Welcome to Bath
Transport yourself back in time and enjoy the finer things in life with an unforgettable trip to the World Heritage City of Bath. Sitting upon a unique collection of natural hot springs, Bath is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and pulls in visitors from around the globe all year round. With its eclectic culture, buzzing atmosphere and Georgian architecture on every cobbled street, you’ll never be short of things to discover. If you’re looking for inspiration on how to plan a truly spectacular trip to this fabulous city, our Bath travel guide is for you.
The attractions and museums on offer in Bath take you on a journey through history, starting with the famous Roman Baths. Walk where the Romans walked in the magnificent bathing complex that still steams with natural hot water. You can even bathe in the waters in the open-air rooftop pool whilst drinking in the stunning views of the city. Next, go Georgian and unfold the story of Bath’s most famous resident, Jane Austen, and visit the Royal Crescent.
No visit to Bath would be complete without indulging in afternoon tea at one of the many fancy tearooms. The Pump Rooms is always a sure fire hit, providing a quintessentially British dining experience. The city of Bath is filled with fabulously delicious restaurants around every corner.
Whether you’re looking for a fun filled family break or a luxury getaway for two, our Bath travel guide will help you plan the perfect trip
Must do's by day
Stride down the Royal Crescent, Bath’s most iconic Georgian street
Bathe in the spring waters of the ancient Roman baths
Indulge in traditional afternoon tea at the famous Pump Rooms
Must do's by night
Enjoy a performance at the historical Theatre Royal
Dare to join a ghost walk, if you’re brave enough
Sip a cosmopolitan in one of Bath’s fancy cocktail lounges
Travelling to Bath
Located in the south-west of England, Bath is 120 miles West of London and in the county of Somerset. It is easily accessible by road via the M4 and M5 motorways or by frequent train links to Bath Spa station. Based 20 miles from Bristol airport, international travel is made easy.
Bath Spa station is located in the city centre of Bath and a short walk away from the main shops and attractions. A 15 minute train ride will get you to Bristol Temple Meads and a 90 minute train ride can get you straight to London Paddington.
Located just 10 miles from junction 18 of the M4, Bath is easily accessible by road. There are also excellent motorway links from the North, Devon and Cornwall via the M5, whilst Wales is just a short drive west on the M4
Bristol Airport is just 20 miles from Bath and connects to over 113 international destinations. Links between Bristol Airport and Bath include The Bristol Airport Flyer Express coach service, which runs 7 days a week. The complete journey would take approximately 60 minutes. Taxis are also available for direct routes
Getting Around in Bath
Everything in Bath’s city centre is mostly accessible by foot, but there are other transport options at your convenience. For a novel way to see the city, canal tours are available. Frequent bus services and a flexible bike hire concept also ensure you can get around the city with ease.
First Group is the main bus operator in and around Bath and they operate from a large central bus station on Dorchester Street. The city offers four different Park and Ride services and with many different bus routes you can get just about anywhere in Bath by bus.
Bath city cabs can be found at various taxi ranks around the city including at the front of Bath Spa train station. If available, these taxis can be flagged down for immediate travel. Pre-booked private taxi companies operate in and around Bath city centre and are often a cheaper option.
Hiring a bike is a popular and fun way of exploring the city of Bath. Bike in Bath is a system which allows you to securely pick up and drop off your cycles at various docking stations around the city, meaning you never have to return to your starting point
Getting to Bath
Based in the glorious county of Somerset, Bath is the most visited city in the south-west of England. Just 120 miles west of London, Bath has always been the most fashionable destination for wealthy Londoners to escape the capital. Londoners would often travel by boat along the Kennet and Avon Canal.
Bath Spa train station has rail links to the whole of the UK, including a direct 90 minute train from London Paddington. By road, the M4 and M5 motorway provide easy access to the city, and BristolAirport is nearby for international visitors.
