Oxford Poetry Walk (reviewed by Alison Boulton)
Oxford Playhouse and Live Canon theatre makers have combined to produce an audio tour of Oxford, featuring some of its most iconic locations, and the poetry they have inspired.
The tour takes approximately an hour, but there is plenty of time to stop, enjoy the read more...
Daily Info Staff (DI Staff), 05/04/12
Shared by Alasdair, the guide from 'I Love Oxford Walking Tours'
I really love Oxford as besides its compact town centre, it's soaked in historical interests & is a nice green space with a relaxed air. There are no shortage of stories to be told about famous people past & present who have lived here. These include the likes of King Charles I who used Christ Church College as his seat of government in the Civil War.
ILoveOxford (DI User), 20/06/11
Here is a lovely map of outdoor art installations in Oxford, produced by the City Council:
It might keep your visitor busy for a fine afternoon!
DI Staff (Unverified), 03/03/11
Start out at the Grog Shop in Kingston Road, equipped with a picnic, and walk down to Port Meadow. Cross the river and walk along the Thames Path. The first stretch is lovely, with wild flowers and views across the river to cattle grazing. Past the station, you come to Osney Island (alas, the Waterman's Arms is now closed), and after the that the old industrial part of the river before approaching Folly Bridge and Christ Church.
Leave the Thames path here and cross over to the Head of the River for a pint: stay on the north bank for a picnic in Christ Church Meadow. Follow the north river bank through some spectacularly beautiful trees before coming to the Botanical Gardens, where you can while away a very pleasant hour or two - do make sure you visit the hothouses as well and see bananas, waterlilies and carnivorous plants.
For tea, if you are feeling rich, go to the Grand Cafe - otherwise cross over and go to the Queen's Lane Cafe. From there you can wander up Queen's Lane itself into the heart of Oxford - and then home.
Jessica Osborne (DI User), 20/08/10
Sitting here in the office with the sun shining outside, contemplating an ideal day in Oxford, my mind is so full of fun possibilities that it's hard to imagine cramming them into sixteen or so hours, especially given that one of the nicest things you can do round here is spend an afternoon lying on the grass in your park of choice with a bottle of Cava and a cryptic crossword. Assuming you've got limited time in the city and actually want to do some stuff, I'd suggest the following:
Rise early. Work up an appetite with a stroll (or a run) round Christ Church meadow, hopefully while the mist is still hanging over the water, and look out for crazy people rowing instead of sleeping (or strolling), then breakfast at the Grand Café on the High Street. It's arguably somewhat overpriced, but offers low-key elegance in terms of menu and decor, with a nice line in lethal coffee. Having hopefully survived the coffee, pop into a couple of nearby colleges (clap at the mound in New College and graze with the deer in Magdalen), before continuing on a round of sightseeing. Other people have recommended the Pitt Rivers Museum on this page, and they're not wrong - it's wonderful - also the Bodleian Library, the Covered Market, Blackwell's Bookshop, St Mary's Church, Modern Art Oxford, and of course lots of the other colleges, are well worth visiting. Consider trying a walking tour - a good way of absorbing lots of historical titbits, taken with a pinch of salt. Stop off at intervals for lunch in the garden of the Vaults and Garden café on Radcliffe Square, or a pint at the Bear, the Turf or the Eagle and Child. Finish up by wearing your legs out for good and all at the fabulous new-look Ashmolean, working your way up to the roof terrace for a well-deserved round of tea and cake.
Now go home, relax - then put on your sparkly eye make up and go out for dinner in East Oxford at the Magdalen Arms, (or try Fishers, Aziz, Fratelli's, Door 74). Yes, they're right about Moya too. Eat lots - you've earned the calories. For the evening's entertainment, I'm not really qualified to recommend gigs or clubs; after such a busy day I'd rather split the evening between a couple of favourite pubs: If you're a bar person I'd try Kazbar on Cowley Road, but I'd probably usually recommend the Fir Tree on Iffley Road and the the Half Moon on St Clements, where you'll hopefully come across a lively folk music night.
Stumble home at two in the morning singing snatches of traditional ballads and vowing to take up the fiddle. Sleep.
Susie Cogan (DI Staff), 26/07/10
In order to thoroughly experience Oxford, you have to embrace both sides of the city: Town and Gown. The University tends (unsurprisingly) to dominate guidebooks, but you’re missing out if you just stick to the museums and colleges.
Alwyn Collinson (DI Staff), 03/05/10
- Get up early and walk/jog through the University Parks. The trees are fantastic in the morning mist.
Jamie Huddlestone (Unverified), 03/02/10
Head down to George & Danver on St Aldate's and grab a breakfast bagel. If it's sunny, take it into Christ Church meadow and sit for a while by the river. If not, eat it there (would a mid-morning ice cream be wrong?) and head down Pembroke Street to Modern Art Oxford.
Ben Werdmuller (Unverified), 03/02/10
Walk through New College Lane to look at the gargoyles, then, if fine: buy a basketful of goodies (from Maison Blanc or Gatineau, Manos or the Co Op plus or minus alcohol from Oddbins), and punt from the Cherwell Boathouse to the Vicky Arms for lunch. If wet: the recently revamped Ashmolean for Art, the University Museum for Nature or the Pitt Rivers for all kinds of human weirdness. Or if your visitor prefers their nature a bit more animated, to the Goldfish Bowl on Magdalen Road - one of Europe's leading aquarium shops, it's almost as good as the zoo. Or, your companion may prefer the elegant simplicity of a day spent gently lurching between the Turf Tavern, the Angel and Greyhound and the King's Arms.
I'd plan to return in the evening to a concert or play (preferably in one of the colleges in order to show off the unique architecture and student vibe). Edamamé, a Japanese restaurant of amazing food and unusual opening hours, is good for a brisk meal if you're trying to fit a lot into an evening (you may have to queue but it usually moves swiftly). If you decide to skip culture for the evening, and especially if your visitor eats meat or fish, you mustn't miss Moya, that jewel of Oxford dining. Civilised yet unpretentious, with beautiful dishes intelligently designed and exquisitely cooked. If it's a Sunday night, and if neither of you have to work the next day, you could finish up with the folk night at the Half Moon.
Miranda Rose (DI Staff), 03/02/10
Hertford Bridge in the snow
Crocuses explode all over Headington Hill Park in February - the University Parks also has a lovely path near the Science area lined with different varieties
John Lindsey Butchers, Covered Market