Thursday, 5 July 2018

Follow Me To: 48 Hours in Bath

what to do in Bath UK visit bath

Hey Owlets,

Today I'm back to share more of my travels with you and this time I want to do something a little different; I'm going to show you everything I did, but it's going to be more of an itinerary that you can use if you stay in Bath overnight. I'm lucky to live in a place that's very well connected so I'm used to popping to Bath for a few hours here and there and I thought I knew the city pretty well, but Visit Bath showed me some things in Bath that I never would've known existed, as well as some old favourites too.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath Electric Bear Brewing Beer

Arriving in Bath by train, the first stop on the agenda was a trip to Electric Bear Brewing to taste some of their beers, produced only a ten minute drive from the city centre. When I'm travelling there's nothing better than enjoying a drink in the sunshine, and it's even better to try something that's unique to the area. Unfortunately Electric Bear isn't open to the public everyday, but it's worth checking on their website as they run loads of events at their brewery. If you can't get to one of their events then you can try their beer at one of the many bars across the city. I actually can't stand beer, but the head brewer managed to find one that even I enjoyed - if you're the same as me I'd recommend you go for the mango sour beer.

what to do in Bath UK visit bathwhat to do in Bath UK visit bath Royal Cresent

After an alcoholic pitstop (preferably in the sunshine), I'd recommend taking some time to explore the city. There's lots of touristy places like the Roman Baths and the Pump Rooms, but my favourite way to get a feel for a city is just to take a wander through the streets. I found this beautiful park just a stone's throw from the Royal Crescent which, if I'd been busy following my phone's maps, I never would've seen. One of my favourite things about Bath are all the little green spaces that are dotted all over the city where you can stop and enjoy the scenery - just as well really with all those hills, I was exhausted!

what to do in Bath UK visit bath Locksbrook Inn Review

When you've worked up an appetite head over to The Locksbrook Inn for lunch with a view; the pub garden is great anyway, but it's made even better by watching the odd boat sail past. We didn't have long for lunch so we only had a pizza, but it was enjoyable, homemade and not at all greasy. The menu looked amazing so I'd love to go back and try something else another day.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath Swoon Gelato Ice cream

Having stopped for pizza at the pub, we moved onto Swoon Gelato for dessert - it's kind of become the Instagram-lover's cult place recently. They have stores in both Bristol and Bath, and provide unique flavours with Pinterest-worthy decor to take selfies with your ice cream against; they also offer vegan options including a vegan chocolate that was so good I couldn't tell the difference between that and the non-vegan alternative. I was a little boring but it was 30ยบ so I went with a mango sorbet to make me feel more refreshed.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath paddle boarding

After a break from the sun it's time to try paddle boarding with Original Wild - by this point the sun has gone down a little and it's the perfect time to relax as you sail around Bath's canals. I'm really sad I didn't get to have a go as my bad hip was playing up, but it's definitely something I'm planning to go back to try - everyone else said they loved it and apparently it's a lot easier than you'd think!

what to do in Bath UK visit bath Framptons gastropub

When you've worked up an appetite I'd recommend going to Framptons for dinner. Walking through the doors makes you feel like you've stepped back in time 70 years, the view from the windows looks more like a painting and the food is absolutely incredible. I went for the hake which was cooked to perfection, and I love the fact that they try to locally source as many ingredients as possible.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath le vignoble wine tasting milsom place

After dinner there's just time for one more stop as the sun sets - after all you are on holiday, right? We went to Le Vignoble on Milsom Place to do some wine tasting - unfortunately I'm not very good at it. When she asked what the wine tasted like, apparently "wine" wasn't the right answer... Le Vignoble offer regular wine tasting lessons, but you can also just pop in for a glass or two. The really cool thing is that you're given a card which is effectively your tab, then you walk around and tap it on the vending machines to get whichever wine you'd like.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath what to do in Bath UK visit bath University of Bath guest accommodation
Photo: University of Bath (my lens wasn't wide enough!)
After a glass of wine, we went back and checked into our rooms for the night. The University of Bath rent out their student accommodation over the summer and all the money is reinvested in improving the university. They're not the most luxurious rooms but they're great for a flexible, low-cost place to stay near the city. It's a 30 minute walk from the centre or a short bus ride, and they start from £35 a night. The ensuite single room that we stayed in is £60 but that's still cheaper than a hotel in the centre. The thing I loved about it is that if you're going with a few friends you each pay around £35 for your room, have a kitchen to make your own food, and have the common room to spend time together.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath breakfast buffet

In the morning we were given a yoga class, which unfortunately isn't usually available to guests. However, during your stay you can have full use of the sports facilities for £10 per day or £30 per week, and that includes use of the incredible pool - word of warning, it's all two metres deep so make sure you're a strong swimmer. Breakfast is an optional extra but it's definitely worth it. As this was a press trip we had breakfast laid out for us so unfortunately you can't expect this at your table if you stay, but they do offer a buffet breakfast.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath sham castle bathampton folly

