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Bath

Enjoy These Al Fresco Feasts With The Last Of The Summer Wine

A delicious selection of afternoon tea treats beautifully displayed on a tiered stand

There is nothing quite like those warm, fragrant summer days, when you just want to be outside as much as you possibly can – whether it’s a long lunch in the sunshine, or drinks in the evening as the stars come out overhead. A city like Bath with all its beautiful open spaces and endless options of exciting events and enticing eats is delightful in the summer. To help you make the most of the last of our lovely summer days, we asked local blogger Sal Godfrey to recommend her favourite spots in Bath for al fresco drinking and dining…

The Marlborough Tavern

This might just be Bath’s nicest beer garden! The Marlborough Tavern has recently refurbished its lovely sunny courtyard. Scrubbed wooden tables, awnings to keep the sun off when it gets too hot, strings of lights and plants climbing the walls give this spot a Mediterranean feel. It’s set on a quiet street at the top of town, making it a lovely peaceful place. The menu is perfect for summer – I particularly recommend their fish and chips, although look out for special menu nights too, starring everything from fresh local seafood to really good steak.

Photo Credit: The Marlborough Tavern

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Besides The Awesome In-City Attractions Bath Offers, Don’t Miss Out On These Delightful Day Trips

As much as there is to do in Bath itself (see our previous posts for inspiration!) it’s also a brilliant starting point to explore this part of England, which is full of history and fascinating things to see and do. Not only that, but it’s on a major railway line and has plenty of great public transport links, so you can often get exploring without the need to bring or hire a car – which has the added bonus of letting you sit back and look out of the window as you travel! Bath is surrounded by gorgeous countryside that you can glimpse even from the very centre of the city, so it’s hard not to feel that urge to get out there and have an adventure. We asked local blogger Sal Godfrey to recommend a few of the best day trips you can make from Bath without your car…

Bristol

It would be crazy not to start with Bristol, Bath’s sister city that’s only ten minutes away on the train. Once a bustling maritime port and the starting point for some of history’s most famous voyages, Bristol is a lively buzzing place packed with excellent food and drink, comedy, live music and more. I particularly recommend a visit to the restored SS Great Britain, designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel and one of the most advanced passenger steamers in the world in her time, for anyone wanting to get a flavour of Bristol’s history. For foodies, meanwhile, there’s almost too much to choose from, but St Nicholas Market and CARGO, both hotspots for small innovative restaurants and fabulous street food, are very much worth a visit.

SS Great Britain

How do I get there? Regular trains run from Bath Spa Station to Bristol Temple Meads Station, both of which are easily accessible on foot from each city’s centre.
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Look Out Bath – The Lads Are Coming To Town!

Whatever the occasion, Bath is the perfect place to bring friends and family together – not only is it a beautiful city packed with brilliant things to do, but it’s compact enough to explore on foot, just ninety minutes by train from London and, of course, you can rent one of our beautiful Hiplets properties so that everyone can stay in the same place and maximise your time together! The following article will help ensure your Bath Stag do, boys’ weekend getaway or birthday celebration is a rousing success!

Image by Andrew Neel - Trendy Man

Previously on our blog, we asked local blogger Sal Godfrey to recommend a few Bath highlights for the ultimate girls’ weekend, so we thought it was only fair that we give the boys the same treatment too. Whether it’s a reunion, a birthday or a stag do, here are Sal’s top recommendations for a boys’ weekend in Bath…

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Exploring Bath In A Most Satisfying Manner…

Bespoke Gin and Tonic

Bath is one of the UK’s favourite places for a weekend break – in fact, TripAdvisor just voted it the most romantic city in the UK. But it’s not just a place for couples to escape, it’s also a fabulous destination for foodies, full of mouth-watering experiences from cookery classes to tempting tasting menus. We asked our favourite local blogger, Sal Godfrey, to round up five things that any foodie visiting Bath just cannot afford to miss…

  1. Savouring Bath’s Food Tours
Platter of tasty bites to sample

Savouring Bath
Photo Credit: Sal Godfrey

Looking for a way to explore the city with a bit of a difference (and plenty of refreshment stops along the way)? Savouring Bath offer a selection of fascinating tours around the centre of Bath – ‘Georgian Bites’ is a great way to get a taste of local history, sampling everything from the famous spa waters to Bath buns, ‘Local Flavours’ will help you discover some of the area’s best fresh produce at the farmers’ market, or book a ‘Foodie Frenzy’ treasure hunt around the city – perfect for hen parties. Tours start from £35 per person.
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5 Very Merry Reasons To Visit Bath This Festive Season

Golden glitter gift box and star decorations
Faded golden globe lights in the background with a simple nativity scene of Mary, Joseph and baby in fore ground.

