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Bath and Beyond, Somerset ⏱️ 5 hrs

Bath and Beyond

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⏱️ Walk 5 hrs (16.5km)
📈 Total Ascent 466 m
⛰️ Highest Point 185 m

Welcome to this Signature Hike

Bath is a beautiful, historic city built from the iconic stone that bears its name. This hike starts in its heart and carries you above and around it, showing it off from every perspective. You’ll encounter a folly castle and a real aqueduct on your walk through the woodland, along the canal and the river.

Read the infomation below to learn more about your walk before you head off.

Ready to walk?

Be sure to download your PDF guide for the walk and make sure you have the OS maps app downloaded.

Or email yourself the guide:

Before you start

Here’s 3 important things you need to know before you head off:

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Save This Guide

Save the PDF guide on your device that you’re going to use on the walk. (This contains all the handy information, from how to get there, points of interest and pubs, taxis etc).

📱

Download OS Map App

This is how you will navigate your way around the route. The link for the route is in this guide and will take you to the OS Maps app.

Click here for Apple
Click here for Android

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Battery

Make sure you have plenty of battery. We hope you have a great walk.

The Curator Gabriel Birstowe

Meet the Curator

Gabriel – or ‘Gabes’ – having grown up in the beautiful countryside on Bath’s doorstep, has been exploring its hidden and not so hidden walking routes since a young age. Having adventured around the world he now finds himself back in this astonishingly charming landscape, exploring its surroundings by means of a liveaboard canal boat. Being an avid mushroom forager, Gabes is always searching the countryside for his next fungi find. If anyone is best suited to share this wonderful part of the world with you, it’s Gabes.

“Bath has been celebrated as one of the most beautiful cities in England and what better way to view its splendour than by walking the rolling hills and valleys surrounding it. This hike takes you high above the city giving you fantastic panoramic views of its historic beauty, winds you through enchanting woodlands, ambles along the tranquil canal and gives you the option of plenty of wild swims along the way. Watch out for the unmistakable bright blue of the kingfisher that can be spotted darting along the canal, or the patient heron poised on the bankside. Bring your mushroom knowledge and see how many varieties you can identify along the way! Idyllic picnic spots can be found throughout the walk, giving you a pause to soak it all in.”

Adventure Summary

South Downs

Whilst only an hour and a half from London by train, Bath feels like a world away. Its beautiful honey coloured stone and Georgian architecture reflect a graciousness that has been its hallmark since Roman times.  Bath is the only entire city in the UK that has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it is not difficult to see why.

Bath Abbey dominates the city centre and provides the focal point to a city that rewards exploration on foot. From the charming Georgian streets to the iconic sites of the Royal Crescent and Roman Baths, there is so much to discover. If it seems familiar, it probably is! Many films and TV series have been shot using the Bath backdrop, most recently the television series Bridgerton. Poldark, Sherlock and The Trial of Christine Keeler have all made use of the perfect backdrop.

Hike Highlights

The City of Bath

The city of Bath captivates with its harmonious blend of Georgian architecture and natural hot springs.

Dunas Aqueduct

The 18th century aqueduct showcases the advanced engineering and architectural skills of the period.

River Avon

Home to diverse wildlife, including otters, kingfishers, and various fishes.

By Train
Trains to Bath Spa run regularly from London Paddington and take around 1 hour and 30 minutes. The route starts right beside the railway station.
 
By Car
There is plenty of metered parking at Bath Spa Station as well as at the Southgate Car Park (BA1 1TP) or Manvers Street Car Park (BA1 1JQ).

Sometimes, we can get so caught up in reaching our destination that we forget to take in our surroundings. When in fact, some of the best moments on a walk are the ones spent not walking. It is not until you stop and look a little closer, that you truly see the magic of where you are.
Our hikes are not about how fast you walk, but about how much you take in. We share these beautiful trails with an abundance of wildlife and there’s always something to marvel at – so long as you take the time to look around.

Nestled on the banks of the River Frome at Freshford, just outside Bath, this 16th-century village inn is a gem in The Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The inn blends traditional charm with contemporary flair, featuring original timber beams, open fires, a beautiful garden, and ample parking. Guests are welcomed warmly and can enjoy a menu of delicious, locally sourced food, real ales, and fine wines. Whether for a countryside walk stop or a delightful dining experience, this pub offers history, comfort, and quality.

Points of interest

Places to enjoy along the route

Deep lock small
BATH DEEP LOCK
Look out for the ornate chimney beside the Pump House that was built to replenish the water level above Bath Deep Lock. The bridges and buildings servicing the canal were all designed to complement the Georgian architecture that makes Bath so beautiful. You pass Bath Deep Lock as you head under the road; it’s the second deepest lock in England.
Sham castle small
SHAM CASTLE
A short diversion to Sham Castle is recommended before you set off along the Skyline. You might have thought that this plateau alone, looming above Bath, offered plenty with its magnificent view. Not so for Ralph Allen, erstwhile postmaster of the city, who had Sham Castle built in 1762 to improve the view from his house! The stark difference between its appearance from the front and from behind is a testament to the motivation for this folly’s construction, but it is nonetheless a sight to behold.
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KENNET & AVON CANAL
The Kennet & Avon Canal runs between Bristol and Bath, to the Thames at Reading. To travel the whole connected waterway, you’d cover more than 100 miles and pass through more than 100 locks. It was constructed at the turn of the 19th century, but the railway soon pushed it into disuse – we have only been able to enjoy it as we see it today since it was reopened after restoration in 1990.
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RALPH ALLEN
It’s difficult to visit Bath and not bump into Ralph Allen. Streets, buildings, and a school are all named after him. Ralph Allen (1693 –1764) was an entrepreneur and philanthropist who made his money reforming the postal system before taking over local quarries. He literally shaped the development of Georgian Bath and its honey-coloured stone. He built Prior Park, a massive Grade I listed Palladian pile to show off the stone as well as his wealth. He also became the Member of Parliament for Bath.
Dundas aqueduct small
DUNDAS AQUEDUCT
This remarkable engineering feat, completed in 1810, carries the Canal over the River Avon. Constructed using the instantly recognisable Bath stone, it’s strikingly elegant, and quite unforgettable when you see a canal boat pass over it! There is another wild swimming spot by the steps beside the aqueduct, accessible as you drop down to the canal path.

What’s Next?

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