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Bath on Saturday the 1st of June

I will have one day in England on Saturday, June 1st. I was in England last year but chose to go somewhere else.
Will it be overcrowded and I maybe I should find something else to do?
Bath would be my first choice, but I would also like to revisit Dover Castle. I was on a tour that did a terrible job there last year, and I wouldn't mind getting a better look at it. I could also hang out in London, as there are always things to do there.

Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

Bath does get busy on Saturdays but it should be ok. Get an early start and you’ll be out before the crowds. The main shopping areas are the busiest part, especially near the Roman Baths. There’s plenty of room once you get up to the Royal Crescent and in the parks.

Posted by
101 posts

Thank you.
I plan on being there when the Roman Baths open and hope to spend a complete day there, maybe leaving around 20:00.
Any suggestions on good places to eat there?

Posted by
4991 posts

Never had a bad meal in Bath, but one of our favorites is The Scallop Shell. Will eat there again on next trip.

Posted by
8 posts

I personally think Bath is far for a day trip from London, especially if you want to get out to the sites before the crowds. That said, I loved Bath and is worth at least an overnight.

Posted by
101 posts

It is what it is. I only have a single day in the country. So it's go to London for the 5th time or Dover Castle for the 2nd time. Not interested in many of the other tourist items. So that leaves me to sit in my hotel or get a taste of a great city that I may come back to.
Easy choice.

Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

I think Bath works fine as a day trip from London. The train is very easy and Bath has quite a small centre which you can easily explore within a day.

I quite often go the other way and do a day trip to London. It’s a fairly long day but for some of it you’re just sitting down on the train and it’s not difficult or stressful.

Posted by
101 posts

I know I asked this before, but I recently saw a post similar to mine about Bath and a few really tried to talk the person out of it due to the Holiday and how busy it will be.

Given I have one day in the UK and have been to London several times, I have no desire to see London for a single day.

My choice is a busy Bath, I plan to be there before 09:00 in the morning and go right to the Roman Baths when they open. After that, I will simply explore, eat, and I have no desire to shop. I would like to view the architecture and enjoy the city as a whole.
Or
Head to Dover Castle and maybe a quick stop at Canterbury, but I have been to both before.

I am still leaning towards Bath, but if it is a complete zoo that you can't breathe as there are that many people I would rather not.

Do I stick with Bath or change to Dover?

Posted by
6825 posts

Obviously no one can predict the future, but if I were in your situation, I would go with Bath. You're planning to get there early and in early June you're not going to have the crazy crowds that will be there later in the month. So it's a bit of a risk, I suppose, but worth it, in my opinion.

Posted by
101 posts

Mardee if it's good enough for you, it's clearly more than good enough for me. Off to have a Bath it is.

By the way, I was in London for this Holiday last year, and man, what a zoo. I made the mistake of getting the all-day Thames River boat pass, and it was so busy I got two rides all day. The museums were so busy you couldn't breathe. The only refuge was the fantastic Albert and Victoria museum, which I may have missed if the Natural History and Science museums were not so crazy. I recommend that museum to everyone.

Thank you,
Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

You will honestly be fine in Bath. There’s lots of green space. You can explore Victoria Park or head over Pulteney Bridge to the Holburne museum and Sydney Gardens behind. You can access the canal footpath here. Not everywhere will be crowded.

I have just checked and Bath Rugby are playing at home that day which brings extra people. However, you’re not trying to park a car and you’ll get to experience the atmosphere. The stadium is right next to the river and quite open so you can see and hear the fans.

Posted by
114 posts

Sounds like a grand day! A couple of my favorite eating spots are Sally Lunn's and The Salamander, along with the Scallop Shell.

Posted by
6444 posts

I'm personally very disappointed that another post (I suspect I know the one you mean) came across in that way to anyone. I am also very disappointed that that other post dissuaded someone from going to Cornwall, as well. I would have liked that poster to go to Cornwall and tried to make it possible for them, but another opinion won the day.

To me the thing about Cornwall is that if you find somewhere busy there is always somewhere quieter very close by.

The same as many tourist areas. I don't want to say don't come to the Lake District at any peak time (even mid Summer)- what I will say or suggest is try to avoid a very few honeyspots and go for somewhere very close by which is less busy and just as "nice" whatever that word means.