Photo Credit: Gareth Harper on Unsplash

Bath is completely magical at Christmas – the winding streets and beautiful old buildings are transformed with twinkly fairy lights, there are cosy, welcoming cafes and pubs on every corner, and the fabulous independent boutiques make it the perfect Christmas shopping destination. The Bath Christmas Market is, of course, legendary, but what else is not to be missed during the festive season? We asked local blogger Sal Godfrey to round up her favourite things to do in Bath at Christmas…

1. Apres-Ski Bar, The Abbey Hotel 

A wooden chalet, with tables and chairs in front and lit up with pretty lights

Photo Credit: The Abbey Hotel

Every Christmas, this pop-up bar appears as if by magic outside the Abbey Hotel, and is the perfect place to warm up and chill out after a serious shopping spree. Inside the rustic log cabin you’ll find a snug alpine ski lodge, beautifully decorated and lit by lanterns and candles, with lots of comfy corners to take a load off your feet, and a bar serving mulled wine and winter comfort food. Entry is free but it can get quite busy as the evening goes on, so bear that in mind when you plan your visit.
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Treat Yourself to the Ultimate Girls’ Weekend in Bath

For hundreds of years, Bath has been the place to come to treat yourself. The Romans knew just how to do it, with everything from fine food to the ultimate spa experience, and Bath carries on the best of both traditions today – so it’s quite simply the perfect location for a girls’ weekend away. Whether you’re on a hen party, catching up with old friends or just taking a little mother-daughter time, Bath has something for you to enjoy. We asked local blogger Sal Godfrey for her top three recommendations…

For Dining: Chez Dominique

This elegant, understated French restaurant on Argyle St will whisk you away to Paris for a few hours. The menu changes regularly but is always full of irresistible dishes – I’m still daydreaming about their pork steaks with pickled walnuts and Roquefort butter weeks later. You absolutely must save room for the dessert menu too. If you’re in a bigger group, then you can book their private dining room (with beautiful views of the weir) and have your own space, or simply reserve a table in the main restaurant – booking is definitely recommended. They have a fantastic set menu too, with two dishes for just £14 before 7pm, so have an early dinner and leave yourself plenty of time afterwards for my next recommendation…

Chez Dominique Chocolate Treats

Processed with Snapped. Photo Credit: Sal Godfrey

For Drinking: Sub 13

This chic bar makes some of Bath’s best cocktails, including a whole menu based around the dream team that is gin and tonic. You wouldn’t know it from the discreet frontage on George St, but Sub 13’s stylish lounges are spread over several floors and highlights include a snug, candlelit champagne bar in the vaults and a beautiful courtyard garden at the back. You can book your own vault in the late night club downstairs, where drinking and dancing goes on until 3am at the weekends, or even arrange your own mixology class. The best bit? Sub 13 offers a huge range of their award-winning cocktails at 2 for 1 until 10pm, every single day.
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Beyond Scones – The Best Afternoon Teas in Bath

Hiplets_Afternoon_Tea

Ah yes, the afternoon tea. As soon as you mention England to anyone who has been, it’s often memories of scrumptious scones and piping hot tea that come up. But a great afternoon tea is so much more than that. It’s about the setting, and about the ambience. A really memorable afternoon tea also needs more than just scones to stand out. After all, the afternoon tea ceremony has a long and hallowed history to live up to.

Afternoon tea as a tradition had been around since the mid-1800s. It is often credited to the Duchess of Bedford, Anna Maria Russell, who elevated it to a substantial afternoon meal in upper class circles. The contents of the menu at an afternoon tea has changed over time, but the decadence of the tradition remains. Below we list some of our favourite places in Bath to have afternoon tea like an English nobleman or woman.

Hiplets_Afternoon_Tea

 

The Pump Room

The Pump Room is a great place to stop for tea in Bath, as it’s part of the Roman Baths, one of Bath’s most popular attractions. After you learn about the fascinating history of the Romans in Bath, you can sit down for a well deserved break with a nice cuppa. The room itself is stunning; columns along the walls and chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, whilst a pianist plays for your enjoyment.
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Ghostly Stories from Bath

As Halloween draws nearer, you may be looking for ghoulish stories to thrill your nearest and dearest with. Bath, with its rich history, offers a wealth of material for scary stories. Here are just a couple of local legends that have kept people up at night for centuries.

The Grey Lady

Hiplets_Ghost_Bath
The Theatre Royal in Bath is a spectacular theatre at the heart of Bath. It was completed in 1805 and is thus one of the oldest theatres in Britain. An old building like this, which has been filled with so much emotion from its many plays, is the perfect setting for a tragic ghost story.

And so it is said that the Theatre Royal is visited by The Grey Lady, who sits and watches plays from one of the boxes. There are various accounts of her back story; some believe she committed suicide after her husband killed her lover while others believe she killed herself out of an unrequited love for one of the theatre’s actors.

Whatever the true story may be, it’s sure to leave visitors to the Theatre Royal scanning the surrounding boxes extra carefully. After a visit to the theatre, you can go to the nearby Garrick pub which has its fair share of unexplained happenings too.
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