Statue Roman Baths
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Visiting the Roman Baths with Kids

Posted on
January 25, 2020

Our kids love learning about history and are especially fond of the Horrible Histories series of books and TV programmes.

At the end of last year, the film Horrible Histories: The Movie – Rotten Romans came out, all about the Romans and how they came to Britain and the kids have now watched the movie several times.

I was keen to keep up interest in the subject and last weekend we headed to the city of Bath to visit The Roman Baths.

The Roman Baths are Britain’ s only natural thermal spa which is set next to Bath Abbey, in the centre of the city.

There is no parking at the Roman Baths, however, it is so central, that there are half a dozen car parks within easy walking distance and the streets are so picturesque that we could have spent hours looking around.

At the entrance, we picked up our activity trail booklets and free audio guides and headed inside to explore.

You can opt for a guided tour, but we were happy to explore at our own pace, listen to the audioguides, which have both children’s and adult settings and fill in the activity sheets.

The tour starts walking around the outside of the baths, in the shadow of Bath Abbey.

The Roman Baths were constructed in around 70AD as a grand bathing and socialising complex and is one of the best-preserved Roman remains in the world. One of the first things you see in the interactive museum is a huge model of what it would have looked like in its hey day.

Eliza remarked that is looked very much like a modern swimming pool in another model.

It is around this area where the children’s worksheets really start bringing the Baths into reality, asking them to identify sculptures they see, with computer generated imagery and their audio guides filling in the gaps.

As you continue into the museum, it is filled with treasures that have been found on the site, including a huge collection of Roman coins and clever visual snippets that transport you back to Roman times and the lives of the Aquae Sulis people.

The Roman Baths is set below the modern street level and has four main features, the Sacred Spring, the Roman Temple, the Roman Bath House and finds from Roman Bath.

As you come down through the museum, there is a metal walkway that takes you through the temple courtyard and introduces you to the goddess the goddess Sulis Minerva.

Romans would have brought her gifts and sacrifices that would have been made at the great altar.

From this area you then get to see the spring overflow, before heading outside to see the Roman Baths.

The Roman Baths are filled with 1,170,000 litres of steaming spring water, reaching 46°C, every single day and you can see the water steaming as you walk around.

Around the edges are the pool are ancient chambers historically housing changing rooms and tepid plunge pools. 

We also found a friendly Celt by the main pool, who chatted with the kids for ages about life around the Roman Baths and let them try on armour and look at things the Roman’s would have used.

Thanks to there fondness for Horrible Histories, they did know what most of the items were for, but it still drew an “ewwww” when they were handed a stick with a sponge on, that had apparently only been used once.

If travelling with young children, beware that the ground underfoot is quite uneven in places, so keep a close eye on them.

The final part of the baths you see is the heated rooms, which include a good surviving hypocaust pilae which show you how their heating system works.

The final challenge of the day is to try the spa water, which contains 43 minerals. The official consensus was “Yuk!”.

From there it is back up to modern street level, where the kids got to get their worksheets checked and were awarded with a certificate and stickers.

A weekday family ticket (two adults and up to four children) to the Roman Baths costs £36.90 online or £41 on the door and includes a free audioguide. Weekend tickets are £44.10 online or £49 on the door.

I would really recommend a visit with children, especially if they are studying Roman history at school.

Have you visited the Roman Baths before?

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18 Comments
  1. Reply

    Lyndsey O'Halloran

    January 25, 2020

    This is somewhere I would love to visit. I think it would be great for Erin in a few years.

  2. Reply

    Sabina Green

    January 25, 2020

    Bath is a lovely city to look around. I have not been in years but I would really like to take the kids to see the Roman Baths.

  3. Reply

    ExoRank.com

    January 25, 2020

    Awesome post! Keep up the great work! 🙂

  4. Reply

    Claire

    January 25, 2020

    We love horrible histories too and I love how much it encourages children to want to learn more about history.

    I have never been to the Baths but they certainly look like an interesting day out x

  5. Reply

    Wendy

    January 26, 2020

    I have always wanted to go to Bath so found this blog post fascinating. I love that the kids thought the spa water was gross haha xx

  6. Reply

    Kacie Morgan

    January 26, 2020

    I’ve only ever been to the Roman Baths once and it was a while ago, I definitely need another visit again soon 🙂

  7. Reply

    Joanna

    January 26, 2020

    I have been to Bath many times but never went inside the Roman Baths to visit. I should definitely do next time I am in town.

  8. Reply

    Jennifer

    January 26, 2020

    These Roman baths are surprisingly child friendly. I would have expected a far more boring and dry experience

  9. Reply

    Kira

    January 26, 2020

    Oh wow what a lovely learning curb and expedition!. It actually looks really interesting. The girls love this sort of stuff and would definitely love to explore

  10. Reply

    Zena's Suitcase

    January 26, 2020

    We’ve visited the Roman Baths and it was such a fun day out. It was so interactive and interesting for the kids. I’d absolutely recommend it

  11. Reply

    Sarah Bailey

    January 26, 2020

    I remember going to the Roman Baths when I was younger – it is such a wonderful place to get to explore. It is amazing how advanced in some ways they were.

  12. Reply

    Sarah | Boo Roo and Tigger Too

    January 27, 2020

    Sounds like a wonderful place to visit and explore with the children. We have friends who live just outside of bath so I’ll have to book a visit to the Roman Baths next time we head that way.

  13. Reply

    Whatlauraloves

    January 27, 2020

    I absolutely LOVE history and checking out different locations. I’ve not visited Roman Baths before but I’d love to go! xxx

  14. Reply

    Laura

    January 27, 2020

    Oh my three absolutely loved the Horrible Histories film, and I think haven’t learnt a little about the Romans from the movie would enjoy visiting the Roman Baths.

  15. Reply

    Anosa

    January 27, 2020

    We love the Roman baths and have been several times but love that your kids love learning about horrible histories, ours do too.

  16. Reply

    Jenni

    January 28, 2020

    This is such an interesting day out for both adults and children. I love that the guide includes a kids version with activities too

  17. Reply

    Anosa

    January 29, 2020

    This looks brilliant. I would never have thought that it would be so entertaining for the kids. This is somewhere I have never been but would love to visit, I want to try that spring water to see what the difference in taste is.

  18. Reply

    Rajat

    February 1, 2020

    This is such an amazing post full of pictures that actually excit you to plan your trip to Rome, the city with so much history and culture. a great way of writing and making use of photography talents.

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KARA GUPPY
Bournemouth

Are we nearly there yet? is a new online blog run by me, Kara Guppy, and is named as such thanks to my daughter Eliza who always asks that very question when we are less than 5 minutes up the road heading off on our adventures. You may know me from my other family blog chelseamamma.co.uk