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A Day in Bath

By: Cityseeker
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Parade Gardens

Parade Gardens are a great source of pride for Bathonians and feature ornate themed flowerbeds depicting cartoon characters or persons of historical importance. From the gardens, you can get a lovely view of the weir and watch the canoes as they travel westward along the river. During summer afternoons, free children's activities are held near the bandstand. These are always popular with tourists and locals alike and feature arts and crafts, circus skills and storytelling. On Sundays, you may also be treated to concerts in the bandstand. A perfect place for picnicking or just soaking up some rays away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Access is opposite The Empire, below Orange Grove. A small charge is made for entry to the gardens.

Orange Grove, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1EE
Sally Lunn’s House

Sally Lunn's is the oldest known house in Bath. The present timber-framed building dates from 1492 and Roman and Medieval remains have been found below the cellar floor. Sally Lunn, a young French girl, did not arrive until 1680. She brought with her a recipe for the sweet, brioche-style bread that has become known as the Sally Lunn Bun. The tearooms are sadly not designed for the numerous visitors wanting to experience a taste of the famous Sally Lunn Bun, which makes for a cozy dining experience. You can, however, savor the exceptional light bites dating back to those times that are still offered here. For history enthusiasts, the kitchen museum is a great avenue to check out the historic kitchen used by none other than the lady herself.

4 North Parade Passage, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1NX
The Roman Baths

This extravagant ancient bath complex is an excellent example of Ancient Roman spa architecture dating back as far as 43CE. Built around three hot springs that steam and bubble at a constant 46 degrees centigrade (115 degrees fahrenheit), the baths offer insight into the daily life of the Romans. A Sacred Spring feeds the Great Bath and the complex opens out into a series of changing rooms and baths to either side of the central bath. As per tradition, there is also a cold plunge pool for bathers to cool off after a hot sauna. The complex also features a temple devoted to Sulis Minerva, the Celtic goddess of healing and fertility that the Romans worshipped as Minerva Medica. Exhibits and Roman artifacts include a famous stone relief of the Gorgon's Head, mosaics, stone coffins, and a gilded head from a statue of Sulis Minerva.

Stall Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1LZ
Victoria Art Gallery

Opened in 1900, the upper floor of this Victorian Art Gallery's permanent exhibition space holds paintings from the early 17th Century up to modern times; including works from some of Bath's best known artists such as Thomas Barker, as well as a collection of porcelain, glass, and miniature decorative art. The lower floor, once the Bath library, houses six-week exhibitions with wide ranging themes and appeal. A small exhibition room, library, and the Guildhall's Georgian rooms next door, complete the complex. Events and lectures are regular features, and activities for the visually impaired and children are available. A small bookshop offers a wide selection of cards and gifts; coffee and tea are also available.

Bridge Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA2 4AT
St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church

Arriving by train from London, St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, is the first impressive building that visitors will notice. On the riverside just before the railway station, it boasts the tallest spire in Bath and was built in 1862. Unusual rococo inside with pillars of Red Devonshire marble either side of the aisle, an ornate altar and ceiling, it's a large peaceful church rarely crowded for services. Also fairly original, next to the votive candle stand (an exclusively Catholic phenomenon), is a book where people write in the objects of their prayers. Visiting Polish priests occasionally celebrate mass here.

South Parade, Bath, United Kingdom, BA2 4AF
Bath Postal Museum

Postal Museum is housed in the original Bath post office, which issued the world's first postage stamp, the Penny Black on 2nd May 1840. The Bath Postal Museum opened in 1979 to trace the history of mail delivery from 2000 B.C. to the present day. Historic artifacts such as antique postboxes are on display alongside images and models depicting the trajectory of the postal system. The film room offers a short film dramatizing the beginnings of the postal service. Don't miss the library, children's activities and special exhibition room.

27 Northgate Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1AJ
Thermae Bath Spa

Britain's only natural thermal spa, Thermae Bath Spa offers you warm, natural mineral-rich waters to soak the chill away. To soothe your mind and body, the spa offers a wide range of treatments. You can even book for the different spa sessions like the New Royal Bath or the Cross Bath. The spa uses water from natural springs which lie beneath the city of Bath. Heated, mineral-rich water flows from these natural springs everyday. One can also try the Minerva Bath, open-air roof top pool, aroma steam rooms and waterfall shower. Top off the bath with a nice healthy bite at Springs Cafe & Restaurant.

Hot Bath Street, The Hetling Pump Room, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1SJ
The Jane Austen Centre

The Jane Austen Centre is located in Gay Street where Jane Austen once lived. The permanent exhibition in this Georgian house offers a look at the life and times of Bath's most famous citizen. Staff give regular introductory talks, following which you may browse through the exhibition at your leisure. Settings and costumes illustrate the city in Austen's time, while a video presentation gives glimpses of her daily life and how living in Bath influenced her novels. If you fancy dressing in period costume and posing for the camera, make an appointment for a sitting with the professional photographer. The gift shop offers various Jane Austen souvenirs, books, stationery, lace, cards and gifts.

40 Gay Street, Queens Square, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 2NT
Henrietta Park

This beautiful park was opened to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897. It covers large acres of land and is blessed with mature trees and elaborate bedding areas. Take the time to explore the King George V Memorial Garden, now a garden for the blind complete with Braille labels. Each of the plants has been carefully chosen for scent and are particularly fragrant on warm summer afternoons. The Memorial Garden also boasts a wisteria-covered pool complete with fountain. Toilets available including facilities for the disabled.

Henrietta Road, Bath, United Kingdom, BA2 1EE
The Assembly Rooms

The Bath Assembly Rooms have been the meeting place for public entertainment since the 1700s. The Ball Room is the largest space, and is used for dance, concerts, exhibitions and conversation. The Octagon Room's shape was suited for card playing among the menfolk, while the women often retired at the tea room. An additional card room was added at the back, which now serves as a bar area. The architecture is quintessentially Georgian and exudes a timeless elegance. Costumes of the kind worn in the 18th Century as well as exquisite garments, old and new, are housed in the Fashion Museum on the lower floor of the building.

Bennett Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 2QH
The Holburne Museum

Sir William Holburne's fine art collection can be traced back to the 19th Century. Since then, it has grown to include many historic pieces from renowned artists, especially locals whose work was inspired by Bath. Holburne Museum of Art, gloriously set at the top of Great Pulteney Street in the midst of the Sydney Pleasure Gardens, was originally a hotel in the late 18th Century, but transformed into a museum in 1916. Holdings include Holburne's collection of silver and porcelain, excellent examples of period furniture, a Schantz Fortepiano, and a harp dating from 1802. The many paintings include landscapes by Guardi and Turner, and portraits by Bath artist, Gainsborough. It also plays host to special events like lectures and concerts.

Great Pulteney Street, Bath, United Kingdom, BA2 4DB
The Circus

The Circus is the embodiment of John Wood the Elder's vision: to create buildings with all the grandeur of Palladian palaces but all the convenience of a row of private houses. Planned as a speculative venture to be let or sold, and at various times it was home to such luminaries as William Pitt, Thomas Gainsborough and William Gladstone. The Circus was designed by Wood in 1754, and looks rather like a Roman amphitheater turned inside out, its three tiers embellished with Doric, Ionic and Corinthian columns. It was Wood's enthusiasm for the Palladian revival that was responsible for the particular unity of style that characterizes Bath to this day. And it was Ralph Allen whose generosity translated Wood's architectural dreams into the squares and crescents of this gracious city.

The Circus, Bath, United Kingdom, BA1 1EE
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