One of the things I love about day trips from London is that they allow me to see a lot of places in a short time. But sometimes a destination deserves a closer look, and now that I have 48 hours in Cambridge I’m excited to dig a bit deeper into this university city.
48 Hours in Cambridge
I’m here for a visit with my boyfriend, and after a quick train ride from London we arrive in town ready to explore. We’ve lucked out with gorgeous weather for our stay, and the sun sets the tone for the trip.
We spend a lot of our time in Cambridge visiting the colleges. They’re what make the city beautiful, and I can’t get enough of their architecture and history.
From the fan-vaulted ceiling of King’s College Chapel to the painted interiors of Queens’ College Hall, I’m in awe.
I fall in love with the facades at Clare, the cloisters at Jesus, and the details at St John’s. When my Cambridge alum boyfriend takes me around his college, Sidney Sussex, I feel like I’ve stepped into a storybook.
Punting in Cambridge
One of my favorite ways to see the colleges is from the water. Punting is a must here, especially on a sunny day. We board a flat-bottomed boat and take off down the river, soaking up the scenery along The Backs as we go.
The bridges over the Cam are stunning, and each seems to outshine the next. From the Bridge of Sighs at St John’s College to the Mathematical Bridge at Queens’, I can’t decide which is my favorite.
Sightseeing in Cambridge
Back on land, we start the rest of our 48 hours in Cambridge wandering through the narrow streets and browsing in the markets.
We visit the Fitzwilliam Museum to see its impressive collection of art and antiquities, and climb to the top of the tower of Great St Mary’s for some of the best views in Cambridge.
We queue up to get inside the 17th-century Wren Library at Trinity College, which is one of the most impressive temples to books I’ve ever seen.
We also get a sneak peek at the David Parr House, which opens to the public in 2019. Its gorgeous painted interiors are straight out of Queens’ College Chapel and Hall, and are all the more impressive for being in a family home. Watch this space.
And speaking of Queens’ College Chapel, we attend a concert there one night, and evensong at King’s College Chapel another. The sound of music echoing through the chambers is angelic, and adds to the heavenly feel of the spaces.
But the other spaces in town are equally surreal, from the pub gardens with idyllic river views to the cozy coffee shops with a distinctly university vibe.
By the time we’ve finished walking, discovering, eating, and exploring, our feet are sore and my camera is exhausted.
We hop on the train back to London, our eyes bright with the sights of Cambridge and our ears full of its music. Two days have been great for getting a feel for the city and digging a bit deeper than I’ve been able to on day trips. That said, they’ve also made me realize how much more there is to see.
How about you? How would you spend 48 hours in Cambridge?