University of Cambridge
Many of the Cambridge University colleges, libraries, and museums are open to the public; the best way to discover the history of the complex is on a walking tour. Tours typically cover Trinity College, home to the Wren Library and the Trinity College Chapel; Queens' College, which lies along the Cam Riverfront and harbors the Mathematical Bridge; and King’s College, where you can admire Rubens’ Adoration of the Magi in the King's College Chapel.
Visit Cambridge on a day trip from London; it’s possible to combine it with a visit to Oxford, home to another one of England’s prestigious universities.
Recent reviews from experiences in Cambridge
Things to Know Before You Go
Some of the best views of the university colleges can be found along the waterfront of the Cam River—an area known as The Backs, as the colleges back onto the riverfront.
The historic center of Cambridge is easy to get around on foot; most of the colleges are within walking distance of each other so ensure you’re wearing sturdy footwear.
Many of the colleges charge an admission fee or require you to visit as part of a tour.
Most college buildings are fully wheelchair- and stroller-accessible.
How to Get There
The University of Cambridge is located in the city of Cambridge, 65 miles (105 kilometers) north of London. It’s a 1.5-hour drive along the M11 or a 1.5-hour journey by train, which depart regularly from London King’s Cross station.
When to Get There
Though it’s possible to admire the college exteriors at any time, college visits are limited to certain times of the year, especially during exam periods around Easter. By far the most popular time to visit is in July and August, when the colleges are open daily and huge crowds descend on the city center. If visiting independently, it’s worth timing your visit for early or late in the day to avoid the crowds. Punting is possible along the River Cam from April through October.
Things to Do in Cambridge
In addition to visiting the university colleges, there’s plenty of other things to do while you’re in Cambridge. A quintessential activity is punting along the River Cam, lined with landmarks such as the Bridge of Sighs and The Backs. A visit to the Fitzwilliam Museum should be top of the itinerary for art and history enthusiasts, while other landmarks include St. Mary’s Church and the Corpus Clock at Corpus Christi College. For the most impressive views, head to the Magdalene Bridge or take a stroll through Cambridge Botanical Gardens.
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