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Cambridgeshire

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About Cambridgeshire

In some of the UK's other counties the charming, albeit tiny, city of Ely, with its impressive cathedral, Georgian terraces and medieval heart, would be the main attraction. Or even pretty Peterborough, Cambridgeshire’s largest market town with an almost intact Norman cathedral. But it’s difficult to dethrone Cambridge in this part of the country, with its gracious, honey-coloured architecture and history of peace, beauty and learning. So on our list of the best places to stay in Cambridgeshire you will find a large percentage of hotels in Cambridge, along with a handful in Ely, but we have also included some wonderful pubs-with-rooms in smaller villages, and a couple of impressive country house conversions.

Some visitors to Cambridgeshire have no intention of travelling beyond the historic college buildings, the Fitzwilliam Museum, or cobbled streets of Cambridge, and  the town certainly has a full-schedule’s worth of attraction on offer, from art museums and galleries to incredible libraries and churches. But while you're in the area it would be a shame to miss out on a visit to the Duxford Air Museum — they have a prototype Concorde — or Oliver Cromwell’s house in Ely.

Outside of the larger towns, Cambridgeshire’s flat, part-reclaimed Fens are an incredible landscape to explore on foot, or by bike. If that’s the sort of thing that appeals to you, consider our recommendations for the best places to stay in Cambridgeshire’s hamlets and villages. We’ve found some friendly old pubs-with-rooms, with hearty menus perfect for walkers and cyclists!

The Best Places to Stay in Cambridgeshire

For a Refined Stay

  • The University Arms is right in the middle of Cambridge, next to Parker’s Piece and Downing College. It’s been converted from an elegant 18th century building, with a grand, pale stone carriageway. The hotel has almost 200 rooms and suites, all of them decorated in Cambridge blue and white, with large bathrooms and leafy views. Expect desks and books, and a wood-panelled gourmet restaurant which mirrors many university dining halls.
  • If you dream of staying on the banks of the Cam, The Graduate, Cambridge is our Gurus' recommendation for you. This is an eclectically stylish choice, with plenty of Cambridge references, including sawn-in-half punts turned bookshelves in many of the rooms, an impressive collection of literature, and a huge DNA installation. The Garden House restaurant offers a seasonal menu in a charming setting, the lobby bar feels glamorous, and the swimming pool and spa have huge windows overlooking the river.

For a Country House Hotel

  • The Old Hall is an historic, Jacobean manor house turned luxurious country hotel. The rooms are a good range of sizes, from simple singles, to rather grand suites with four-poster beds and free-standing baths. There are some nice antiques, alongside some very nice more recently handcrafted furniture, and our favourite rooms have views over the mature gardens. There’s a lovely terrace too and the Orangery Restaurant serves fine dining British cuisine.

For a Romantic Mini-Break

  • The Clayton Hotel is a large and elegant hotel close to Cambridge Station. The contemporary design has been softened inside, with plenty of Cambridge blue, wood panelling, and plush fabrics, but this is a new building, with all the bells and whistles to prove it, including a gym. There are 155 rooms and suites, a chic bar and restaurant, a comfortable lounge and a roof terrace too.
  • Poets House is a 21 room hotel converted from a row of three Georgian townhouses in central Ely, just opposite the cathedral. The location is excellent, and the hotel brings a certain bling to Ely, a boutique hotel vibe that this lovely little city was missing. Expect deep copper baths, in room (and butlers who will draw them for you), lots of surfaces that reflect, and fancy toiletries. It’s definitely the sort of place that needs a cocktail bar — and Poets House’s cocktail bar really hums! Plus there's an elegant restaurant.
  • Cambridge’s Hotel Du Vin has been transformed from an old university building, retaining many of the original architectural quirks, but adding a bistro, bar and cinema suite to the library the building already had. There are just 37 rooms and suites — the suites are all one of a kinds — some with private terraces or balconies. Some of the rooms would suit families, and kids under two years old stay for free.

