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Living in Bath as a student

Find out what it's like to live in Bath and the South West while you study for your degree.

A city with a sense of community

Bath's historic architecture and culture are the perfect setting for year-round events, including concerts, carnivals, sports and exhibitions. There's always something interesting and fun going on.

Living in Bath means you get all the convenience of living in a vibrant, historic city but with a friendly and safe community atmosphere.

Bath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, thanks to its Roman heritage and Georgian architecture, so there are loads of historic locations to visit around the city.

Because of its cultural contributions, TIME magazine listed Bath as one of the World's Greatest Places 2021, making it one of only three UK cities to make the list.

You can also enjoy major exhibitions in the city's museums and galleries or watch West End plays at the Theatre Royal.

There are also lots of parks and gardens to relax in, but if you're looking for something different, try Britain’s only natural thermal spa or a boat trip along the river.

Bath's sports venues are in the centre of town, so you can enjoy the exciting atmosphere on match days and support local teams, including Bath's Premiership rugby club.

Throughout the year, you can get involved in one the city's many events and festivals, including the Bath Carnival.

Travelling around town

Bath's transport services make it easy to travel, whether you're doing some shopping in town, going to campus for lectures, or you just want a bike ride along the river.

The town is compact and easy to get around on foot and by bike.

You can travel between the city and the campus easily, either by foot, bike, car, or bus.

There are also lots of local bus services. The U1 bus takes about 20 minutes from the campus to the city.

A local Bath bus travelling through Oldfield Park.

Shopping and eating out

Bath has a variety of shops, including high-street brands, independent shops, and fashionable boutiques. Most of the high-street stores are in the Southgate Centre, with artisan and vintage shops around the city.

For food shopping, there are lots of supermarkets in town, including Lidl, Iceland, Waitrose, Sainsbury's, and Morrisons. There are also Polish and Asian supermarkets around the city.

Bath has hundreds of restaurants, cafés, and delis to suit all tastes. There are several well-known chains as well as independent businesses, and new places pop up all the time.

You can use your TOTUM card from the National Union of Students to get student discounts in lots of shops, restaurants, and cafés.

There are several markets held in Bath, including a permanent one at the historic Guildhall and food and vintage markets at Green Park Station.

Southgate shopping area in Bath city centre

Outdoor activities

The city is surrounded by beautiful countryside which is perfect for walking, running or cycling. There is great access to some of the National Cycle Network routes in South West England.

Near the campus, you can take part in the free weekly 5k parkrun or, if you want a bigger challenge, you can also sign up for the Bath Half Marathon.

If you prefer getting your exercise in water, there are lots of places to go for different swimming experiences and you can hire a rowing boat, paddleboard, canoe, or punt on the River Avon.

A cyclist beside the River Avon.

Social life

Bath has a vibrant social scene, including a mix of clubs, cosy pubs, beautiful parks, and fascinating museums. You and your friends can find activities to suit you any day of the week.

Living in Bath, you'll have a great choice of places to socialise, whether you want a night out in the city's pubs, bars and clubs or a meal out with friends.

If you like music or comedy, you can go to a gig or have a laugh at a comedy club. Bath has a range of different venues for all different tastes including The Forum and Moles.

Bath also has a good selection of cinemas and theatres, whether you are interested in West End plays or blockbuster films, including the Theatre Royal, the Little Theatre cinema and the ODEON.

There are also cultural events throughout the year which have previously included the:

  • Bath Festival, a ten-day multi-arts event
  • Film Festival
  • Comedy Festival
  • Fringe Festival
  • Great Bath Feast

From Bath, it's easy to travel to nearby festivals like Glastonbury, Love Saves the Day, and Boomtown.

Going beyond Bath

There are lots of ways to travel to and from Bath and you can get to the rest of the country and beyond from the centre of town.

You can easily explore the rest of the South West, including visiting Stonehenge or taking a trip to the coast.

Trains and coaches to the rest of the country leave from the city centre. Trains take about:

  • 15 minutes to Bristol
  • just over an hour to Cardiff
  • one hour and 20 minutes to London
  • 2 hours to Birmingham

You can drive to Bristol Airport from the University in less than an hour or get a direct coach to Heathrow Airport from the town centre.

View of the Stonehenge on a sunny day

Photos of Bath and the South West

See what makes the city and the surrounding area such an exciting place to live.