rooms of Bath hosted the prettiest balls and were where social circles collided. Jane herself adored dancing and attended many gatherings here to drink tea, dance, play cards and listen to music. Today the Assembly Rooms also house the Fashion Museum, complete with a collection of dresses worn during Jane Austen’s time.
Life in Bath during the 18th century was luxurious, you just need to take a look at Number 1 Royal Crescent to know that. London’s aristocrats would flock to Bath to “take the waters”, from Bath’s restorative and healing springs. Want to taste it for yourself? Head to the Pump Room or the Spa Visitor Centre.
Austen would have spent much time in the city and the parks, especially Pulteney Bridge, Great Pulteney Street and Sydney Gardens, a popular spot for afternoon picnics.
Best time to visit?
In summer the weather is always fine but for something a little more cultural, check out Bath during the Jane Austen Festival, taking place this year from September 16th to 24th, 2012.
Have you been to Bath? What were the highlights of your trip?