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Cheer up the grey months with a winter break in Bath

This time last year, we shared our top tips on beating the January blues with a winter break in Bath.

So, since we find ourselves battling through this cold dark period of the year once again, we thought we would revisit and refresh our advice for 2019.

January and February, and even sometimes March, are the time to wrap up and nurture yourself a bit; indulge in the odd treat that will nourish your body and soul and cheer up these otherwise grey months.

A winter break in Bath could be just what is needed. All our self catering holiday homes in Bath are perfectly located within 15 minutes’ stroll of the historic centre making them the perfect base for a Bath city break. Have a quick look at our special deals and discounts to find out about any offers you could benefit from when booking your Bath accommodation direct with us.

Our beautiful city of Bath has a vast array of things to do and see to brighten up a dull winter day.

Here are our top picks for a winter break in Bath:

Bath’s spas

Bathe like a Roman in the mineral rich geothermal waters at the award-winning Thermae Spa Bath or in the five-star luxury of the Gainsborough Hotel’s Spa Village. Both spas use water from the natural hot springs that made the city such a popular destination in ancient times.

Situated in the heart of the historic city, the Thermae Spa Bath is a perfect place to spend a relaxing afternoon, wandering between the rooftop pool, with its amazing views, the indoor Minerva Bath and the Wellness Suite with its steam rooms, infrared room and ice chamber. With more than 40 spa treatments to choose from there is something to please every visitor.

The award-winning Gainsborough Hotel, opened in 2015, boasts a luxurious spa complex set beneath a glass atrium where guests can ‘take the waters’ at the Bath House, visiting a circuit of natural thermal pools, saunas, a steam room and an ice alcove or choose from one of the vast array of spoiling treatments which will leave you feeling a million dollars.

Spa it up during your winter break in Bath
Gainsborough Hotel Spa: Perfect for a winter break in Bath

Afternoon tea

There is nothing quite so quintessentially English, quaint and indulgent than a proper afternoon tea. There are several places in Bath that offer a wonderful teatime experience according to your taste and budget. If you are feeling flush, few places do it better than the Royal Crescent Hotel. Guests are treated to a selection of delicious sandwiches, followed by freshly baked scones with clotted cream and strawberry jam served alongside a range of dainty pastries and cakes. The mouth-watering treats are accompanied by a choice of Ronnefeldt teas but you can choose to add some sparkle with a flute of Taittinger Champagne.

If you want an elegant setting, head to the Pump Room where you can admire the stunning Georgian interior and enjoy live piano while you sip on one of their wide range of teas. The Traditional Pump Room Tea includes finger sandwiches, scones and a quartet of little pastries, such as a Battenberg sponge, chocolate éclair and macaroon.

For a slice of history Sally Lunn’s is the place to go. Situated in what is probably the oldest house in Bath, dating back to 1482, the ‘historic eating house’ is a tourist favourite but that should not put you off. It is a welcoming and cosy place famed for the Sally Lunn bun a large brioche-style treat served toasted with savoury or sweet toppings that serves as a meal in itself.

Other smart hotels which excel with beautifully presented teatime treats in wonderfully opulent settings include the Bath Priory Hotel, No 15 Great Pulteney Street and The Gainsborough. So, plenty of choice!

Afternoon tea at the Pump Room is a worthwile treat on a winter break in Bath
Winter break in Bath: Treat yourself to afternoon tea at the Pump Room

Classy cinema

A cinema trip is a perfect way to spend a winter evening and now Bath can offer a much more lavish movie going experience with the launch of the new boutique Tivoli Cinema. This is a far cry from the popcorn strewn big chain cinemas, with a stylish lounge bar and café offering a seasonal menu of small plates and classic cinema treats with a twist such as the wild boar hot dog. This is before you even go into the theatre itself where you’ll sink back into plush sofas with your own lamp lit side table for drinks and let the show unfold.

Or, if you prefer a more vintage experience, head to the charming The Little Theatre Cinema Bath, running since 1935, showing mainstream and arthouse films across its three screens. There is wine, beer, tea, coffee and other beverages and snacks on offer to keep you sustained throughout the films.

Experience the luxe new Tivoli Cinema on a winter break in Bath
Winter break in Bath: Experience the luxe new Tivoli Cinema


A trip to the theatre is a wonderful way to raise your spirits on a damp dark winter evening, whether to see a play, comedy or other form of live show. Happily in Bath there is plenty of choose from. The Theatre Royal Bath stages a wide range of touring West End shows in its main playhouse and more experimental or new material in its Ustinov Studio. Family friendly shows are staged in the egg which sits in the heart of the Theatre Royal and focuses on theatre for young people and children.

Other smaller theatres such as the Mission Theatre and Chapel Arts Theatre host a varied programme of comedy, theatre and music while Komedia offers a heady mix of live performance from cabaret and comedy to music and film.

Enjoy a show at the Theatre Royal during a winter break in Bath:
Winter break in Bath: Enjoy a show at the Theatre Royal

Sip a cocktail in style

Yes, yes, we know about dry January but we feel this time of year is depressing enough without denying oneself the odd tipple. After all, cocktails are a treat to be enjoyed in moderation, it’s not like downing several pints at your local pub. Bath has several great cocktail bars – for more detail have a read of our blog about Bath’s best cocktail bars.

In summary, for atmosphere head to The Dark Horse or Opium, for a party crowd head to Sub 13 or Circo, and for old fashioned luxury head to The Montague Bar in Bath’s famous Royal Crescent Hotel or Bar 15 at No 15 Great Pulteney Street.

Enjoy a sophisticated cocktail or two during your winter break in Bath
Winter break in Bath: Enjoy a sophisticated cocktail or two

Dry January? Focus on the food then!

If you are being virtuous and sticking to a completely dry January, you have every excuse to indulge in some really fabulous food. Bath is a foodie’s dream come true with fantastic restaurants, pubs and cafes all offering delicious fresh seasonal menus. With so much choice, it is really about what you are after.

If you want to treat yourself to a lavish meal at one of the city’s finest restaurants, have a read of our recommendations on the best eateries in Bath for fun and fine dining.

If you want some wonderful rustic chunky filling fare, have a read of our recommendations on the best pub grub to be found in Bath.

Finally, if you are veggie or simply looking to cut back on your meat consumption for 2019, have a look at our recommendations for the best vegetarian restaurants in Bath.

Sample Bath's great restaurants during a winter break in Bath
Winter break in Bath: Sample the city’s great restaurants

Crisp winter walks

Okay so it’s cold but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the great outdoors at all. On a clear bright winter day, as the low sun casts long shadows on golden hills, the Somerset countryside around Bath looks breathtaking. So, don your wellies and head out for a refreshing stomp.

For inspiration have a look at our blog about lovely walking routes around Bath. After all, nothing makes a pint and pub lunch taste as good as when you’ve earned it with a brisk winter walk.

Wrap up and enjoy a brisk walk during your winter break in Bath
Winter break in Bath: Wrap up and enjoy a brisk walk
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