How to have the best day in Bath, England – EVER.

Posted on October 11, 2012 by yankeebean

I spent the most awesome day ever in Bath with my brother, Leonard and his wife Ella who were visiting from Chicago.  We had such a good time, that I though I should write about our itinerary in case anyone else is going to a pilgrimage to the beautiful Bath sometime soon.

Step 1 – Cream Tea at the Pump Rooms

You won’t regret hanging out in this gigantic, gorgeous, chandelier-y spot.  The cream tea is delish (two scones – one fruit and one plain – strawberry jam and clotted cream) and I can also happily recommend the Welsh Rarebit if you’re looking for something savoury.  It’s worth it for the atmosphere alone – there was a piano player tickling the ivories when we were there.  He did what we came to call The Moon Mash-up – he played Moon River, Fly Me to the Moon and Paper Moon in a single glorious medley.  Excellent.

(check out the Pump Rooms website for directions, menus, or just to oggle)

Step 2 – The Roman Baths

Ok.  I’m being serious.  Go here.  Shut down your computer, iPad, or smart phone.  Get your coat.  Finish reading this later.

The level of history is something that me and my American family-peeps were completely unprepared for.  I’ve never said the word ‘awesome’ so many times in 90 minutes.

It’s beautiful, fascinating, and comes with a top-notch free audio tour.  Legendary expat, Bill Bryson, has even done a set of audio segments that are priceless – not to be missed.

(check out the Roman Baths website – that is, if you haven’t stopped reading already as per my instructions)

Step 3 – Mr. B’s Emporium of Reading Delights

Leonard, Ella and I are all carnivorous readers and so we couldn’t resist a trip to this gem in Bath’s crown.  The shop itself is lovely and has an outstanding selection of books (with all purtiest book covers, too) – but what makes it stand apart is the staff.  No question is too small and they make glorious recommendations.  They are SO FREAKING LOVELY there.

It’s worth mentioning that their gift wrap is also completely adorbs.

(check out Mr. B’s lovely website – it’s cute-patoot)

Step 4 – The Royal Crescent

We found our way to the Royal Crescent by asking a passing stranger where it was.  The exchange went something like this:

Me:  ”Excuse me.  I’ve heard there a big pretty row of houses somewhere that we should go and look at – do you know what that is?”

Friendly man: “You must mean the Royal Crescent… [insert directions and laughter here]

You’ll be shocked to know that ‘big pretty row of houses’ doesn’t quite do it justice.  It’s definitely worth a look!

(learn more about the Royal Crescent on your best-interweb-friend and mine, Wikipedia)

Step 5 – Thermae Bath Spa

Ok.  You have to go here, too.  Don’t go to Bath without coming here, just don’t.  It’s thermal.  It’s a bath.  It’s a spa.  For the love of God, what else do you want?

We opted to get in for ‘last orders’ at 7pm and spend two hours watching the sun set from the thermal roof-top pool.  We also frequented the scented steam rooms a couple of times (Sandalwood was our fave).  But most of our time was spent floating in perfectly heated mineral pools and looking at gorgeous views across Bath.


(Fancy a warm floaty sunset-y Bath extravaganza?  What a dumb question, of course you do – here’s the Thermae Bath Spa website)

Step 6 – Eat food and drink wine

This last step is optional, but I highly recommend it.  We ended up in Carluccio’s where the happiest waiter on earth served us the tastiest garlic bread I’ve ever laid taste-buds on.

But there are far too many awesome restaurants in Bath to count – if anyone has any suggestions, bring it on!

And that’s the end of the recommended ‘Best day in Bath – EVER’ guide.  I’m sure that I’m missing things, but this list made for an awesome, but not too busy day out.

It’s going to be one of those days that ages in my head like a warm tasty whiskey – it’s going to get better and better the more I remember it.  And THAT is the sign of a good day.  A very good day, indeed.

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What Others Are Saying

  1. Jo October 20, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Such a beautiful part of the world. I just want to get in the roman baths right now.

    I really love your blog by the way! Bookmarking.

  2. Kim October 14, 2012 at 2:22 am

    I’m not sure if they still do it, but there used to be a free walking tour that left a few times a day from the square in front of the Roman Baths. I highly recommend it. I did it a few times since I would take friends on it when they came to visit. I think I learned something new each time I went on it!

    Thanks for the post about Bath. I lived there for a year and a half and it was a wonderful place.

  3. Melinda October 12, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    I started following your blog because I studied abroad in England and was nostalgic for the cultural observations. Funnily enough, I lived in Bath and went to school quite close to the Roman baths. This brought back so many memories. I lived in a house just north of the crescent and walk ed through it and the circus on my way to school each day. I ate my share of Sally Lunn’s buns when I had visitors, but also ate my share of 2.50 baguettes from a small shop in the square. The Christmas market in the square is just darling and I loved the holiday concerts at the Abbey. Thanks for highlighting one of my favorite places!

    • yankeebean October 12, 2012 at 6:29 pm

      I feel nostalgic for Bath and I was only there for a day – do you ever get back to visit?

      I’m also liking the sound of this little baguette shop in the square! Do you know what it’s called for the next time I’m in Bath?

  4. Taylor October 11, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    I went to Bath in January 2010. I skipped right to the eat/drink part and added “shop at stores I also have back home in Hampshire” :)

    • yankeebean October 12, 2012 at 10:42 am

      The shopping there is ridiculously good! I’m tempted to go back once it’s closer to Christmas to see all the lights and sort some retail therapy…

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