We hitched a ride (actually on the train) with my colleague's History of Science class in late November and had a short but fun and informative tour of Cambridge. Highlights of the day: time spent in the Whipple Museum of the History of Science, a great "insider's" look at Pembroke College (the tour conducted by the student's British Culture prof, a Pembrokian), a brief visit to the Fitzwilliam Museum, and topped off by an unforgettable evensong performance at Kings College.
We took some neat pictures but unfortunately, since our visit was so brief, we didn't really get familiar enough with the town to be able to identify many of the wonderful buildings and other sites. So, for purposes of this webpage, it's going to be mostly photos with little explanatory text, although when I can make an educated guess about a scene, I'll include that. Here's my blog post covering the day. You can see many more photos (some with tentative identifications) in this Flickr set.
And if you want to get an idea of Cambridge geography, and see where some of these photos were taken, check this map:
View a larger version of this Cambridge map here.
One feature that I can identify is the River Cam, which gives the town its name. Here are two shots, one including some boats and even a punter, in spite of the chilliness of the day. I expect in the summer there would be a traffic jam of punters.
Here are three photos of some absolutely fabulous buildings. They were taken early in our day, so I'm sure they must be Pembroke College structures. Can you imagine going to school in surroundings like this?
Of course, the town itself is incredibly quaint and picturesque, just loaded to the gills with fabulous buildings and photo opps. Here are a couple of street scenes, although they're missing one of the most ubiquitous items: bicycles. I wish we'd taken a picture of one of the many bike parking lots, most of which were full of probably hundreds of bikes. Walking on Cambridge streets is an exciting activity, with all the bikes you need to dodge. Especially since your attention is often more focused on the lovely architecture than the traffic.
Here are some glimpses of the Whipple, whose quite tiny space was jam-packed with fascinating and well-displayed exhibits. Scientific instrumentation is their strong suit, which is fine with me since that's one of my favorite categories of museum fare.
Back outside to more amazing Cambridge architecture. And horticulture. Just look at these lawns! Coming from dry south Texas, we think this kind of turf is too good to be real. Both of these lovely quads are on Pembroke's grounds, which are obviously very well-tended.
Two more lovely buildings. On the left is Kings College, which we were seeing here from its river side. Later in the day we made our way back to the front door, shown on the right, for evensong. It was choral music even Henry enthused about!
We filled the time waiting for evensong by looking around downtown Cambridge, where we saw this clever cricket/machine device in a shop window. Then we made a very quick visit to the Fitzwilliam, which features art and antiquities rather than science. No photos in the galleries, of course, but you could snap in their impressive lobby, and we took advantage of that.
We wish we'd had more time to spend in this fascinating town. But you can see many more of the pictures we took there in this Flickr set.
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