Bath is a city in the ceremonial county of Somerset in South West England. It is situated 156 km west of London. The city was first established as a spa with the Latin name, Aquae Sulis (“the waters of Sulis”) by the Romans sometime in the AD 60s about 20 years after they had arrived in Britain (AD43), although oral tradition suggests that Bath was known before then. They built baths and a temple on the surrounding hills of Bath in the valley of the River Avon around hot springs.
We visited Bath, as we went to London for a few days and decided to take a tour to Stonehenge and Bath. I’ll write about Stonehenge another time. The tour guide, David was a wonderful person. Well educated, knew what he was talking about and did it in a fun, sarcastic and interesting way. He made me want to come back and take another tour with him. And he showed us Bath as well. We cut down lunch at some place in the country and got one more hour in Bath, nice to wonder around, but still plenty of time to see it.
The entire city was rebuilt in 18:th century (I think) by John Wood senior and his son John Wood junior, so all the houses look the same, three stories, white and pretty (well, now more greyish) and exactly the same. If you don’t look on the street signs, you won’t know your location. It’s cute, but a little bit boring. The river Avon is pretty and is well used, there are cute walks and a very nice park next to it. This city didn’t forget the river, that’s good.
We came there on a rainy day in October. Our guide, David, told us all about it. He pointed out the best places, both to eat scones, and ice cream and few interesting things to do. We visited the Roman baths and the museum and learned about how the place looked back then.
The ancient Roman baths, nowdays a wonderful museum is filled with stories from ancient times, statues, artifacts, rooms, temples, you name it. There is of course the warm water coming up from the depths, where the rich ancient Romans took their baths and planned what place they could invade next. It was not allowed to touch the water, but I did it anyways. It felt warm and nice.
After the Baths we went to an old tree, that was planted on July 4:th, 1776. At least so we were told. Do you recognize the date? It was beautiful with its yellow autumn leaves.Majestic, historic and romantic. On a warm sunny day it would be pretty nice to just sit here and contemplate. But I guess that on a day like that there are huge crowds here, so forget loneliness.
After seeing the tree we went to the river and also to a market. River was nice, the market a little bit boring. We saw also a church, quite nice, but not as impressive as Notre Dame, or Westminster Abbey. We also had luch in a small anonymous pie-and-sandwich-place. Nothing special and that made it special indeed.
Well, that was Bath. Was I impressed? Well, by the baths yes, by the city? Not really. It’s pretty, it’s historic, that’s it. And don’t go there in summer, it’s crowded with tourists now, I can imagine how it look in July.
The City of Bath was inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1987. Link to the site: City of Bath.
My grade for this site is two globes. I know, it’s little. If I would grade the Roman baths it would be 3,5, but the city can be seen in a short while.