Bath is a beautiful city to explore, filled with history and breathtaking architecture. I only had a weekend there while visiting an old school friend so we decided to make the most of it.
The Roman Baths
Bath was so fascinating, it is steeped in history. I got a sore neck from looking up so much. We visited the Roman Baths. I didn’t realise how old they were (the fact that they are called the Roman Baths didn’t give it away, I’m just that observant). The temple itself was built in 60-80 AD and the baths were built in the following 300 years.
Our first view of the bath was from a terrace that looked down on it. There was a man dressed in Roman costume wandering around, the giant pillars and the statues looking down on the great bath made you feel like you had stepped back in time, well if you ignored all the tourists milling around it did.
We had a wander around the museum before going down to the Great Bath. There was a display of all the jewellery they found buried and a lot of it is similar to jewellery worn now, in fact, you could even think that they had just popped by the warehouse (a kiwi department store), aged them slightly and chucked them in the display cabinet.
The Curse Tablets
The Roman Bath curse tablets that are in the museum were interesting to read. They were written to the goddess Sulis Minerva to curse the perpetrators of thefts and the return of the stolen goods and date back between the 2nd and 4th century AD. The curses were written in Latin on pieces of lead and pewter then thrown into the hot spring, some of them were quite graphic asking for the thieves to go mad or blind. One even reads, ‘May he who carried off Vilbia from me become as liquid as the water. May he who so obscenely devoured her become dumb’
Nothing like a little justice!
After the Baths we had a little wander around Bath Abbey. The sheer size of these Abbey’s is overwhelming. Bath Abbey was founded in the 7th century and rebuilt in the 12th and 16th centuries. It is a large gothic building and one of the largest in the West Country. It was slightly marred by the scaffolding and building work going on inside but still stunning nonetheless.
Sally Lunn Buns
On our way back to the car after a bit more exploration of the city, we had to visit Sally Lunn’s House, the home of the Sally Lunn bun and the oldest house in Bath, being built in 1482. We were excited to try our buns later on that night along with our RJ’s licorice logs, fudge and NZ wine. By the time we had our dinner, sat around looking through old school photos and reminiscing about Kiwiland and high school we kind of forgot about our treats and only had the buns. They were quite different from Sally Lunn buns back home so were a little disappointed. They didn’t even have icing on them! But we can still say that we had Sally Lunn buns from the Sally Lunn House which is kinda cool.
The next day we explored Bristol. We had a walk around the shops and St Nicholas Market, so much to see! The market is run inside the Exchange which was built in the 1740’s. A market was held every Tuesday and Thursday from 1831. The markets are now held in the Exchange Mon-Sat. After the market, we found the museum and then it was back to the train station. All in all a great trip with lots of interesting sights saw.
Things to do in Bristol
- Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery, we did this and it was fascinating learning about the history of the city.
- Walk around and spot the street art. Bristol is filled with street art, you may find yourself face to face with a Banksy work.
- Look at the lockets on Pero’s Bridge. Maybe add one yourself?
- Visit Bristol Cathedral
- St Nicholas Market
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