Beautiful colleges, idyllic scenery, a traditional boat and a glass of something refreshing can always be found along Cambridge’s river, but the British summer usually holds one thing back. Over the last few weeks the missing ingredient has finally arrived. The hottest sun for years has beamed down on the shimmering waters to complete the recipe for a perfect day’s punting. We love to complain about the weather, but so far this summer has made good on the high expectations made of it, a luxury Brits are rarely afforded!
On the hottest day in the UK for seven years, it is an understatement to say the outdoors is the place to be. Fortunately if you’re in Cambridge punting is the ultimate outdoor experience. People escaped the sweltering streets to the cool breeze of the river and the shade of the willows that litter the banks. There’s nothing quite like a glorious day on a punt. The classic architecture of the centuries old colleges are a constant spectacle, but the glow of the sun and the reflection of the water really brings them to life. The whole of the river is completely animated by the blazing sun and cheerful faces populating the boats. Setting off on a boat pushed by a wooden pole is an immersive escape that really feels like a punt through the ages.
Come the evening there is still a low buzz on the river as the light sets on the water. If anything could rival the day it would be the glinting twilight. As the day winds down you still have time to take a trip on the water, which would reward your patience throughout the day. The sun vitalises every stage of the day and leaves a warm afterglow towards the end. Arguably this is Cambridge at its best. The crowds have lulled and the temperature has cooled. Gliding across the water, under the bridges and alongside the buildings, the sky is inked with soft oranges and deep reds, providing a peaceful backdrop for a unique location.
The great scenery is a refreshing experience in the 32-degree heat, but by the end of the day you may want to be in the water rather than on it! Either way Cambridge by river is a treat in the sunshine.
Posted By: Dan Scott-Lintott