Cambridge, a Tour of the Historic Colleges

Cambridge, a Tour of the Historic Colleges
Photo by Chris Boland / Unsplash

It was rainy and a little bit cold, but nevertheless an exciting day out in East Anglia. Cambridge is a breathtaking city well known for its beautiful University, founded in 1209.

As soon as you step into this gorgeous city you are instantly surrounded by the powerful history of England.

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St Benet's church

We started our tour on Benet's Street where we had a glance at St Benet's church, the oldest building in Cambridge, dating back to 1025.

This ancient Anglo-Saxon church has been a place of Christian worship for nearly a thousand years.

Corpus Christi College

Corpus Christi College [Photo by Julius Dūdėnas on Unsplash]

The best example of a medieval college court in Cambridge is the Corpus Christi College. This was the moment when I fell in love with the city. The buildings are dating from 1352.

Pembroke College

Pembroke College

Another college, dating back to the second half of the 14th century is Pembroke College. William Pitt was a student here in 1773 and became Britain's youngest Prime Minister at the age of 25.


Peterhouse is the city's oldest college

Little St Mary's Lane

Little St Mary's Lane

We continued on towards the Little St Mary's Lane. Don't miss the little church, just inside the glass inner door is a memorial to a former vicar, the Reverend Godfrey Washington, Great Uncle of George Washington.

It's a lovely walk down Little Mary's Lane to the river. We didn't hire a punt, but you go for it, you can hire one with a 'chauffeur.' It's a nice way to see the beautiful views of the famous College backyard.

Laundress Lane in Cambridge

Next up is Laundress Lane. You should be safe here, horses and carriages are forbidden along the passageway.

The Mathematical Bridge of Queen's College

The Old Mathematical Bridge [Photo by Bogdan Todoran on Unsplash]

The Old Mathematical Bridge of Queen's College is a must-see sight in Cambridge.

Queen's College

Queen's College

It's said that Queen's College, is one of the City's most beautiful colleges and I must say, I agree. When we walked in through the massive gate I was amazed by the magnificent 15th-century surroundings. It felt like going back in time!

Top Tip: Download this article as a self-guided walking tour on your smartphone. Check out our Cambridge city walk on

After exploring the Queen's College, pop into Walnut Tree Court.

As we walked through the wonderfully crafted doors into Walnut Tree Court, we could hear loud and powerful organ music. I guessed it was a student rehearsing in his spare time. Be sure to look up when inside - the ceiling of the chapel is stunning.

The archway of the Cloisters built in the 1590s is another feature worth attention. It's super really atmospheric.

President's Lodge

Another lovely bit in the Cloister Court was the beautiful timbered President's Lodge. The lodge is the only substantial half-timber building remaining in Cambridge. Don't you just love timber-framed buildings?

St Catherine's College

St Catherine's College

Yet another wonderful building was founded in 1473 and rebuilt in the 17th Century. Cambridge just doesn't disappoint!

Clare's College

Clare's College was completed in 1719 after the fire destroyed the original building, founded in 1338.

Trinity College

Trinity College [Photo by Tzenik on Unsplash]

Have you heard the story about the college and the Henry VIII statue above the gate? Apparently, he holds a chair leg in his hand, only because, many years ago, a bunch of students thought it would be a fun thing to do.

Trinity College is the largest in Cambridge, founded in 1546 by Henry VIII (my favourite King, before he became old, cruel and grumpy). The Trinity Great Court is the largest university court in the world.

Cambridge University Hall of Fame [Photo by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash]

On the right-hand side, in a Gothic chapel, you can find statues of many famous people including Isaac Newton, a former student of the college.

The Fitzwilliam Museum

The Fitzwilliam Museum

Just a stone's throw away, you'll find the elegant Fitzwilliam Museum, the art and antiquities museum of the University of Cambridge.

King's College

Kings' College Chappel [Photo by Jean-Luc Benazet on Unsplash]

King's College, one of the famous colleges in Cambridge is known worldwide and it is truly impressive. Unfortunately, the college is closed on Sundays, but I could still appreciate its spectacular facade.

While strolling around Cambridge, other little things caught my eye. I really loved the wall adorned with purple wisteria and an old-style cake shop. Which reminded us to pop into a cafe for tea and cake.

The Round Church

The Round Church

We finished our tour at this Norman building - the Round Church. There are only four such buildings in the country. The design is believed to reflect the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.

Well, that was a nice day in Cambridge. We would definitely love to come back again soon!

Top Tip: Download this article as a self-guided walking tour on your smartphone. Check out our Cambridge city walk on

Where to stay in Cambridge

If you plan to stay in Cambridge for a night or two, use the search box below to find your ideal accommodation: