Love nature? Then you’ll love these nearby attractions


Since we are based in Cambridge, our students have access to a range of exciting and educational attractions. Although summer in this wonderful city may be over for another year, there are a plethora of nearby attractions just waiting to be explored during your spare time.

Nature lovers in particular will love Cambridge, and the winter offers a selection of beautiful scenery you won’t forget. Read on, to find out more about the natural attractions and a city for all seasons.

Paxton Pits Nature Reserve

With 77 hectares of lakes, meadows, shrubland, woodland, and grassland to take in, Paxton Pits Nature Reserve offers an excellent escape just outside of the city. Located in St Neots, the reserve isn’t just famous for its fantastic scenery – its bird population is pretty special too. Nightingales and cormorants both call Paxton Pits their home, alongside a variety of other birds, insects, mammals, and flora.

As well as being able to view the region’s most stunning native wildlife, there’s an opportunity to learn more about it. Paxton Pits Education Centre, which is managed by The Wildlife Trust, contains a number of exhibitions and hosts various wildlife education and community groups.

The River Cam

You can’t mention Cambridge without conjuring up visions of punting and the glorious river banks. The River Cam is the iconic waterway at the centre of most of these picturesque images, and it’s not just a glorious sight during the summer months. Come autumn, the river is even more stunning and an ideal spot to partake in some very traditional, river based activities whilst viewing the city in a different light as Visit England details:

The river Cam“Find your inner rhythm in Cambridge as you mess about on the River Cam. When you see a punt gliding serenely along the river Cam, you can be forgiven for thinking it looks effortless. But the UK’s answer to the gondola of Venice is inevitably a lot harder to control than it looks. Thankfully, experienced guides are on hand to take you through the basic principles of punting. After a couple of hours, you should be able to propel the punt along by pushing that five metre pole against the river bed.”

The Backs

The University of Cambridge is home to a stunning Botanic Garden. Several of its colleges run alongside ‘The Backs’, an iconic park. Home to the Mathematical Bridge and the Bridge of Sighs, The Backs offers stunning views all year round and the best outlook over the city’s renowned architecture.

Wandlebury Country Park and Nature Reserve

The great outdoors personified, Wandlebury Country Park and Nature Reserve is a natural gem that’s a favourite with visitors of all ages. Located to the south of Cambridge, it’s a retreat for nature lovers and walkers, thanks to its stunning woodland and chalk grasslands. As well as being able to explore more than 110 acres of green space, at Wandlebury you can discover the remains of a 5th century Iron Age hill fort.

Wicken Fen National Nature Reserve

As the National Trust’s oldest nature reserve and one of England’s most famous fens, Wicken Fen National Nature Reserve is a must-visit for individuals who love all things outdoorsy. Autumn brings a number of thrilling events, as well as a chance to enjoy the rich colours of the changing seasons. The reserve’s wigeon ducks, winter thrushes, hen harriers, short eared owls, starlings, and spiders all put on impressive natural displays come autumn. Get out there and explore Cambridgeshire’s natural wonders by taking a day trip to nearby attractions.

Where to look next:

  • To find out more about our A Level and GCSE courses, click here
  • We have possibly the best boarding in the UK – have a look at boarding at CCSS
  • Our student profiles give you an insight into what life is like for students at CCSS
  • If you’re interested in seeing which universities our students go to, click here.

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