Spending a weekend in Bath has been on our agenda for quite some time now. I can’t quite believe that I have never visited the City, so it was definitely something we needed to change this year.
Bath isn’t too far from our home with just a 90 minute drive making weekend breaks in Bath quite accessible and even more reasons to add to places we must visit.
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There are so many Bath hotels and accommodation to choose from, but we booked to stay at Bath Mill Lodge after a recommendation from Tracey at A Williams World, and finding a good price sealed the deal for a weekend in April. I spent a little while planning our weekend in Bath before we went to maximise our weekend experiences.
If you wanted a more central location to stay you may want to investigate the Landsdown Grove Hotel, a Grade 3 listed building which is one of the oldest buildings in the city.
We had already decided to maximise our weekend away in Bath. We would make good use of our National Trust membership, and stop off on route. The property that seemed to slot perfectly into our journey was Stourhead in Wiltshire, so we arrived just before lunch time to stretch our legs and pass some time before travelling on to Bath.
We arrived at Bath Mill Lodge just before 4pm, and spent the rest of the evening relaxing and enjoying the facilities before a busy weekend exploring the city.
Parking In Bath
We were advised to use a park and ride rather than try to park in Bath centre, and as our accommodation was approximately ten minutes car drive away from the city centre, we settled on one of the three park and rides available in Bath.
A short drive from Bath Mill Lodge to Oddham park and ride, and we were greeted with a bus waiting for us, although they do travel every fifteen minutes so we wouldn’t have had to wait too long. At just £3 per person, the park and ride was cheaper than trying to find a parking space and then clock watching all day.
Attractions In Bath
Having never spend the weekend in Bath before, we had already discussed that we were going to play at being tourists for the weekend. Despite it being a Saturday we wandered up the not too busy high street from the bus stop and arrived in front of Bath Abbey.
I was surprised how easily we found everything so quickly, and very handy that the first three attractions we wanted to visit were all so close to each other.
We started off by visiting Bath Abbey as we realised on a Sunday there would be a service and we wouldn’t be able to go inside. We were greeted by lovely ladies asking if we wanted a quiz for Abby to complete as we wandered around. I thought this was a great idea as it means she wouldn’t get bored whilst we wandered.
I knew Bath Abbey was big but I hadn’t realised just how big it is inside, and there is so much information to take in which was interesting despite not being religious in any way. Bath Abbey is free to go into but donations are welcome.
The Roman Baths are almost next door to Bath Abbey, and I was really looking forward to visiting. Your entrance ticket price gives you access to the audio tour which is a great idea manning you can listen to what you want as you tour the baths.
Again I didn’t realise just how big the baths are and how much there is to see. Another great touch for the kids in your groups is the separate audio speeches making it child friendly. Abby really enjoyed her visit to the Roman Baths and I wasn’t sure she would, so it was great.
The tour takes you right through from top to the bottom, seeing everything there is to see along with all the history that is being preserved. You can spend as long as you want on the tour which is amazing value for the ticket price.
I will definitely make another visit in the future.
Related Post – Things to do in Bath with Kids
Bath City Sightseeing Tour
It was almost lunchtime, but we spotted the Bath City Sightseeing Tour bus pull up out side Bath Abbey. The sun was shining at this point and we thought it would be the perfect time to get on the bus and sit on the top deck to see the sights of Bath.
We were lucky with the seats and took almost the last few seats on the open upper deck of the bus. Bath City Sightseeing Tour takes around an hour to complete from start to finish, however your ticket price is valid for 24 hours and you can hop on and off anywhere along the route.
There is a tour guide on the bus with complimentary headphones to listen in with. As the bus has 17 different stops along the way, you will find plenty of opportunities to get some more sightseeing in.
Busses arrive around every fifteen minutes but this does depend on the season. I spotted lots of busses during our weekend in Bath, so they must be very popular.
We used the sightseeing tour as an opportunity to rest our feet after a busy morning, and to also take in some of the history that Bath has to offer. It’s also great to be able to appreciate the architecture of the buildings as they are very pretty and unusual to what I normally see.
There are amazing sights to be seen along the tour such as the Royal Crescent hotel, The Thermae Bath Spa, Jane Austen Museum, Bath Priory and so much more.
One top tip our tour guide also pointed out was that the tour tickets also give you a discount when visiting other attractions so it’s worth a look if you’re visiting other places as well.
Read our full experience of the Bath Open Top Bus Tour
Eating & Shopping
We were definitely hungry after all of that sightseeing, and decided on a quick lunch. There is so much on offer, so you will be spoiled for choice if you decide to spend a weekend in Bath.
We ended up opting for simple choices such as Subway sandwiches for lunch, and then our main meals we ate in the local chain restaurants. There really is something for everyone including afternoon tea, restaurants, bars and so many more. I would definitely explore a little more if we were on an adult only weekend in Bath.
With the park and ride bus stop at the end of the high street, it would have been rude not to do a little shopping on the way back to the car. Abby was very happy that she spotted Primark, right next to a street entertainer that kept her amused for ages.
The choice of shops is vast, and I was impressed at how clean and tidy the high street was, certainly a lot nicer than other towns we have been to.
After a relaxing afternoon and evening in the sunshine at Bath Mill Lodge, Hubby decided he wanted to visit the American Museum on Sunday morning.
Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and there are plenty of museums and attractions that represent varying times in history. You will be spoiled for choice from fashion to literature, to Art and plenty more. Quite a few are also accessible via the City Sightseeing Tour bus.
The American Museum is slightly out of town near the University, and is currently undergoing refurbishment due to a burst pipe. We only realised this when we arrived however I can see the potential for a future visit as at full capacity I can see it would be a vast place to visit.
Our last afternoon during our weekend in Bath loomed over us too quickly, and we decided that we would take a drive out to Cheddar Gorge, a National Trust site around 40 minutes drive from Bath. The weather turned during our drive and by the time we arrived it was pouring down.
We were so glad we had decided to spend Saturday doing outdoor activities. After a picnic in the car, we decided not to venture out as the cliffs would be slippery, but still it was an experience to drive down into the centre of Cheddar and see the looming cliffs above us. One to return to another day.
Our other choice had been to visit the Bath Skyline, however the weather had also put paid to that idea as we would have been drenched and I would love to experience the views on a nice sunny day. Lots of excuses to return to Bath for another visit in the future.
All too soon it was Monday morning and time to pack the car up and travel home. We had an amazing weekend in Bath and can’t wait to visit again and see more of what the city has to offer.
We were provided with a complimentary press pass for access to the attractions and facilities in Bath, however all opinions are our own.