Definition and origin of punting
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, a punt is: “A long, narrow flat-bottomed boat, square at both ends and propelled with a long pole, used on inland waters chiefly for recreation.” Its origin is; “Old English, from Latin ponto, denoting a flat-bottomed ferry boat; readopted in the early 16th century from Middle Low German punte or Middle Dutch ponte ‘ferry boat’, of the same origin.”
What punting means today
To the average English person, a punt is a bet, and to an American, it’s a football kick. However, to those who have punted on the Cam, its something much better.
The boat is very comfortable with cushioned seats and blankets. It is traditionally built out of timber. The experience is like stepping back in time.
The route takes you past the magnificent Cambridge College backs. There are many breathtaking views, such as Kings College Chapel and the Bridge of Sighs. It’s especially exciting because much of the river can only be viewed by boat. It is a perfect opportunity to relax and do nothing, whilst the driver takes you on a tour of the river.
To book your river experience, check out our punting tour options.