Bath, UK

Pulteney Bridge and weir

We decided on Bath as a good location for our first wedding anniversary. B had good memories of the place from when she first visited a few years ago and, somehow, it’s one of those places that I never quite got around to visiting. If I’d known quite how pretty it was I’d probably have made the trip long ago!

The back of Pulteney BridgeOne of the nice things about Bath is that it’s compact — almost everything you want to see is well within walking distance. The bad thing, and I’m nit-picking here, is that the place has been photographed to death making any half-way original shots practically impossible. Hence, above you can see a “standard” shot of Pulteney Bridge and the weir. To the left you can see the bridge from the other side1. Not quite as picturesque; you can understand why virtually all of the images you see are from the other side!

Bath Abbey

Not far from the bridge is Bath Abbey. A church has been on this site for over a thousand years but this one “only” dates back to 1499. Bathed (pun intended) in late afternoon light, its sandy textures look amazing. When we passed by earlier in the day there was a large Police presence making sure that a protest against the ongoing military action in Iraq went peacefully.

Protest outside Bath AbbeyThe Royal Crescent, BathStatue looking over Roman Baths in Bath

After the distinctly modern protest we sought out much older sights. Only quite old — just a couple of centuries old — is the Royal Crescent. It’s a large semi-circle of imposing but attractive houses overlooking Victoria Park. If you have to ask how much they cost you almost certainly can’t afford to live in one.

The Roman Baths go back nearer two thousand years. It’s amazing to note that the plumbing still works correctly after all this time. Not that you’d want to bathe in the algae-tinted water right now! It’s an impressive site, not only in terms of what is still visible but also when you think about how sophisticated their bathing habits were all that time ago. Less impressive was the taste of the spring water that appears in a fountains in the “Pump Room.” I think it was the fact that it was slightly warm that made my stomach turn. We decided that a coffee in one of the many cafe’s was a better option…

Overall, a great weekend in a lovely city. I’m sure we’ll be back at some point.

If this has piqued your interest, you might like to have a look at the following sites:

  • Bath City Trail. A very 1996-style web-site, but we vaguely followed this entertainingly written walking tour of Bath’s city centre.
  • Bath on Google Maps. Bath from above.
  1. Click on the thumbnails for a larger view. []