That Saturday, 1 June, I would have actually have thought that families would be returning home from any half term holiday week, not packing out a town- apart from maybe a few coastal resorts if the weather is really warm.

Posted by
101 posts

Helen,
What time does the match typically end? That way, I will avoid that return train to London and maybe even the next one or possibly leave before it's over, but it depends on the schedule. Maybe I will try to go to the match if there are tickets and it's not pricey. I have never been to a Rugby match.
I am going to get an open return GWR ticket.

Sara, are those restaurants all seafood? Unfortunately, I have become allergic to seafood, but only if I eat more than a bite. So I can be around it and even if the tools have touched it I am fine.

Thank you,
Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

It kicks off at 3.30 and matches last for 80 mins with a halftime break so it should be over by 5.30. The train station will be busy after the game you are right, but most people will be making more local journeys so they either won’t want the same train as you or will get off quite soon.

Posted by
101 posts

Well, I just looked at the ticket prices. Never mind. It is mostly sold out, except for hospitality tickets that start at 150.00 pounds.
Yikes, too much for curiosity.
Do you think the crowds will clear out by 7 pm?

Thanks,
Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

Are you thinking about the trains? I don’t know for sure but I’d guess it would be fine by then because not many people want to head into London at that time and the main rush of rugby fans will be over.

A lot of people from the small towns around Bath go into Bath on a Saturday night so you’ll probably see a few sights in between that and the rugby crowd, by which I mean a lot of drunk people!

Posted by
114 posts

By the way, a museum I love is the Museum of Bath at Work. The couple of times I visited, it was not crowded at all, and it's a fascinating aspect of Bath's history.

Posted by
101 posts

A little twist. British weather.
Based on this forecast, would you still be going?
"Cloudy; a morning shower in spots followed by a little rain in the afternoon" 19-21c.

Keep in mind this is the only day I can make it this year and maybe for a good long time. My other option is to visit London and see some less-crowded museums (stay away from Natural and Science, etc.).

I do have a rain jacket and a light jumper.

Other than the Roman Baths and the Museum of Bath at Work what other indoor things are there to do to keep out of the rain?

Mark

Posted by
6444 posts

Absolutely I would go. Dry until 2pm, then a 32% chance of rain until 5pm, then 65% chance for a couple of hours.

Where I am today in the Lake District we are under a 2 day weather warning for rain, with a risk of transport and power disruption (yes, really). It should have been bucketing it down now for 5 hours.

So far all we have is the lightest of drizzle.

There's a one hour round trip river cruise at Bath (covered boats)- https://pulteneycruisers.com/

If it got really wet I might be inclined to hop back on a train or bus and go to the museums in Bristol, 15 minutes away by train, 1 hour by bus.

There is a City sightseeing open top HoHo bus in Bath. I don't know about Bath, but up here the open tops have a covered section at the front. I like doing the open tops on a wet day sat in the covered bit as the buses are normally empty. You still get the fresh air and the expansive views.

Posted by
101 posts

It sounds like your weather forecasts are no better than ours.
You convinced me.

Do you think a light jumper and a rain jacket without a lining will be enough, or should I go for the heavier jumper?
If I decide to try your Bristol idea, what museums are your favorite?

Thanks,
Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

Mark that is actually a good forecast for us! I don’t know how many layers you’ll feel you need. For me I’d only need very light layers but so much depends on what sort of temperatures you’re used to. We have this weather here at the moment and I am not wearing sweaters at all, just a T-shirt and light cardi or vest top with a linen shirt over. The forecast will probably change between then and now anyway.

I’d take a raincoat if it’s still looking wet but mine is unlined and lightweight.

If you wanted to come to Bristol the best museums are the MShed, the Georgian House and the SS Great Britain. The main Bristol museum has some Egyptian stuff and natural history exhibits. I wouldn’t say it was a must do for visitors.

Posted by
101 posts

Helen, thank you so much.
Everyone here in these forums is very helpful and put up with people like me with a million questions, but if I didn't ask I would never have even considered Bristol as a rain option.

