A low-lying, attractive and historic city on the edges of both the Fens to its north and East Anglia to its east, Cambridge is notable for its impressive Gothic cathedral and, of course, some of the world’s finest universities. Your dog is unlikely to be moved by any of this, but will no doubt enjoy the abundance of green spaces, relaxed atmosphere and the proximity of the River Cam.
Cambridge is a great place for a city break with your four-legged friend, but its location also means it is a fantastic base for a wider-ranging exploration of the countryside to the north of London. As well as the Fens, Cambridge’s location at the southern tip of Cambridgeshire means that it is not far from either the Chilterns in Bedfordshire or the Thetford Forest Park in Norfolk, while some of the finest countryside rural Suffolk has to offer is also just a short drive away.
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Dog Friendly Cambridge Must Sees
A punt down the river
One of the best ways to look around Cambridge is by river. Scudamore’s Punting will either provide you with everything you need for a self-propelled punting voyage or, for a little extra, run conducted tours. Both are dog-friendly and are a brilliant way to take in some of the city’s most significant landmarks, such as the Mathematical Bridge, College Backs, Wren Library, Bridge of Sighs and the chapel of King’s College.
Cambridge Walking Tours
For those who prefer to do their exploration on dry land, there are also plenty of well-organised and fully accredited walking tours. You and your dog will learn and discover just as much, expending a little more energy but with a much-diminished chance of falling in the River Cam.
Cambridge Museum of Technology
Cambridge is locally known as Silicon Fen, with the excellence of the city’s universities having established the area as one of the country’s leading hubs of technical innovation. At the Museum of Technology you can find out all about the history and development of technology in Cambridge, from the Industrial Revolution to the present day. Better yet, your dog can come with you.
Denny Abbey and Farmland Museum
Located in the countryside north of the city, the English Heritage-administered Denny Abbey has an 850-year story to tell. In addition to the ruins of the old monastery, first established in 1159, you can also visit an extensive outdoor collection of farmyard equipment and learn about the development of agriculture in England. A visit to Cambridge makes dogs cleverer, too.
The Best Dog Friendly Walks in Cambridge
A large park in the northern part of the city centre, not far from Scudamore’s Punting Station, Jesus Green offers extensive grassland areas with avenues of horse chestnut trees and the River Cam marking its northernmost boundary. If this somehow doesn’t manage to tire your furry friend out, Midsummer Common can also be found just across Victoria Avenue. Your dog will love it.
One of the most picturesque areas of the city, The Backs is a large green space which – as the name suggests – runs around the backs of some of the city’s most famous universities, including St. John’s, Trinity and King’s College. If you’ve already been past here on a punting tour of the river and your dog was just desperate to have a run about on the lawns, here is their chance.
A large park and garden to the north of the city, not far from Jesus Green, Stourbridge Common combines paved walkways, grassland, woodland and the ever-lurking River Cam. It also features a children’s play area and a local nature reserve. With both wild swans and cattle residing in the area, your four-legged friend may need to spend some of this walk on their lead.
Grantchester is a village to the southern tip of the city’s border. It has gained a certain amount of fame thanks to the ITV series of the same name featuring a sleuthing clergyman, but in Cambridge it remains more significant for being where the River Cam enters the city. The Meadows are part of the flood plain, a broad green area with plenty to see, explore and sniff.
Milton Country Park
A 95-acre park of woodlands and wetlands located about four miles to the north of the city, Milton Country Park boasts lakes, nature reserves and a sensory garden. Everything an energetic dog needs, in other words.
Dog-friendly Cafés and Restaurants in Cambridge
Cambridge Cookery School
Purbeck Road, CB2 8EB
As you’ve probably guessed, the Cambridge Cookery School is a place that people can visit to go and learn how to cook. However, it also has an on-site cafe. Not only does this welcome dogs, but keep on the lookout for any dog-based cookery classes at the school itself. Your dog could learn how to cook their own treats and become largely self-sufficient.
4 Trumpington Street CB2 1QA
Units 5/6 Dale’s Brewery, Gwydir Street, CB1 2LJ
An independently-owned coffee shop with two locations in the city centre, Hot Numbers offer fresh coffee from their own roastery plus brunch options and different menu choices at each of their stores.
Stem and Glory
50-60 Station Road, CB1 2JH
A large, modern, open-plan warehouse-style space located near Cambridge Station, Stem and Glory specialises in vegan food. It has a fully plant-based menu, plus juice bar, craft beer, cocktails and mocktails.
54 King Street, CB1 1LN
A family-run cafe which has Hot Numbers roasted coffee, homemade cakes and food made from local ingredients. It also features a selection of local art and pottery, as well as hosting live music events.