For Central Cambridge

  • The Gonville Hotel is a spacious, 84 room hotel close to Parker’s Piece and the University Museum of Zoology. It offers a uniformity of contemporary style, with clean lines, sleek furnishings and plenty of mirrors, both in the rooms and in the fine-dining restaurant and chic bar. Plus there's a garden and bikes to hire if you want to explore like a local!
  • Centrally located in Cambridge, The Varsity Hotel & Spa has 48 rooms and suites, a fantastic roof terrace, a private cinema and a spa and gym. The decor is an eclectic mix of antiques and contemporary pieces, and all of the rooms are well arranged with plenty of light. The spa and restaurant are in a separate building.

For Exploring Cambridgeshire

  • The Old Bridge is a chic hotel on the outskirts of the pretty market town of Huntingdon, which is just a short dash from Cambridge. This is a simple, but stylish, 24 room hotel, with decor that ranges from the traditional to the contemporary. If you want a four-poster bed, or free-standing bath, you just have to say. A great base for exploring the region.
  • The Lodge Duxford is perfectly located for visits to the very excellent Duxford Air Museum, but this chic choice makes a great base for exploring the whole region. Its 17 rooms and suites are arranged in the main house, in a converted stable block, and in the Loft. Each is unique, but all of them have cool, original art, and smart modern bathrooms. There’s a restaurant and a cafe, and a hip cocktail bar.

Best Pubs-with-Rooms

  • The Black Bull Inn is a thatched village pub in Balsham, which is convenient for Newmarket, as well as Cambridge. The restaurant is an award-winner, with fancy gastropub cuisine, and a menu that changes with the seasons. The pub and restaurant are downstairs, their exposed beams and brick walls complemented with lots of leather furniture, while upstairs the rooms have a contemporary rustic look with pale-coloured wood and just the right amount of tartan.
  • The Crown and Punchbowl is a local village pub-with-rooms, just three miles from Cambridge, in pretty Horningsea. The pub itself has wood panelled walls, woodburning stoves, and Tudor beams, but its nine rooms are decorated with a Scandinavian colour scheme and contemporary furniture. The hearty cuisine and great selection of local ales makes this a cosy stay, and a popular one with walkers.
  • The White Hart is a totally charming, 17th century inn in Ufford, a pretty village just outside Stamford. It has 12 rooms, some decorated in contemporary style, and some more traditional. The pub has a lovely garden and a courtyard, and serves classic British pub food. Quaint and rustic, this is an affordable pick.
  • The Three Hills is a pretty village pub-with-rooms in Barlow, which is close to Duxford. The exterior is long, low and traditional, but inside the cosiness has been updated with a more contemporary feel, where exposed brick and open fireplaces still feature, but there’s a pale neutral colour scheme and a lounge that feels like a living room. A welcoming choice for families, and folk travelling with their pets, with great food and a peaceful location.
  • Ely’s The Royal Standard is an historic pub in the centre of town. The pub and its restaurant are popular with locals, and known for good local ales, a classic pub menu, and an eclectic wine list. Upstairs there are five rooms, all individually decorated, mixing their original features with a contemporary collection of furnishings and colours. Good value too.

Best B&Bs

  • 5 Chapel Street is a three bedroom B&B converted from a pretty, Georgian terraced house in Chesterton. The rooms still have a traditional feel, with polished parquet flooring, sash windows, and a collection of antiques. As well as providing useful advice about Cambridge, the owners have a small fleet of Dutch bikes to lend to guests. They also offer a warm welcome and home-made breakfast.

For Great Value

  • The White Hart is a restaurant with rooms in Fulbourn, which is just a few miles outside of Cambridge. It has ten rooms, all simply and comfortably decorated with country chic style. The bar and restaurant are lively, with a friendly atmosphere.

Prefer a Private Apartment or Cottage?

  • If you'd prefer the privacy of a self-catering option then browse through the wide variety available online with our partner, Booking.com.

