Cambridge Ranked, pt.II

By Francesco Loy Bell September 26, 2016

We are back with the second instalment of our ranking of all things Cambridge, social, locational, academic and more.


Date Spots

  1. The Varsity Hotel Roof

Your date will be blown away by this simultaneously scenic and suave rooftop bar. The closest thing you can get to one of London’s skyscraper haunts, enjoy switching from gazing at your lover’s eyes to taking in the breath-taking scenery Cambridge and beyond has to offer.

  1. Punting

We know this is massively clichéd and that most of you will recoil at the thought of asking your better half onto a wooden boat while a guy who thinks he is jokes and has a suspiciously proficient use of his left arm ogles at you every time you hold hands. But punting really is fun ting – you get to see into loads of colleges you probably haven’t been arsed to visit, you get to snuggle, and you do feel ‘so Cambridge.’

  1. Fudge Kitchen

Indulge your sweet teeth by going on a fudge-making course. A fun, original and hands-on date, they will love it when you cutely get fudge stuck on your nose, or drop your iPhone in the mixture. Sticky fingers you may get (oh stop it), but the building up your adorableness will make it all worthwhile.


University Parties

  1. ArcSoc

Weird, wonderful, and always incredibly put together, keep an eye out for the Architecture Society’s termly bashes. Usually fancy-dress obligatory, these are a welcome break from weekly clubbing, and often take place in various diverse locations, such as their Union Take-Over last year.

  1. Union Ball

Speaking of the Union, their ball provides an early taster for May Week, allowing you the opportunity to don black tie, often with a quirky twist (James Bond.) Ok, James Bond being the ‘quirky twist’ for a black tie do is pretty unimaginative, but you get the idea.

  1. King’s Bunker

Underground, minimalist, ugly, Red Stripe, basically Berlin. Jokes apart though, King’s Bunker’s nights are usually great, with a variety of music and cheap, cheap drinks. Look out for their Termly ‘mingles’, culminating in the oh-so-not-a-may-ball King’s Affair in May Week.


Places to Work

  1. Criminology Library

Hear me out. Large open windows, Italian Piazza style wooden benches under the shade of trees in the garden, forty-year-old postgrads learning about brutal murder, the Crim Library is the best place in Cambridge to complete your essay. You heard it here first.

  1. Law Library

You’ve tried to work in your room but your new mate Dan keeps having pres with all the freshaaas. It is now week 4 and this is not ok. Go to the law library. They don’t fuck around. At the risk of feeling self-conscious at the low thudding noise your arm makes when you put it down on the table, the airport-style Law Faculty Library is great if you like absolute silence and scary focus.

  1. Botanical Gardens

For all you English students who secretly fancy yourselves a bit of a Byron, this is the perfect place to lounge among the flora and work on your stylistic prowess. For everyone else, there is quite a nice café and some pretty lit geraniums that are worth looking into.


Alternative Hangouts

  1. Emma Pool

I know, it’s mad, Emma actually has a pool. Probably a bit cold in winter, but the hedge-surrounded haven is so nice in summer after exams. Quite crowded, but they have inflatables and you are allowed to bring speakers etc, very nice very nice.

  1. Grantchester

Genuinely such a pretty little town, with some really nice restaurants in it (The Red Lion, The Rupert Brooke.) So nice to go on a walk there for Sunday Lunch, and you can even sit in the same place that Virginia Woolf once did!!!!!!!!!!

  1. Portland Arms

Not the nicest alternative hangout per se, the Portland Arms is really good on most Sunday nights, where the Open Deck’s boys allow people to bring in their own vinyl. It usually starts at 6ish and ends at 9, which is perfect for normal people who feel morally wrong having a mad1 on a Sunday night, and also for abnormal people who think it’s morally wrong to not go to life on said nights.


May Balls

  1. Trinity

Bit early, but often dreaming of May Week will be a useful way of getting through the week throughout term time. Once again biased, once again controversial, but Trinity’s May Ball is truly a spectacular phenomenon. Oysters on Punts, any food you could wish for, a Moet bar, A FUCKING PUNT FULL OF SAN PELLEGRINO, and the guys who performed that FIFA song “Trip, Switch”, Trinity was a night of unlimited excess, which is well deserved after a long year.

  1. John’s

Basically Copy and Paste the above.

  1. King’s

At the risk of being told off for including Kings in this category, despite it’s not-a-May-Ball-ness, King’s Affair is still one of the hottest tickets in May week. Completing the ‘Holy Trinity’, it is an edgy, non-black tie alternative to the more traditional parties.


Hope all this helps, see you in Fresher’s