Indigo Coffee House
8 St. Edward’s Passage, CB2 3PJ
The kind of small, intimate coffee shop that you probably associate with England’s great university towns, Indigo is located in a narrow passage a stone’s throw from King’s College. They offer a haven of peace and quiet, along with hot drinks and freshly-made sandwiches.
Dog Friendly Pubs in Cambridge
The Clarendon Arms
35-36 Clarendon Street, CB1 1JX
An independently-owned pub located in between two of the city’s dog-friendly green spaces, Christ’s Pieces and Parker’s Piece. In addition to traditional pub decor and a beer garden, The Clarendon Arms is also one of the city’s top-rated restaurants.
Cambridge Brew House
1 King Street, CB1 1LH
Located right next to both Christ’s College and Sidney Sussex College universities, the Cambridge Brew House has everything you’d expect from a modern British pub – big screens, a varied and exciting food menu and plenty of seating. It also has its own on-site microbrewery.
32 Chesterton Road, CB4 3AX
Just on the other side of the River Cam from Jesus Green, The Waterman is an old-fashioned English Inn which offers food and drink as well as eight rooms available for an overnight stay. Recommended.
12 Regent Street, CB2 1DB
Located on the eastern edge of Parker’s Piece, NOVI is a multi-storey cocktail lounge and bar that also specialises in brunches and smoked barbecue dishes. Dogs are guaranteed a warm welcome.
The Station Tavern
2 Station Square, CB1 2GA
A traditional bare-brick English boozer, with varied menus of both food and drink, a beer garden and a snug area. The Station Tavern also runs regular Doggy Afternoon Teas, for anyone whose dog is used to a taste of the finer things in life.
Dog Friendly Shops in Cambridge
12 Bene’t Street, CB2 3PT
An independently-run and award-winning gift boutique located not far from King’s College Chapel. Podarok specialise in bags, purses and jewellery as well as quirky, fun collections of handmade toys, home furnishings, seasonal items and greetings cards.
46 Chesterton Street, CB4 1EN
An independent bar and bottle shop not far from Jesus Green. Here you and your four-legged friend can either get a drink to enjoy on the premises or stock up on your wine and beer to take home. Dogs (and their owners) should, of course, always drink responsibly.
20 Trinity Street, CB2 1TY
A city fixture, trading in Cambridge since 1876, Heffers is a bookshop located near the Bridge of Sighs which also sells board games, records and gifts.
Grumpy’s Pet Shop
150A Scotland Road, CB4 1QQ
Located near Stourbridge Common, just north of the river, Grumpy’s will be just up your dog’s street. It was recently nominated for Britain’s best independent pet store.
Unit 1, Christ’s Lane, CB2 3BZ
Including the branch of a bank on this list is a little bit unusual, but we hear that dogs can rely on a warm welcome at Cambridge’s Metro Bank. Furry pals will be offered treats, water and may well even leave with a new bandana courtesy of their new friends. Come to think of it, this is better treatment than I get from my own bank.
Your dog can then go and show off its new bandana at Christ’s Pieces, a park just a few metres away.
Dog-friendly Cambridge: Where to Stay
If you’re looking to stay in a dog friendly hotel in Cambridge, here’s our recommendations:
32 Chesterton Road, CB4 3AX
We’ve already mentioned The Waterman in the dog-friendly pubs section, but it would be remiss to fail to point out that their rooms are dog-friendly, too. Coupled with their location on the river, just a few minutes walk from Jesus Green, it really would be a perfect choice for a weekend getaway in the city for you and your four-legged companion.
Granta Place, Mill Lane, CB2 1RT
Both the name of a hotel and also a threatening sentence spoken to a floundering student, Graduate Cambridge is a luxurious 4-star hotel set inside Coe Fen, a park in the city centre not far from Scudamore’s Punting Station on the River Cam. Your dog will wonder what they have done to deserve such opulent treatment.
Ibis Cambridge Central Station
2 Station Square, CB1 2GA
A 3-star hotel located near the central railway station, the Ibis is an ideal choice for people wanting to visit Cambridge but keep to a budget. It is near the city centre with plenty of parks and green spaces a short walk away to keep your dog entertained.
The Old Red Lion
Linton Road, Horseheath, CB21 4QF
On the border between Cambridgeshire, Suffolk and Essex in the village of Horseheath, The Old Red Lion is a traditional-style inn about 13 miles to the south of central Cambridge. Dogs are welcome to join their owners in the bar area, which serves the same menu as the hotel’s restaurant. Guests can also request a sausage be cooked specially for their pet at breakfast. A great location to explore the rich countryside that lies just outside of the city.
Travelodge Cambridge Newmarket Road, 180-190 Newmarket Road, CB5 8HF
As ever, we finish one of these guides by giving some love to Travelodge, one of the UK’s most pet-friendly hotel chains. This budget city centre location is within 200 metres of both Midsummer Common and Stourbridge Common.