Thursday, 2 January 2014

A Trip to Cambridge

I really rather like Cambridge. I’ve been up a few times now and I think it has to be one of my favourite cities. You’re never quite sure what is going to face you round every corner; some wonderful architecture, a cobbled street, a garden or a glimpse of the river. I think part of Cambridge’s charm is that so much has been discovered there and is still being discovered today. Behind every window you pass someone could be uncovering the answer to a question that has puzzled everyone for years.
The other fascinating thing of course is the amount of famous names connected with Cambridge. The last time I was there I walked right past Steven Hawking! I have been lucky enough in the past to go ‘behind the scenes’ of the University buildings and over Newton’s famous bridge. 
We always stay in the same B&B because it is around a 15 minute walk from the city centre but you can get there a few different ways; through some of the backstreets with the interesting shops, over the green or along the river.
After a very horrible drive up (the M25 being closed exactly where we needed to get off) and after we had deposited our belongings at the B&B we wandered into the city and ended up at The Cambridge Wine Merchants. I had a rather lovely white wine which I’ve completely forgotten the name of (it’s also known as the white Chateauneuf du Pape) with the cheese and charcuterie board. I have to say that the portions of cheese and charcuterie were staggeringly tight; I could have inhaled it in one. Nonetheless it was nice to sit, drink, nibble and watch the world go by. 
I had booked dinner at a restaurant called De Luca as we wanted a relaxed but preferably Italian meal (it was the OH’s birthday you see). This place was absolutely rammed. The kitchen is in the middle of the restaurant so you can see what’s coming and going. It was all very nice; the olives deserve a special mention for not being too briny as do the pictured garlic bread balls with sunblush tomato sauce. The bruschetta was one of the nicest I’ve ever had with loads of fresh garlic and the tomatoes were brilliantly not cold.
The next day, after our breakfast including eggs from the B&B’s own garden, we meandered into town in search of a bit more shopping and some lunch. I was surprised to find the market was on on the Sunday and all the traders were in a different spot to where they were on the Saturday. The coffee man with the van always had a queue! Still pretty full from breakfast we had a late lunch in Byron. It wasn’t immediately clear if it was a chain or an independent but after walking past another one it turns out it’s the former. Really nice juicy burgers with generous toppings though that filled us up for the rest of the day. 
Cambridge has a great mixture of shops; gifts, art, kitchen, clothes, food and plenty of independents too. You’re never far from a cup of tea or coffee. Having been to the (original) Fitzbillies before for one of their famous Chelsea buns I’m always on the lookout for somewhere new. We met up with my Auntie and Uncle for a nice cup of coffee overlooking King’s Chapel and spent the rest of our last day wandering around and eventually ending up in The Cambridge Cheese Company shop. We were very well behaved and only came back with three cheeses; Blue Monday, Comte and something beginning with T. We had a great weekend up there and I’m looking forward to going back.

14 comments:

  1. Cambridge is a good place to be at the moment, we've had so many new openings lately so there is lots of choice. I'd recommend Pint Shop, Aromi and Afternoontease for your next visit :)

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  2. I would also recommend Michaelhouse on Trinity Street for a coffee, cake or light meal. You might even be entertained while you eat, with a performance from the part of the building which is still a church.

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  3. I studied at "the other place", so I could not possibly agree that Cambridge is nice... Glad you liked it though.

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  4. I love Cambridge ! I remember doing the Times Chess Challenge there

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  5. I'd love to visit Cambridge some day! Sounds like a fun place!

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  6. I'd love to visit one day, I have never been before. It sounds like you had a wonderful time.

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  7. If you fancy a trip out of town (next time you visit Cambridge) you should try out The Three Horseshoes. They have a surprisingly good selection of beer alongside some of the best food I've had outside of the city.

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  8. I still haven't been to Cambridge and it seems to lovely! Maybe this summer!
    The white Chateneuf du Pape sounds very interesting :)

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  9. Looks like a great day trip! Lovely looking food too :) I am not sure which road you would have taken or how horrible it is but if it's anything like Sydney traffic. i feel your pain!

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  10. Wow! Beautiful place with those rustic looking buildings. Wish (hoping) I go over too someday.

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  11. Lovely photo journey you took us on with so many great and delicious looking foods!

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  12. I've never visited Cambridge - would love to go someday! So much history. Great pictures - thanks for taking us along with you!

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  13. stephen hawking! i'd plotz if i passed him on the street! this sounds like a wonderful place to visit...maybe i'll make it there one day!

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  14. I've never been to Cambridge but your gorgeous review of it has made me want to!

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