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Bath is one of the most picturesque towns in England, and its famous Roman baths (for which the town is named) draw hundreds of thousands of tourists each year. Bath is definitely worth a visit, and as it is located just 90 minutes by train from London, can be conceivably visited in a daytrip from the capital. We’d recommend an overnight stay, though, and a longer visit would allow you to truly soak up the atmosphere.

Getting there

Direct trains run from London Paddington station and take between 90 minutes and two hours to get to Bath train station, which is conveniently located in the centre of town. If you book in advance, you can get single tickets from £14.50 – and it’s a lot cheaper to buy two of those than to get a return ticket – they start at £56.50. If you buy a ticket on the day, you’re looking at around £30 each way.

National Express, the coach company, also runs a service to Bath from London (and from many other places throughout the country). The trip’s a lot longer than the equivalent train journey – between three and three-and-a-half hours. National Express often has cheaper fares for as low as £5 per person each way – a good discount off the standard £18.70 fare. Book in advance to get the cheapest fare.

Bath, England
Beautiful Bath.

The closest airport to Bath is Bristol airport, still a good hour away from Bath by coach and train, but worth considering over London if you’re flying in from continental Europe.

And, of course, you can hire a car and drive there, giving you the flexibility to see some of the countryside and other attractions of the South West. But for Bath itself, a car isn’t necessary – the town is very compact and you can see all the principal attractions on foot.

Speaking of travelling by foot, Bath is one of the end points for the Cotswold Way, so you could hike into or out of the city if you like.


So what are these principal attractions? Bath is a world heritage site, and its architecture and Roman ruins are the biggest drawcards, but the public gardens are also spectacular.

Roman Baths
Bath’s number-one attraction is conveniently located in the centre of town. Well, perhaps it is fairer to say that the town grew up around the baths, given that the Romans moved to the area to make use of the hot springs. They weren’t the first ones there – the Celts used the site as a shrine to Sulis (also known as Minerva).

It costs £16.50 per adult to get in, and if you buy a combined ticket you can get a discount on the Fashion Museum and the Victoria Art Gallery. The audioguide is free and informative, with explanations of the baths, Roman life, and some of the artefacts that have been found in and around the baths.

Bath Abbey, Bath, England, UK
Bath Abbey

Take your pick – Bath has a Fashion Museum, a Postal Museum, a Museum of Bath at Work, a Musuem of East Asian Art, a Jane Austen musuem, and a Museum of Astronomy (among many others). Unlike museums in London, you have to pay to enter, but for many you can get a 2-for-1 entry if you travel by train.

Bath is full of parks and gardens. Royal Victoria Park was opened by Princess Victoria when she was 11 years old – she was so impressed that she honoured it with the word “Royal”. The Parade Gardens run along the river front near the abbey, and Jane Austen used to enjoy the free Sydney Gardens. The Queen’s garden features an obelisk and is a nice place to have lunch, while the hidden gem of the Georgian garden is located at the back of a Georgian house and can be accessed from the Gravel Walk. There are a lot more to choose from – wander around and discover your favourite.

Bath trees and river
A walk along the river is a great idea.

Buildings and rooms
Visit Bath Abbey – the last Gothic church in England. It’s just across the square from the baths, in fact you can get some nice photos of it from inside the bath complex. Pulteney Bridge and Pulteney Weir are both impressive, the bridge being famous for having shops all along it, like Florence’s famous bridge. Apparently only four bridges in the world share this honour. The Royal Crescent was designed by John Wood and finished in 1774, and is an excellent example of Georgian architecture – head to the Circus nearby for another one. The grass park in front of the Royal Crescent buildings features a haha, a kind of hidden fence used to keep out livestock. Also, stop into the Assembly Rooms, to see where the balls in Jane Austen’s books were held.

Jane Austen’s characters in her novels that are set in Bath always seemed to be shopping. Most of the shops around the Roman Baths are pretty touristy, but if you roam further afield you’ll find some nice little stores. And of course, there’s a full range of supermarkets, banks, and high street shops.

Bath has a wide range of restaurants, but if you’re only here for a day, you’d be better picking up a picnic and eating outside. There’s a Waitrose right near Pultney Bridge, stop in and stock up and eat beside the river in Parade Garden.

We discovered the best coffee we’ve had in the UK at Colonna & Small’s Espresso Rooms in Chapel Row. The coffee was made well and with love, and the decor in the two small rooms upstairs was pleasant. If you’re after a cream tea, you could try the Sally Lunn’s tearoom, which is located in the oldest house in Bath, and sells the famous Sally Lunn bun.

