Glastonbury Water Way – Bath, Frome, Wells & Glastonbury – 55 miles – 6 days. This pilgrimage seeks to refresh our relationship with the wild waters of Britain – to honour and encounter the water that surrounds us within and without. This pilgrimage starts at one of Britain’s most famous natural springs – the health-giving spa of Aquae Sulis, which today takes the form of a rooftop spa overlooking Bath Abbey – sacred to the Celts, Romans, Georgians, and everyone in between. You will travel via waterways like the Rivers Frome and Avon, the Mells Stream, wild swimming weirs, and other sacred springs and wells in the towns of Frome and Doulting, and the city of Wells. England’s smallest city is appropriately named after the enormous holy wells in the Bishop’s Palace Gardens, sprung from an underground river that can also be seen from the cloisters of Wells Cathedral.” However, the destination of Glastonbury gives perhaps the most elemental of water experiences in the crashing White Spring and its immersion pools right under Glastonbury Tor (make sure you arrive during the limited opening hours), and the more peaceful Chalice Well in the World Peace Garden.
By making this pilgrimage you will find your way of approaching these sacred water sources. You can engage with them by wild swimming in weirs, under aqueducts and in the confluence of rivers, fording ancient fords, seeking lost holy wells, and drinking wild water from a variety of natural springs (can you taste the difference?). You can drink wild water if you use a safe water filter, like one from brands Grayl or MSR, and perhaps fill a special bottle with this water which you can then share with every other water source or font along the way. Play safe, of course.
Re-engages you with the life-giving element of water
Heals you in sacred springs and bathes you when you wild swim in rivers
Potent, hearty landscape
Deep integration of Christian and Pagan holy places
Holy Places along route listed in our book Britain’s Pilgrim Places: Bath; Frome; Doulting; Wells; Glastonbury.
The 2-day, 23-mile section from Frome to Bath is also known as the Aquae Sulis Way (click link for photos of that section, as they are not displayed below), and the 12-mile, 1-2 day section from Wells to Glastonbury can be walked in either direction, and the webpage has an extended essay introducing you to the history and mythology of the route.
Photos of the section from Frome to Glastonbury.
(The photos of the section from Bath to Frome are found on the webpage for Aquae Sulis Way.)