Visiting Cambridge for a long weekend or are you a resident already? I’m sure either way you wouldn’t want to miss out on taking a short trip over to Ely (only 12 minutes by train) as it has so much to offer in the way of history, culture, shopping and food & drink.
Ely is a cathedral city in Cambridgeshire, England, about 14 miles north-northeast of Cambridge. Ely is built on a 23-square-mile Kimmeridge Clay island which, at 85 feet is the highest land in the fens. The City of Ely offers a wonderful blend of the historic and the modern. Ely is rightly proud of its connection with eels as the name Ely comes from the Isle of Eels when the City was surrounded by water and marshland. Eels are still caught in the River Great Ouse and many still consider Smoked Eel a delicacy. There is even an Eel festival held yearly around April/May time to celebrate.
Below, we have listed a few must see places for you to visit on your trip..
The Cathedral dominates the landscape for miles around. It’s origins in the 11th century and the City of Ely was developed around this unbelievable structure. You can take a walk around the Cathedral at your leisure or enjoy a more informative experience by taking a guided tour. The Cathedral is also a cultural centre and hosts many concerts and events throughout the year. One of the best being the Christmas markets filled with hand-made goodies, held in November.
Oliver Cromwell’s House
This is the only remaining house used by Cromwell with the exception of Hampton Court Palace in London. Cromwell lived with his family in Ely for just over ten years and the house provides a strong insight into 17th century life. The house has eight period rooms, including the kitchen, study, and the famous haunted bedroom.
Easily a favourite spot for visitors wishing to relax, take a boat trip, browse through shops and galleries, enjoy afternoon tea or simply watch the activity on the river. A rather long river frontage, perfect for an afternoon stroll from which you can soak up the beauty and tranquillity of the local countryside.
Market days have been around in Ely for hundreds of years and still create a real buzz. For those who love a bargain or enjoy browsing, a visit to Ely Markets is a must. A chartered General Market is held on Thursdays and on the 1st, 3rd and 5th Saturday of every month as well as on Sundays and Bank Holidays. There is also a Craft and Collectables Market that happens every Saturday throughout the year with a great range of arts, crafts, vintage, retro and much more. You must visit the Street Food Aisle for a great range of delicious food to go. And last but not least, a Farmers’ Market is held every 2nd and 4th Saturday and is awash with knowledgeable producers always on hand to give advice and the freshest of local produce on sale.
Whenever you choose to visit Ely for the day or perhaps just an afternoon please feel free to ask our concierge team for more tourist and travel information and please do tag us in all of your photos!