The Wheatsheaf, Combe Hay
Worth finding for its secret valley setting, stunning summer terrace, country-chic decor, elevated pub grub and rustic charm.book here
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Four-day itinerary written by Amy, founder of Discover Bath
The charm of the World Heritage city of Bath is ever enticing. It is easy to be drawn in by the historic architecture, the independent cafes and restaurants, or the lively markets filled with artisan brands. Look beyond the city and you'll see peaceful countryside waiting in its wings to be explored.
I've lived in Bath for four years now and love spending time outdoors. Whether it's on the weekend with my children or a day out with friends, I am forever seeking new places to venture.
This four-day inspirational itinerary provides a glimpse into some of Bath's finest and most dramatic scenery, both in the city and just outside. There is something here to satisfy those battered walking boots, use some pedal power, or simply take a wander through the city's photogenic streets but with a slightly different lens.
Two pubs with rooms within the Epicurean Collection which are perfectly placed for exploring Bath and its glorious surrounding countryside are The Wheatsheaf, Combe Hay (left below) and Timbrell's Yard, Bradford-on-Avon (right below).
Both are under a 20-minute drive from Bath's city centre, and only a short drive from each other. There is also a direct train from Bradford-on-Avon to Bath Spa which takes about 12 minutes.
In a hidden valley just 10 minutes south of Bath, the 16th century Wheatsheaf is perched on a hillside overlooking the pretty village of Combe Hay. Continue reading >
Timbrell's Yard is a stylish Grade II listed riverside property in the heart of Bradford-on-Avon, full of quirky detail touches that give the place a real wow factor. Continue reading >
Stay at one or both. Each inn provides the perfect base for my inspirational four-day itinerary. The map below shows the four areas I suggest exploring and how far each is from the inns.
If you'd prefer to stay further into the countryside, click below for all the inns within the Epicurean Collection which are within a 40-minute drive away.
All Collection inns within a 40-minute drive from Bath's city centre >
Take to the majestic Bath countryside with the South Stoke 10km walk. Enjoy lush green fields, shaded woodland paths and meandering brooks. The route takes you along the remains of The Somersetshire Coal Canal and catches a glimpse of Midford Castle. The path goes through the quaint villages of Southstoke and Monkton Combe and there's a well-positioned bench on the final ascent for incredible valley views and a rest, or, of course choose one of the great pubs en-route, Packhorse Inn in South Stoke or Wheelright Arms in Monkton Coombe.
Castle Farm Midford is a great stop on this walk for breakfast or lunch but come back for their brilliant Saturday Supper Club. The team creates a six-course menu based on a monthly theme with many ingredients sourced from their garden. There will be specially crafted cocktails and candle lit barn where you can watch the team prepare your meal. Book ahead.
This is the walk to choose for rich green paths and sweeping valley views to the North of Bath. The walk starts mostly flat then descends slowly down through the Langridge valley with rolling hills filled with wildflowers. If you're lucky you might even catch a glimpse of a hot air balloon in flight. A short but steep uphill climb takes you back to the Hare & Hounds for a well-deserved pint. Book a table by the window or sit on the terrace for pizza and get views across the valley you've just walked.
I walked this section back in early spring before all the greenery shot up. Then again in the summer months and the change in scenery was incredible. Every season brings a new landscape which is breathtaking.
You don't need to leave the city for an outdoor adventure. Whether you're a fan of Bridgerton or not, The Bridgerton Walk is a fantastic way to transport you to Georgian Bath. The 4km circular route takes in the filming locations and they chose well. Wander around some of the most iconic, elegant and historic streets. There's dramatic architecture, ancient trees and pleasure gardens.
Top outdoor lunch spots include the unmissable Mrs Pots Chocolate Shop for a hot chocolate at the very least. Bosco dishes up one of the finest pizzas, or The Fine Cheese Co. and if you fancy some delicious vegan fare then head to Cascara.
This is a fantastic way to explore a bit further out Bath's countryside. Of course, you can do this route by bike, but hiring an e-bike is great fun and very easy on the legs. I hired an e-bike for half a day for £25 from Bath Ebike Hire who show you the ropes, were really helpful with tips and logistics then send you on your way.
The Two Tunnels Greenway is one of Bath's iconic cycling routes which follows the disused railway trackbed of the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway and through Britain's longest tunnels. The route is predominantly traffic free and packed with architectural gems, wild water swimming spots, cafes and pubs and, of course, Bath's incredible countryside views on the way.
There's plenty of pit stops for a refuel or post ride pint. The George Inn is on the canal and serves good pub grub, or the Angel Fish Cafe a stone's throw from the Dundas Aqueduct does the largest homemade burgers and golden sausage rolls. The Moorfields comes highly recommended as a pub option at the end of the route. The Moroccan spiced falafels with houmous, pomegranate and lemon oil are a must-try.
Stay at one or stay at both. These inns provide perfect bases for exploring Bath and its surrounding countryside.
If you have any queries or questions about this itinerary or the inns, please contact our reservations team on firstname.lastname@example.org who will be very happy to help.
Last updated: 31.01.22
Photo credit: Unsplash (Silviya Nenova - header image)