The key to Bath’s popularity and fame is in the name. It was the Romans who first recognised the value of the hot springs in the area. They were quick to build a thermae, or imperial bath complex, on the site, which they steadily developed further during their reign over the course of around three and a half centuries. That early significance has meant that through the ensuing centuries, further important buildings were constructed, including Bath Abbey in the 7th century, and the fine 18th-century Georgian architecture for which Bath is also celebrated, such as the elegant townhouses of the Royal Crescent and the Circus.
Bath tours from London usually include stops at some of the region’s other highlights, of which there are many, including Stonehenge and the Cotswolds. There is a broad range of tour options available, but given the distance from London, full-day tours are the minimum in terms of time, in order to make the most of Bath. Cheap tours are available too, as well as longer trips over a couple of days that seek to offer a more comprehensive exploration of the region, with the Cotswolds and Oxford making it onto the itinerary. Here are three of the best tours on offer.
From £64/ per person
As one of the most consistently popular Bath tours from London, this simple itinerary, lasting around 11 hours in total, focusses on Bath primarily. The first stop of the day is at the revered prehistoric monument of Stonehenge, with an hour and a half to explore the site and the modern visitor’s centre. The tour then heads to Bath, starting with a guided driving tour through the city to help you get your bearings. There will then be plenty of free time to explore, shop, and visit sites that intrigue you the most, before returning to London. Meals are not provided on this tour.
From £73/ per person
If you’d prefer to spend a little less time in Bath and Stonehenge in order to fit a couple of other stops into the itinerary, then this is a great alternative tour. The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Stonehenge is first-up, followed by Bath, where you can explore at your leisure and have some lunch (not covered in the tour price). Hop back on the minibus to head to Lacock nearby, a stunning little village (which is typically British) that has been used as a filming location in many films and period dramas. The final stop is Avebury, a rural area with its own, much wider prehistoric stone circle. And speaking of circles, the tour then ends back in your start-point of London after roughly ten hours.
FROM £159/per person
Sometimes a day is simply not enough time to take everything in. This tour acknowledges that and so opens the itinerary up to other regional must-see sites, such as the lovely Cotswolds and the historic university city of Oxford. Notably, Stonehenge is absent from this trip, although the Avebury stone circle is included. Bath is the highlight of day one, where you can visit the Roman Baths and other spots in the city. Accommodation is included in the price at a B&B in the pleasant town of Cirencester. Day two takes in Cotswolds favourites like Bibury, Broadway Tower and Stow-on-the-Wold, while Oxford is reserved for last on the return journey to London.