Anyone for tea? We adore having afternoon tea in Bath, but there are also quintessential tea shops where you can buy loose leaf, tea bags, and locally made teaware to take home and enjoy.
Bath is home to health food shops like Seasons on George Street that have a great selection of herbal teas and you’ll also find gift sets of tea in many of the museum and attraction gift shops around the city.
But, if you want to delve into the world of single estate loose leaf tea, and you don’t know your oolong from your elbow, we’ve found five places where you can learn about the wonderful world of tea and find out more about fine teas from around the world.
Pick up something sweet to enjoy with your brew and explore these five best tea shops– one is sure to be your cup of tea!
1. Teahouse Emporium
Look out for the little teapot hanging above this beautiful shop hidden in Union Passage! Inside Teahouse Emporium it’s an olde worlde treasure trove of different teas, with rows and stacks of jars full of colourful concoctions that have been expertly blended by the team at Teahouse Emporium.
They’ve been importing fine teas since 2005 and the years of expertise can be seen (and smelled) in the pre-blended options. Lift up one of the bell jar lids and take a good sniff of fruity flavours or apothecary-like mixes called Detox and Antistress.
You can also blend your own tea and choose from the jars of dried herbs and flowers that have all kinds of fragrant things from rose buds to nettle, ginger, and milk thistle. If loose leaf tea is not your bag, grab a pack of pre-made tea bags that are created with the same fresh dried tea ingredients.
As well as herbal and fruit teas, there are fine teas from all over the world, from matcha to oolong, as well as rarer types like pu erh, mate yerba, and blooming tea (beautiful flowers are hidden in a white tea and they ‘bloom’ as you brew). Not a fan of tea?
Try their single estate coffees or hot chocolate mixes instead and take a look at the cute tea caddies and other accessories while you’re there.
Address: 18 Union Passage, Bath, BA1 1RE
2. Comins Tea House
Single estate teas are directly sourced by owners Rob and Michelle Comins and this is the kind of place where you can properly geek out on tea and take a deep dive into the different types and tastes.
Simply put, they have green, white, oolong, black, fermented, and puer based teas but within these categories you can learn all about the various leaves, production methods, and the estate where they were grown.
If you want to learn more, sign up for Tea School, which takes place downstairs on Saturday mornings and focuses on different types of tea every session (25 for an hour) with information about the oxidation/production processes, the history of the tea, and of course a tasting.
Upstairs you can enjoy a cuppa, pick up loose leaf tea to take home, or shop their Comins Own Brand/British Teaware range of accessories that are designed and made in Britain and Sri Lanka by talented craftspeople.
Address: 34 Monmouth Street, Bath, BA1 2AN
3. Gillards of Bath
Smack bang in the middle of Guildhall Market, Gillards of Bath has been a purveyor of fine teas since 1888 and the stall-style shop retains this sense of history with large tea barrels behind the counter.
Originally founded by Henry Gillard on New Bond Street in the 19th Century, the tea company is still run as an artisan family business today. Specialising in Indian teas, here you’ll find loose leaf teas from all over the world, and special blends.
Bridgerton fans can try the Lady Whistledown’s Extraordinary Tea, which features black tea, rose petals, hibiscus and blackberry leaves for a taste of an English rose garden. You’ll also find high-quality coffee and hot chocolate here, as well as pre-packaged tea bags and tables full of British themed teaware, too.
Address: Guildhall Market, Bath, BA2 4AW
4. Kaskazi Back to Nature
Kaskazi is a gorgeous little shop in Northumberland Passage that brings responsibly sourced products from East African smallholder farmers to the UK.
Kaskazi is named after the ancient “North Wind” in Kiswahili. These monsoon winds facilitated the spice trade between East Africa and the rest of the world.
Inside the small shop you’ll find carefully curated shelves of cute crafts, fragrant spices, zalt (flavoured salt from Zanzibar), sea moss, and other culinary delights from East Africa. Everything is processed and packaged in the countries of origin, so more funds are retained by the communities.
Well-stocked with tea options, head to the section where you’ll find Tanzania Tea Collective’s single origin teas, which are grown in foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro, blended with spices and herbs from smallholder farms across Tanzania and Zanzibar, and then packaged by young women in Dar es Salaam.
Delicious options include Kilimanjaro Green Tea, Zanzibar Chai, and caffeine-free infusions like Lemongrass Moringa (lemongrass leaves, moringa leaves, and fennel seeds), which helps with digestion.
Address: 15 Northumberland Place, Bath, BA1 5AR
5. Whittard of Chelsea
Part of a nationwide chain, Whittard of Chelsea has been going since 1886 and it’s easy to see why. Pretty packaging, easy to grab gift sets, and a wide range of teas flavours and styles mean it’s always a busy spot on Stall Street.
While it would probably make tea connoisseurs shudder to think about, Whittard’s range of instant teas are a fun and colourful option if the ritual of brewing your tea is too much effort.
Whittard does seasonal specials really well, so head here if you’re looking for a themed tea for an occasion, or you want to try a new flavour. There are also plenty of coffees and hot chocolates if you’re not a tea lover.
Address: 10 Stall St, Bath, Bath, BA1 1QE
Amy is an award-winning travel writer born and bred in Bath. She has written for national newspapers and magazines from the Guardian and Mail on Sunday to Conde Nast Traveller and Good Housekeeping. Now she’s helping travellers explore Bath, one story at a time.