Top attractions in Oxford
The name alone exudes a scholarly atmosphere, with nearly 40 different colleges and their hallowed halls of learning. However, there's more to "Gown Town," and you'll find a city that brims with history and science, and traditional English culture.
Commonly known as the Bod, the university's famous library contains 9 million books, making it Britain's second largest. The earliest collection dates to the 13th century.
Connected to the Bod by an underground passageway, this striking structure, with its circular design from 1749, is the reading room of the library. Go on a guided tour to see it.
Established in 1621 by the university's faculty of medicine, Britain's oldest botanical garden boasts 7,000 various species of plants, and its glasshouses are 300 years old.
Walk among dinosaurs in the gallery under an industrial interior of glass and iron. After visiting, go to the Pitt Rivers Museum in the adjacent building with its bevy of artifacts.
The ensemble of 18,000 objects includes scientific instruments from the Middle Ages to the 20th century. The chalkboard Einstein used in a lecture at Oxford is also on display.
Once a place for lectures and ceremonies, the tallest structure on the High Street was the first of this center of academics. Climb the 124 steps to the top for amazing views.
A reminder of the former, 13th-century St. Martin Church that once stood here, this belfry, with a clock that chimes every 15 minutes, marks the geographical heart of the city.
Students, academics, and those who love books have been flocking to this historic shop since opening on Broad St. in 1879. Whatever the subject, you'll find a book about it here.
Built in 1897, this former library and police station is the seat of the local government and also houses the Museum of Oxford, covering the history of the city and university.
To experience this popular summer outing, rent a flat-bottomed boat and push yourself down the River Cherwell. You can rent one at the Magdalen Bridge or Cherwell Boathouse.
You can spend a full three days visiting the main attractions in the city center, but why not add a couple more to explore its different neighborhoods, such as trendy Jericho or East Oxford and soak up that English culture?
Exploring the city on foot is the best way to take in the sights and sounds, especially during rush hour times. There are two bus companies which are Oxford Bus Company and Stagecoach. A day pass, which is valid when traveling with either one, costs 4£, and you can buy it directly from the driver.
There are hotels in the bustling center itself, and you'll have everything at your fingertips. You'll also find accommodation just beyond the center, with easy access to go on a sightseeing expedition.
- CurrencyBritish Pound (£)
- Time ZoneUTC (+00:00)
- Country Code+44
- Best time to visitOxford is great for a visit year-round, and with so many different festivals on offer throughout the year, it's best to plan your trip according to what you most want to do.
Things to Do in Oxford
Top Attractions in Oxford
Cities in United Kingdom
Other Sightseeing Options in Oxford
Want to discover all there is to do in Oxford? Click here for a full list.
What people are saying about Oxford
Our guide Lizzie was just an amazing guide. Really knowledgeable and witty. Taking us through some of the more known places in Oxford, such as Trinity College (really beautiful), Divinity School, Bridge of Sighs, Bodleian Library and many other places, Lizzie had historical knowledge and funny stories comming for us from right and left. I highly recommend this tour! And if you get Lizzie as your tour guide you are extra lucky.
Eric - our guide - was extremely knowledgeable, well spoken, informative and attentive to his clients. He took us through the tour in an organised manner which flowed effortlessly from one area to another. He answered all questions concisely and without hesitation - he obviously knew his history which actually covered a vast expanse of time. We encountered other guides whilst on our tour and it was noted they were nowhere near as knowledgeable as Eric. We would recommend Eric as a superb guide to Oxford University and surrounding area.
It was an absolutely nice walk through beautiful streets and colleges of the Oxford. I was very lucky to have Edward as our tour guide, because he told really a lot about history and traditions of the colleges and students. He showed us plenty of fascinating spots many of which were hidden from larger tourist groups so that we could listen to him undisturbed and fully enjoy the atmosphere. Highly recommended! These 2 hours make you immerse in the culture and spirit of our the world‘s best university!
Better map of Oxford would help. A pamphlet describing sites in Oxford would assist.
My guide was Peter who added a personal touch to the tour my introducing himself and telling the attendees a bit about himself. Everyone got to know the other attendees through questions Peter asked and that helped to break the ice. He was very knowledgeable about the history of Oxford and the making of the Harry Potter movies and showed us around various sites. Everyone could ask as many questions as they wanted and there were plenty of opportunities to take pictures. Peter even had some dressing up clothes in his bag and handed out some yummy cake! What more could you ask for? A brilliant day out with a lovely guide! I will recommend this tour to everyone! Thanks very much!