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A weekend in Cambridge

August 29, 2014

I’d wanted to visit Cambridge for such a long time. I wasn’t quite sure why, but I had seen a few photos from friends who had lived there and it just seemed like a lovely place to visit. So we picked the Bank Holiday weekend, right before my birthday, to finally tick it off our list. I did a bit of research, asked friends who had studied there, and asked Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for their recommendations. I got such a great response, so thank you to everyone who made suggestions – sometimes it’s better to go by recommendations than Trip Advisor reviews.

We mainly spent the weekend walking around. It’s always the best way to explore, and because the city is much smaller than I thought it was it meant that we could circle a few times and really take everything in. Plus we were really lucky with the weather, so we took full advantage of being able to walk around without getting soaked! The architecture is amazing – and strange that the University is such a tourist attraction. It must be bizarre to study there. Here are a few (ahem) photos from our weekend.

Once we had arrived in Cambridge we were both quite hungry, so of course the first stop was to find some decent food. We went to Nanna Mexico, which was pretty good. I ordered a burrito bowl which actually arrived on a platter and was huge! I was disappointed with the rice – honestly, who serves white rice in a Mexican cafe? It should be Spanish or coriander rice. Puh. On the plus side though, the hot sauce was really tasty and the guacamole was great. It all did the trick anyway, and kept us going for an afternoon of shopping and wandering.

After we walked around most of the city, we took a friend’s recommendation and paid a visit to The Eagle. He had said to look up at the ceiling when we got there, which was a little confusing. We walked through all of the rooms looking up with only plain ceilings to be found, until we reached another section of the bar and found this.

Which was pretty amazing. It’s covered in the graffiti of World War II airmen, and although we couldn’t find a spare table in the room, it was amazing to look up at and try to decipher the scrawled words. What an amazing piece of history. I was quite happy that I didn’t need the loo while we were there, as I’m 100% sure this pub would have haunted toilets and that’s one of my biggest fears. We only stayed for a swift drink, and were seated next to a table of three American women who were super excited to be in England, and had ordered fish and chips. It kind of made me cringe whilst at the same time feeling so happy to be in a city, even a country, that people from other countries are so excited to visit. I guess it’s the same stupid excitement I feel when I go to Berlin, or New York.

After plenty more wandering and shopping we headed back to the hotel to relax before going to Cocum for dinner. It was OK – I loved that the menu was quite different to a lot of other Indian restaurants, plus I will always have a soft spot for South Indian food. I actually managed to resist the dosa this time!! Instead I enjoyed a coconut milk-based curry, a rarity which I took full advantage of, and we shared some tasty starters too. What is it about curry houses – I always leave absolutely stuffed?! I was very happy to retire to one of the most comfortable beds I’ve ever stayed in. Nothing fancy, just a Premier Inn on the outskirts of the city, but the bed was so ridiculously comfy! Even thought it was outside of the city, it was a short walk to the bus stop, the journey was a few minutes to the city centre, and a day ticket was £4, making it really convenient. Well, unless you forget to bring your ticket with you when you go out in the evening and you have to buy another ticket. Who would do that, though?

Waking up early and just enjoying being in bed was a great start to the Sunday, and we were in no rush to get out of the hotel. In fact we checked out at 11.59am ;)

By Sunday lunchtime I just wanted something simple, so we found a cafe and scoured the menu in the hope of something vaguely veganisable. We were in luck, they actually had the word ‘vegan’ in one of their dishes (tomato and mushroom ciabatta) and, upon further questioning, could also offer us a veggie sausage baguette. Nothing too fancy, but it did the trick. Well, the ciabatta was pretty crud but I would recommend the sausage baguette with chips if that’s what you fancy.

After an energising lunchstop we walked along the river and investigated more of Cambridge.

Look how handsome he is ;)

We didn’t actually end up going on a boat ride, but I enjoyed watching everyone else enjoying themselves on the river.

After wandering around for a while we stopped off at the Rainbow Cafe for some coffee and cake. It’s an odd cafe that can be found underground with low ceilings and a sort of hippy feel to it. I didn’t fancy the menu for lunch, they didn’t have any ‘lunchy’ kind of options – more dinner dishes, like stew, roti and shepherdess pie. However I liked the sound of the desserts, and had heard pretty good things about them. They have loads of vegan options, including a daily special cheesecake, crumble, pudding and cake. I went for a soya cappuccino and a slice of chocolate rose and raspberry cake, and Trout went for a guava juice and fig pudding. Both were really, really good – I would definitely recommend popping in if you’re in Cambridge! Everything is veggie, with plenty of vegan options, however there are very few tables so I would think about going when it might be a bit quieter – especially if there are more than a couple of you.

I really hate having my picture taken, but here’s a snap of me eagerly awaiting my cake to be served.

And here it is. Delish. For some reason both cakes look quite small here – but they definitely weren’t! After we had inhaled our cake we walked back towards the bus stop, made our way back to the hotel and picked up our car. We drove just outside of Cambridge to the IWM Duxford, which Trout had been wanting to visit for a while. It was actually really good! It had a few hangers filled with planes, and a few other bits and bobs like that. It had an actual piece of fabric from the first Wright Flyer, which I thought was amazing! It was made out of fabric that was usually used to make women’s underwear.

My love checking out the exhibits.

Lots of guns.

These two planes were probably my favourite’s. I love the original fabric and wood, there’s something so beautiful about them. We did sign up to go on the flights they offer in original World War I planes, but they were fully booked which was a shame. It was only £39 each, which I thought was pretty darn cheap – next time we’ll turn up earlier!

Thanks for a lovely weekend, Cambridge! I would definitely recommend you to a friend.

Today I’ve got the day off, and am currently enjoying being in my PJs  watching trashy TV at 9am! Can’t wait for Real Housewives to start at 9.25am. My sister is arriving around 10am and we’re having a belated birthday fun day. I’m hoping that the weather is lovely, and we can make a trip to Street Diner – I haven’t been in so long, and am craving lunch from Sultan’s Delights. What are your plans for today and the weekend?

Have you been to Cambridge before?
Did I miss anything that you would recommend?


11 Comments leave one →
  1. August 29, 2014 10:09 am

    I’ve never been to Cambridge but it looks lovely. I’d love to go punting and might try it now I’ll be frequenting Oxford a bit more often (boo!)

    It definitely looks like a city that would be perfect for summertime and pub gardens.

    • September 2, 2014 8:35 pm

      Next time I think I would definitely go punting. I really want to visit Oxford, too!

  2. Tamzin permalink
    August 29, 2014 8:59 pm

    I have never actually been to Cambridge but it looks lovely and definitely worth the visit!

  3. Aja permalink
    August 30, 2014 12:31 am

    Gorgeous photos. I have to add Cambridge to my list of places to visit.

  4. August 31, 2014 11:30 am

    Cambridge is so gorgeous! Alfie’s best man did his PhD there so we visited a few times. It’s such a little bubble, reminds me of Harry Potter. :-)

    • September 2, 2014 8:36 pm

      It really does! It’s a nice place to spend time in – especially when the weather is lovely.

  5. September 2, 2014 6:08 am

    Now you just made me want to visit Cambridge – it looks amazing! (and so does that burrito bowl!). Hope you had an amazing birthday!


  1. 2014: A few of my favourite moments | paperbagblog

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