A romantic weekend in Oxford
With so many beautiful buildings, green open parks and the Thames river flowing right through it, Oxford is city oozing romance and charm from every cobbled street and university library. So why not take your loved one to Oxford for a short break or long weekend?
What is there to see in Oxford?
One of Oxford’s biggest charms is its abundance of college buildings forming the Oxford University. There are 38 colleges in Oxford starting as far back as 1096. The buildings that fill the city centre are a joy to stroll around, some of which are open to the general public. There are some great walking tours of Oxford that will entertain as much as they educate. Usually run by students looking to make a few extra pounds. A lot of the college history of Oxford is filled with pranks, strange traditions and an alarming number of farmyard animals kept as mascots. It seems every college has its quirky traditions and rivalries with its neighbours.
What else is there to see in Oxford?
Aside from the beautiful colleges there are a number of other buildings worth checking out. Most notably the Clarendon building on Broad Street and the nearby Bodleian Library which opened in 1602. It houses a copy of every copyrighted book in the country, some 9 million books and has over 176 Km of book-shelves. You can also take guided tours behind the scenes here. Open 9am – 5pm.
The Botanic gardens are worth a look too, the oldest in Britain and beautifully maintained gardens and greenhouses with all manner of exotic plants. Open daily 9am – 4.30pm.
What nightlife is there in Oxford?
As you’d expect with a city highly populated by students, there’s a lot of nightlife here. There are some fantastic pubs, some as old as the colleges, often nestled away down tight alleyways and unimposing doorways. My favourite and most famous is The Turf Tavern, a popular hangout for students and hidden down a small alleyway off Hollywell Street. Not far from the Bodleian Library. It’s a tiny ale house with very little space inside but a large garden area outside. One of Oxford’s best cosy pubs and always a great atmosphere. It’s also where US President Bill Clinton, while attending Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, infamously “did not inhale“. How he would have found room to do that, I’m not sure. Check it out for yourself. Also worth visiting the Lamb & Flag on St. Giles’ and The Bear Inn on Alfred Street, the oldest pub in Oxford.
Romantic Hotels in Oxford
With such grand architecture everywhere in this city you’ll be sure to find some gorgeously romantic and historic hotels here too. The Old Bank Hotel is definitely such a place. Right on the High street, it’s easy to find and was awarded “Best city hotel” in 2011. A very cosy and romantic hotel that feels very “Oxford”.
For something a little different try Mal Maison near Nuffield College. Probably the only prison that has been converted in to a boutique hotel! The exterior gives little away but the interior is sure to make an impact.
- For guided walking tours check out Oxford On Foot or Visit Oxfordshire
- For a full guide to Oxford go here.