I have just returned from Bath, staying for three nights. I have mixed feelings.
First, Bath is a lovely city. Arriving mid-afternoon the day before, my first day looked a bit like this:-
- Pulteney Bridge (8am), I have a thing for bridges which I think stems from my love of rivers.
- Thermae Bath Spa (9am), who cannot love a roof top natural thermal pool when the air temperature is close to freezing.
- The Roman Baths (12noon), mainly because of my like for history and Roman History.
The rest of the day was spent enjoying the pubs of Bath. I highly recommend the Coeur De Lion, it is a quirky and very small pub down a side road, unfortunately I just can’t remember which.
I visited the Thermae Bath Spa again the following morning.
The queue during the day on Saturday was long. I am talking about three hours long, so I skipped it until the Sunday. The queue at 9am Sunday morning was manageable (probably about 20 minutes), but I’d recommend a weekday. I was one of only 10 people at 9am on the Monday morning and throughout the day the queue never seemed particularly big.
Photo: Roman Baths, Bath
However, I now found myself having seen all I really wanted to see within the best part of a day.
I visited the Abbey and the Royal Crescent, neither did anything for me. I’m not a big fan of shopping and found there was little else for me but idly wander the streets again with pub stops along the way. This is not a criticism of Bath. It got me thinking though, do I still enjoy city breaks. This will be another blog post entirely, but I genuinely believe the lure of what a city can offer has gone for me.
Back to the pubs.
The pubs are lovely.
The ales, bitters and ciders (so many ciders) are just as good. Present are your Wetherspoons, All Bar One and the likes you can find in any city. But even on the main streets there are quirk and cosy pubs.
Bath is full of the quintessential ‘oldie’ pubs, if that is even a thing.
Photo: Pulteney Bridge, Bath
Would I recommend Bath? Most definitely, although perhaps a Thursday evening returning Saturday afternoon type of trip. Would I go back to Bath? At the moment the answer is no, but I think I need to reevaluate what I want from a ‘City Break’ before giving fair answer.
To end on an almost entirely unrelated note, I was in Bath for Remembrance Sunday. The below photograph was taken just outside the Abbey and it was stirring to be in a square crowded with people, all paying their respects with near complete silence for the two minutes.
Photo: Bath Abbey, Bath. Remembrance Sunday 2017