Thanks again,
Mark

Posted by
101 posts

One last question I promise. How tolerant are the shops, museums, and other places in Bath of backpacks?
I was thinking with on and off rain I may want to take off the jacket and place it in my backpack.
I could just wrap it around my waist if that would be the better option.
I ask as I know some places around me (museums and some shops) do not allow backpacks inside.
So do I take or leave it?

Thanks,
Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

I use a backpack all the time. It’s not an issue here. You’ll see lots of people with them.

Posted by
114 posts

Other options for indoor sightseeing are No. 1 Royal Crescent museum, Bath Abbey, the Holburne Museum and the Guildhall Market.

Posted by
6444 posts

BTW I had a couple more ideas for Bath, and don't know whether Helen gives them a yes or no- Bath Abbey and the former Green Park Station- now a craft and local producers market

Posted by
101 posts

This is great. Thank you so much for all the ideas.
I guess I have no more excuses not to buy my ticket.

Thank you all so much,
Mark

Posted by
33128 posts

Where I am today in the Lake District we are under a 2 day weather warning for rain, with a risk of transport and power disruption (yes, really). It should have been bucketing it down now for 5 hours.

here where I am in the East (bordering East Midlands), continuous heavy rain filled my rain gauge over half way from empty, and about an hour ago the sun came out. Water water everywhere

Be prepared for anything and something nice might happen

Posted by
1121 posts

Shamefully, I’ve never been to Bath Abbey or Green Park station. I think Bath is too close to home to be a tourist day out for me! I mainly go there for a mooch around the shops or sometimes the theatre.

Posted by
6825 posts

here where I am in the East (bordering East Midlands), continuous heavy rain filled my rain gauge over half way from empty, and about an hour ago the sun came out. Water water everywhere

Nigel, same here in Duluth. Yesterday it poured down rain from around 8 am until 10 pm that night. No stops, and we had multiple flood warnings. Plus the wind was so strong, I thought I was back in England. :-) The ground is all sloshy with multiple puddles. I really would like this weather to be done...

Posted by
6444 posts

Well I've just picked up a National Weather Service advisory for expected light, slushy snow on several of the mountain passes in the Cascades, WA today, and it appears to also be for Friday to Saturday now.

I'm just looking at the Snoqualmie rain gauge on the I90- 2 inches of rain in 24 hours. For them that will be very welcome.

Less welcome is that Nigel's rain has finally reached the Lake District about 8 hours plus late.

Posted by
395 posts

We were in Snoqualmie less than 2 weeks ago, hiking around the falls in 80+ weather. Welcome rain indeed. :-)

Personally I love Bath Abbey and we've always fit in a visit when in Bath. One year we took the tower climb tour and found that very interesting. This year we also visited Prior Park as suggested by a number of posters and enjoyed that also.

Visiting the Baths first thing is a good idea. Not sure if you'll need advance tickets in early June. We were glad we had them during our visit, but that was closer to the end of July.

Posted by
101 posts

I bought my train ticket (Super Off-Peak Return), an entrance ticket for 9:30, and a guided tour for 10:00 at the Roman Baths.
I will bring my backpack with a jumper and a rain jacket just in case.
I am really looking forward to it. I do like taking the train as what I have seen so far of the English countryside is beautiful.
I have written down all of your suggestions, and I will see how many I can see.
I also wrote down the suggestion that if the weather is really bad, I should take the train to Bristol and check out the museums there.

Thank you all so much,
Mark

Posted by
101 posts

I ended up going to Bath on the 1st of June 2024. When I arrived it was blue skies and sunshine. So much for the forecast for rain and clouds all day. It did get a little cloudy later on, but never rained on me.
I left the train station and headed for the Roman Bath. The streets were deserted at 9 am. I had a ticket for 9:30, but nobody was there, so they let me in early. I did a little of the audio tour until it was time for my guided tour. The guided tour was fantastic and last over an hour. After that I continued my audio tour and then left after 2 1/2 hours.
When I got on the street, there were so many people you could hardly breathe.
I still ended up having a good time, but being a bit tired and with the huge crowds I decided to leave at 3 pm. About two hours earlier then I intended, but I am glad I did as this was the last day of my Europe trip and I was out of energy.

I know about a quarter of the crowed was for the game.

Mark

Posted by
1121 posts

I was wondering how you got on. I’m glad you enjoyed the Baths and it was a lovely day weather wise on Saturday.