New College
Literary Activities

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Our most recommended New College Literary Activities

Oxford: Official University and City Walking Tour

1. Oxford: Official University and City Walking Tour

Explore Oxford, the city of Dreaming Spires, on a walking tour with an expert guide from the city’s tourism board. Be shown the city’s most famous sights, uncover its hidden history, and enjoy all the astonishing stories about Oxford's key characters- real and fictional. Meet your guide at the grand and very old Broad Street (once the city's ditch) let them know where you come from and any special Oxford interests you may have and they will do their best to incorporate those.  Go to Martyrs' Memorial, the scene of terrible religious retributions in medieval times, and on to the oldest tower at St Michael of the Northgate built in Saxon times. Then, make your way to the very heart of the University and the inspiration behind Harry Potter's Hogwarts School. Pass by the pubs where the Inklings used to meet to discuss their writing as well as the pubs where Inspector Morse was filmed and the most popular student drinking holes in days of old. Discover the city that is home to several of Britain's most famous literary characters - both fictional and real - such as JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis, Philip Pullman, and Colin Dexter as well as some of their most famous creations like Lyra and Will, and Inspector Morse. Admire Oxford's stupendous architecture, gargoyles and grotesques, so wonderfully preserved from every historical period and style, and take a stroll through the breathtaking Radcliffe Square. Cross the whimsical Bridge of Sighs as it's fondly known, just like the ones in Venice and Cambridge. See the Bodleian Libraries from the outside in the splendid Old Schools Quadrangle. Learn about the city’s famous museums including the Museum of the History of Science, containing Einstein's blackboard, The Pitt Rivers, once home to shrunken heads, and the fabulous Ashmolean, which was one of the very first ever museums in the world. If time allows, walk as far as to the beautiful Christ Church Meadows, where punting happens and cattle graze; a truly pastoral and quintessential English scene.

Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with Divinity School Entry

2. Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with Divinity School Entry

Follow in the footsteps of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and other characters from the Harry Potter movies. J.K. Rowling applied to study at Oxford University and so she was familiar with Oxford. When they were producing the films, Rowling walked the producers around Oxford, pointing out various sights which they could use, such as the statue that looks like 'Nearly Headless Nick', and Turf Tavern Lane, which looks like Knockturn Alley. This tour showcases where the Harry Potter movies were filmed in Oxford. It includes entry to 1 film site only via the Divinity School, where they filmed the classroom, dance, and infirmary scenes. You will be passing the city's famous sights and colleges from the outside. You will also be provided with lots of insights about the actors, the producers and about JK Rowling's inspirations. As you walk around, you will take part in a Harry Potter quiz to test your knowledge of the books and films. The guide will also describe how student life in Oxford compares with Hogwarts.

Oxford: Harry Potter Walking Tour Including Christ Church

3. Oxford: Harry Potter Walking Tour Including Christ Church

Meet your Oxford University student guide in central Oxford and head for the Hogwarts' Infirmary, set in one of the halls of the famous Bodleian Library. Imagine the infirmary’s beds in place here, and admire the richly sculpted beasts and biblical carvings that appeared in many of the Harry Potter movies. Next, explore one or two of Oxford’s oldest colleges, delving into the rooms and cloisters that featured as Hogwarts’ gloomy interior. See other filming locations and hear trivia about the characters and movie productions. Test your knowledge of all things Harry Potter with our custom quiz. Along the way, hear about Oxford’s influence in famous children’s literature, from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to The Hobbit. Finish with a tour of Christ Church (founded 1524) whose hall was an inspiration and not the actual Dining Hall at Hogwarts. This part of the tour will be a self-guided one with a multimedia guide.

Oxford: Official “Haunted Oxford” Ghost Tour

4. Oxford: Official “Haunted Oxford” Ghost Tour

Discover all the key haunted places in and around Oxford on a nighttime walking tour based on the book 'Haunted Oxford' led by the author himself, Rob Walters. Experience the best way to 'see' Oxford’s ghosts on a route that takes you around the heart of central Oxford and its University. Meet your guide and get whisked away into the night, starting on the corner of Turl Street and Broad Street, which was once the city ditch and site of terrible murders and religious persecution. Learn about the history of Oxford and hear many splendidly spooky stories dating back to Danish Viking times. Walk past Oxford University, Radcliffe Square, and peer into the Old Schools Quadrangle - of Harry Potter fame. Admire the gorgeous and imposing architecture of Oxford and feel the history in the walls, which are well preserved and represent every period of architecture from Medieval through Classical to modern.  Look up at the Bridge of Sighs, so-called as it is reminiscent of the one at Venice which led prisoners to their doom. Wind down the ancient walled lane to New College, built in the late 1300s, and see its dark gates against the gloom.

Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with New College & Divinity School

5. Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with New College & Divinity School

Enter the magical world of Harry Potter, visit the filming locations of New College and Divinity School, and learn interesting facts and trivia from your guide during this Oxford tour experience. Get transported to the beloved fiction universe that surrounds Oxford. Escape into the Harry Potter universe as you visit their filming locations in Oxford along with an expert guide. Walk by the New College cloisters and see where Malfoy was turned into a ferret by Mad-Eye Moody in 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.' Visit the Divinity School, the oldest building at the university, and the place used as Hogwarts' hospital wing in several Harry Potter movies. Remember the scene where Harry has to stay overnight to regrow his bones after Professor Lockhart removes them all? That was filmed right here. On any dates when the New College cloister (the actual film site) is closed, the tour will run but not include access to the cloister. Additionally, on any dates when Divinity School is closed, you'll visit an additional college instead (not a film site).

Oxford: Harry Potter Walking Tour

6. Oxford: Harry Potter Walking Tour

Immerse yourself in the Harry Potter universe as you visit the movie's filming locations in Oxford. Visit Christ Church, the Divinity School, and other fan favorites as you learn interesting facts about the movie and J.K. Rowling. See the stairs that Hogwarts freshmen climb into the Great Hall. Discover which room was the inspiration for the Great Hall at Hogwarts. Check out the spot where Alastor Moody turns into a ferret for Draco Malfoy. Let your guide take you into this beloved fictional universe as you explore the sights of Oxford on this guided Harry Potter walking tour.

Frequently asked questions about New College Literary Activities

What are other things to do than New College Literary Activities that are worth visiting in Oxford?

The other unmissable things to do in Oxford are:

Other Sightseeing Options in New College

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What people are saying about New College

This was amazing! Really lovely man Professor Miguel ( I think). Really brilliant balance of Harry Potter and local history. Really interesting. Would definitely recommend.

Knowledge tour guide. Injected some fun stories along the way. Had been to university in Oxford so knew a lot, and very passionate. Great tour!

Great guide, very knowledgeable , but did it in a nice way. Happy to answer lots of other questions too. definitely recommend.

The tour is great. The guide was very informative and personable. This tour is worth the price and time

Michiel was an amazing guide and host! We had a wonderful time.