The best budget hotels in Bath for a thrifty city break

Fred Mawer
The charming Country Living Lansdown Grove Hotel sits proudly on one of the seven hills of Bath offering wonderful views of the city

You can appreciate much of the best of Bath for free, including the ground-breaking Georgian architecture of The Royal Crescent and Circus, along with the grandiose interior of the Assembly Rooms and historic Bath Abbey (suggested donation). In terms of eating and drinking, you are spoilt for choice for affordable cafés and pubs, many of which are frequented by Bath's large student population. As for accommodation, while Bath has a deserved reputation as being expensive, weekday prices tend to be much lower than weekends, and there are some good, keenly-priced places to stay. Here's our pick of the best budget hotels in Bath.

YHA Bath Hostel, Somerset, England

YHA Bath

Bath, Somerset, England

8Telegraph expert rating

I know what you're thinking: smelly school groups and mouldering shared showers. But bear with. The Bath YHA has had a £2.5 million facelift, and 14 of its bedrooms now have en-suite bathrooms. Plus, the bones of the place were already beautiful – the main, Italianate building has decorative Victorian tiles, parquet floors, ornate ceiling roses and expansive balconies that are only slightly marred by the YHA’s ubiquitous, bright green branding. Chartreuse signs direct you to the relaxed café and bar; the simple but satisfactory restaurant where children eat free; and to the vast and well-stocked self-catering kitchen where families can cook and eat their own meals. Read expert review From £29 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Harrington's City Hotel

Harington's City Hotel

Bath, Somerset, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A privately owned, cosy little hotel on a delightful cobbled side street right in the centre of Bath. Spread over three interconnecting Georgian houses, it is brimful of character, with quirky décor and furnishings. The 13 bedrooms are individually decorated in fun styles. Most strikingly, one wall of each room has boldly patterned wallpaper (butterflies, birds and scenes from the theatre). You might also have a furry bedspread and the hotel's own cushions embossed with "Queen St". Though Harington's is no bigger than many of Bath's b&bs, it comes with a lounge and bar, and a reception manned for long hours. An unusual feature is the whirlpool tub in a little courtyard. Read expert review From £76 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Z Hotel Bath, Bath, England

Z Bath

Bath, Somerset, England

7Telegraph expert rating

Z Hotels has brought a touch of the urban lifestyle to the city of Bath. The boutique chain – with its affordable rates and no-frills stylishness – offers a hip and more upmarket alternative to budget brands, and is ideally situated for a short break. The rooms, though small by usual standards, offer clean, minimalist lines and comfort; the white walls are offset by occasional oak-veneered panelling and large, dark grey headboards; the very comfortable bespoke beds are made in Devon. Facilities are minimal: it’s designed to be just a temporary base, but there are noticeable touches, such as free apples and soft drinks; the bar is also licensed throughout the night. Read expert review From £45 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Brooks Guesthouse, Bath, UK

Brooks Guesthouse Bath

Bath, Somerset, England

7Telegraph expert rating

With 22 bedrooms, Brooks is bigger than a lot of other guesthouses. It spreads over two interconnected houses on a Victorian terrace. Classic period features such as cornicing, chandeliers and fireplaces combine with strikingly patterned wallpaper and boldly coloured walls – mustard, for example, in the relaxing lounge – and a mix of antiques and modern furnishings. Breakfasts, taken in a fetching, parquet-floored basement dining room, are a highlight: the appetising buffet spread includes homemade granola, muffins and marmalade, while the long list of cooked treats to choose from includes bacon sandwiches and smoked salmon and cream cheese bagels. Read expert review From £67 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Hill House, Bath, Somerset, England

Hill House Bath

Bath, Somerset, England

8Telegraph expert rating

A first-rate b&b converted from a pub, in a terraced Georgian building near the centre of Bath. Everywhere – the hall, stairs, breakfast room and bedrooms – is tastefully furnished with interesting paintings, photos and objects, and a successful, understated mix of antiques and modern pieces. Hill House manages to feel smart but homely, as is borne out by the hallway's bookcase of eclectic, browsable reading matter, much as you might find in a friend's living room. Owners Harry Tedstone and Douglas Yeates live in the property, and provide hands-on hospitality that goes beyond the usual call of b&b duty. Expect to be emailed a list of restaurant recommendations in advance. Read expert review From £115 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Country Living Lansdown Grove, Bath

Country Living Lansdown Grove Hotel

Bath, Somerset, England

7Telegraph expert rating

The charmingly reimagined Lansdown Grove Hotel, partly housed in an 18th-century Grade-II listed building, sits proudly on one of the seven hills of Bath offering wonderful views of the city. The interior look is a collaboration between the hotel group Coast & Country and Country Living, with experts from the home and lifestyle magazine involved in numerous aspects of the design. The aim is comfort not showiness and a country-meets-city style. The spacious lobby is now an inviting space with green wellies by the door, the warmly decorated library with its green leather chairs has an eclectic range of leather-bound books, paintings and prints, and there’s an attractive garden too. Read expert review From £68 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

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Grays

Bath, Somerset, England

8Telegraph expert rating

This is one of Bath's best b&bs. It occupies an imposing semi-detached Victorian villa set on the city's southern slopes, a 15-minute uphill walk from the centre of Bath. A sweeping staircase overhung with gilt mirrors and architectural prints sets the tone inside the house. Everything is designed with taste and flair: think sisal carpets, French-style furnishings and carefully coordinated colour schemes. There are 12 individually designed, thoroughly attractive and very comfy bedrooms. You can expect top-quality sheets, piles of pillows and cushions on beds, fresh flowers, and spruce bathrooms with power showers and limestone surfaces. Read expert review From £82 per night Check availability Rates provided by Booking.com

Contributions by Simon Horsford and Hattie Garlick

Prices cited on Booking.com are subject to change in high season and during popular holidays and events.