A Christmas market has to be one of the best ways to get into the festive spirit. I have been wanting to visit the Bath Christmas market for a while now so this year we planned ahead to make it happen. Famous for its picturesque chalet huts and a focus on local suppliers I couldn’t wait. If you’re keen to visit you still have until the 10th of December this year.
We got up early and drove over in the morning, it was fun passing Stonehenge to show our daughter on the way, watching the world wake up made it feel like an adventure for all of us. Once we’d parked and taken the train to Bath it couldn’t have been easier to find all the Christmas action. Walking through the Southgate area we were delighted to find plenty of faux snow falling from the sky, shops galore and places to eat. I had to make a quick stop at Accessorize for gloves as it was a much colder day than I had anticipated.
We then headed through to the Abbey area which is just stunning sitting close to the Roman Bath Museum and Pump Rooms and especially with all the chalet huts so beautiful decorated. Having had an early start we were ‘forced’ to buy delicious cupcakes at Didicakes chalet hut by our hungry daughter, it was an early treat in a day full of tastey finds. There is so much to see as you wander through the markets and plenty of fabulous local traders selling a great variety of gifts and of course mulled wine!
Once we’d explored a bit we decided to take a short break at Hunter and Sons tucked away in Milsom Place for supberb coffee, craft beer and a sausage roll. It was nice to escape the hustle and bustle and sit for a little while we planned the rest of our day. Our daughter loves a good map and it was fun to see how much more we had to see. We then ventured further away from the town centre for a wonderful lunch at Clifton Sausage. They had a wonderful set menu and we enjoyed sausages, pork belly and sticky toffee pudding.
Fuelled up and ready to go again we headed back via Milsom Street where we found Jolly’s, Waterstones, Vinegar Hill and lots more. We had time to explore some of the chalets we had missed earlier before gathering with the crowds at the Abbey for the 4pm Carol Service. It was such a lovely experience, everyone was made to feel so welcome and we got to take in the beauty of the Abbey while it filled up before the service began. It was no surprise that each of the four services had been full and everyone gave the carols their best singing voice. By the time we came out it was getting darker and the lights were making everything look even more magical. It wasn’t long before we were all tired and ready to head back to find our hotel.
On first glance hotels in Bath really inflate their prices for this period which is fair enough but helped us in our decision to stay a short train journey away in order to get a good balance of excitement and relaxation. We stumbled on Timbrell’s Yard in Bradford-on-Avon, a Grade II listed hotel with views of the river, a fantastic restaurant and situated close to the station, it ticked all our boxes. It had such a festive feel with a beautiful Christmas tree and decorations here an there.
We couldn’t have been made to feel more welcome, the staff were fantastic, which is especially lovely when you have a tired, hungry toddler on your hands. Our room was gorgeous, it looked over to the church and river and had an in room bath that made bath time quite exciting for our daughter. We enjoyed another fantastic meal in the restaurant and really wished we hadn’t eaten so much earlier as we didn’t have room for puddings, we’ll just have to go back!
In the morning, after a good nights sleep, we went down to breakfast. We love a good breakfast and were thrilled to find there was something for everyone, our daughter enjoyed a croissant, the bircher muesli cups were delicious and, having booked directly with the hotel, we enjoyed a cooked breakfast. After a stroll down the river and round the town we were very sad to pack up and check out, we had such a wonderful break and despite a jam packed day of festive action felt revived and rested. We made our way back in to Bath for a little more shopping before heading home. Another year I would love to make it over to the ice rink and crazy golf, I think a longer weekend might be in order next time!
If you would like to see how we got on you can see our short video over on YouTube! Do you have a favourite Christmas market? I’d love to hear where you head to feel festive! It’s really never too early to start thinking about next year.