Travel Information

  • London Stansted Airport, being just half an hour away by rail, or car from Cambridge is the best bet. London City Airport is next closest, at about 35 minutes away from Cambridge by train, or two hours away via train from Kings Cross. If you’re coming to Cambridgeshire by train there are routes out of London Liverpool Street Station, Euston, and Kings Cross.
  • If you want to hire a car we recommend you visit our online partner, Rentalcars.
  • Reasons to visit Cambridgeshire include both indoor and outdoor attractions, so the best time of year to visit depends on what you want to see. Cambridge itself has the colleges, plus museums and galleries, so there are indoor elements, but there’s also the ‘Backs’, and punting on the Cam. You may also want to consider the university calendar. If you’re hoping to see some sunshine, spring and summer will be the best time to plan your visit, but Cambridgeshire gets rain throughout the year, so whenever you’re visiting it’s worth packing your waterproof gear.

Still not sure where to stay?

Weather

Monthly Weather in Cambridgeshire

Best Hotels in Cambridgeshire

  • The White Hart, Cambridge Cambridge (Fulbourn) 10 rooms from £80

    Great walks  -  Go for a walk in the nearby Wandlebury Country Park and Nature Reserve.
    Sights nearby  -  Four miles from Cambridge city centre and all of its sights.
    Restaurant  -  Recommended.
    Restaurant

    Nestled in the picturesque village of Fulbourn a few miles outside Cambridge, The White Hart is a charming pub with rooms. Featuring comfortable, spacious rooms and an atmospheric restaurant. The hotel's bar is a great place to unwind in the evening. See More

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  • The White Hart, Stamford Stamford (Cambridgeshire) 12 rooms from £85

    Sights nearby  -  There are many tourist attractions nearby including Burghley House and Peterborough Cathedral
    Local markets  -  Good for local colour.
    Full of character
    Remote  -  Off the beaten track.
    RestaurantGardenPet friendlyDisabled accessParking
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays

    A charming 17th century inn with twelve uniquely designed rooms, some with a contemporary vibe, some more traditional, all with smart modern bathrooms. Classic British cuisine created with local produce, and a picturesque garden terrace for warmer days. Quaint and rustic; ideal for a country escape. See More

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  • The Crown and Punchbowl Horningsea, Cambridgeshire 9 rooms from £94

    Local exploring  -  Offering the best of both worlds with its pretty rural setting just 3 miles outside of Cambridge city centre
    Country Escape  -  With roaring fires, hearty cuisine, and lovely countryside for long walks — this is a charming rural stay
    Great walks  -  There is a walking path along the river from the centre of Cambridge right to the pub (ideal for building appetites)
    Sailing  -  For a classic Cambridge experience, go punting on the river
    RestaurantParking

    A charming pub located in a quaint village just three miles outside Cambridge city centre. The nine rooms are individually styled but all have a modern feel with pale wood furniture, plush headboards, and neutral hues. The wood-panelled pub is more traditional and serves hearty cuisine & good ales. See More

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  • The Three Hills Cambridgeshire 6 rooms from £100

    Country Escape  -  A friendly pub in a pretty rural village with great local food, ideal for cosy country retreats
    Sights nearby  -  Nearby sights include Ely Cathedral, Cambridge American Cemetery, Audley End House and the Cambridge University Botanic Gardens
    Great walks  -  Embark on the picturesque Bartlow Hills Walk
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    RestaurantGardenPet friendlyViewsParking
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays

    A quaint village pub with low ceilings, exposed beams and fireplaces, furnished in a homely style with sofas, armchairs and muted pastel tones. Cosy, pretty rooms feature charming floral fabrics. The pub serves locally sourced classic British food with a twist. A delightful rural stay. See More

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  • 5 Chapel Street Cambridge 3 rooms from £100

    Local exploring  -  A charming home with warm hosts who provide vintage bikes and endless nuggets of knowledge with which to explore the city.
    Sailing  -  Take a traditional punting trip down the River Cam.
    Restrictions on children  -  Children over 12 are welcomed
    Full of character
    ParkingNo pets
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays

    A delightful small B&B in a pretty Georgian house. Traditional rooms are beautifully styled with polished parquet floors, sash windows, crisp white linen and a choice selection of antique pieces. Home made breakfasts and tea are offered along with vintage bikes and a very warm welcome. See More