After you've spent some time enjoying the facilities it's time to get out and explore again. I've been to Bath many times and never knew this existed. Ralph Allen built a lot of Bath in the 1700s, but the story says that he wanted something to look at, so he built Sham Castle. It's really strange because it's just the front face of the castle and nothing else. It's beautiful for pictures but the view is also incredible - from the hill you can look down onto the whole city. It's one of those things that you wouldn't expect to find, and it's worth the walk just for the novelty.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath county hotel beach bar
Photo: Visit Bath
When it's time for a rest, I'd take a short walk and head to County Hotel's new beach bar. I've seen a lot of these springing up recently but they always seem to be in London so it's nice to see something more local. They've effectively built a beach in their back garden and it's a great place to spend a few hours drinking cocktails, relaxing on the comfy chairs and having a chat.

what to do in Bath UK visit bath view from the hill

After all of this I was definitely ready to go home and sleep - I think I got back at 4pm and was asleep by 7, but I always prefer a busy schedule because I'm that person who wants to make the most of every second and see everything. Hopefully this has inspired you if you're planning a trip to Bath this summer, and you can take one or all of these things to personalise the trip to whatever you enjoy doing. 

Where would you like to see me go next? Let me know on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or in the comments below.

Love and Feathers, 
 The Owlet ๐Ÿ’œ 

You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Pinterest

N.B: I was a guest of Visit Bath so everything was complimentary, but all views remain my own.

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Bar + Block, Birmingham Review

Bar and Block Steakhouse Restaurant Waterloo Street Birmingham Gluten Free Food Review

Hey Owlets,

I'm back with another restaurant review, and this may actually be one of the last for a little while. I feel like I've been flooding you with them recently and I have so much going on over the next month or so that I don't have time to go out for a meal! Today's review comes from a little further north than the last one, just off of Cathedral Square in central Birmingham.

I realise the first photo may not seem particularly relevant, but as soon as you walk into the restaurant you realise that it's an Instagrammer's paradise, in fact the manager had to stand there for a minute waiting to show us to our table as we took a photo of the sign.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

What I Wore to Common People: Plus Size Festival Lookbook

Plus Size Festival Fashion Inspiration Look Book Common People Oxford

Hey Owlets,

If you remember last month I was lucky enough to be invited to Common People Festival. One of the the things I struggled with most was trying to decide what to wear. If you search festival fashion it brings up hundreds of photos of skinny girls in over the top outfits and it really stressed me out, when I was already nervous about being at my first festival. So I thought it was time that we change that - here's what I wore to Common People.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

May in Pictures

Barn Owl Centre Review Owl Flying Bristol Gloucester

Hey Owlets,

I've not done one of these posts in ages, but in all honesty I haven't had a month that's been worth doing an "in pictures" post about until now. The first few months of the year are always quiet. It's hopefully been worth the wait though because not only is May a special month for me, but it's also been so busy that I needed a duvet day by the time we got to June!

Friday, 8 June 2018

A New Summer Menu - Cosy Club Bristol Review

Cosy Club Review Where To Eat in Bristol

Hey Owlets,

I feel like I've been very heavy (pun intended) on the food content recently, but I've had the opportunity to visit some incredible places, and I had a few messages saying you enjoyed seeing my recommendations for where to eat when you visit Bristol/Birmingham, so your wish is my command!

Today's venue wins the award for the prettiest place ever! Cosy Club occupies the shell of an old bank on Corn Street and it's been restored beautifully - this is probably the closest you can ever get to eating brunch in a cathedral, and it's amazing.  The restaurant feels like it belongs in the building, with its decor and menus all echoing the gorgeous 1930s art deco style.

Saturday, 2 June 2018

Follow Me To: Common People Festival with Snazaroo

Common People Oxford Review Snazaroo Face Paint Bristol Plus Size Fashion Blogger

Hey Owlets,

I've been really lucky to get to do some amazing things with my blog, but a few weeks ago I got an email from Snazaroo that, for a second, I honestly thought they'd sent to the wrong person. So last week when I boarded the train to Oxford, I was still feeling like I needed you to pinch me.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Follow Me To: My 22nd Birthday!

Bristol Plus Size Fashion Blogger Mental Health Personal Growth Travel

Hey Owlets,

I don't know about you, but I'm feeling 22..... sorry, had to do that!
I originally wasn't planning to do a birthday post this year, but I ended up having such a great time that I really wanted to share it with you. So here we go - here's what I got up to for my 22nd birthday (and pretty much a week around that).

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Dinner with a View: Salt and Malt, Chew Valley Review

Salt and Malt Chew Valley Review where to eat bristol restaurants

Hey Owlets,

Living in Bristol for two decades, you'd think I would've found everything there is to see, but when I was invited for dinner on the bank of Chew Valley Lake, my first response was "there's a lake near the airport?" Salt and Malt is a small restaurant and takeaway less than an hour's drive from Bristol city centre, offering dinner with an incredible view. Unfortunately it's one of the few places that you can't get to without a car, but if you can drive it's worth the trip.