Tourists to the city and residents were lined up on the bridge desperate to catch a glimpse of the family after news got round that the Beckhams were punting on the river.
Student Connor Smith, 19, from Henlow, who was on a day out with his family, said: “We were keeping an eye out for him because they told us he was here, they said he was a special attraction for today.
“They were apparently trying to keep it on the down low but it didn’t really work because they were telling everyone.
“I saw him as his punt went under the bridge on the other side of the river and then I looked behind and the bridge was just full of people taking pictures of him.
“Everyone was really excited that he was there. Victoria was in another punt next to him with some other girls, I don’t know who they were.
“I didn’t seen him do any punting himself, he just looked relaxed and sat back.”
And news of the sighting left regular visitors to the city upset that they had missed him.
Ben Smith said: “David Beckham is in Cambridge whaaaa.”
Prina Shah said: “David Beckham in Cambridge at the moment, punting. I repeat, David Beckham and Posh Spice, and family in Cambridge round the corner.”
Twitter user @chloesparks_ said: “I need to go to Cambridge today just on the off chance I see David Beckham.”
@TaniaTheScribe said: “So glad the Beckhams were in Cambridge today. It’s a great destination for an any-day treat :-) #MissedBecks”