2012-11-27 at 11-59-55On Day 2 of our jaunt we spent an entire day in Bath. First thing in the morning I walked back through this elegant city to buy my Russian matryoshka doll.

2012-11-27 at 12-00-39It was still fairly quiet.

2012-11-27 at 12-02-36The throng of Christmas shoppers had yet to appear. The view above is of the King and Queen’s entrance to the Royal Baths, with the abbey in the background.

2012-11-27 at 12-01-11Bath Abbey.

2012-11-27 at 12-03-56The traders were still setting up when I arrived at the market.

2012-11-27 at 12-17-59Despite the light drizzle there was already a lovely atmosphere at the Christmas market. I bought my doll (which reminds me, I must take a picture of it!) and then met up with Pam and Gerald in the square where our free walking tour was to begin.

2012-11-27 at 14-33-28We met up with our dapper guide with his prestigious Blue Badge and he took us on a two hour walk around Bath, giving fascinating information about the Bath’s history and people, as well as sharing some amusing anecdotes and scandalous stories.

2012-11-27 at 13-40-15We walked all the way to Royal Crescent.

2012-11-27 at 13-48-28And the Circus.

2012-11-27 at 14-24-56At Pulteney Bridge we could see that the River Avon was very swollen by the heavy rains that had fallen on the region over the last couple of weeks. Compare it my shot of the same view in 2008.

2012-11-27 at 14-25-49Looking east across the river.

2012-11-27 at 14-30-28We ended up at the other side of Bath Abbey, where a plaque commemorates where Edgar, the first king of England, was crowned. The site once had a much larger church on it than the current Bath Abbey. I can really recommend the Mayor’s Free Walking Tours of Bath.

2012-11-27 at 16-01-10After lunch we visited the Roman Baths. Looking down on the Sacred Spring.

2012-11-27 at 16-40-12It is hard to imagine what this would have looked like in Roman times as all the building in the bath and temple complex have been lost. The architecture you see here is much later, mostly Georgian, with just the spring and the bases of the Roman columns remaining.

2012-11-27 at 16-08-26In the museum there is a replica of how the Roman Baths would have looked.

2012-11-27 at 16-11-39There are also many ancient artifacts on display, such as the remnants of the Temple pediment with the face of a Gorgon in the centre.

2012-11-27 at 16-33-36Here is the mouth of the sacred spring.

2012-11-27 at 15-50-20We skipped tea in the Pump Room and instead visited Bath Abbey next door.

2012-11-27 at 17-10-09Bath Abbey is the last Gothic church built in England.

2012-11-27 at 17-11-14Wonderful fan-vaulted ceilings.

2012-11-27 at 17-08-22The original wooden doors.

2012-11-27 at 17-13-23The altar.

2012-11-27 at 17-12-38A very impressive pipe organ.

2012-11-27 at 17-15-33There is also a memorial to Arthur Philip, the first Governor of Australia, who spent his final years in Bath. By this stage we had exhausted Gerald, so Pam and I dropped him off back at the apartment where he read a book and had a glass of scotch.

2012-11-27 at 18-20-23Meanwhile Pam and I went to the Bath Assembly Rooms. Built in the 18th cetnury, they were to focus of elegant Georgian society.

2012-11-27 at 18-10-38The tea room.

2012-11-27 at 18-07-51The ballroom. Readers of Jane Austen will know the Assembly Rooms from Northanger Abbey and Persuasion.

On the way back to our apartment, Pam and I did a little window shopping. We all had dinner in the Snug at Gascoyne Place, where there was a lovely ambiance and a crackling warm fire.