Nestled out in the British countryside, weekenders can’t resist a trip to the charming city of Bath. Its exquisite Georgian architecture and historic Roman baths have earned this spa town Unesco World Heritage Site status and it really does deserve the title. If you’ve got a weekend to soak up the best of the city, here’s what to do with 48 hours in Bath:
Morning of day one: Get your bearings and learn about the history of this beautiful city by joining a Bath City Walk. The walking route touches on all of Bath’s main attractions, including Bath Abbey, Pump Room and the Royal Crescent. The guided walk comes in at £7.50 for a 2 hour tour.
Explore the Bath Farmers’ Market: Fresh and seasonable market stall produce from local farmers is in abundance at this cosy Saturday morning market. Look out for award winning ewe and goat’s cheeses, local jars of honey and homemade preserves.
Light lunch: Head to Sally Lunn’s, a cafe set in one of Bath’s oldest houses and home to the original Bath Bun, which is now a regional speciality. Whether you have a sweet tooth or a savoury palate, there are plenty of options to choose from. The smoked salmon with lemon, dill and cream cheese is divine.
Afternoon at Victoria Art Gallery: Art lovers shouldn’t miss the decorative arts and marble statues housed in a gorgeous Grade II listed building. The gallery’s collection includes portraits by Thomas Gainsborough and Johann Zoffany, as well as 20th century artists like Walter Sickert and John Nash.
From the gallery, you can take stroll along the River Avon and through the Parade Gardens before dinner.
Dinner at Opa Meze Bar: This discreet Greek restaurant is unassuming from the outside but on the inside the ornately decorated and elegant cellar rooms won’t fail to impress. The food at Opa Meze Bar is mouth watering – the soutzoukakia lamb meatballs in a smoky sauce, dolmades stuffed vine leaves doused in lemon juice, and melitzana baked aubergine with feta are all irresistible.
Night cap at the Canary Gin Bar: This two-storey bar is run by master mixologist, Tom Pople, who is an expert in all things gin. The Canary Gin Bar is nothing short of quirky; you can expect your G&T to arrive in a teapot.
Boutique luxury at Harington’s City Hotel: Conveniently located right next door to the Canary Gin Bar, you can roll into Harington’s Hotel as the light fades. With 13 uniquely designed boutique rooms to choose from, Harington’s is a place for style and comfort in the heart of the city.
Morning of day two: After enjoying a lazy Sunday morning breakfast of fresh fruits and croissants at Harington’s, indulge yourself at the Thermae Bath Spa. Sunday mornings are the quietest time to visit the open-air rooftop pool, which has naturally warm and mineral rich waters overlooking the city.
Time for a coffee: Specialty coffee shop, Colonna & Small’s, is a must for coffee connoisseurs who love rich and complex flavours. The Kenyan filter coffee and the Tanzanian flat white come highly recommended.
Go in search of unique gifts: Bath is home to a variety of boutique stores and handcrafted goods. Timber Treasures on Bath’s Abbey Green is a family-run store selling handmade oak barometers, quirky cheese boards and other wooden keepsakes. For bookworks, try Topping & Company Booksellers, who have 45,000 titles, including signed first editions on their shelves.
Lunch at the Stable: Sourdough pizza bases and homemade tomato sauce are what makes the pizzas at the Stable better than anywhere else in the city.
Afternoon walk to Prior Park: Take a stroll outside of the city to Prior Park, a beautiful National Trust owned landscape garden with glorious views over the valley. If you love traversing the British countryside then from here you can continue onto the Bath Skyline, a six mile walk around the city.
Sunday evening roast: For a truly fabulous end to a weekend in Bath, head to the Chequers, a gastro pub known locally for its innovative take on British food. For meat-eaters, the lamb-shank roast will hit the spot, while vegetarians will love the mushroom and apricot nut roast. Check out the chalkboard for the Sunday evening specials.
Thank you to Peter O’Sullivan, a UK travel enthusiast who loves culture, history and boutique design for the fabulous travel feature.
The Fabulous Times