Rode is situated on the Somerset-Wiltshire boundary 18km (12 miles) south of Bath and 8km (5 miles) north-northeast of Frome, just north of the junction of the A36 main route from Bath to Warminster and the A361 Frome to Trowbridge road. There are two distinct clusters of development, with the medieval church and several old houses situated on the A361 and the main part of the village offset to the north, between the two main roads.
The core of the village is at about 60m above sea level, on a fairly level site, with a gentle rise north to Rode Hill and an 80m rounded knoll to the south-east of the village. The River Frome flows immediately to the west of the village, with a historically important crossing point at Rode Bridge.
The village is surrounded by farmland on all sides with small fields bounded by hedges. To the west, the course of the river is a tree-fringed, meandering channel, bounded by meadows.
Rode is a mainly a commuter village (often with families and children) and a retirement village, but it does have some significant businesses including:
- Choconchoc supplying handmade chocolates to outlets such as Harrods, JohnLewis, and Selfridges and employing over 30 people;
- Camden Miniature Steam Services, a specialist book publisher and distributor employing over half a dozen people;
- Fussells collection of enterprises including Fussells Farms, Fussels Fine Foods, Rode Haulage and Frome Area Building Supplies; together employing 30 full time staff and 14 part time.
These businesses provide some local employment opportunities, but for the most part their employees come from outside of the village. There is a significant level of commuting to work from the village with an average travel to work journey of 20km in the ward Rode is part of, and 48.4% of employees in the Eastern area of Mendip commute out of the District (Mendip DC Housing Needs Study 2012).