Visiting Jane Austen's Bath

By travellingwithmynikon | Sep 27, 2020
Europe > United Kingdom > England > Bath

The city of Bath is an excellent destination for any history buff. From the Roman era to the Georgian times, and literature in the form of Jane Austen's, Bath has something for everyone.

Roman Baths

If you love your Roman History, then the Roman Baths are the place for you. Walking through, you feel fully immersed in the Roman days, and you learn so much more about their lives through video and artefacts.

I bought the online Museum saver ticket, which not only offered a discount but got me into the Victoria Art Gallery exhibition and Fashion Museum.

I arrived just after it opened in the morning, which would be the best time to come if you don't like crowds as this is a very popular attraction.

The crowds in the afternoon outside the Roman Baths and Bath Abbey

The crowds in the afternoon outside the Roman Baths and Bath Abbey

An audio guide is included in your ticket price, and you could spend a good couple of hours exploring the site learning about how the Romans lived.

The Temple Courtyard is now in ruins although there is a suspended walkway that will take you over it.

The suspended walkway takes you over the ruins

The suspended walkway takes you over the ruins

The Courtyard was where sacrifices were made at the great altar and prayers to Sulis Minerva was made.

The bronze head of Sulis Minerva

The bronze head of Sulis Minerva

Videos are projected against the walls helping you to imagine what life was like during Roman times in most rooms.

Outside you can walk around the Great Bath and from here see Bath Abbey peaking over the top

Outside you can walk around the Great Bath and from here see Bath Abbey peaking over the top

This is such an interesting attraction, and you could spend a couple of hours or more here. Like I said earlier if you want to avoid the crowds, get there early, and that should also give you time to take it all in.

Bath Abbey

The entrance of Bath Abbey

The entrance of Bath Abbey

Restorations are undergoing inside and outside Bath Abbey, but that doesn't mean you can't see the magnificence of what is inside this building.

You can enter for free, but a donation of £4 is strongly encouraged. Only half of one side is under restoration, so there is still plenty to see.

The organ on the wall behind the restorations

The organ on the wall behind the restorations

This is the last of three churches built on this site with the present Abbey being restored between 1864-1874 by Sir George Gilbert Scott. He was also responsible for the wooden ceiling being replaced with the amazing stone fan vaulting that is there today.

Massive stained windows and detailed the ceiling and arches, have everyone looking up at the beauty

Massive stained windows and detailed the ceiling and arches, have everyone looking up at the beauty

Bath Abbey is well worth the look if you love architecture.

Pulteney Bridge And River Avon

Designed by Robert Allan in 1770, Pulteney Bridge is only one of four bridges in the world that have shops across it.

It is not only just a shopping destination but one of the most photographed spots in Bath, as it spans the River Avon.

Pulteney Bridge spanning the River Avon

Pulteney Bridge spanning the River Avon

There are riverside walks where you can enjoy the views along the river. A private garden is on the city side, but you have to pay to walk through. If you go closer to the bridge on the city side, you get a better photo from the footpath.

Looking up the River Avon to Pulteney Bridge

Looking up the River Avon to Pulteney Bridge

The Victoria Art Gallery is a free museum is right across the road from the Pulteney Bridge and has free entry. If you bought the online museum saver ticket, it would get you into the special exhibitions.

Artwork even lines the walls of the staircase

Artwork even lines the walls of the staircase

Upstairs on the first floor are two galleries. In the large gallery, you can find paintings from the 15th Century through to modern art.

On the ceiling of the Rotunda is the impressive dome decorated with the zodiac

On the ceiling of the Rotunda is the impressive dome decorated with the zodiac

Once a month, on a Wednesday, there is a free guided tour of the main gallery. It is where you can learn about the stories behind the works of art.

Paintings and sculptures from the past 500 years on the upper level

Paintings and sculptures from the past 500 years on the upper level

In the small upper gallery is a collection of Georgian and Bohemian glasses, British porcelain and pottery dogs.

Downstairs is where you have exhibitions you pay to see. They change regularly, and some are for sale.

Fashion Museum And Assembly Rooms

The Fashion Museum and Assembly Rooms show not only what Bath fashion was like during Jane Austen's time, but how fashion has changed over the past 300 years.

The collections of men's and women's clothes held here are incredible. Even the gowns from the 1700's look as though they were made yesterday.

The collections of men's and women's clothes held here are incredible. Even the gowns from the 1700's look as though they were made yesterday.

Men's, women's and children's clothes are represented throughout the ages, as well as gloves, shoes, bonnets and hats. The audio guide is part of the ticket price and details all the garments in the collection. You can also dress up and see what you would like in period costume.

Free guided tours also give you a more detailed description of the collections and last 30 minutes.

You can walk through the Assembly Rooms admiring the Georgian architecture and stunning chandeliers. It's no wonder that two of Jane Austen's books were turned into films here as well as many more period films.

The substantial assembly rooms where you can imagine the parties dancing the nights away

The substantial assembly rooms where you can imagine the parties dancing the nights away

Now I wouldn't say I'm that interested in fashion, but I did enjoy walking through this museum. Although I appreciate all the work and detail that went into the clothing of the day, I am even more thankful that I live today, comfortably, in jeans and a t-shirt.

Number 1 Royal Crescent: The Georgian House

An excellent example of Georgian architecture and upper-class home is No. 1 Royal Crescent.

When you first enter the house, you are treated to a video on Henry Sandford and his life here.

There are volunteers in every room, giving you their in-depth knowledge of Georgian times and Henry Sandford.

Every detail of the furnishings is authentic to the late 18th Century, even down to the decorative food.

The butter in the shape of cows

The butter in the shape of cows

Jellies and sweets in different shapes

Jellies and sweets in different shapes

There are three floors to explore as well as the basement which has the servants' hall, kitchen and housekeepers' room.

The Servant's Hall

The Servant's Hall

In Henry Sandford's bedroom, you are afforded the best views of Royal Crescent.

The Royal Crescent as you see it from Henry Sandford's bedroom window

The Royal Crescent as you see it from Henry Sandford's bedroom window

The Withdrawing Room complete with chandelier and piano

The Withdrawing Room complete with chandelier and piano

This is a good way to see how the aristocrats lived. The enthusiasm of the volunteers is infectious, and you feel as though you've stepped through into another time.

Jane Austen Centre

The entrance to Jane Austen's Centre

The entrance to Jane Austen's Centre

I left the best for last, and if you are a fan of Jane Austen's and her time in Bath, then the Jane Austen Centre is the place for you.

A detailed talk and exhibition await you, where you will learn all about Jane's life. From paintings and sketches to information boards you can immerse yourself in Regency England even getting chance to dress up in Regency costume. If dressing up is not to your style, maybe writing with a quill and ink is before you leave.

Part of the exhibition on Jane

Part of the exhibition on Jane

On the top floor is the Regency Tearoom where you can enjoy tea, coffee, cakes and sandwiches. The staff are dressed in Regency period dress, adding to the atmosphere of a refined afternoon outing.

You can enjoy the Tearooms without paying for exhibition if you choose

You can enjoy the Tearooms without paying for exhibition if you choose

Bath is a beautiful city full of history to satisfy everyone. You can spend as little as a day to see your favourite spots or longer to explore more of Somerset.

Just an hour away is Cheddar Gorge with its caves and prehistoric history. You can read more about my time in Cheddar Gorge here.

Jane Austen Literature Bath Abbey History Monastery Art Gallery

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Written by travellingwithmynikon
Hi. My name is Kim and I love to travel especially getting about in nature. I have only really started this seriously at the end of 2018 but I'm loving the lifestyle and community.

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