Thanks so much everyone, for your generous input to my previous post about our proposed itinerary in East Midlands/East Anglia. It was exactly what I wanted. I'm adding my further questions in both this new post as well as the older one, which also has some responses to Nigel. It seems that there is much enthusiasm for the area around Cambridge (Fens, Ely, Anglesey Abbey, Oundle, Newmarket) and I would dislike missing out on some delightful places. It looks like we need to spend two days in and around Cambridge. Would you agree that this would be a better choice than a day up by Lincoln/cathedral and Doddington Hall? I love cathedrals but we've seen plenty in our travels, and we'll be seeing more palatial homes during our trip. I'm a little concerned about big house burnout. Lastly – could you please talk to the weather spirits and tell them to hold off on the rain? We see enough gray skies and drizzle in our neck of the woods as it is.
Definitely 2 days (or more!) in and around Cambridge. Don't forget the colleges themselves with their lovely buildings and beautiful grounds and the walk along the Backs (the River Cam flowing along the back of many of the colleges); Kings College chapel (first stone laid in 1446 by Henry VI). Lincoln is a pretty town with a lovely cathedral with a castle and some Roman remains....a nice place for a day's visit, but I think overall I would still go with Cambridge.
Cambridge... kind of magical!
Have just got back (Friday) from a trip to England. Stayed in Lincoln a few nights as the cathedral has been on our Wish List for over 40 years. The visit was definitely worth it for us- but the scenic part of Lincoln is very compact. Visit the cathedral (they have free guided tours a couple of times during the day) we did the floor tour, but they also have a roof tour and a tower tour. The cathedral is big and awe inspiring, but very sparse inside as all the monuments etc were destroyed or paved over. Right outside the cathedral you can catch a Hop-On, Hop-off bus tour which takes about an hour. Unless you are a keen history buff, or very interested in art museums, you can see Lincoln in a day. We spent three days and really enjoyed it all, but thats us. Stayed in White Hart hotel- just a stones throw from the Cathedral. I would say it is comfortably worth a day for anyone. We went from Lincoln to Ely (or Cambridge) by train on our return, change at Peterborough (tight cahnge- not much time) so you can do both.