Best Things to Do in Bath

What are the best things to do in Bath, and why make a day trip from London to Bath? Because Bath is one of England's most beautiful cities, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It's noted for its beautiful Georgian architecture, the Roman Baths and the Thermae Bath Spa, Bath Abbey, the Georgian Theatre Royal, its links with Jane Austen and its lovely setting on the River Avon. Choosing the best things to see in Bath isn't easy as there are so many of them, but here are our suggestions of the best things to do in Bath, in alphabetical order:

Bath's Roman Baths by Torchlight

Assembly Rooms and Fashion Museum

Bath's Assembly Rooms appear in both Persuasion andNorthanger Abbey by Jane Austen. They were the place to meet in the 18th century, though what you see today is a sympathetic restoration after wartime damage. The Fashion Museum covers those elegant days, but also displays costume right up to today's street fashions.

Bath Abbey

This beautiful 15th-century abbey is notable for its stained glass windows. Don't miss the Heritage Vaults which explain the building of the Abbey on the site of what was a Saxon Abbey.

The Circus

The Circus is where you'll find some of the finest Georgian houses in Bath, where three crescents are grouped in a circle. The well-known British artist Thomas Gainsborough lived at number 17 from 1760-74.

Holburne Museum and Sydney Gardens

You'll find work by Gainsborough on display at the Holburne Museum, alongside other artists and objects including one of Rachmaninoff's pianos. The museum is in what used to be the Sydney Hotel, another place visited by Jane Austen. Behind the museum and also visited often by Jane Austen, the Sydney Gardens make a pleasant place to take a break.

Jane Austen Centre

One of England's best-known and much-loved authors, Jane Austen, lived in Bath from 1801-6, and even when she didn't live here she was a regular visitor all her life. Two of her novels, Persuasion and Northanger Abbey, are set in Bath, and each September the city holds a week-long Jane Austen Festival. The Center is close to one of the houses where Jane Austen lived and gives visitors a full picture of the author's many links with Bath.

Pulteney Bridge

Don't miss the attractive 18th-century Pulteney Bridge (above) which is one of Bath's most photographed sights.

Roman Baths and Pump Room

The hot springs in Bath (which gave the city its name) were one of the features that attracted the Romans when they settled here, and made it one of their major cities in Britain. They loved their baths and built a fine bath-house here, much of which remains and which ought to be one of your first stops in the city as a visit can take some time. Definitely one of the very best things to do in Bath. Don't miss the Georgian Pump Room next door, either, which features in Jane Austen's works.

Royal Crescent

A 5-minute walk west from the Circus is Royal Crescent, the finest of Bath's Georgian crescents and dating from 1767. No. 1 Royal Crescent can be visited, to see what life among the gentry was like in Bath at that time.

Theatre Royal

This is one of the finest examples of a Georgian Theatre in England. It opened in 1805 and was beautifully restored in 1982.

Thermae Bath Spa

This 21st-century answer to the Roman Baths is a day spa and has a rooftop pool and offers massages and other luxury spa treatments. 

Discover some Free Things to Do in Bath

Buy Our Best Day Trips from London Guide

The Ten Best Day Trips from London is a Kindle guide to the most popular attractions in England that can be easily reached and enjoyed in one day. It focuses on the practical information, telling you how to get to your destination by train, by coach, or by driving - and recommends the best choice to make.

For all ten destinations there are direct links to coach and bus timetables, the cheapest fares, and direct booking options for tickets. This travel guide also recommends the best things to see and do in each destination, with links to websites for opening hours and admission prices. 

The Kindle guide includes over 40 colour photos and 11 colour locator maps, showing you where every place is in relation to London.

Buy the guide at Amazon UK, Amazon USA or other Amazon stores worldwide.

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