Cambridge Travel Guide
With its cobbled streets, twisting river and ancient colleges, Cambridge is without doubt one of the UK’s prettiest towns.
Dominated by the 31 colleges of one of Britain’s most prestigious universities, it is, at heart, a student town – even if those students are more likely to go on to discover a cure for cancer rather than raise hell on the cobbles.
Indeed, the city’s collection of memorials, plaques and benches are dominated by famous alumni, among them Sir Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin and no fewer than 15 British Prime Ministers. The architecture of the colleges is mostly grand, although a guided punting trip past the famous King’s College Chapel will give you a glimpse of the University’s more human side.
Further along the Cam, you’ll find the rickety-looking, wooden Mathematical Bridge, the Wren Library at Trinity College and pretty riverside gardens and parks known collectively as The Backs.
You could always make the experience extra authentic by trying punting yourself (it’s far more challenging than it appears), though if you really want to do it properly, take along a punnet of strawberries and a bottle of champagne.
Beyond the city's academic assets, Cambridge is a vibrant spot replete with pubs and restaurants and crammed with museums to boot. Drink at the RAF bar of The Eagle pub, which still has it ceiling decorated with messages left by the airmen who drank there 70 years ago, or plunge into quaint passages set around the historic market place and colleges, where a unique blend of independent shops can be found along familiar high street brands. Catch a student theatrical production, or a show at the Arts Theatre; otherwise see live music or comedy at the Corn Exchange.
When you want to explore beyond Cambridge, there’s plenty to choose from: head for the market town of Ely or Wisbech, explore the wonderfully unique Fens, or enjoy a sport of horse racing at Newmarket.