First Time Visitors

Welcome to Cambridge!

Cambridge the University City

If you are a first time visitor to Cambridge, start here...

Visiting Cambridge with the family

The University of Cambridge is what most people think about when visiting. It is the third oldest university in the world (after Bologna and Oxford). It was formed in the 13th Century by a group of students who fled from hostility in Oxford. The colleges are beautiful, most hug the banks of the river Cam as it winds it's way through the city centre. However with kids it is not always visiting the colleges that will make a great family visit. There is a lot else that you can do as a family. You can punt on the river, browse cafes with the grand spires of King's College in the background, splash in local pools and see fantastic family friendly museums. Click the title to explore the historic side of Cambridge.

Places to Stay, Eating Out, Summer Fun

Here are some ideas of family friendly places to stay, eat out and things to do if you are visiting. It is a selection of some of the places locally that cater well for kids. It isn't a full list, as there are so many. If you have any suggestions do get in touch to let us know.

child with plant exhibit
Family Day Itineries
white bedroom
Places to Stay
pancakes, pancake, crepe-2020863.jpg
Eating Out with Kids
girl with balloons
Summer Fun

Top Family Things to Do on a First Visit


punting from river

Punt along the river

There is nothing more Cambridge than gliding along the Backs on a summer's day. It is the best way to see the colleges. This is best suited to older children and teenagers, and you can ask for life jackets on most punts. You can do it yourself but it is trickier than it looks! I'd recommend the chauffeured version but it is pricier.


Jesus Green Trees

Hang out on Jesus Green

This one of the best green spaces in the city. The grass is short so you can play games or have a picnic. It is next to the river and just a few minutes away from Trinity and Jesus College right in town. Swans and ducks bob about by the weir. There is a playground, skateboard park, tennis courts and a kiosk.


museum cabinets

Find Knight's Armour in the Fitzwilliam Museum

This museum is impressive and great for kids. There is an entrance to the left suitable for buggies where you can pick up kids packs to use inside. Find the Egyptian statues and mummies. Stand in the main entrance looking up the stairs and ceiling, it's very grand. The cafe is nice too.


Botanic Gardens

Take toddlers to the Botanic Gardens

This is a lovely garden by the train station. It has huge trees, a rock garden and lots of spaces to explore for toddlers and children. If you arrive by train it is a nice place to start, and from there you can exit on the other side and walk to Lammas Land paddling pool to cool off, and then onto the city.


bus, red, london-3913228.jpg

Take the Tourist Bus or Hire a Bike

The tourist bus is a nice way to see the city from the top and it goes out to the American Cemetery too. It's a good way to orient yourself. If your family are good cyclists, Cambridge is a nice place to cycle around and you can hire bikes from outside of the train station. It does get very busy in the summer though, and the paths can be narrow and shared with pedestrians so may not be suitable for younger ones new to cycling.

More Things to Do...

Punts on the river Cam

Bat Safari Punting

Join the Wildlife Trust on a Bat Safari punt for adventures at dusk towards Grantchester Meadows. 90 minutes long. Grab this chance to see our

Read More »
geocache object


This is a modern day treasure hunt, using a GPS device to find hidden containers or ‘caches’. It is a nice, simple idea set up by volunteers worldwide.

Read More »
Round church

The Round Church

Also ‘The Church of the Holy Sepulchre’, located opposite the sweet shop on the corner of Round Church Street and Bridge Street. It is one

Read More »
children in museum

The Polar Museum

The Institute was established in 1920 by Frank Debenham as a memorial to Scott and his companions. It holds a unique collection of paint- ings,

Read More »
trinity college courtyard

Useful Links

Here are some more links that you may need when visiting:

Cambridge Tourist Information – Official tourist information site. It can help with accommodation, attractions and events.

Visit Cambridge – an official ‘destination management’ organisation.

Essential Information – this is our list of useful numbers of travel, health, emergency or advice organisations.

Support and Social Networks – an overview of local parent and support networks.


%d bloggers like this: