In need of some spring inspiration? Look no further than Bath – the city's beautiful views, contemplative spaces, uplifting music, rich collections of art and artefacts and therapeutic waters are perfect for satisfying curious minds! In this third and final post in their series exploring the ways that Bath can make you happy, Mary Stringer from Thermae Bath Spa gives her seven top tips for enlivening the mind in Bath...
1. Music to Your Ears
From the refined Pump Room to buskers and street artists, music beats loud in the heart of Bath, and Bath Spa University’s School of Music & Performing Arts ensures a production line of talent for the future. As well as The Bath Festival and a lively Fringe Festival in the summer, there is a Bach Fest and Mozart Festival in November, opera at Iford Arts Festival, and regular concerts at stunning venues such as the Assembly Rooms and Bath Abbey. Smaller, intimate venues such as Chapel Arts Centre, and Komedia offer year-round live music.
2. Take the Waters
Bath’s waters have been lauded for their healing properties for centuries, but there are more than just physical benefits. There is something elating about bathing in waters heated by hot rocks deep within the earth – particularly when looking across Bath's stunning skyline from Thermae Bath Spa’s rooftop pool. As you’re warmed by the water and its minerals, feel your mind gladden and your heart lift!
3. Time for Tai Chi
This ancient marital art is a gateway to a calm mind and a balanced body. The best way to enjoy it in Bath? At the Roman Baths’ terrace in the chill air of early morning, overlooking Bath Abbey and the statues of Roman emperors. The sessions cost just £4 and will take place from 8am—8:30am from Tuesday 10th April.
4. Catch a Play or Film
The Theatre Royal, Ustinov Studio and The Mission Theatre all add to the vibrant cultural scene where shows destined for the West End rub shoulders with dynamic, original productions. The Chapel Arts Centre too, with its jam-packed monthly schedule of drama, comedy, music and dance performances is also worth checking out as an inspiring, creative space.
5. Laugh Out Loud
Give your mind some light relief with comedy in Bath. The Bath Comedy Festival takes place in spring and some of the country’s best comedians head to the Komedia Krater Comedy Club all year round. Here for the evening? Try the Bizarre Bath comedy walk which runs regularly from 8pm - a tour that's more hysterical than historical!
6. Art Appreciation
The Holburne Museum has a fascinating history – a Grade I listed building that has at various points been a hotel, a hospital and finally an art museum, it houses works by those such as Gainsborough, Stubbs and Turner. Another is the Victoria Art Gallery, which focuses on works by artists who lived and worked in the Bath area, and there are 20-plus smaller, independent galleries in the centre or within walking distance, all offering incredible ranges of contemporary and classic art.
7. Love for Literature
Bath plays a central role in books by Chaucer, Jane Austen and Charles Dickens amongst others. What better place to delve into stories from one of the greats? You can browse the shelves at the great independent Topping & Company Booksellers. Some of the world’s best literary figures also come to Bath for a diverse programme of talks and readings during The Bath Festival in May, and the Jane Austen Festival is another brilliant opportunity for literary-themed events, talks, walks and balls!