We all know how fickle the weather in the summer can be in the UK, but that’s not to say we won’t get our fair share of glorious weather (fingers crossed!) One of our favourite things about the British Summer time is that whenever the weather is good everyone gets outside to make the most of the rays. If you’re heading to Cambridge this summer there are some excellent choices when it comes to outdoor eating and drinking, making it the perfect place to enjoy any sun the summer throws our way.
Check out our handy map & hover over the points to find out where to find the best al fresco eateries in Cambridge. Then scroll down to read more about each venue - bon appetite!
- For something with a river view try… The Anchor
One of our favourite things to do in Cambridge is to sit by the river and watch life, and punters, slowly drift by. If there’s one place to do this in style it’s The Anchor. With excellent modern British cooking and a beautiful river terrace boasting unparalleled views over the Cam, there’s a reason we keep returning to this iconic pub. As well as the fresh, seasonal menu, there’s also a rotating beer selection, which is always a big draw.
- For something for vegans try… The Old Bicycle Shop
This quirky Cambridge establishment prides itself in serving fresh, locally-sourced food making it a wonderful choice for veggies and vegans. Claimed to be the very place Charles Darwin bought his bike from in the 1800s, the interior design reflects its illustrious past as a much-loved bicycle shop. With a lovely secluded little courtyard where you can enjoy the sun while munching on the delicious offering, we love this unusual little café.
- For the best pizza in town try… The Punt Yard
Almost everyone we know loves a good pizza. And the best place we know of in Cambridge to grab a slice is The Punt Yard! With views over the river and an exceptional menu, including their amazing Yard long pizzas available on the ‘Yard Sale’ menu, there’s a reason this place is a local favourite. While we usually like a traditional pub, we have to make an exception for The Punt Yard, thanks to their varied menu and friendly staff. Definitely worth a try if you’re in the area!
- For something a bit grownup try… Novi
One of the reasons we love Novi, alongside the top-notch food, are the amazing cocktails. With a great mix of flavour packed food, art exhibitions and dance nights, all tied together with an industrial-meets-70s bar, this is a unique option which definitely merits a visit. The menu includes sharing platters, as well as generous sized plates you can keep all for yourself after a long day of exploring the city. It really is the perfect place to grab a craft beer or cocktail – or try one of their delicious mocktails if you’re watching your alcohol intake.
- For some Thai-flavours try… Thaikhun
There’s only limited outdoor space at this local favourite, and the amazing fragrant food quickly draws a crowd, so we definitely recommend booking ahead, but don’t let that put you off! There’s something magical about chowing down on authentic Thai street food while enjoying some summer sun. From crowd pleasing favourites like Thai Fish Cakes and Pad Thai to more unusual dishes like their fragrant Suikiyaki Noodles, there’s something for everyone at Thaikhun.
- For a beautiful roof terrace try…. Six
Six Cambridge couples stunning city views with amazing food and top-notch drinks – what more could you ask for on a sunny summer evening? Offering everything from brunch to lunch to dinner and even afternoon tea, this really is a crowd pleaser whatever time of day you visit. Enjoy some classy flavours like their truffle chips or decadent crème brulee and give yourself a truly indulgent treat to top off your trip to Cambridge.
- For something kid-friendly try… Millworks
We wouldn’t usually recommend a pub as our child-friendly option, but we have to make an exception for the Millworks. Based in an old mill, this amazingly bright and light building feels like you’re outside even if you’re not in the great outdoor area. There’s a special children’s menu featuring all their favourites like fish fingers and mac and cheese, as well as a couple of dishes for adventurous youngsters, and a colouring picture. Kids will enjoy the energetic atmosphere and parents will appreciate the bold, punchy flavours, not to mention the great beer selection. What’s not to love?
- For a great pub garden try… Pickerel
We couldn’t complete this list without a traditional pub garden, as we all know there’s no better place to enjoy the sun. The Pickerel Inn is right in the city centre, but still enjoys a lovely pub garden, making it a great choice when visiting Cambridge. Thought to be the oldest pub in the city, you’ll find everything you want from a classic pub, as well as a few modern twists. A Greene King pub, you’ll find all your favourites on the menu, as well as behind the bar.
- And if the weather is looking a little changeable try… Zizzi
Although it’s not strictly al fresco, during the summer months Zizzi is able to open almost a whole wall of its Regent Street location meaning that you’re as close to outdoors as possible while still sheltered should the weather change. This family favourite serves a vibrant season menu, making it perfect whatever the weather. What’s more the Regent Street location offers lovely views over Parker's Piece.
For all our top tips for visiting Cambridge check out our Cambridge guide. Whichever destination you choose to explore during the sunny summer months, take advantage of great savings with CrossCountry Advance train tickets.