By RailBath Spa is a Victorian station on the Great Western railway. It is conveniently located right in the heart of the city, in walking distance to all the main shops, restaurants and attractions. Trains run to Bath Spa from all over the UK, however some routes require a change at Bristol Temple Meads station. (The journey from Bristol Temple Meads to Bath Spa is just 15 minutes). Coming from London is an easy 90 minutes away via Paddington station, with trains running every 30 minutes.
By RoadThe best way to reach Bath by road is on the M4 or M5 motorways. Located just 10 miles from junction 18 of the M4, it is easily accessible for all drivers. For visitors coming from the North, Devon and Cornwall, the M5 has some excellent motorway links. Bath’s one way system can often cause confusion for visitors, so Bath offers four Park and Ride services in Newbridge, Lansdown, Claverton Down and Odd Down. They offer free outer-city parking and a reduced return bus ticket for £2.20.
Bristol Airport is conveniently situated only 20 miles from Bath and connects to over 113 international airports. Flying into Bristol provides a much more relaxed airport experience compared to the larger and much busier London airports.
The Bristol Airport Flyer Express coach service offers an excellent way of getting to Bath and runs 7 days a week. The complete journey would take approximately 60 minutes. Taxis are also available from the airport and can take you to bath in 40 minutes, for a charge of around £40
Getting Around in Bath
As everything in Bath is compact and close by, the best way to explore is by foot. But there is plenty of alternative transport in Bath to help you get around if you are going a bit further. Bath travel includes a fantastic bus service and plenty of taxis, so you can get just about anywhere in the city. A popular way to explore Bath is by bike, and the city has an excellent bike hire concept that allows you to pick up and drop off your bike at various points around the city.
By BusBuses in Bath are operated by the First Group and routes are based around a large central bus station on Dorchester Street (adjacent to Bath Spa station). As well as travel in and around the city of Bath, the First Group operates buses from Bath to nearby Bristol and the seaside town of Weston super-Mare.Due to the complicated and often congested one way system in the city, Bath has four Park and Ride services in Newbridge, Lansdown, Claverton Down and Odd Down. This option offers drivers free and secure outer-city parking and a reduced return bus ticket for £2.20.
By TaxiBath has plenty of taxi services at your disposal for when you need to get somewhere as easily as possible. 24hr taxi ranks are based around the city centre (including outside Bath Spa train station). These taxis can also be flagged down for immediate travel, if available. An alternative option is to pre-book taxis to pick you up from wherever you are. If you don’t mind waiting for them to arrive, this can often be a cheaper option.
Abbey Taxis 01225 444 444
V Cars 01225 312 121
By BikeCycling is a great way to get around Bath, especially when the traffic builds up. There are various bike hire shops in the centre of Bath, but a new scheme has been launched to make bike hire as easy as possible. In 2011 Bath in Bike was launched, which allows you to collect and drop off bikes from four docking points around the city (Orange Grove, Bath Spa Station, Green Park Station and the HolburneMuseum). 30 minutes hire is free and prices range from £1 for an hour to £35 for an annual pass.
Shopping in Bath
Bath’s award-winning streets are a goldmine when it comes to retail therapy. From small and chic boutiques to high street and designer brands, shopping in Bath has something for everyone. The city is full of quaint passageways and alleys, brimming with hidden gems and bargains just waiting to be discovered. Stroll down the grand Georgian streets to discover an eclectic mix of fashion, jewellery, antiques and home ware shops, where you’ll be sure to pick up a souvenir or two. Bath’s Milsom Street was voted ‘Britain’s Best Fashion Street’ in the Google Street View Awards 2010.
Top 5 Big Brand Shops in Bath
Jolly’s (House of Fraser) 7-14 Milsom Street
Jolly’s began trading in 1831 and to this day still preserves its beautiful Georgian shop front. Now home to the much loved House of Fraser, there’s something for everyone.
The Apple Store, 39 Southgate Place
Drop in to discover all the latest technology from the global retail giant. Advice and tutorials are at hand to get you up to speed with Apple’s newest gadgets.
