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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

There's Something About Bath

Like an elusive dream, I have been frantically chasing the sun throughout our trip in the United Kingdom. It has the effortless power to ease my occasional melancholic mood. One fine day, we planned a trip to Bath in Somerset and the sun paid us a surprise visit. It turned out to be glorious. 
The one-hour train ride from Cardiff, Wales to Bath made this trip comfortable for all of us. Bath seemed ideal since its size was not daunting for any traveler. (My advice for any day trip: If there are at least three of you traveling on a train, you can go directly to the train station to get the group ticket. You'll save some quid if you do that)

The first thing I noticed as soon as we got out of the train station was Bath's well preserved 18th century architecture. The white to cream colored limestones were immaculate. Expect anything the Romans built to be impressive and ambitious. 
The color of the limestones illuminates the city. Bath's stunning Georgian Architecture is feminine and even romantic. There's a hint of Parisian flair to it (Or maybe that's just me). Back in 1987, Bath was declared as a UNESCO Heritage Site.
It won't be difficult to navigate this small city because there are dozens of signs pointing you to the main attractions. If you get lost, that old means you REALLY have a bad sense of direction! 
During ancient times, Bath's name was Aquae Sulis (waters of Sulis). The bath complex was founded as early as 75 AD by the Romans. This would be England's only naturally occurring hot spring that was enjoyed mostly by the upper class during the old days. You can't leave Bath withoutt seeing this structure.
A view of the Bath Abbey from the Roman Baths.
Here's a closer picture of the Abbey. The building on the right side is the entrance to the Roman Bsths.
The Sacred Spring.
An actor who is always "in character". Do you think they do this for free? 
The Great Bath's water comes from the hot spring.  Too bad you can't take a bath here anymore.
Before reaching the Great Bath, there's a museum that contains artifacts from the Roman Period. Gordon head in the center.
A famous one would be a gilt bronze head of the goddess Sulis Minerva.
At the end of the museum, you'll see the remains of the hypocaust heating system, which was basically a steam room or sauna before. It shows the engineering genius of the Romans.

Spring Overflow
After the Roman Baths, we had a delightful lunch at a Thai restaurant called Panasia. They served delicious food that did not burden our wallets this time. 
On our way to the Royal Crescent and Circus, I saw this cute dog peering through the window. Can you see him (middle window)? He/She looks like a character from a novel too.
The Circus. From an areal view, this would be be circular. 

What I was most excited about was seeing the Royal Crescent. This place shows how fashionable living could be done during the Regency Era.

This was "THE" spot for us to sunbathe for a few minutes. I could imagine myself on a barouche as I come here to attend someone's dinner party. Images of people in regency costumes came to mind.
Another popular attraction here would be the Jane Austen Center. If you ever wondered how Jane Austen lived parts of her life during the English Regency Era, you can visit this center along Gay Street (yes, gay) to learn more about her life. My sister asks "Where's Mr. Darcy?"
This was a sketch of Jane Austen. She looks a tad bit scary, doesnt she?
Bath was a special place for Jane since two of her novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, were set here.
The center was quite disappointing since it was mostly about costumes during that era and excerpts from Jane Austen's novel. However, the Regency Tea Room saved us. 
It received the Tea Guild Award of Excellence this year. This means that this tea room has the highest standards in the service of tea and complementary food. We couldn't agree more.
Reading Pride and Prejudice while drinking afternoon tea. Life couldn't get more cultured than this.
Fresh Chamomile Tea to keep me relaxed.
Some Lemon Cake to complement the tea.
A visit to the Assembly Room is a must here but it was unfortunately closed when we got there. This was the venue for social dances and flirtations before as reflected in Austen's novels.
The Fashion Museum was also closed. My sister was not too happy about that.
Banana Republic on Cheap Street. How Ironic.
Shhh..Quiet street is ahead.
I was pleased as a punch about Bath exceeding my expectations. Next time I come back here, I'll already know what to do. I'll sit in the park near the Royal crescent and read my favorite Austen novel. A well-deserved massage at the new thermal baths might also be a good idea. That's the way you do it in modern Bath. Dream, Read, Romanticize and let the world pass by.


Gladys | ByahengBarok.com said...

great photos once again... ever enticing to visit UK. wish i could go there to and take as much travel photos as i can :)

deobaraanmd said...

Thanks gladys! go plan your trip already. :)

Gian said...

Doc Deo , nice post once again. Keep it up .

deobaraanmd said...

Thanks gian!

Xylee said...

The pic on the dog peering through the window is so cute! :) Nice capture Doc.

deobaraanmd said...

thanks xylee! i actually have a closer shot.

Micamyx|Senyorita said...

LOL at the street names. Will include Bath on my list of must-see destinations on my next UK trip :D were you able to visit Stratford Upon avon?

deobaraanmd said...

@mica - haha yes they were funny! I wasnt able to visit Stratford upon Avon but im planning to go back to UK next year. Bath is probably one of the best places to visit there. You should really go.

CMBT said...
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deobaraanmd said...

hi chester! Thanks for checking my blog. Hope you get experience Europe soon.