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  • The Royal Standard Ely 5 rooms from £100

    Local exploring  -  Well positioned to discover the museums, cultural sights, and antique stores of historic Ely
    Great walks  -  Take a leisurly stroll along the riverside path that runs beside the Great Ouse
    Sights nearby  -  Visit Ely's sights including Ely Cathedral and Oliver Cromwell's house
    Restaurant  -  Classic British pub fare served in the restaurant
    RestaurantParking

    A historic pub in Ely which offers a characterful pub and cosy contemporary rooms. Each of the five rooms are individually styled. The building's original features remain but now there's modern art, plush headboards, & contemporary fixtures. The friendly pub serves pub classics and good local ales. See More

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  • Poets House Ely, Cambridgeshire 21 rooms from £119

    Sights nearby  -  A stone's throw from the famous cathedral
    Room service  -  Personal butlers at your beck and call
    Views  -  Great views of Ely Cathedral
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Air conditioningRestaurantViews

    Exciting new addition to Ely's hotel scene. Townhouse hotel in the heart of the city opposite the cathedral close. Service is key with personal butler's to draw your bath, and a luxurious vibe throughout. Lively bar for evenings in. See More

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  • The Old Bridge Cambridgeshire 24 rooms from £128

    Local exploring  -  Well placed on the outskirts of a pretty market town with good access to the rest of the county.
    Great walks  -  Take a stroll along the picturesque river that runs alongside the hotel.
    Sights nearby  -  Visit Houghton Mill an impressive working 18th century watermill.
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Air conditioningRestaurantGardenPet friendlyDisabled accessParking
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays, Good Hotel Guide

    A chic hotel located on the outskirts of the pretty market town of Huntingdon and within spitting distance of Cambridge. Traditional and contemporary styles merge well throughout with bold prints, antique furniture and the best rooms have free-standing baths. The perfect spot to explore the region. See More

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  • The Old Hall Ely (Stuntney) 14 rooms from £130

    Local exploring  -  A great location to exlpore the historic city of Ely with its magnificent cathedral.
    Sights nearby  -  The magnificent Ely Cathedral is an absolute must-see.
    Restrictions on children  -  This is an adults only property
    GardenDisabled accessParkingNo pets

    Historic Jacobean manor house turned luxury B&B with views over the magnificent Ely Cathedral. A range of rooms from grand four-posters to single classics, all sumptuously decorated and filled with antiques & handcrafted furniture, plus beautiful mature gardens and terrace. See More

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  • The Varsity Hotel & Spa Cambridge 48 rooms from £135

    Cinema  -  Rooftop cinema in fine weather
    Views  -  Rooftop and river Cam views from many rooms (but not all!)
    Restaurant  -  Recommended.
    Spa
    Air conditioningSpaRestaurantDisabled accessViews
    Recommended by  -  I Escape, Tablet, Good Hotel Guide

    Newish, central, contemporary hotel with plenty of light, great roof terrace and cinema, chic design details and a useful spa and gym. See More

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  • The Gonville Hotel Cambridge (Cambridgeshire) 84 rooms from £140

    City Style  -  A chic boutique hotel located in the heart of the city.
    Sailing  -  Laze on a punt on the River Cam.
    Boutique
    Restaurant  -  Recommended.
    Air conditioningRestaurantGardenPet friendlyDisabled accessParking

    A recent refurbishment has spruced up this city centre hotel. Contemporary design throughout, the rooms are spacious with clean lines, feature mirrors, sleek furnishings and indulgent bathrooms. The fine-dining restaurant is exemplary and there's an elegant bar too. See More

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  • The Black Bull Inn Balsham, Cambridgeshire 5 rooms from £149

    Country Escape  -  A quintessentially British pub in a pretty village. Ideal for weekends of walks, open fires, ale and hearty fare.
    Great walks  -  Find picturesque walking trails starting straight from the property.
    Full of character
    Restaurant  -  Recommended.
    RestaurantGardenPet friendlyParking

