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Top 5 Spots To Enjoy Autumn in Cambridgeshire

top 5 spots to enjoy autumn in Cambridgeshire

So it looks like another year is almost up and Autumn has come back around again. It’s not too late to squeeze in a little staycation though. If you’re looking for some inspiration for somewhere to explore this Autumn then I think this post will be just right for you. Check out the top spots to enjoy autumn in Cambridgeshire!

This is a guest post written by Mairead of SicklyMama.com

lets get into it!

As my husband has family in Tokyo, I’ve been lucky enough to visit Japan twice. Both times in the late spring. And, as luck would have it, on both occasions I’ve missed the famous cherry blossom season.
 
On my first trip, after a long journey across Tokyo from the airport, we met up with my husband’s uncle who cheerfully informed us that there had been a good amount of blossom still on the trees until the night before. A big storm had hit and blown it away while our plane was still somewhere over Russia. Great. On our second trip, the blossom was long gone before we even got on the plane.
Cambridgeshire autumn trees
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So I’ll have to wait until our next visit for my chance to participate in the Japanese tradition of hanami… Enjoying the transient beauty of the cherry blossom. Although we don’t have an equivalent word in English, we certainly do have some similar traditions of our own – albeit perhaps not on quite such a grand scale.
 
I’m thinking about going for a walk in the hills in bluebell season, or enjoying the sight of the first daffodils of spring. Or maybe I’ll just take a beautiful walk this autumn in Cambridgeshire! 

let's talk about autumn in camrbidgeshire

Now that the year has cycled through to autumn, of course, there’s the prospect of crisp bright days, golden trees, and the crunch of leaves underfoot. Even if your travel plans have been disrupted this year, the prospect of an autumnal staycation can be quite charming. But where are the best places to enjoy the sights, sounds and (in some cases) tastes of autumn? I’ve pulled together this guide to my local area, giving you ideas for some of the best spots to enjoy autumn around Cambridgeshire.

Ely Riverfront

Ely is one of the UK’s smallest cities, with the feel of a countryside market town rather than a burgeoning metropolis. But the impressive sight of its enormous cathedral, visible for miles around, means that it’s hard to deny it does technically meet the requirement to be called a city. Ely is situated on the Great Ouse river. The riverside is perfect for autumnal walks.
Ely riverfront - Cambridgeshire in autumn
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From the quayside near the centre of town, a short stroll north along the river will take you to Roswell Pits Nature Reserve, where you can admire the colours of autumn and keep an eye out for bittern, great crested grebe, and even otters. On the way, you’ll pass row after row of blackberry bushes that are laden with fruit – perfect for an autumnal crumble.

Alternatively, you can head south along the river and enjoy the wide-open skies and landscapes of the fens in autumn. Close to the water, you’ll see colourful narrow boats and smell their woodsmoke in the chilly air. Then you can always head back into the city to enjoy a hot cup of tea, or a pint of something stronger…

Chippenham Park Gardens

Located on the border of Suffolk and Cambridgeshire, you’ll find the stately home of Chippenham Park. The park opens its stunning gardens to the public on a few dates throughout the year. It’s a popular wedding venue and is especially worth a visit in the autumn.

Autumn is when the gardens are awash with colour. The grounds are dotted with Japanese Maple trees with leaves in a magical range of hues, from blood reds to golden yellows. You can explore the formal gardens and woodland areas, check out the range of produce they’ve been growing in the kitchen garden, and walk in the quince orchard.

If you’d like a more relaxed experience or just need to take a break from walking, there’s the obligatory cafe which offers hot and cold drinks and some very fine scones. (Mmmm)!

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Hinchingbrooke Country Park

Still not convinced about autumn in Cambridgeshire? Let’s be honest; autumn doesn’t feel like autumn unless you’ve crunched your way through a pile of dried leaves, right?
 
Cambridgeshire is known more for its fens than its woodland. Hinchingbrooke Country Park in Huntingdon offers 63 acres of woodland, meadow, grassland and lakes. In the autumn, the woods are carpeted in vivid orange leaves while the foliage that remains turns from green to yellow. It’s a particularly fun place to visit with children. There’s a large fenced-in play area and you’ll probably also stumble across wild play and dens in the woodland near the car park. 

If you’re really keen to enter into the spirit of this “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness”, there are even companies offering foraging courses around Hinchingbrooke Country Park. You can join a guided walk searching for mushrooms, berries and more. 

Anglesey Abbey

Anglesey Abbey is a National Trust property with formal gardens as well as a wildlife discovery area. As you wander through the grounds, there’s plenty of beautiful spots to enjoy the reds, oranges and yellows of autumn foliage, but there are also a few seasonal surprises.

Anglesey Abbey trees and path
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I loved the discovery of a carpet of delicate pink and white cyclamen beneath the trees lining a path to the old Mill building. I was surprised by how the colours were so reminiscent of the colours of cherry blossom season in Japan. Plus, in the autumn you’ll find a striking rainbow display of multicoloured dahlias, with over 70 varieties on show.
 
Anglesey Abbey is another great place to visit this autumn if you have children. There’s an ‘autumn bucket list’ for them to complete around the grounds. One of these being a hunt for all the colours of autumn and natural treasures to hunt for; conkers, pine cones, and more. 

The Cambridge Backs

And finally, of course, a guide to autumn in Cambridgeshire wouldn’t really be complete without a mention of Cambridge city itself. On a bright sunny autumn day, the architecture of the famous colleges is picked out in perfect detail. You’ll get the best views of the seasonal colour along the Cambridge Backs, strolling along the banks of the river and criss-crossing over the picturesque bridges. 

If you keep walking south along the river, you’ll end up in Coe Feb and Lammas Land. This beautiful wild parkland is right in the heart of the city where you might come face to face with a herd of wandering cows (don’t worry, they’re friendly).
cambridge backs
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Of course, if you want to get a whole new perspective on autumn in Cambridge, you can try viewing it from the River Cam itself. Plenty of companies offer punting tours along the river. If you’re feeling a little bit more confident, you can simply hire a boat and do the hard work yourself. 

From the water, you’ll be able to take in some world-famous views, such as King’s College Chapel and the Mathematical Bridge. Just make sure you wrap up warm – or do what the students do, and take a thermos flask of hot chocolate, topped up with something a little stronger…

About the Author

Mairead blogs at www.thesicklymama.com primarily about being a new mum with chronic illness. She also covers gluten-free baking, and reviews.
 
You can find her on Instagram here – www.instagram.com/sicklymama. She loves reading, writing, travel, and actually getting the time to take a long bath! 

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Cambridgeshire pintrest
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Looking for ideas on your next staycation? Check out this short guide on the top places to visit in Cambridgeshire in Autumn to find out why you should plan your next staycation here! via @dannyexplores
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