Get Off Your Ath and Go to Bath

This weekend I took a break from the bustling streets of London to explore Bath and South Wales.

Our first stop was Stourhead Gardens, which is part of a massive estate. All of the hills and ponds and everything was manmade simply for the enjoyment of the owner. I’ll let these pictures speak for themselves.

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Featured in a scene from Keira Knightley's Pride and Prejudice

Featured in a scene from Keira Knightley’s Pride and Prejudice

After being led on a walking tour of Bath, we were given the rest of the evening as free time. A suggested activity was the Thermae Bath Spa. For 32 pounds, you could relax in a pool of the thermal bath waters for 2 hours. After much debating, as I’m saving most of my money on theatre tickets, I decided to use my birthday money from Suzie’s mom towards the spa experience. Thanks, Mrs. Ahlvers! ❤

Wow, talk about money well spent! I love educational tours, walking everywhere, and constant exploring, but it was so refreshing to slow down and just relax. We were given a plain white robe and slippers to wear over our swimsuits as we made our way through the spa. the highlight of the spa was the rooftop pool that overlooked Bath Abbey and the original Roman Baths. It was amazing being immersed in the thermal waters, complete with timed jets and a giant faucet that served as a warm back massage.

The floor below housed the aromatherapy steam rooms — lotus flower, a fancy name I can’t remember that smells like Vick’s, eucalyptus, and sandalwood. To cleanse yourself in between the individual rooms, there was a thermal shower, and if you got too hot, you could go out on the terrace for some crisp, fresh air. The bottom floor had another pool with a lazy river, but I preferred floating in the rooftop pool.

For a truly luxurious experience, you could go to the in-spa café. It was a beautiful sight to see all of these posh people sipping champagne, gazing into each other’s eyes over a classy meal whilst wearing robes and slippers. The middle-aged men were the most amusing.

My new friend Lydia and I thoguht it would be fun to get a treat. Unfortunately, the kitchen was backed up so we couldn’t eat without a reservation, but we were allowed to come in for a drink and small bites. As I sipped my orange cream rooibos tea, for once I stopped talking and enjoyed the beautiful moment with a satisfied sigh. Yes, this is slightly cheesy, but there are truly no words to express that sense of freedom from the world.

It gets better because they added a half an hour to our time, so we finished the experience watching the sun begin to set from the rooftop pool.

Photography wasn't allowed, so check out their website for pictures:   https://www.thermaebathspa.com/

Photography wasn’t allowed, so check out their website for pictures: https://www.thermaebathspa.com/

The next day, we went to South Wales to visit Chepstow Castle. It was neat, but it heavily smelled of urine and wasn’t quite as impressive as some of the other building we’ve seen. I got some good pictures, though.

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Thrown in the dungeon... again

Thrown in the dungeon… again

Our second stop was at Tintern Abbey, and similar to the spa experience, the beauty is hard to describe. If you’re unfamiliar, Tintern Abbey was a monastery, but when the Anglican Church took over, it was abandoned. Now a portion of the structure remains, and it has served as inspiration for poets, artists, and other creators for years. Jane Austen actually writes about it in Mansfield Park. I’ve been enjoying these excursions with a neat group of girls, but at Tintern Abbey I wandered off on my own to silently soak in the beauty.

Stained glass is beautiful, but somehow this tops it

Stained glass is beautiful, but somehow this tops it

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On our final day in Bath, we toured the Roman Bath museum where I got to taste the bath waters. It was warm and fairly metallic, but I probably have superpowers now, so it was worth it.

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Now I need to work on the scenes we’re filming tomorrow and write a paper over The Elephant Man with Bradley Cooper. Hopefully the spirit of Jane Austen will guide me.

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