'They arrived at Bath. Catherine was all eager delight; her eyes were here, there, everywhere, as they approached its fine and striking environs....She was come to be happy, and she felt happy already.' Northanger Abbey
Jane Austen is synonymous with Bath. Our one day guided tours of the city she made her home bring Regency Bath to life and, thanks to our experienced and knowledgeable guides, provide a unique and fascinating insight into Jane's life and times.
The day begins on Regency Bath’s most fashionable strolling street, The Royal Crescent, where you will meet your guide and have the chance to take photographs before visiting No.1 Royal Crescent. This Georgian town house is furnished and decorated just as it would have been in Jane's day.
You will then walk to the Assembly Rooms, designed by John Wood the Younger in 1769 as a place for Regency high society to dance, listen to music, play cards and take tea. The building is now also home to the Fashion Museum, renowned for its world-class collection of contemporary and historic dress. You will be treated to an exclusive guided tour of the museum and learn more about the history of fashion, both in Jane Austen's period and beyond.
The tour continues along the The Circus, an elegant street consisting of three curved segments of Grade I listed townhouses arranged in a circular shape, into Gay Street, pausing at No.25, Jane's former home, and on to Queen's Square. Designed in the early 18th century by John Wood the Elder, it became Regency's Bath most desired address and in 1799, Jane herself spent a month at No.13 in the company of her brother Edward, his wife and children and her mother, Mrs Austen.
In the centre of the Square, occupying seven of Wood's original townhouses, is the Francis Hotel where you will stop for a traditional English afternoon tea of finger sandwiches, freshly baked fruit scones, homemade cakes and deserts.
Refreshed, you then continue on foot to Great Pulteney Street, home to Northanger Abbey's Catherine Morland and an excellent place from which to admire the beautiful Pulteney Bridge. Jane Austen's home at 4 Sydney Place lies at the far end of the street.
Next stop is the Holburne Museum, a Grade I listed building that was originally designed as a hotel, but is now home to a fascinating collection of fine and decorative art. We have arranged an exclusive, curator-led tour of the Museum which will not only give you a real understanding of the collection, but also provide an insight into the history of the building and Jane's love of the Sydney Pleasure Gardens where the Holburne is located. At the end of the tour, you will have time to stroll in these pretty gardens, just as Jane would have done.