Dent's Factory Shop, Furnax Lane, Warminster
Worth the short trip to pretty Warminster, Dents make some of the best gloves in the world, and they're offered at a discounted rate here.
Kilver Court, Kilver Street (Shepton Mallet)
A unique factory outlet shopping experience offering discounted designer brands such as Mulberry and Aubin and Wills. Local and organic produce, designer home-ware, gifts and cards are also available.
Highgrove, 38 Milsom Street
Visit the third branch of the Prince of Wales’ organic food and home ware shop, which is named after his Gloucestershire home. All profits go to the Princes Charities Foundation.
Top 5 Independent Shops in Bath
Vintage to Vogue, 28 Milsom Street
Discover Bath’s largest collection of men and women’s vintage clothing and accessories. Dig deep and you’ll be able to find vintage designer pieces from the 1930’s to the 1960’s.
The Silver Shop of Bath, 25 Union Passage
Since 1952, this family run shop has sold beautiful and affordable silver jewellery to suit every taste. There is also a wonderful selection of home ware.
Mimi Noor, 25 Milsom Street
As the only premium denim boutique in Bath, Mimi Noor offers an unrivalled collection of denim and top customer service to help you find your perfect fit.
Charlotte Brunswick, 3 Church St
Selling the very finest hand-crafted chocolates, be sure to leave Bath with a box of delicious 'Bath Bun' truffles.
Bijoux Beads, 2 Abbey Street
Get creative at one of the UK’s leading suppliers of glass beads and jewellery making equipment. Their stock comes from around the globe, beautifully displayed in an 18th century sho
Eating Out in Bath
With such a diverse mix of people in the city, you’d expect the restaurants in Bath to be nothing less than varied and vibrant. Locals, tourists and students all wine and dine in this fabulous city, so the restaurants of Bath cater for every budget and taste under the sun. Choose between one of the many national big name restaurants, and the delicious independent eateries.
Restaurants in Bath offer exotic aromas from around the world including Moroccan, Thai and Indian cuisine. For a truly British feast, enjoy some traditional pub-grub in one of Bath’s many pubs. Of course, delicious Italians are scattered around the city if you fancy something a little more classic
Top 5 Traditional British Restaurants in Bath
The Marlborough Tavern, 35 Marlborough Buildings
Bath’s most celebrated gastro-pub based right behind the Royal Crescent. Tuck into multi-award winning pub grub over a quick lunch or a long cosy dinner. Locals love this spot.
The Priory Restaurant, Weston Road
Indulge in Michelin-starred fine dining at this top Bath restaurant. Located in luxury 5 star hotel, The Priory, beautiful surroundings and impeccable service is guaranteed.
Velo Lounge, 30 Moorland Road
A unique café concept that is both informal and eccentric, providing a very cosy hangout spot. This eatery serves everything from burgers to tapas, and makes great coffee too!
Sally Lunn’s, 4 North Parade Passage
A traditional afternoon tea experience in one of Bath’s oldest houses. Be sure to sample the famous ‘Sally Lunn Bun’ with your tea.
Retro Café, 18 York Street
A great place to refuel when shopping or exploring the city. Enjoy wholesome lunches, daily specials and top coffee in this colourful cafe
Top 5 International Restaurants in Bath
Aqua Italia, 88 Walcot Street
Head to Bath’s fashionable arts quarter to experience mouth-watering, locally sourced Italian dishes. Housed in a former church house, Aqua Italia boasts elegantly romantic candlelit surroundings.
Panasia, 2 George Street
Enjoy authentic Asian cooking in this Award Winning Restaurant by Guide2BATH. Sample Thai, Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese culinary delights and wash them down with a specialist Oriental cocktail.
Café du Globe, 1a North Parade
Experience African flavours at Bath’s only Moroccan restaurant. Offering mouth-watering dishes, warm hospitality and exotic décor, Café du Globe is a great choice if you fancy something a little different.
Same Same But Different, 7a Princes Buildings, Bartlett Street
Tasty tapas dominates the menu at this fun Latino restaurant. Great for groups wanting to catch up over a mojito or warm up with some firey food.
