In April, we will be visiting our daughter and her boyfriend in Leeds. We wanted to take a trip to Bath for 4 days. We cannot decide which is the better method - car or train? A car would give us transportation around Bath but I am worried about driving on the right hand side and I heard that English drivers are not tolerant at all!! Any advice on this?
Hello Lori. Traveling from Leeds to Bath is not a very long trip. I travelled in trains from York to Bath. I do not know of any reason for renting a car there. I heard that Leeds is a town that tourists like being at. Improvements were made there in recent years.
It a four-hour train ride with either one or two changes. Booked online 30-60 days in advance, you can get a fare of £16. The cheapest walk-up fare is £69. Use the Journey Planner at www.nationalrail.co.uk to get timetables and fares.
I haven't driven in England, but I had no problems doing so in Ireland two years ago. Having a navigator/map reader/potential trouble spotter sitting beside you helps a lot.
Parking in the centre of Bath is expensive and difficult, and you could not use a car to get between sites. If you want to visit Stonehenge, Wells, Lacock, Castle Combe, etc, then a car would be convenient. It would also be useful if you wanted to travel into the city centre from the suburbs in the evening, perhaps for the theatre or a restaurant.
Driving from Leeds to Bath by motorway would not be a pleasant journey, especially if you are nervous. The train would be less hassle, but do book your tickets in advance if you can.
Lori Anne, clarification - do you mean "driving on the left hand side"?
Driving in England can be a bit challenging, especially in the more populated areas. Unless you're really comfortable with this, you might be better with public transport. The roads can be quite narrow, and some drivers aren't too tolerant of "slower traffic" in front of them. You'd also have to familiarize yourself with the rules for Roundabouts.
Train is one option from Leeds to Bath, but you could also consider Coach (National Express). The fares are quite reasonable, but of course that mode of travel is slower. You could also use a combination of Rail & Coach (Rail to London and Coach to BAth?).
If you did hire a Car, parking in Bath wouldn't necessarily be a problem, as many B&B's offer free parking. For tours of Stonehenge, Lacock, Cotswolds or whatever, you could use day tours from Bath rather than drive. Have a look at Mad Max tours on the net (they're listed in Rick's England book).