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At this time of year it’s often tempting to simply spend all our time indoors.  It’s cold outside.  The days are short.  And even a little wind can chill the bones.  Plus this year round choosing to mostly stay at home is an especially good decision.  But regardless of the circumstances it’s not healthy to spend all our time indoors.  So we at the Varsity Hotel Cambridge would like to suggest a few winter walks in our vicinity, for your consideration.


Following the Towpath

Though generally advisable to remain at home in these times, we all still need some exercise in our routine.  To maintain or improve our mental and physical health.  And with gyms not a current option for most, the great outdoors is often our best option.  Some prefer to run.  Others like to cycle.  But for many of us walking is the way to really take in the ambience and atmosphere of our surroundings.

The Varsity Hotel makes for a good landmark for anyone wanting to walk in the area.  It’s right on the river bank.  Close to several green spaces.  And on the edge of Cambridge city centre.  This suggests two main routes to take in the area.

The first is down the river.  Only about 100m down the river from the Varsity Hotel is Jesus lock.  This combination of weir, footbridge and lock for barges is the dividing point of the river Cam.  Upriver of here is the city centre and the older colleges.  There the river is shallow enough for the punting Cambridge is so famous for.

Downriver is the domain of the various boathouses and the racing Eights you’ll see during Bumps, or the Boat Race on the Thames.  A long stretch of river flanked by the old towpath, for when river barges relied on horsepower to pull them upriver.  It is now a lovely, scenic walk which slowly becomes more rural over time.  And even features a small and well concealed nature reserve right on the riverbank.


Into the City

The other main option is to follow the river upstream into the heart of Cambridge’s historic city centre.  Taking a walk through the city centre past the front of the various medieval colleges is to take a walk through architectural history.  Any architectural style you can think of in the several hundred years pre-20th century is represented here.  And right now there are no hoards of tourists to get in your way as you might expect during an average summer.

But perhaps even better suited to current conditions would be a walk along the Backs.  In times gone by the backs of the colleges weren’t exactly beautiful.  This is were the coal barges would arrive to deposit their loads.  Where rubbish was stored to be later removed.

But, after changes in technology and a determined clean up effort, the Backs are now a beauty spot.  Take a leisurely walk down the leafy open spaces, admiring the exquisite architecture and college gardens at a distance.

Whichever direction you choose, using the six storey Varsity Hotel as a reference point will help you plot your journey.


Suite Life Competition

Are you looking forward to life after lockdown? Us too! So, to give you something to look forward to, we are launching our #varsitysuitelife competition giving you the chance to win a FREE NIGHT IN OUR SUITE!

The Stunning Senior Fellow’s Suite features breath-taking views over the Cambridge skyline that can be enjoyed from its own private balcony or floor to ceiling windows, luxurious super-king size bed, signature free standing bath, ELEMIS toiletries and enormous smart tv!

To enter, you just need to take a photo of yourself doing your daily exercise activity, use the #varsitysuitelife and post it. Make sure your photo is public so we can see it! 

Entries start now, closing date for entries 19/02/21, winner will be drawn on 22/02/21 – T/C’s apply, see website for details.