Panahar, 8 Moorland Road
A great choice if you fancy delicious authentic Indian cuisine for excellent value. You can even Bring your own Booze at no extra cost.
Nightlife in Bath
Exploring the city of Bath doesn’t have to stop when the sun goes down. After dark, a whole new world of theatre, live music, comedy and more emerges, offering an unmissable programme of Bath nightlife. Whether you’re a big family or a young couple, you’ll find something that’s right up your street.
Laugh yourself silly on the Bizzare Bath comedy walk, have a night at the theatre or relax with some live jazz music. If you didn’t manage to pack in enough sightseeing in the day, two of Bath’s biggest attractions, the Roman Baths and the Thermae Spa are open during the evenings too.
Top 10 Bath Nightlife
Theatre Royal, Sawclose
Enjoy contemporary, classic or children’s performances at one of the UK’s oldest and most beautiful theatres. With stunning Georgian architecture, the building is an attraction in itself.
Komedia, 22-23 Westgate Street
This award-winning venue entertains crowds every night of the week. Choose from comedy, music, club and cabaret nights for an unforgettable evening in Bath.
Ghost Walk of Bath, St Johns Place (Meets outside Garricks Head)
A guided tour to discover the spooky histories and ghosts that lurk around every corner of Baths’s historic Georgian streets. The Ghost Walks provide evening fun for all the family.
Thermae Bath Spa, Hot Bath Street
For something a bit different, beat the crowds and enjoy the relaxing Thermae Bath Spa by night. Watch the sun go down whilst bathing in the outdoor warm mineral waters.
The Little Theatre Cinema, St Michael’s Place
Since 1936, this cinema has been at the centre of Bath entertainment, showing quality cinema from around the globe. Combining art-deco styling and wonderful comfort, it’s the perfect cinema experience.
Bizarre Bath, North Parade Passage (Meets outside Huntsman Inn)
Now in its 22nd year, this guided comedy walk is hysterical rather than historical. Laugh yourself silly as you stroll around the city, a top choice for comedy lovers.
Pig & Fiddle, 2 Saracen Street
Everyone in Bath old enough to drink knows about this pub. Known for being a ‘proper pub’ with a friendly atmosphere, it has been somewhat of an institution for over 20 years.
Chapel Arts Centre and Café, Lower Borough Walls
Providing an eclectic programme of performances, the Chapel Arts Centre showcases unique dance, theatre and music. With ideal acoustics and cabaret style seating, it’s a quality night out.
Green Park Brasserie and Bar, Green Park Road
Jazz fans can enjoy the live jazz evenings at the Green Park Brasserie, Beautifully located in an old railway station. A great place to combine live music with fantastic food.
Roman Baths by Night, Abbey Church Yard
Visit the romantic torch lit Roman Baths by night and see them in a whole new light. To beat the crowds during the summer months, the whole site is open until 10pm.
Bars in Bath
If you’re looking for a great choice of watering holes, Bath’s bars will be right up your street. Splash out on a cocktail in a chic bar, let your hair down with some karaoke or simply snuggle up by the fire at a cosy tavern. Whether you’re a party animal or a pub-crawler, we’ve put together a top 10 that has something for everyone.
Many bars in Bath are set within atmospheric buildings and locations, ranging from Grade II listed buildings to old railway arches. The smallest pub in Bath is steeped in history, dating all the way back to 1749.
Top 10 Bath Bars
Circo, The Halcyon, 2/3 South Parade
With its infamous circular bar, Circo serves up some of the best cocktails in town in this ultimate chill-out lounge. The stone baked pizzas are ideal for a late night snack
The Cork, 11-12 Westgate Buildings
One of Bath’s finest drinking establishments, The Cork offers the perfect place to socialise, relax and sip on stylish drinks. Enjoy year-round al fresco drinking on the outdoor heated terrace.
