You might not have missed that this weekend I went on a 24 hour jolly to Bath Christmas Markets - it's on my Instagram and I think I banged on about it enough.
Myself, my Mum, one of her besties and her daughter who only happens to be one of my besties too have been saying for years we need to go on a girls long weekend to Venice. Like years. So what do we do when we can't seem to find the money or the time? The last two November's we've met up in the UK for a short weekend instead. Logical, we are not. Desperate for a weekend away and some time together we are.
We've all been to Bath many times but never made it for the markets so we chose last weekend and booked it all in the summer and on Saturday morning we hopped in the cars and met in the middle. Except the middle for me and Mum was about an hour and a half max and about 3 for them. Soz.
If you haven't been to Bath Christmas Markets before it's INSANE. Like that's the review I'd give on Trip Advisor. Cardiff Christmas Markets is really different, it's mainly the Hayes that has all the stalls in one place but in Bath it's like every street has a few stalls and then there's one or two squares that have pop up food outlets and obviously copious amounts of mulled cider and wine. We 100% didn't get to see it all and we were there for 5 and a half hours and I don't even know where the bits we missed were.
The whole city centre is decked out in lights and things to do and look at and obviously all the stalls but it's SO busy I think if you can wangle it you're probably better off going on a weekday. Everyone and their dog turned up for what was the first weekend of the markets and whilst we had a fabulous time and saw everything we personally wanted to see, some of the stalls were about 7 or 8 people deep and you couldn't get anywhere near them.
Every carpark in Bath was full by the morning, every Park & Ride and overflow were full, there were around 200 coach and bus loads of people in the centre and all the trains in and out were down all day so you can imagine the volume of people. If the crowd was moving down stream and you were going against the flow you were knackered. On the whole it was fine, if you don't like crowds it probably isn't your kind of thing because there were a few people genuinely pushing (I got a good shove out the way by a middle aged woman which was cute) but on the whole you can escape for a few and have a coffee - if you can find somewhere to sit down.
Because of the price of city centre hotels and the difficulty of parking anywhere remotely near Bath we just booked a Premier Inn in Chippenham. We literally just needed somewhere to pop our heads down for the night and it cost us 88 quid for 3 rooms which split between 4 people ain't half bad (lol jk me and Gabs are poor graduates, obvs our Mums treated us <3).
The Premier Inn itself was just like any other but MAHOOOOSIVE. Me and Gabbie shared a room because sleepovers and the Mums had rooms next but one to eachother on the other side of the hotel. Every time we went to find them the corridors kept going, and going, and going, and then you'd go through a door, and another door and then find another corridor and then in the distance you'd be able to see ANOTHER TURNING. It was ginormous but super easy to get to off the M4 and has a Morrisons opposite and a Brewers Fayre attached for meals and breakfast.
On the Sunday we needed somewhere for a few hours to clear the cobwebs before we all set off home at about half 2 that afternoon so we went to Lacock about 15 minutes down the road.
Lacock is a National Trust owned village (yeah that's a thing) where the residents all pay rent to the Nat Trust and so do all the farmers and that sort of thing. You pay to go into the Abbey (where bits of Hazza P were filmed) and into the museums but the village itself is free to wander after a bit of loose change for the carpark. We only had about 2 and a half hours there after a (very) leisurely breakfast so we did the village which was bloody gorgeous.
They had craft fairs and pop up Christmas shops and furniture makers and a divine bakery, tea rooms, a pub, a ceramic shop...the whole place was the perfect Sunday afternoon kinda stroll. It was bitterly cold but we had a right old jolly wandering and admiring the houses whilst I took photos of front doors. You can take the blogger out of Wales and all that...
We ended the day with a cheesy jacket potato and a cuppa to warm our bones and parted ways once more only to promise we'll do it again next year <3