Prior Park, Bath

After an excruciating week last week we took the decision that some time out was needed. I am a huge fan of walking and having recently rejoined the National Trust in an effort to try and get myself back out and about.

We decided to visit Prior Park Landscape Garden in Bath. This is one of those places we had overlooked multiple times during our previous membership but it always catches my eye when I go through the guide. As I’m not allowed to drive at the moment we had to go on Hubby’s little bike so didn’t want to risk going to far, there’s only so far a 125cc is going to get you with a heffalump like me on the back!

We rode over to Bath and parked up in one of the car parks before plotting the route to the park. We knew it only has disabled parking from the National Trust’s guide and whilst I have disability status I’m fairly sure mental disability without a blue badge doesn’t qualify for a limited disabled parking space!

The walk started out really nice with a gentle stroll along the Bath canal-side, we got to see people relaxing on their boats, locks being opened and cyclists out for a Saturday ride.

Then came the hill, now I admit the guidebook does warn you about the hill… “1 mile uphill (very steep) walk…” But we all know reading and experiencing are two very different things! I have to say thank heavens for my starting at the gym before my recent relapse as my legs weren’t a problem walking up this hill, just my asthma (oops!)

There were various turns and Hubby would say, almost there and we would go around the turn and all I would see was more steep hill ahead of me, yes I wanted to smack his skinny, healthy butt!

I had to stop and get my asthma under control about three times but eventually after about 25 mins we finally reached the entrance and was met by a really friendly lady who checked us in then sat us down while she showed us the map and told us some of the history of the site.

It was the first time I had used my plus one carer card aswell so I had been really nervous about that but all went well with no queries.

Once we got into Prior Park we were stunned, it was a beautiful park and very peaceful. I think the inaccessibility helps keep it somewhere which is nice and quiet to enjoy unlike some National Trust properties which can get very over-run and aren’t good for my anxiety!

The pivotal view was stunning and I’m so pleased we were there on a sunny day to get the real benefit of it:

We continued to take the woodland walk around the edge of the park which initially lead us to a wonderful view of the Bath skyline.

We then found a lovely little swing attached to a tree which of course brought out the children in us, until we heard a few children coming and quickly scampered away! But not before this happened…

At the bottom of the park you have the wonderful Palladian Bridge and a tea garden, and, thankfully for my asthma, an alternative exit so you don’t have to walk back up the hill! This also offered a nicer route back down into Bath via a lovely country lane, through a very small tranquil village.

We will definitely return to Prior Park Landscape Garden. I think I will wait until I’m a bit fitter and healthier though so I can conquer that hill!

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