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    Why we love Oxford

    Just an hour by train from London and you’re in the city of dreaming spires. And Oxford is crammed with them. A seat of scholars for 800 years, it houses Britain’s oldest university, botanical gardens, and pubs. It has more quadrangles, gothic spires and listed buildings than you can shake a gown at. Add cobbled lanes, canals and the odd punt along its rivers and it becomes a real heart-breaker. Although bursting with museums, libraries and galleries, there’s more to this gem than its beauty and towering intellect. Harry Potter fans can spot film locations, shoppers will love its nearby bargains, foodies will drool over its lip-smacking choice. And if that isn’t enough, it sits on the doorstep to the Chilterns, the Cotswolds and the baroque country pile of Blenheim Palace.

    Things to do in Oxford

    Soak up the atmosphere as you walk around the Dreaming Spires of historic Oxford University, one of the world’s top universities.

    Find out more about Oxford University
    An old hall with grand ornate walls in the Divinity School as part of Oxford's Bodleian Library.
    University of Oxford

    Walk through 1000 years of history in Oxford Castle and Prison, climbing the Tower, one of Oxford’s oldest buildings and descending into the crypt deep below.

    Book tickets for Oxford Castle and Prison
    Sunset at Oxford Castle and Prison
    Oxford Castle

    One of Britain’s best museums is the quirky Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford with artefacts from all over the world.

    Find out more about visiting the Pitt Rivers Museum
    An overhead view of the exhibits and displays at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford
    Pitt Rivers Museum

    Want designer clothes at a discount? Head to Oxfordshire’s Bicester Village, one of Britain’s favourite shopping destinations for bargains.

    Visit to Bicester Village
    Bicester Village
    Bicester Village

    Soak up the atmosphere as you walk around the Dreaming Spires of historic Oxford University, one of the world’s top universities.

    Find out more about Oxford University
    An old hall with grand ornate walls in the Divinity School as part of Oxford's Bodleian Library.
    University of Oxford

    Walk through 1000 years of history in Oxford Castle and Prison, climbing the Tower, one of Oxford’s oldest buildings and descending into the crypt deep below.

    Book tickets for Oxford Castle and Prison
    Sunset at Oxford Castle and Prison
    Oxford Castle

    One of Britain’s best museums is the quirky Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford with artefacts from all over the world.

    Find out more about visiting the Pitt Rivers Museum
    An overhead view of the exhibits and displays at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford
    Pitt Rivers Museum

    Want designer clothes at a discount? Head to Oxfordshire’s Bicester Village, one of Britain’s favourite shopping destinations for bargains.

    Visit to Bicester Village
    Bicester Village
    Bicester Village

    Places to stay in Oxford

    City Centre

    Be among the oldest university in the English speaking world, checkout the architecture, the bookshops and cool bars, and The Malmaison - a former Victorian prison that you can stay in.

    Summertown

    An affluent part of Oxford with red-brick Victorian houses and tree-lined streets. It’s peaceful nature, and you’re budget will go further here. Explore the canal network here.

    Cowley

    Is diverse, full of life and has lots of diverse restaurants and bars, and is the home of Oxford’s street art. It’s close to Magdalen College and the Oxford Botanic Gardens are here too. It also has a summertime carnival. 

    Jerico

    For literary types and lovers of small pastel painted houses and independent cafes, this is your place. Situated in the north, you’ll find some cracking restaurants and cocktail bars. Both the Ashmolean Museum and the Museum of Natural History are here.

    Explore nearby

    An unmissable destination for travellers, London is a melting pot of history, culture and green spaces.

    Cities
    Picadilly Circus underground station

    Lush rolling pastures, pretty stone villages and rambling rivers - the Cotswolds has it all.

    Countryside
    Male and female couple hugging in the garden near a fountain

    Lovers of The Crown can wrap themselves in royalty as this town is about as regal as it gets.

    Cities
    Guards marching, Windsor Castle

    Cool creative Bristol is a must-see for art, culture and action-packed adventure.

    Cities
    Firework in the evening, illuminated hot air balloons on the ground at the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta.

    Getting to Oxford

    Located in the heart of Oxfordshire, Oxford is 45 miles from Heathrow Airport and just over an hour by car. From London Heathrow and Gatwick airports, you can hop on The Airline coach service, which runs 24 hours a day. National Express services from Stansted Airport also serve Oxford, taking just under two hours.

    Getting around Oxford

    Oxford is easily accessible from every corner of Britain, with London to Oxford train services taking around 60 minutes from London Paddington. Experience Oxfordshire has a range of maps and guides to help you plan your visit to Oxford. You can also explore using a bus tour operated by City Sightseeing Oxford.

    By punt

    Hire punts, pedalos and rowing boats to explore Oxford’s River Cherwell.

    By foot

    Oxford’s main attractions are best explored by foot, a walk from the train station to the city centre is just 15 minutes.

    By bus

    The Oxford Bus Company provides frequent and affordable travel across Oxford, with quick and convenient contactless and cash payment options. Stagecoach offers city centre services and runs routes to the stately home at Blenheim Palace to the north, around 35 minutes away. Five Park and Ride locations exist to keep the city centre car free and run into the centre regularly.

    By bike

    If ever a city was made for cycling, it would be here. Oxford is home to several dockless bike hire operators, where you can access cycles via a free downloadable app by scanning a QR code. Bainton Bikes also provides cycle hire and self-guided tours. You can access a cycle route planner too.

    Want to know more?

    Check out Experience Oxfordshire for top insider tips and travel inspiration.