Cambridge Colleges and Castle

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Cambridge has a ghostlike attraction; the visitor who has seen everything that lies in the guidebook and has not thought of the past has only seen half of this beautiful city.

The cluster of ancient colleges started when a core of Oxford dons escaped to the Fens in 1225. The Chancellor was recognised by the Pope in 1254 before the same at Oxford and so it is often said that Cambridge started after Oxford but finished first.

The streets are full of the ghosts of scholars, spies and Roundheads and this walk takes in all the places where they may roam. The charming cloisters of Trinity, St John's and Clare as well as the medieval gates of all the others are visited on the walk, as is the castle mound which has a great vista over the city.

A final stroll is taken along the side of the canal, back to the start at the bus stop from the park-and-ride.

England - East England - Cambridgeshire - Town or city

Features

Church, Pub, Public Transport, River
29/06/2016 - Sharon Hooper

A good walk to get a feeling for Cambridge. However, don't do it in the first half of June as all the colleges are shut preparing for their summer balls. Also, I question the distance. We walked somewhat further although we did have to backtrack a bit because of the college closures.

10/08/2012 - martin stimson

Did this walk yesterday afternoon in 24 degree summer sunshine. A really good walk, and a great way to see the city which was very cosmopolitan and full of interesting things to see. I think you would need to be on a bike though to do the walk in the time stated! You need to build in time to wander through some of the college gardens etc. We parked in the Multi storey car park near Parkers Piece, at mid day, and we finished the walk at 5pm.This included 40 mins or so for lunch, and 15 mins for an ice cream! We also paid £1 for a local tourist map from a machine in the carpark entrance. Highly recommended as the map on this walk is too small. The route through Clare College wasn't possible without paying, but there are lots of paths and interesting narrow streets to follow.

11/03/2012 - Ian Mapp

Once again, walking world comes up with the best way of exploring a new city. Our 1st visit and I now feel that I know the place. We also found that by sneaking in the back of St Johns College by following the route avoided a tax of £4 which someone was collecting at the front gate :-) Story at http://mappiman.blogspot.com/2012/03/10312-city-tour-of-cambridge.html Thanks.