Two-for-one offers

Throughout Britain, you can get a two-for-one deal on certain attractions if you travel there by train. You need to fill in an online form, print out a voucher, and show the voucher and the train ticket when you’re buying your tickets at the attraction. Keep an eye out for these promotions, as they change over time, but many of Bath’s principal attractions have been part of the programme in the past.

Bath is a great place for a visit during a stay in the UK. Whether you stay for a day or a year, you’re sure to have a great time!

This post was first published in 2010, but prices have been updated for 2018.

Heading to Bath? Buy your travel insurance, book your accommodation, or shop on Amazon after clicking these links. It doesn’t cost you any more but we get a small commission. Cheers!
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Your thoughts on "What to do in Bath, UK"

  • One more amazing article on this blog. Thanks for sharing.

    on August 31, 2016 at 1:51 am Reply
  • Great article, Another reason why I keep coming back to this blog!

    on September 13, 2016 at 1:31 pm Reply
  • Well written article! Truly captures the beauty of Bath!

    on September 19, 2016 at 9:22 pm Reply
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    on October 18, 2016 at 2:08 am Reply
  • Great article. You captured the beauty of Bath!!!! I really like your blog. Thank you so much for sharing it.

    on November 5, 2016 at 2:19 am Reply
  • Bath is one of my favourite cities in England! I took a bus from London and it was pretty cheap!

    on December 13, 2016 at 6:23 pm Reply
  • Great post, my first time here and been reading 3 great posts so far, loving it!!

    on February 22, 2017 at 7:02 pm Reply
  • Great list of attractions in Bath, Linda. Glad I found the post!

    on February 23, 2017 at 8:04 am Reply
  • Bath is also a stone's throw (pardon the pun!) away from Stonehenge, and it's quite easy to fit in a visit to that monument too on a visit to Bath. Great post!

    on May 28, 2017 at 6:01 pm Reply
    • So true! We attempted to visit Stonehenge as well as Bath as part of a day trip from London -- didn't work for us because of fog and bad traffic. It could certainly be done with a bit more planning, though.

      on May 29, 2017 at 9:04 pm Reply
  • This is a fantastic article! I'm visiting Bath soon and this was exactly what I was looking for. Thanks for sharing this.

    on June 20, 2017 at 2:14 am Reply
  • Great article! I haven't made it to Bath yet, but hopefully, I'll get there soon. And then I'll take bath in Bath.. ;)

    on July 28, 2017 at 7:37 am Reply
  • Great article! I haven't made it to Bath yet, but hopefully, I'll get there soon. And then I'll take bath in Bath, haha ;)

    on July 28, 2017 at 7:38 am Reply
  • I Have been to bath lots of times and I agree with on the things you have listed and Bath is a lovely place.

    on November 3, 2017 at 7:51 am Reply
  • One more amazing article on this blog. Thanks for sharing. I'm following your articles. I have been to London many times. But I have never gone Bath. It takes my attraction.I take there in my list.

    on January 9, 2018 at 1:57 am Reply
  • Very great article. I am reading this blog because of title. Things to do in Britain.

    on January 15, 2019 at 8:04 pm Reply
  • Awesome Post! Thanks for sharing..

    on November 12, 2019 at 12:19 am Reply
  • Beautiful photos.

    on March 18, 2020 at 5:55 am Reply
  • Such a beautiful place.

    on March 18, 2020 at 5:58 am Reply
  • Thank you very nice point of view. Great images

    on March 18, 2020 at 5:59 am Reply
  • Pictures are so beautiful.

    on March 18, 2020 at 6:00 am Reply
  • This is a great way to visit a country. We like staying at least a month in an area and then take the day trips out and around.

    on March 18, 2020 at 6:01 am Reply
  • I love this place, They are nice article. I have already visited some of these places, good to know there are much more. This is so fascinating. Thanks for sharing us.

    on April 28, 2020 at 10:48 pm Reply
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    on December 2, 2020 at 10:15 pm Reply
  • Hi Linda, I hope you doing good. I read your article and I love it. Love to read about Bath, UK I would like to visit Bath asap after reading this blog post. Looking forward to reading your next blog. Thanks a lot!!

    on February 27, 2021 at 4:10 am Reply
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    on June 29, 2021 at 4:24 am Reply
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    on July 26, 2021 at 8:52 pm Reply
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    on July 31, 2021 at 6:23 pm Reply
  • What a Fantastic Post!! Love your work.

    on September 3, 2021 at 2:58 pm Reply
  • This is a well-described post about BATH and it is said that "Bath is one of the most picturesque towns in England" and its true. The nearest airport from BATH is Bristol and BATH is also 90 min away from London by train. This is one of the must-visit places in UK.

    on September 11, 2021 at 4:23 am Reply
  • Your blog is very informative thank you. It’s really helped me. Thank you

    on November 14, 2021 at 11:44 pm Reply

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