Top 10 tips for your first visit to Cambridge, UK

Whether taking your offspring to experience the world of a Cambridge undergraduate, or escaping with your significant other to the one of Europe’s most culturally rich cities, our top 10 tips should help you make the most out of your visit. Here are our suggestions if you’re a first time visitor to this University city.

The pleasure of punting

The most tranquil way to experience Cambridge is by punt which offers views of many famous Cambridge landmarks including King’s College Chapel. Though possible to hire a punt, a chauffeured tour is recommended; sit back, relax and allow the friendly chauffeurs impress you with their punting skill and historical knowledge. Many companies offer additional luxuries including champagne services and afternoon tea – very ‘Cambridgey’ indeed.

Punting in Cambridge

The beauty of Cambridge University’s Botanical Gardens

It is unusual to find, in a city center, forty acres of sumptuous gardens. Founded in 1846 the gardens retain their Victorian grandeur whilst having been charmingly contributed to since. Having lost yourself in timeless herbaceous beauty why not have a bite to eat at the Garden Café on site? Using fresh, local ingredients, it offers luscious food suited to every palate. For added indulgence we recommend reserving the Gilmor table, offering stupendous views and a bespoke menu.

Botanical Gardens, Cambridge

Talent spotting at the Theatre

The oldest University playhouse in England, the ADC Theatre is the cultural hub of University drama in Cambridge. Home to Footlights, the university’s dramatic club, the ADC has had many a celebrity actor grace its stage including Emma Thompson and Hugh Laurie. It is the perfect place to experience the hottest talent on the world’s acting stage performing both recognized productions as well as student written plays.

Dining at the Alimentum

Led by Chef Patron Mark Poynton, Michelin-star Alimentum offers sophisticated, contemporary dishes full of delectable flavours. With menus dictated by season you are sure to get the most prime cuts and freshest of local produce. These elegant dishes accompany smart and chic ruby red interiors. For the ultimate luxury experience, Consensio recommends the Chef’s Tasting Menu – forever changing and always exciting.

The finery of the Fitzwilliam Museum

Established in 1861 by the VII Viscount Fitzwilliam of Merrion the Fitzwilliam Museum is a haven of artistic splendour. Collections of medieval manuscripts and autograph music by composers such as Handel accompany paintings from Renaissance great masters and the Dutch Golden Age. With continuous varied exhibitions, a visit anytime of year to this Neo-classical palace of glamour is guaranteed an insightful experience.

Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Collegiate life

Tour the colleges and indulge in the rich architectural splendour of Cambridge’s 31 Colleges spanning 700 years. Each College has its different policy on admitting members of the public, however most are welcoming with hospitable porters. Do not let the enormity of colleges be your guide; many of the smaller colleges have interesting histories in their own right. For example, you can walk in the footsteps of Charles Darwin at Christ’s college. Father of evolutionary biology, it was from here he embarked on his ground-breaking journey of discovery on HMS Beagle, inspiring ‘On The Origin of Species’.

College in Cambridge

Cotto cuisine

Hans Schweitzer, executive chef at Cotto, has an impressive repertoire that has seen him travel the globe frequenting the most exclusive restaurants. His culinary expertise translates into the market-fresh, innovative European dishes on offer. Aesthetics of the contemporary creations, such as goats’ cheese brûlée with roasted beetroots, match the imaginative flavours. The finest of European wines add to the ambiance.

Anglesey Abbey

What could be more British than a grand country house? An Augustinian priory perhaps? Anglesey Abbey combines both of these with Jacobean grandeur and 1920s glamour. Steeped in 98 acres of landscape grounds and located just 9 km from Cambridge, it is a must-go to any visitor to the city. The interiors have been preserved how the last owner, 1st Baron Fairhaven, left them when he bequeathed the property to the nation, offering a rare insight into the Baron’s opulent world.

The Varsity Hotel

The Varsity hotel & Spa is most certainly the place to stay in Cambridge. It is within a stone throw of Cambridge’s most illustrious colleges and boasts an Elemis spa, gym and roof terrace. The latter gives the option of a lazy tour of Cambridge offering a view of most colleges. Why not enjoy a bird’s eye view of the city whilst sipping a glass of champagne in the sun? The accommodation is grand yet comfortable with exquisite attention to detail, oozing British charm.

Varsity Hotel, Cambridge

Cambridge City Hotel

With a central location, elegantly furnished rooms and the added luxuries of a concierge service and sauna, the Cambridge City Hotel is luxury accommodation at its finest. Renowned for its helpful staff, exquisite food and cleanliness of rooms, you are sure to feel well accommodated here.

Cambridge City Hotel

Ceri Tinley is the Co-Founder and MD of Consensio Holidays.

If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.

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