London is pretty full on and can get a bit overwhelming on occasion, sometimes a well earned break is just what the doctor ordered.
So to celebrate ONIN’s travel theme, we have put together a long weekenders guide to a glorious city only 90 minutes train ride from Paddington station. Welcome my friends to Bath.
Bath is a quiet city compared to London, with many a quaint café and cultured museum to visit. However it does house 2 substantial universities, thus offers not only a energetic day programme but also a bustling night life.
Let’s set the scene and start at the beginning. Friday evening, you’re tired and dirty from a day slogging in the factory (ummm I might mean office, but it sounds much more dramatic this way), to avoid the rush hour cost and carnage you and your party take the 19.30 train from Paddington to Bath Spa station and arrive into Bath at 20.59. An off peak return will set you back about £53.50.
BATH WESTERN ABBEY HOTEL
You walk 10 minutes to your sleeping quarters, the Bath Western Abbey Hotel. This will cost you about £100 per night (its a holiday!) but there are cheaper (or more expensive) options available, for example the smart and comfortable Bath Centeral Travelodge (~£60 per night).
Right it’s time for tea, and you’re all feeling rather meaty! So you wander through the cobbled streets to James Street West and are welcomed into the Bath Brewhouse. This posh pub hosts its own microbrewery so the beer is a must! And they offer a corking menu filled with seasoned chicken and sticky ribs to cured meats and classy scotch eggs. The nosh is fab and mains are around the £10, so won’t burn a hole in your pocket. There is always a great mix of locals, tourists and those energetic students which makes the Bath Brewhouse a bustling yet not rowdy venue.
After dinner you can either head out par-taying with your new found uni chums to SecondBridge (reasonably close to your posh accommodation!). All the clubs are teenie tiny in Bath, and underground! No ruining the locals scenery with drunken youths
Or mosey on for a quiet tipple at the Westgate, another one of those demur drinking establishments.
Saturday morning! The sun is shining, the weather is sweet and there’s a rumble in your tumble. It’s time to head over to Bridge Street for the best breakfast in town. The Blue Quail Deli is not to be missed on any sort of Bath-y visit.
Their menu is graced with the likes of scrambled egg and chorizo, creamy porridge, fruity hot beverages and a massive array of cakes and pies. But you MUST indulge in a hot chocolate, it is THE BEST hot choc ever take my word for it. I think if I worked there I would end up the hot chocolate monster. Brekkie for 2 ~£15, but it’s well worth it
Next stop the Farmers Market, you have to take the fam home some authentic rural goods right? Every Saturday the charming Green Park Station provides Bathonians with quality local produce. Try Paul Davis’s ‘Oven to You’ fruit pies (yup you’ll eat a whole one!) or some plump duck from ‘The Thoroughly Wild Meat co.’, everything comes from within a ~30 miles radius and the farms are licenced, so you know its coming from a good place!
As you continue meandering through the city and are lucky enough to visit Bath in December they hold a cracking Christmas Market. Think steaming mulled wine, handmade arts & crafts and crimbo prezzie galore. Be careful though it does get rather packed!
Have a jolly down the river
If you’re saving the pennies, Bath is also great for freebie wandering (my favourite type of price) round the shops and in the parks, it’s easy to spend not too much feeling like you’ve done a lot.
Hmmm you start to feel a little peckish, time to head over to La Perla for a Spanish Tapas dinner. These chaps offer fantastic little dishes to share, try the Cabello de rape (monkfish) and Queso de cabra (fried ghosts cheese) to set your tastebuds tingling. Trty not to fall into the restaurant though, its a bit dark down those stairs!
You have to head down some dark stairs to get there, lots of Baths attractions are underground
But it’s worth it!
Additionally the if you download the Visit Bath app it suggests a load of offers around the city, and one of these is 2-4-1 Komedia Krater Comedy Club.
Every Saturday night Komedia hosts 3 comedians for a night of chuckling, it’s worth it some are awesome! With the 2-4-1 two auditorium views cost £18. Be sure to get there for 6.30pm to bag premium seats! Afterwards they hold a club night ‘Motorcity’, this is quite unconventional as it appeals across the age spectrum due to the funk, motown and soul beats they pumps out, non of that house and club malarkey! Be prepared for a jolly crowd and a good time.
The largest venue in Bath is still pretty intimate
Hmm that early dinner has left you a little peckish, good job you grabbed couple of slices of cake from Jacobs coffee house, while you drank your creamy chai tea earlier. The banana and pineapple is moistly (worst word ever!) fantastic! It goes well with the crunchtastic mince pie shortbread.
corking array of cakes at Jacobs
Wow! Okay so you roll over and look at the clock, 10am! Deary me lets make the most of the last day here, breakfast time! Now I know its a chain buuuuut you cannot beat brekkie at Bills! They open all day but their French toast with bananas and fruity compote is seriously scrumptious.
Sunday is a day for mooching, the farmers market is replaced with a vintage and antique market on the first Sunday of the month, but there is always something going on in Green Park Station. Wandering in the parks or trundling along the canal are great ideas for the summer, and the bustling streets offer a nice spot of retail therapy in the winter, you could even opt for a skate on the ice rink or a trip to the Holborn museum to keep the group entertained.
Green Park Station is so bustling and jolly at the weekends
If you are seeking a cultured outing, the Assembly Rooms offer a audio tour. This may sound a bit dull but the attempts at recreating the ‘ye olde England’ experience is pretty cool. Its one of those things you have to do to believe it.
So posh, our faculty ball was here!
In any season if the weather is sweet you could always try a bus tour? Soaking up some rays supporting a hangover, I mean feeling bright and airy is always a great shout to entertain/sit down for a prolonged period.
Or just sack it off and hit the Raven for an infamous pie, £8 well spent I say!
Warms the cockles what what!
Sadly it’s time for home and you say goodbye to this quaint little city, refreshed and revitalized. Ready to face the big smoke once again!
By Aspen Glencross
Find out more about Aspen and our writers here: http://oninonline.com/about-our-writers/