It’s that wonderful time of year again where we’re all looking for the perfect gifts, arranging to spend time with loved ones and generally feeling jolly and festive. So why not get things all wrapped up with a visit to Bath this December?
Less than an hour and a half away from Lakeside, Bath does Christmas in style! Head on over to SouthGate Place to see the only grotto in the city that comes complete with a log cabin for Father Christmas and a winter wonderland for you. Open right the way up to Christmas Eve, Father Christmas is available to say hello from 11am – 5pm up to the 13th December, and after that he is staying for an extra 2 hours a day until 7pm! He has to dash off at 4pm on Christmas Eve though, as he will be rather busy in the evening delivering presents!
If you’re planning a visit with the little ones, be sure to book ahead so they can meet him, or drop in at any time up until 30 mins before closing so he has the chance to prepare for their visit. If there is a long line, there are happy elves ready and waiting to entertain you and keep you smiling while you wait.
During your visit, why not take the time to check out the award winning shopper’s paradise that is the Bath Christmas Market? The streets are lined with more than 170 chalets filled with Christmas gifts of all shapes and sizes, right in the centre of the city, and are just a short distance from both the Roman Baths and Bath Abbey – more stops on your journey!
The Bath Christmas Market is a full sensory experience with the amazing sights, sounds, and scents of Christmas emanating from warming mulled wine and freshly baked mince pies, Christmas carols, and the beautifully decorated shops of talented local makers. Take in the creative wonders of the local shopkeepers, including the glass art of Robin Coetzee or illustrator Mary Kilvert from Herefordshire and her signature woolly sheep, stationery, decorative wallpaper and inspired Lanterns hand-made from printed cotton showcasing wintery British countryside scenes and historic cityscapes.
These are just two examples of the type of artistry you will find in Bath over the Christmas season, and more than 80% of the market stallholders are local businesses offering handmade wooden toys, gingerbread houses, tasty cheeses, funky jewellery, and crafted candles such as Maiden Dorset’s curve candle.
The Bath Christmas Market is a mere five minutes’ walk from Bath Spa train station and is easily accessible thanks to the drop curbs of the city centre. There is an accessible toilet facility on Swallow Street and for the first time, Wi-Fi access will be available at the market this year. If you prefer to drive, Bath is only 20 miles from Junction 18 off the M4 motorway running from London and Heathrow Airport. There are motorway links from the North, Devon and Cornwall via the M5 and Wales is west on the M4. There are several multi-storey car parks as well as three park and ride services operating seven days a week until 10pm (except Sundays) for shoppers coming from the North, West and South. It only takes 10 minutes to reach the centre of Bath, and once you are there everything is within easy walking distance.