Ways to still enjoy Cambridge punting in Winter
Punting along the River Cam is a lovely, romantic way to spend a summer’s evening as a couple. It’s also great fun with a few friends. But what about winter? Does the idea of sailing along snowy banks on either side in chilly weather still appeal?
Well, it should of course. It’s still great fun – just in a different way. And for starters, there are not as many folk around so it’ll be far easier to navigate and wind your way around the city. Buildings and familiar landmarks look different in winter with a frosty glean on them, so do get out and take a look for yourself.
Just ask Josh, he was a punter on the River Cam for six years, @veggievagabonds: “It will be beautifully quiet and you’re more likely to get cheaper prices without having to wait for boats to become available. Punting in the snow or frost is beautiful if you’re prepared, and there’s something very unique about having the whole river to yourself.”
Before you go through, here are some tips on keeping warm so you get as much enjoyment as possible from your aquatic travels:
Take a flask with you
We don’t mean a small hip flask of whisky or rum, but rather a big flask of hot chocolate or coffee to make sure that when the temperature does begin to dip, you warm up. Alternatives are mulled wine with cloves, cinnamon and pieces of dried orange.
Put on a scarf, gloves and a woolly hat
Always cover up your extremities, such as your fingers and head in a British winter. That’s because the heat leaves here first. Also, if you plan on doing the punting yourself then you’re going to want your hands to be nice and cosy while you get pushing.
And don’t forget your coat
It can be tempting to wear a big woolly jumper and layers when you go on the water. And yes, layers are great – but top them off with a woolly coat or a thick padded version. You want to be as toasty as possible when you’re being punted down the river, otherwise, all you’re going to think about is getting off the boat and into a café for a coffee and instant warmth.
Sturdy walking boots are important
Just getting to the boat can involve walking down a muddy grassy bank and, depending on the time of year, it may be frozen and slippery. So, flat boots with a good grip are a necessity. If they’re the type that you can wear thick walking socks with then even better, as these will keep your feet nice and warm. Trainers are a no-no.
Remember to record the event
You’re going to see some amazing sights so make sure you record them for prosperity by bringing along your camera. The old university buildings look gorgeous when sparkling silver with frost and ice, but so do some of the cobbled lanes – especially with all the festive decorations going up in the next couple of weeks. Also, you will, of course, want to make your pals stuck at home jealous by posting those fab pics on your social media sites.