A spot of afternoon tea in Bath

Trip Start Aug 30, 2006
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Trip End Jul 16, 2007


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Friday, February 9, 2007

A weekend trip to Bath. 3 hours by National Express coach bus. Beautiful heritage town. Very English. But not much night life. Still had fun with Fiona and Abby.

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SATURDAY 10 FEB 2007
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Woke up at 6am after a night out at The Purple Turtle in Camden to catch the band 10 Reasons to Live. Once again surviving on 4.5 hours sleep. Not pretty.

Early morning at Victoria Station, and we ate McDonald's for breakfast.

We ended up paying 27.50 for a open return ticket to Bath. Not exactly cheap, but that's what you get for leaving it to the last minute and not buying online.

3 hours on the bus and we were in Bath around midday.

The whole of Bath is listed as a national heritage. It is absolutely beautiful. Lots of old houses, cobblestone streets and pavements. It was a picturesque English town.

We found St Christophers, the hostel chain we had stayed in Amaterdam. 17 a night. Again expensive cos we left it to the last minute.

The hostel was next to a pub and we left our bags in the basement so we could wander the streets before check in.




Bath markets


In front of the Abbey

We checked out the shops and Fiona and I went to the Roman Baths (Abby had seen it before). The Roman baths are natural hot springs. The Roman Baths is below the modern street level and has four main features, the Sacred Spring, the Roman Temple, the Roman bath house and finds from Roman Bath. Green and steamy and apparently very good for you. You can taste the water in The Pump Room, but it's supposed to taste vile so I avoided it.


The Roman baths


The Roman baths


Outside the Roman baths

It was raining. Again. I think it rained the whole time we were in Bath. Tried to check out the local markets but nothing much there. And couldn't walk along the streets because of the rain, so we ended up at the Odeon theatre. We watched Music and Lyrics, the new romantic movie starring Hugh Grant and Drew Barrymore. Was a feel good movie.

Afterwards, we checked into our hostel room. Up a few flights of very narrow stairs and a maze like series of doors. We had a 12 room dorm.

Found a nice Italian restaurant for dinner. Though the service was terrible. Lots of young italian boys who had no idea what they were doing. First no one seated us, then they seated us in the wrong place and then they lost our drink order. But the pasta was yum.

After dinner we planned to rest at the hostel. We eventually found the Common room (hidden in the maze of doors). There were people in their watching a really bad quality version of Shrek. So we decided to find a pub to go to. But nothing really stuck out. In Bath, there is no night life. All you do is eat or drink in one of the many restaurants or pubs. So we chose to have coffee in one of the restaurants. It was packed.

Feeling tired, we went back to the hostel and slept.

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SUNDAY 11 FEB 2007
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We woke at 8:30am after feeling really refreshed. All in all it was a good nights sleep. Although I woke up a few times to screams from the drunks outside our window. And the girl in the bed next to me had a horrible hacking cough.

We went to the bar downstairs for breakfast of toast and tea.

None of the shops were open and it was raining (of course).

We went to the Tourist shop and joined the Jane Austen tour. It rained so much I had to pay $4 for a dodgey union jack umbrella - which I think is broken already.

The Jane Austen tour was a 1.5 hour tour of Bath. The little old lady that ran the tour amazingly knew alot of history about Bath and Jane Austen. We walked around the town. And she pointed out places mentioned in Jane Austen's books or places where Jane Austen visited or lived. These included Milsom Street, certain shops, Green Park, the Assembley rooms (where they held balls), and the Roman Baths and The Pump Room (where you drink fancy tea).




The Pump Room, where they drink tea and is used in some Jane Austen books






The Abbey


Beautiful Bath






Some really old houses that are very expensive


Spying onto someone's quaint little courtyard

The tour finished at the Jane Austen Centre. We had afternoon tea (the Jane Austen blend naturally), scones with clotted cream and jam (yum), tiny cucumber sandwiches and chocolate cake (which was a bit too much). How quaint and ladylike. There were pictures of Jane Austen and even Mr. Darcy (Colin Firth) on the walls. My favourite part of Bath was definitely the tour and afternoon tea.

We bought a few things at the gift store. I even bought the books Persuasion and Pride and Prejudice.

We attempted to do some more shopping but most of the stores were closed on Sunday.

So we tried to catch the earlier 4pm bus home. We were told it was full, although clearly there were lots of empty seats. The bus driver was just bein an ass. So much for paying 2.50 extra for open ended tickets!

With nothing to do in raining Bath we spent a couple of hours in the local Lamb and Lion pub, watching rugby and eating curly fries. The time dragged.


A very English pub

We caught the 6:30pm bus and it wasn't very comfortable. Felt car sick and wondered how I would survive 3 hours of this.

Finally got home about 10pm.

It was a lovely weekend in Bath. But I think it would've been better if we came home earlier.
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