Explore Grantchester; Cambridge’s neighbouring country escape
Cambridge is a city that has everything. It has beauty, architecture and vast green spaces, but it doesn’t compromise on modern tastes either. When it comes to the latest trends in fashion or food, you will find it here.
Along with its fabulous location – 45 minutes to London by train – the city is growing fast. People travel far and wide to see one of the oldest city’s in the UK with its beauty, sights and culture. For those in the know, Grantchester provides a welcome escape from the noise of the city.
A 45-minute walk or 15-minute cycle, head out of the city, past The Fitzwilliam Museum, picking up a coffee from Hot Numbers on the way and towards Grantchester Meadows. Follow the footpath along the river taking int country views and free roaming cows.
During summer months the river is alive with activity. Sunbathers and picnics line the banks. Kayakers and paddle-boarders take to the water, while others swim and children splash and swing from the tree ropes. Winter is equally entertaining, albeit slightly more muddy. Adventurers still take to the water and there’s plenty of wildlife to spot.
Grantchester with its mostly calm, clean water is one of the best spots for wild swimming in Cambridgeshire. The water is easily accessible at the meadow entrance by The Red Lion pub.
If you plan to spend a whole day in Grantchester, you won’t find yourself wondering at things to do. Expect a relaxed and leisurely pace compared to that of the city.
Where to eat in Grantchester
The Red Lion Pub
This beautiful pub is quintessentially British. It has that old-worldly feel with open wood fires and vast beams shouldering the roof, and the décor inside is classically refined with deep armchairs and a mismatch of oak tables.
The menu is far more than what you’d expect from a regular pub. The Red Lion takes inspiration from the ‘Best of British’, using only fresh, seasonal ingredients. During winter months pick a seat by the fire, or in summer nab a picnic bench in the garden. The pub is busy year round so it’s best to book in advance. Dogs are welcome too!
The Orchard Tea Rooms
There is nowhere in Cambridgeshire quite like The Orchard. Wander into the gardens and be met with countless deck chairs and tables; idyllically placed beneath row after row of green apple trees.
It’s a great spot to take a cream tea for two and enjoy the sunshine – if you can bear the wasps enjoying your scones as well, of course! But insects aside, this place is special in its setting and with its laidback atmosphere, you can spend a couple of hours here without even realising.
If you’re looking to enjoy Cambridge’s most famous activity, punting along the River Cam is a wonderful way to do so. Pick up a punt from Mill Lane Punting Station in Cambridge and drift the two to three hours all the way to Byron’s Pool in Grantchester – named as such after Lord Byron who was a frequent visitor.
Cambridge Distillery Showroom
This sleepy village is the last place you’d expect a swanky gin distillery. The showroom on the High Street offers an insight into the distillery process. Walk-ins are welcome to taste samples before purchasing, and private tastings can also be arranged. Why not pick up a bottle of gin, grab some tonic and slice of lemon and enjoy by the water’s edge. How very British!
St Andrew & St Mary Church
This Anglican Church comprises of parts dating back to the 14th century and is believed to have ties to Corpus Christi College. If you enjoy looking into the history and architecture of buildings, then this pretty church is not one to miss.
Whatever you plan to do during your trip to Cambridge make sure Grantchester is on your list. It hosts some of the best pubs and beautiful sights in the county. Don’t miss out!