Bath is full of history, with brilliant shopping, nightlife and foodie scenes, but there are also a range of ways to get outdoors on an adventure in and around the city. Being nestled in the stunning Avon Valley and as home to a beautiful canal surrounded by green wooded hills means that the likes of mountain biking, trail running, wild swimming, climbing, and more, are always on offer.
Read on for Darroch Davidson from Wild Swim Bike Run’s top six ways you can get active in Bath...
1. Pedal Power
Without even touching the Cotswold or Mendip areas there are bridleways, long distance cycling paths, wooded singletracks, converted railway paths, quiet roads, and a network of National Cycle Network routes with plenty of pubs and cafés to enjoy along the way in Bath. Some ideas to get you spinning include the Bristol and Bath Railway Path, the Kennet and Avon Canal Path, the Colliers Way, the Two Tunnels Greenway and some of the best road cycling in the country up on the Cotswolds!
2. Tackle the Trails
Bath is surrounded by seven hills and therefore valleys full of hidden woods, historical buildings, native wildlife and peaceful spots to relax. We’re also perfectly placed to tackle some fantastic long-distance walking paths including the Cotswold Way (102 miles), the Limestone Link (36 miles) and the Macmillan Way (290 miles). Want a shorter trek? The Bath Skyline Walk, a six-mile loop with panoramic views of the city, is for you.
3. Mix It up with Multi-Sports and Triathlons
With a range of flat, rolling and steep terrain combined with the University of Bath’s Olympic-sized, London 2012 Legacy Swimming Pool and the Cotswold Water Park, we’re a perfect training destination. Speaking from experience, Bath is the perfect place to train for something like an Ironman – if you train hard, the race will (theoretically) be easy!
4. Make a Splash
With the River Avon, Kennet and Avon Canal, Cotswold Water Park and the Chew Valley Lake, you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to water sports. Guided and hire options are available for canoes, rowing boats, stand-up paddleboards and day boats from Bath Narrowboats and Bath Boating Station. The stretch of canal between Bath and Bradford-on-Avon is a highlight with two aqueducts to cross and lots of wildlife to look out for. You might even spot an iconic kingfisher!
5. Recharge Overnight
With a number of excellent budget accommodation options such as the University of Bath, Bath YMCA and Green Park House, we’re the perfect city in which to base yourself for an overnight bikepacking or walking adventure. Car-free paths can take you from the city centre right into the heart of the countryside.
6. Enter a Race
Looking to take your adventuring to the next level? We’re lucky enough to stage a number fun, local, outdoor events including Bike Bath, a celebration of cycling featuring 25, 50 and 80-mile routes, and the Bath Half Marathon.
It’s also handy that Bath’s vibrant après-adventure bar and restaurant scene is the perfect place to re-live the day’s adventures before hitting the reset button to do it all again!
Finally, whilst enjoying our beautiful countryside, please remember to observe the countryside code, use appropriate safety equipment and leave nothing but footsteps!
Now want to head on an adventure? Check out Wild Swim Bike Run for cycling and triathlon holidays in the UK and New Zealand. In Bath they run Bath Cycle Tours, perfect for seeing the city’s sights from the saddle, and experiencing stunning countryside on the Kennet and Avon Canal Path.