Second Bridge, 10 Manvers Street
Known to many as Bath’s best nightclub and cocktail bar, Second Bridge brings clubbers top DJs for a great night on the tiles. Sip a cocktail and dance the night away.
OPA, 14 North Parade
Set in old arches by the River Avon, OPA is a chic and sultry tapas bar, offering the best cocktails and cuisine from the Med to tantalise your taste buds.
Central Bar, 10 Upper Borough Walls
Combining a historical 18th century building with contemporary design, the aptly named Central Bar lives right in the heart of Bath. Serving high quality drinks and dishes, it’s a real find.
Gascoyne Place, 1 Saw Close
Gascoyne Place offers the best of a classic public house within a Grade II Listed Georgian building. Head here for a great company and a warm atmosphere on a chilly evening.
Pulp, 38 Monmouth Street
Located beneath the popular Las Iguanas restaurant, this lively bar serves a great range of cocktails in a buzzing atmosphere. Be sure to try out the tequila tipples.
St James’ Wine Vaults, 10 St James Street
Serving an extensive choice of wines in a welcoming pub atmosphere, you can enjoy regular live music, pool tables and a the popular pub quiz every Thursday night.
Mandalyn's, 13 Fountain Buildings
Drama Queens will love this this popular Bath haunt, famous for its lively Karaoke nights and live acts. Pluck up some courage and take to the stage!
Coeur de Lion, 17 Northumberland Place
Stop off for a swift pint in the smallest pub in Bath. Owned by Abbey Ales, Bath’s only brewery, this ancient pub has been serving folk since 1749.
Attractions in Bath
Arguably the UK’s most picturesque and historical city, Bath is brimming with vibrant cultural attractions to excite the whole family. Attractions in Bath bring history to life, with a fantastic collection of museums and must-see historical hot-spots. As well as a bustling hub of city centre attractions in Bath, the surrounding areas of country side are home to even more things to do such as; Longleat, Stonehenge and The American Museum.
Visitors to Bath are invited to journey through time as they learn about the Romans, the Georgians and everything in-between.
Top 10 Bath Attractions
Roman Baths, Abbey Church Yard
In the heart of the World Heritage Site lies Britain’s only hot spring. Built by the Romans, observe the magnificent temple and beautiful bathing complex filled with natural hot water.
The Royal Crescent
Being the most iconic street in Bath, The Royal Crescent is an attraction in itself. Enjoy the sweeping row of beautiful Georgian townhouses and spectacular views of the city.
Thermae Spa, Hot Bath Street
Experience a fusion of history and modernity at this remarkable spa and bathing complex. Enjoy the naturally warm pools including an open-air roof top pool and indulge in a Spa treatment.
Jane Austen Museum, 40 Gay Street
Learn about the life of Bath’s most famous resident, Jane Austen, and discover how living in the city influenced her timeless novels. Live guides in period costume animate the experience.
Longleat House, Gardens & Safari Park, Warminster
Home to the eccentric Lord Bath, Longleat now comprises of the historic house, adventure park and fantastic safari park. This place guarantees fun for all the family.
The Fashion Museum, Assembly Rooms, Bennett Street
Take a journey through time to discover the changing fashions from the late 16th century to the present day. The museum has 30,000 original items of contemporary and historical clothing.
Wookey Hole Caves and Attractions
The kids will love Wookey Hole Caves,Britain’s most spectacular caves. Home to the imfamous Witch of Wookey, wander through the prehistoric valley, visit the magical fairy garden and more.
Herschel Museum of Astronomy, 19 New King Street
A delightful Georgian townhouse once home to famous astronomer and musician William Herschel, this museum pays homage to his discoveries and the study of Astronomy.
American Museum, Claverton Down
Set within the historic Claverton Manor around 120 acres of grounds, The American Museum houses the finest collection of Americana outside the US. Enjoy the interactive exhibitions and period rooms.
The famous prehistoric monument of Stonehenge lies just one hour from Bath and makes for a fantastic day trip to the surrounding Wiltshire countryside.