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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Ready made itinerary for visiting Bath, the amazing town of Jane Austen and The Duchess.

The Roman Baths and Bath's Abbey - Two of the unique treasures of Jane Austen's town.


Why Bath is so famous?

Bath is not just a thermal town, despite the fact that it is famous for its spa. 

It is not only the city of Jane Austen, the worldwide famous novelist of Pride and Prejudice and Northanger Abbey.

There is much more to say about Bath and is a wonderful town to visit.

Nourished by natural hot springs, Bath is a romantic destination popular with the fashionable society since the eighteen century.

Despite its Roman origin, Bath is the perfect realization of a wonderful Georgian city plan. It is maybe the best example of the British Georgian style.

When, at the end of the eighteen century, the English high society started to take an interest in thermal baths as a way to relax and heal, Bath become a very popular destination and rich families started to build beautiful houses and mansions that you will enjoy to visit today.

Walking along Bath’s streets you will feel to have gone back to the time of Jane Austen’s novels and enjoy the special spirit of the most important spa in Britain. 

Here a great itinerary to discover Bath ready for you!

The famous Crescent
Another photo of the crescent from a side.



What to see in Bath?

Start your visit at the Royal Crescent to see maybe the most famous sight of Bath. 

You will probably remember that you have already seen the Royal Crescent featured in the movie “The Duchess” starring Keira Knightley.

The Royal Crescent is a street of 30 terraced houses laid out in a sweeping crescent in the city of Bath, it is one of the greatest examples of Georgian architecture to be found in the United Kingdom- 

Sitting in front of this amazing building, you have to admit, you feel back in Georgian times.

Remain in Georgian times and walk along Brock Street to The Circus. 

Walk slowly to appreciate this modern enormous Coliseum-inspired building opening up in front of you.  

It is obviously inspired by the Roman Coliseum, but the amazing thing is that The Circus is made by three wonderful Georgian building perfectly identical. 

So from whatever of the three streets converging in the circular square you are coming from, in front of you there is a semicircular facade and two symmetric buildings at the side. 

It is hypnotic, and you should come back at night when the windows are illuminated and you can see the wonderful furniture in these elegant houses to enjoy the atmosphere.

Now walk from The Circus, along Gay Street, towards the Cathedral and the Roman thermal baths. 

If you walk at night the lanterns along the long street make a particular, maybe a bit creepy, atmosphere, particularly when it is rainy and the wet pavement reflects the light of the lampions.

At the end of Gay Street, near Queen Square visit the Jane Austen visitor center.

There the famous novelist is highly celebrated as “the best loved of Bath’s many famous residents”, despite the fact that when she learned her family were moving to Bath, "she fainted dead away" and she was able to write very little until she left the town!

The Circus

The Roman Baths and the Modern Spa

Walk in the heart of Bath, in the square where the Abbey and the Roman Baths are. 

The Roman Baths are amazing, you should absolutely visit them! 

The hot water is still filling the old Roman pool at the centre of the building; whatever if you want to make use of the thermal baths you’ll have to walk few hundred meters and bath at the modern baths, where our itinerary ends.

The roman baths have been modified several times during the centuries. 

It is wonderful to walk along the terrace and watch from a different prospective the Baths and the gothic Abbey at the other side of the square.

Visit also the Grand Pump Room, next to the Roman Baths. 

Now an elegant restaurant and tearoom, the Grand Pump Room, sitting in this elegant tea room you feel as if you are back in the Nineteen Century. 

It will be another fantastic moment of your travel in Georgian England.

Now walk to the beautiful Pultney Bridge. 

The bridge has been designed by another famous architect: Robert Adam. If you ever visited Florence or Venice in Italy, you will easily guess that the bridge was inspired by two Italian famous bridges: Ponte Vecchio, because like the Florentine bridge it has  shops across the full span on both sides and Ponte di Rialto in Venice, because of its Palladian design. 

Another extravagance, for the enjoyment of the fashionable Georgian society, you cannot miss to visit.

Pultney Bridge, note the resemblance with Ponte Vecchio in Florence.

Saint Peter and Saint Paul Abbey, usually musicians and artists perform in the square.

You can now go back to the Roman Baths and finish your visit at the Abbey.

The Abbey is dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul. 

Notice the long Jacob ladder carved on the fa├žade of the abbey at the side of the main door and the angels climbing it, and some of them falling down too! 

Inside, the fan vaults of the ceiling are the most interesting feature of the abbey. 

Or skip it and finally relax at the modern spa. 

The modern spa is just two streets away from the old one. 

The spa offers many different packages and combinations of spa sessions and treatments plus the option of a meal in the spa restaurant. 

What you absolutely should not miss is a swim on the modern spa's open roof top swimming pool. 

Swimming admiring Bath’s skyline, broken by the pinnacles of the Abbey’s tower. 

Maybe it is not a Georgian experience, but it is certainly a unique way to finish a Georgian day.

Where is Bath & How to get to Bath ?

Bath is a perfect destination for a wonderful weekend.

Bath is in England, United Kingdom.

Bath is situated in the county of Somerset in South West England, 97 miles (156 km) west of London and 13 miles (21 km) south-east of Bristol.

The easiest way to visit Bath is to fly to Bristol.

From Bristol Airport you can take a taxi to Bath and you will be there in 50 minutes.

If you prefer, you can also take a bus from the Airport to Bristol Temple Meads Railway Station and then a train to Bath.

Train and bus are frequent and you will be in Bath in one and a half hour.

Book the accommodation well and advance because the destination is very popular through all the year and the best places are easily fully booked.


What's to see around Bath?

Bath is also the end (or the start) of the Cotswold Way, consider planning a trip to Bath and the Cotswolds.


Read our page about The Cotswold Way Project for more info.

Visit also our page Visit England for more itineraries and posts.