Bath attracts more than 300,000 visitors every year in large part due to its rich history and beautiful architecture but the city itself is just the start. Explore beyond Bath’s Georgian facades and you will discover a wealth of beautiful stately homes, country manors and heritage buildings with beautiful gardens and parks peppering the nearby countryside.
No Bath city break would be complete without a trip to one of the amazing historic properties, all of which are an easy drive away.
Most of our Bath holiday homes have onsite parking meaning you can hop in the car to explore the surrounding countryside and nearby attractions but for those without their own transport, we can help advise on trains and buses or book you taxis where needed.
Here are just a few of the historic properties and gardens worth visiting during your stay in Bath:
Prior Park, Bath
This beautiful Georgian mansion built in the 1730s and 40s for Bath entrepreneur Ralph Allen has now been converted into a school but visitors can still explore its Capability Brown landscape gardens which offer stunning views of Bath’s city centre and boast one of only four Palladian bridges in the world. A bus from Bath city centre takes visitors up the steep hill to the entrance from where you can enjoy a walk back down the hill into Widcombe.
Longleat House, Warminster
A 45 minute drive from Bath but worth the journey, the ancestral home of the Marquesses of Bath is an Elizabethan stately home of unimaginable grandeur. The property which houses many artistic treasures is surrounded by Capability Brown landscaped gardens and 900 acres of rambling parkland. For those with children, the famous Longleat safari park also provides many hours of entertainment.
Dyrham Park, Dyrham
Conveniently located between Bath and the M4, this baroque country house was built for William Blathwayt in the late 17th century and houses a fine collection of art from all over the world including a collection of Dutch masters. It sits at the heart of a stunning 270 acre deer park with sweeping views of the Gloucestershire countryside. Behind the house is a more formal garden featuring ornate borders, ponds and an orchard.
Lacock Abbey, Lacock near Chippenham
A favourite among Harry Potter fans due to its use as a location in the films, Lacock Abbey was originally built as an Augustinian nunnery in the 13th century but moved into private ownership after the dissolution of the monasteries in the 16th century. The building has undergone many alterations meaning it boasts numerous architectural styles. In the 19th century it was the home of William Henry Fox Talbot, inventor of the photographic negative. The village of Lacock itself is worth of a visit as it has been perfectly preserved as a relic of the past since being given to the National Trust in 1944.
Just the other side of Bristol, this ornate property is a great example of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture built as a family home for businessman William Gibbs in 1830s. The house is surrounded by beautiful gardens overlooking the Yeo valley, with formal terraces, rare trees and a productive kitchen garden. It remained in the family until 2002 when the National Trust bought it and they have since been unveiling new features and rooms to the public each year.
Stourhead, Mere, Warminster
This Palladian house built in the 1720s is surrounded by a famous landscape garden described at the time of its opening in the 18th century as being ‘a living work of art’. The gardens are built around a magnificent lake adorned with classical temples, grottoes, bridges, rare trees and undulating lawns. The property is home to treasures such as a Regency library, Chippendale furniture and valuable paintings while its 2,650 acre estate boasts chalk downland, ancient woodland, farmland and parkland teeming with wildlife, all of which can be explored on foot.
If you are planning to come and stay at one of our gorgeous Bath self-catering properties and would like further advice on nearby attractions or great days out near Bath, get in touch via email or phone as our team will always be happy to help.