Why I love Cambridge (and a yarn bomb)

I honestly feel like I live in the best place in the country. We moved from the big smoke to Cambridge 6 years ago and I utterly love it. Probably more and more as time goes by. Today I want to share with you some of my favourite things about the city.

The green space and river

Although Cambridge is a city, unlike London, the green space and idyllic river scenes make me feel like I can breathe. There is space. And cows.

The River Cam on claireabellemakes

People row and live on boats. After the rowing races they chuck each other in the river. Good old traditions.

I am also proud to say I can actually punt (only took me 5 years to learn).

The River Cam on claireabellemakes


You have to own a bike here. If you know me at all, in real life or through my blog, you know I’m obsessed with my bicycle. So much so, that I decorated it with bunting (tutorial here). It just makes sense to get around on a push bike.

Bicycles on claireabellemakes


As much as it is busy and sometimes noisy with the students around, the city doesn’t feel right without them there. During the holiday periods the city feels oddly deserted and the buzz returns when term begins. It’s a love/hate relationship. I should be grateful, I wouldn’t have a job without all 22,000 of them.


The city centre in Cambridge is filled with ancient buildings and inspiring sculptures. I find myself diverting on my journey to and from work some days, just to enjoy a different cobbled street or back path. Spaced along the river are wooden houses surrounded by pretty gardens and in the city centre a fun sculpture stands to pay tribute to a local eccentric who fundraised for charity his whole life.

Cambridge Architecture on claireabellemakes

A compact city

I love that you can reach anywhere in Cambridge within 30-40 minutes on foot or by bike. We never manage to leave the house without seeing someone we know. It’s friendly and compact. People stop to help each other and a good morning greeting isn’t unusual.

Creativity and that yarn bomb I mentioned…

Finally, it’s a creative city. People take up hobbies such as art, music, dance and craft. A yarn bombed lamp post or bike rack isn’t unusual.

Look as this guerilla knitting/crochet we saw today by the river. I wonder who could have put it there (*wink wink*)?! Perhaps they were inspired by Meredith of the blog One Sheepish Girl? She has declared today Sheepish Yarn Bombing Day!

Cambridge Yarn Bomb on claireabellemakes

Have you ever visited Cambridge? Or do you live in a place you love as much as I love Cambridge?


All images in this post are owned by claireabellemakes. Please contact me should you wish to use them.

I have shared this post on Handmade Monday – come see what others have been up to!

68 thoughts on “Why I love Cambridge (and a yarn bomb)

  1. Just about sums it up perfectly. I love your obsession with the cows, oh and the fact that you focus on the good bits of using a bicycle and not that it is a nightmare in a car! It is a great place to live near and I do not visit as often as I would like.

    1. I get so excited when the cows come back each year! They are practically like pets in my back garden. We haven’t had a car since we lived here, imagine how much we have saved! I am so happy we never sit in traffic!

  2. You’ve really captured Cambridge here and described so many or the things I love about it too. I remember my first sight of the cows on Midsummer Common. Never will forget that. One of the many quirky, but lovely things about our city. Excellent post!

  3. o that wasn’t there on Thursday! (yarn bombing) walked from work to Cafe Nero and back, walked past that boathouse and didn’t spot it – and there were three knitters amongst us!

  4. What a lovely post. I miss Cambridge lots, so thanks for the pictures. I lived there for 7 years, before moving up north about 18 months ago. Never saw any yarn bombing though, that must be a new thing?!

  5. I’ve never been to Cambridge, but I think I love it even more now that it’s been yarn bombed. 😉

    The river is beautiful! I always love cities that are on water (as long as I’m not the one being thrown into it….lol!)

  6. Lovely post Claire! I love Cambridge too and I was lucky enough to grow up here. I only spotted the new Snowy sculpture on Thursday (as I don’t go in to town often enough) and I recognised it straight away!! What a legend!!

    You are right about the creativity, I love the buskers in town (except the bagpipes, sorry!) and will never forget the violinist I saw once playing while walking along a tight rope!!

    1. I’d love to live on a boat! I remember visiting your narrow boat as part of the river festival. Your cat looked very at home 🙂

      I hope you enjoy the photo. Thanks for taking the time to comment.


  7. Great post, made me smile! I adore Cambridge and don’t visit as often as I should… I’m hoping to get to know my own city (Colchester) just as well starting next month… 🙂 xx

  8. Such a lovely post. I love Cambridge so much too. I think I might have been here for just over 6 years now and love it today as much ad I did on my first visit. Nothing ever gets old here, we have the best of everything!! Xxxxx

  9. I love Cambridge too, ever since my sister and her husband were students there in the 80s. I was the idiot that, cycling between lectures with her, stopped on my bike at a junction and caused a real pile up!!
    York is my true love though, I lived there many years ago and am hoping to be able to return there to live again one day soon 🙂

  10. I love the bunting on your bike! and the beautiful touch of yarn bombing too 🙂

    Cambridge sounds lovely, its great to find the place that feels just right for you isn’t it. I love living in the Wiltshire countryside – we’re just outside Bath which is a beautiful City too and i feel like i get the best of both worlds – although i’m a country bumpkin at heart 🙂

  11. I admit I have a very soft spot for Cambridge as my Dad was born and brought up in the Fen not far from there and I still have relatives living in Fenstanton. However, I adore where I live, in Herefordshire’s Golden Valley. We moved here three years ago and I haven’t regretted it at all. The people are welcoming and friendly, the countryside is beautiful and I just wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

  12. I’m not too far from Cambridge, It’s a great place, I love going to The Fitzwilliam,The Sedgwick and the Zoology Museums as well as the small gallery shops dotted around the centre. I have a couple of photo’s on my blog, one of the punts (well done on mastering them) and one of the Mathematical Bridge. There are so many things to like about the city.

    Jan x

  13. You do live in a wonderful city! There’s a possibility that my husband could do his D.Phil. there in the future and I dream of living there often. Glad to know there are other knitters and bloggers there if we ever do get to move to Cambridge!

  14. Cambridge?? What can you say. Well one word Perfect!! No where else i would like to live. The people, the vibe, the history, the city, the buildings and lets not forget the Midsummer Cows. I love my home city of Liverpool but Cambridge…………..I am blessed to live there.

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