Tuesday 25 March 2014

Trip to Bath - Part 1

I've been to Bath quite a few times, but always for the Christmas market. Last year I promised myself that I'd take a trip to Bath and look at some nice Austen-y things, and last week my mother and I caught the train, and just about an hour later we pulled into Bath. We had about 6 hours there, and frankly I need to go again, because there is more that I want to see!

If you haven't been to Bath and you get the opportunity you should definitely go, it's such a gorgeous place. It's a World Heritage site and even if you don't go and see any of the attractions it's still a beautiful place to walk around, the architecture is just something else.  Knowing that our time in Bath was limited we had to choose a few things to see as a priority, so we headed off from the station past the cathedral.  No time to go in unfortunately, but even from the outside it's impressive:

We went to the Jane Austen Centre, where we heard a short talk on Jane Austen's life and specifically the time she spent in Bath. From the sound of it her parents were very fond of the place, and in fact they met in Bath.  After Mr Austen retired as a clergyman they settled in Bath, and were comfortable enough, but after he died their income was reduced meaning that they had to move to less and less attractive accommodation as time went on.  I really enjoyed seeing the exhibition here, which gave insight into both Jane Austen's life, and life in general at that time.  There was a tearoom here that I was sorely tempted to try out, but there was no time, there were sights to be seen.  We went on to have a wander down the Gravel Walk, which is referred to in Persuasion - this is where Anne and Captain Wentworth go after she has read the letter:

"...soon words enough had passed between them to decide their direction towards the comparatively quiet and retired gravel-walk, where the power of conversation would make the present hour a blessing indeed; and prepare for it all the immortality which the happiest recollections of their own future lives could bestow. There they exchanged again those feelings and those promises which had once before seemed to secure every thing, but which had been followed by so many, many years of division and estrangement."

The Gravel Walk is a cut through to the Royal Crescent which is probably one of the most lovely streets I've ever walked down.

There is a house here which is decorated in Georgian Style but we didn't have time to go in and see it, something I definitely want to do next time!  It's the house on the far right of the picture above.  Instead we just walked along the road and pretended we lived there. There is a hotel along this stretch and lots of homes which were under renovation.  These houses are crazy expensive for terraced properties, but they really are beautiful.

We then went to see another of our must-see sights of the day, the Assembly Rooms. Feast your eyes on this...

Wow!  You can just imagine dancing happening here. There was so much gorgeous detailing in this building. Just look at the ceiling of this room.

There were three rooms you could see, the one I've shown above, the Octagon Room, that was used for cards, and what was the tea room.  This is also a lovely room, but it can be hired out, as it was on the day we visited, so I only had a quick nose at it.  You can get married here, and if I lived closer to Bath I would have been very tempted to have had my wedding there!

Housed in this building is the Fashion Museum, which I really enjoyed.  I took quite a few pictures which hopefully you'll find interesting, I'll post them next time.


  1. I love the links you have incorporated into the post! Once I can rope my sister in law in, I think it is time for a trip, I have never been but one royal crescent looks interesting and I would like to visit the museum.

    1. Yes, I want to see One Royal Crescent too, we just didn't have time on the day. I also want to go back and see the Roman Baths and the Pump Room. It was my mum who particularly wanted to see the fashion museum, but I really enjoyed it too, well worth going.

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