Friday, March 28, 2008

Let The Calm Wash Over You

We started our week with a trip to the Bath Thermae Spa, Britain's only natural thermal spa. It was a wonderfully relaxing experience.

Bath itself I found rather dull and boring. I don't think that the weather helped. It was cold and grey.


Bath is a city famous for its elegant Georgian architecture, with "perfectly proportioned" Georgian Crescents, and greenery.

Perhaps I've been spoiled by staying so often with friends' living in Edinburgh's New Town. I found the spa town's architecture rather unimpressive, a poor cousin to the far more elegant Edinburgh.

The Pulteney Bridge, "modeled on the Florentian Ponte Vecchio") was the only building that caught my attention, with its buildings spanning either side of the bridge.

River AvonRoman Baths

The Roman Baths have made the city famous, "the best preserved Roman spa from the ancient world stunningly restored during the Victorian era".

Iron in the waterGhosts

You can drink the water in the pump room. For me, it was like drinking some warm slightly salted water - the kind you would gargle at home after a tooth extraction.

Water Spa

I'd booked us both in for the de-stress thermae treatment. It was wonderful - especially the aromatic moor mud wrap and back, neck & shoulders massage.

I'm not into the whole massage/treatment thing. Xfe is, of course. But wow. I could certainly feel the wrap soothing deep inside. To experience that while having my head massaged was wonderfully relaxing.

On a couple of occasions I realised my head was empty. I was thinking of nothing at all. After laying there for 50 minutes, in my wrap, having my head massaged I was simply soothed.

After showering my therapist actually gave me a full body massage. She spoke no hype when she told me that I was "in a deep state of relaxation". Truly, I was.

That night, back in London, I slept as well as I ever have in my life.

It is certainly something I will do again.


You have to book the treatment, and it is an extremely popular place, so you have to book well in advance. However, for us, the next time we'll go for he day. It's close enough to do it that way, without staying over (like the town itself, the Hilton hotel we stayed in was spectacularly tired and disappointing).

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