Not that we don’t adore London, but you know we have a penchant for exploring and with so many gems with easy reach of the capital, what better time of year to escape for a day?

There’s something deeply romantic about Cambridge at the best of times, but even more so during the autumnal months. Less than 90 minutes from London, it’s a city of literary greats and enticing stories.

Start with a guided tour of the Cambridge Backs on a punt – or try punting yourself if you’re brave enough – taking in the sights of the stunning Cambridge University from the water before stepping inside the hallowed halls as trodden by so many greats. Don’t miss the stunning King’s College Chapel, famous home of the live Christmas Eve carol concert.

Take a stroll around the Botanic Gardens and lose yourself in 40 acres of luscious foliage, owned by Cambridge University. Make sure to check listings for The Cambridge Junction, an independent arts venue packed with comedy, music, theatre, spoken word, movies and more; from folk music to top stand-ups, it has a reputation as one of the best live music venues outside of London. Any literature lover should make sure to visit Heffer’s bookshop; it’s a veritable shrine to the written word and virtually impossible not to pick up a tome or two to challenge the mind.

If you’re seeking a vegan nibble, Stem & Glory’s small plates might be just up your street, while the institution that is Fitzbillies café has been a beloved haunt of the city’s students since the 1920s and makes the best bakes in town. For those after an indulgent feast in the most sumptuous of surroundings, book a table at Parker’s Tavern. Situated in the University Arms Hotel, chef Tristan Welch brings his experience from the likes of Le Gavroche to this buxom British brasserie, home to an unpretentious menu of classics in its cosy, atmospheric dining room and with the recent launch of its new Sunday roast menu it’s the perfect autumnal pit stop.

By Laurel Waldron