Importance of the River Cam
A trip to England would never feel complete without punting in Cambridge and marvelling at
the sights surrounding the world-famous university that was home to legends like Professor
A Cambridge punt involves a flat-bottomed wooden boat with a quirky
chauffeur who is most likely a resident or a student at the university.
You can take a ride with friends and family and learn about the history of Cambridge and why it has a special place in
many people’s hearts. If you are visiting the city for the first time, you might be wondering
which side of the River Cam to take the tour from to get the best views. There are two main options
for a Cambridge punting tour.
Please note that we only do tours along the College Backs (the lower River Cam).
The Lower River Cam
This is a short stretch of River Cam that runs through the heart of Cambridge University and is best if
you want to see all the famous landmarks, such as King’s College Chapel and the Mathematical
If you want to explore the university, this is the better tour because then you will get to
enjoy all the views and stories during your Cambridge punting tour. This is an exceptional ride that will
give you a lot of insights into student life at this renowned establishment.
During the tourist season, this route may be the most crowded, but you can always book in advance to avoid
queues and secure tickets for your preferred timings.
Unless you steal a student card or sneak into the university, this is the best way to see all the grounds and iconic buildings even if you
spend less time on the River Cam.
The Upper River Cam
The upper River Cam is a lengthier stretch that leads towards picturesque villages outside Cambridge.
Instead of gazing at buildings, you might see more natural scenery and farms.
This side of the river is less crowded, so if you are self-punting in Cambridge for the first time and need some
space to master your punting techniques, you can practice your skills on this side without
bumping into all the tourist boats that swarm the lower river.
Unlike the lower River Cam, you can also enjoy a more relaxing atmosphere because there are hardly any crowds at the upper river,
and you will find plenty of beautiful scenic spots for a picnic break.
However, be careful of swans and ducks that might attempt to steal your food.
Please note we no longer offer self hire.
The Popular Route
The lower river is a popular choice among tourists, but the upper river is preferred by locals because of its serenity and chance to
spend more time on the river.
You should not have any problems buying tickets at the last minute, but it is always better to book those beforehand because Cambridge gets very crowded
during the warmer months.
If you are only visiting for a day, you might miss out on a punting in Cambridge tour if there are too many people and you have not booked the tour on the college backs in advance.