A city of quirky rituals, riverside gardens and rolling meadows, Cambridge is an idyll of gastronomic, cultural and intellectual feats - rumour has it that the Latin edition of Scrabble is popular here. While a college tour would be no doubt be dull in most places, for Cambridge we make an exception; the honey-hued university buildings are among the city's most spectacular. With spiral staircases and boundless bookshelves, this is Hogwarts territory. The line for evensong at King's College often winds down the street but we suggest you join it, religious or not; the mass is a spectacle of bygone tradition and Catholic opulence.
It's not all medieval art and dusty books, however. The university's Kettle's Yard showcases 20th century art; distinctive paintings, sculptures, ceramics and glass offer a bubble of modernity in this city of antiquity. The culinary offering here is small but flavoursome; grab a hearty brunch at Stir near Jesus Green before rubbing shoulders with patch-elbowed professors at Hot Numbers café. A Chelsea bun from Fitzbillies is also a must. Finish an evening, cocktail in hand, in the sunken garden of Hidden Rooms before hopping aboard the service from Cambridge Station to either Liverpool Street or King's Cross. PSA, plan ahead: you won't get last-minute deals here.
Journey: 50 minute train from King's Cross