Monday, July 7, 2014

Bath and Stonehenge

Another day, another full itinerary everything England has to offer. We began the day in the ancient city of Bath.

The entire city of Bath is recognized for it's historical architecture as UNESCO World Heritage Cite. Some historians date Bath's existence as earlier than 500 BC.
Once again my neck was up, mouth was open and camera was at the ready!

The Jane Austen Centre, on the street where she lived when she was in Bath. Our tour guide pointed out several places along the city where she based scenes from her novels.

These houses along the Royal Crescent reminded me of San Francisco.
The Royal Crescent, built between 1767 and 1775, holds 30 different houses and a hotel. Bath used to be a retreat for the extremely wealthy, especially given the supposed healing powers of the Roman baths and hot springs (keep scrolling for those). 

Karina, Danielle, Romela and I in front of the Crescent. 
 The Circus, completed in 1768, is an example of Georgian architecture. Circus, comes from Latin, meaning circular or round.

Legend has it that the acorns on top represent a man and a pig who both had leprosy and were cured by bathing in the Roman Baths.  Pigs like acorns, and the man apparently lured it out of the bath with the treat.

Each of the symbols along the wall between pillars are unique.
We stopped to eat lunch in the grass under the Pulteney Bridge. It was built over the river Avon in 1774. This bridge and the Ponte Vecchio in Florence are the only two bridges with a continual line of shops along the top.

The Victoria Art Gallery, and a boat tour :)

Karina, Danielle and I.

The current Bath Abbey, founded in 1499, was the last medieval cathedral built in England. It's history runs much longer however, as first an Anglo-Saxon church in 757 AD, and a Norman Cathedral in 1090.

(Note the gorgeous blue sky. I was actually warm!!!)
Of course, Bath's namesakes and main attractions are the Roman Baths. Bath was founded on a bed of hot springs and built in 70 AD as a social and bathing center. The Romans believed the waters came from the Gods and were therefore sacred and healing. The bath site still fills with hot water everyday.

The interior rooms of the baths were warm and humid, (understandably so), and we were able to tour through the actual baths, changing, oiling and sitting rooms that were used.

It's amazing how much of the Baths are still here from ancient history!
The museum had an extensive collection of carved stones, tools and jewelry that were used and worn by the Roman bathers.
Make a wish!

After tasting some authentic Bath water, which was sterilized but warm and mineral rich, it was off to Stonehenge!

Most of Stonehenge's origins and purposes remain a mystery both for visitors and scholars. They do know it is an ancient temple, aligned with the movements of the sun, and was raised 4500 years ago. The final stage occurred around 1500 BC when the stones were arranged in the shape that is visible today. We were there when the sun was setting against a backdrop of thick, dark clouds, adding to the enigma of the monument. 

 This has become my go-to pose. Dorky, but I'm happy and I can't help it :)

It will never cease to amaze me how dizzying it feels to be so close to something I have only know as an intangible photograph for years. I don't ever want to stop exploring the world, and I definitely caught the travel bug :)

No comments:

Post a Comment