Home to one of the best Universities in the world, the internationally renowned college town of Cambridge is a fine example of British pub culture, with old-fashioned drinking spots and traditional taverns found on every corner. Here is our list of the 10 best bars in Cambridge.
The Free Press pub has been standing in Cambridge for over 120 years. Originally home to a printing press which distributed free newspapers around the town, it was converted into a drinking establishment after only one paper was published, and found much more profitability in its new line of work. Newspaper pages adorn the walls here, along with maps detailing the industrial transformation of Cambridge over the years. A perfect spot to enjoy an ice cold ale and revel in the history of the town.
One of the most famous pubs in Cambridge, The Eagle frequently served as the gathering place for scientists working at the local Cavendish Laboratory. It was here that James Watson and Francis Crick revealed their discovery of the DNA double helix shape. Customers can expect a classic pub experience when visiting here, as the establishment boasts a dark wood interior, high-backed chairs and a friendly ambience. Homely dishes such as scotch eggs are available to accompany a range of draught beers.
The Flying Pig offers Cambridge customers an intimate drinking experience. It is a warm and welcoming pub spot, which is extremely popular with locals and tourists alike. Constantly rotating real ale brands and weekend live music add to the appeal here, and a picturesque garden area with outside seating gives diners the option to people watch whilst they relax. The Kozel draught is highly recommended.
Cambridge Blue prides itself on the real ales it offers, draughts sourced from different parts of the world including Holland, Belgium and the USA. The pub plays host to a number of popular festivals throughout the year, and is the number one spot to experience a beer or cider festival in the area. There is a large outdoor garden facility here where visitors can relax and socialise. The antelope burger is a bizarre but tasty choice if looking for a snack whilst drinking.
The Pint Shop draws inspiration for its design and service style from the beer houses of the 1830’s, establishments which transformed beer from primarily a rich man’s beverage into a drink enjoyed and afforded by all. The pub offers a range of low-priced gins, whiskeys and beers, and the quaint architecture adds to the historical charm of the place. The Pint Shop also boasts an excellent restaurant, with food choices including flatbreads, whole fish and gourmet salads.
The Bath House is a traditional pub set in the heart of Cambridge, where customers can purchase a delicious plate of the beloved British dish, fish and chips. The pub is conveniently located for easy access to the Cambridge market as well as several theatres. Live music is featured here occasionally, and if you’re wondering where the name originates from? The pub was built on the south side of what used to be an Augustinian friar’s bath house.
A famous college town, Cambridge is home to the traditional King Street run, a challenge where students attempt to drink a pint of beer in every bar on King Street. King Street Pub is a predominant feature on the route, offering many beer options, a large TV and a pool table for socialising. Remember to pace yourself if visiting here whilst participating in the activities; you have at least six more pubs to go.
If searching for an interesting alternative to the English pub scene whilst in Cambridge, La Raza should be your top choice. This place is a Spanish-style bar serving a variety of fruity mixed drinks and delicious dishes like paella and tapas. The establishment exudes a trendy and modern ambiance, hosting live DJs and soul music sets weekly. Customers also have a chance to get hands-on with their food here and try a cocktail mixing master class.
The Mitre is another example in Cambridge of a popular modern drinking spot steeped in local history. The pub’s name derives from its origin as the meeting point, or joining place, of two local inns that were later put out of business. The Mitre, formerly known as the Cock and Magpie, remained as a public house, and flourished. It is now a local hot spot for enjoying traditional English cuisine with fine, ice cold ales, while the Sunday lunch offered here is delicious and filling.
The Mill is built on the site of an old English feud between two millers. Henry Hazard, a Tory, and C.F. Foster, a Liberal, partook in a lengthy and futile conflict which became infamous throughout the town. The establishment has shed all signs of past troubles and is now a beacon of delight in Cambridge, with a warm and welcoming atmosphere, friendly staff, and a lively record player in the corner. The pub also hosts a wealth of social events, such as Rugby World Cup viewing parties, a Halloween haunted house and a regular Monday quiz night.