    A charming village pub in a pretty area of Cambridgeshire. Four simply dressed rooms feature parquet flooring, crisp white linen and contemporary light wooden furniture. The award winning restaurant serves exemplary gastro pub food using seasonal produce. See More

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  • The Lodge Duxford Duxford, Cambridgeshire 17 rooms from £149

    Short break  -  Well located between Cambridge, Stansted Airport, and London making this a good choice for a quick getaway
    Business meetings  -  With trendy workspaces and meeting rooms, this is a hip hangout for work
    Restaurant  -  The restaurant serves British dishes with European influences while Graze Cafe serves casual bites and there are pizzas too
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the King's College Chapel and Anglesey Abbey in Cambridge
    RestaurantGardenPet friendlyParking

    A hip boutique hotel in Duxford near Cambridge. Stylish rooms are set in the Main House, Loft, or Stables. Each is individually designed but expect modern art, block colours, modern bathrooms, & Roberts speakers. With several dining options & co-working spaces, this is a real Millennials' hangout. See More

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  • University Arms Cambridge 192 rooms from £156

    Local exploring  -  Conveniently located close to the centre, ideal for exploring museums, the parks and gardens, as well as the various colleges
    Great walks  -  Wander around the university grounds, with 31 colleges to choose from, there's plenty to explore
    Sights nearby  -  Discover the wonderful churches and chapels of Cambridge
    Spa  -  Aromatherapy Associates Treatment Rooms for Guests
    Air conditioningSpaRestaurantDisabled accessNo pets

    An 18th-century property turned chic hotel, set in the heart of Cambridge. Elegant rooms and suites are quintessentially British; dressed in shades of Cambridge blue with fine wooden desks and plenty of books. A gourmet restaurant echoes the university college's dining halls. See More

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  • Clayton Hotel Cambridge 155 rooms from £159

    Short break  -  Cambridge is just a one and a half hour's journey from central London. Ideal for a quick weekend getaway
    Local exploring  -  Well located in the heart of the city making this an easy choice for a city break
    Sights nearby  -  Pay a visit to King's College Chapel and stroll around the University's Campus to admire the architecture
    Great walks  -  Take scenic strolls along the River Cam and get a real feel of the city
    Air conditioningRestaurantDisabled access

    A sleek hotel offering convenient access to Cambridge's attractions. Spacious rooms are minimalist and contemporary but there is a feel of the old-world in the wood-panelled headboards. With a gym, seasonal restaurant, and atmospheric bar — there is everything you need for a city break. See More

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  • Hotel du Vin & Bistro, Cambridge Cambridge 37 rooms from £175

    Sights nearby  -  Well located in Cambridge city centre for historic sights of Cambridge University.
    Cots available  -  All children under 2 years stay free of charge for children's cots/cribs.
    Restaurant  -  French-style bistro offering A La Carte or Prix Fixe menus
    Wedding license  -  Possible to book entire hotel for weddings.
    Air conditioningRestaurantPet friendlyDisabled accessParking

    Beautifully renovated university building. Rooms boast a range of architecturally quirky features and a number of unique suites. Library, French-style bistro and bar available, offering a comfortable and relaxing stay in Cambridge city centre. See More

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  • The Graduate, Cambridge Cambridge (Mill Lane) 148 rooms from £179

    Foodies  -  The restaurant boasts a lovely setting beside the river and serves exceptional modern British cuisine using very local produce
    Local exploring  -  Cambridge is small so almost anywhere is good but from here you are on the River Cam & have views of the Mathematical Bridge
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the impressive gothic Kings College chapel and cross the Mathematical Bridge (or spot it from the hotel)
    Restaurant  -  The Garden House restaurant
    Air conditioningRestaurantSwimming PoolGardenPet friendlyDisabled accessParking

    Occupying a riverside position, this is a characterful hotel with Varsity styling and a noteworthy restaurant. Rooms have Edwardian design as their inspiration but they feel fun & modern. The Garden House restaurant serves a memorable seasonal menu & there's a chic bar too. Ideal for city exploring. See More

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