Self Guided Walking Tours Uk – Oxford is a gem of a city. There is so much to see, and you can visit almost all of their attractions on foot. That’s why walking tours are a great option for those coming to Oxford. Some will prefer to have a guide, while others may prefer to explore the city, its University museums and attractions at their own pace. We’ve created this map to help you do just that. Below, you’ll find free travel maps (you can download them to your phone if you like) to see all that Oxford has to offer. Pubs and restaurants? We got it. Colleges and libraries? Of course! How about a little shopping or a Harry Potter-themed game? Look no further than that.
Let’s start with a quick overview of the city. This walking tour is perfect for those visiting Oxford for just a few hours. It’s a leisurely tour that should give you a good idea of what the city is all about. There are two routes I like to take when walking in Oxford:
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In pink: Start from the train station or bus station and reach the city center. This short tour should take around 30 minutes to an hour at a leisurely pace – and cover the best of Oxford: its colleges, churches, museums and shops.
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In purple: If it’s a nice day and you have an extra 40 minutes, you can also walk down St Aldate’s and into Christ Church meadows, where you’ll be able to rest in the shade and see the river the famous Cherwell. Make your way back north by way of the Botanic Gardens and enter the city to the east, where you will see some of the university’s oldest colleges.
Let’s go over some details if you want to do a short (or pink) self-guided tour.
This is the largest church in Oxford and is popular with students, professors and visitors. The first church here was built in 1086, although the building that can now be seen on the north side of the chancel dates from 1320 (when the Univesity was officially founded). The Baroque porch (considered “the most beautiful porch in the world”) was designed by Nicholas Stone, and the tower (also dating from the 13th century) can be climbed and offers a wonderful view of Oxford.
This circular library may be considered by many residents and visitors as “the center of Oxford”. It was built in 1749 by James Gibbes and has an Edwardian Palladian style. Although it appears to have three stores from the outside, it is actually one large floor. This floor is divided into different bays separated by Corinthian columns. Today, the Radcliffe Library holds over 600,000 books. It is open to students but not to the public.
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Although you won’t be able to cross this bridge yourself (unless you’re a student at Hertford College), you can still admire its beauty from street level. The bridge was built in 914 by Sir Thomas Jackson and was named after him because it looks like his homonym in Venice. The geometrical concept was also inspired by Archimedes in the 3rd century BC (the area of the parabolic section is 4/3 of the inscribed triangle).
The Sheldonian Theater is where graduation ceremonies are held (it has been for centuries). It was designed by Christopher Wren, who used a striking geometric grid pattern for its ceiling. If you get a chance to enter the building, don’t miss the 32 oil-on-canvas panels that tell the story of Truth, Art, and Science (who banish ignorance from the University).
An independent college of the University of Oxford, St John’s College was founded in 1555 as a men’s college, but has been co-operative since 1979. With the financial strength of
Keble College is one of the colleges of the University of Oxford. It is located on Parks Road, across from the University Museum and University Parks, and is on the northern boundary
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An independent college of the University of Oxford in England, Exeter College is the fourth oldest university college and was founded in 1314 by the Devon Bishop of Exeter Walter.
Christ Church is a college of the University of Oxford. It was founded in 1546 by King Henry VIII and is one of the largest colleges. What is Oxford history?
Oxford University’s Brasenose College (BNC) was founded in 1509 and is home to the oldest rowing club in the world. Brasenose College is ranked 10th in the Norrington List
All Souls College is an independent college of the University of Oxford. It was founded by Henry VI and has no undergraduate membership. Unique to All Souls, all of
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The Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archeology in Oxford is Britain’s first public museum. It was founded in 1683, when the rich old Elias Ashmole gave his collection to
The Oxford University Museum of Natural History or OUMNH displays many examples of Oxford University’s natural history. It also has a training theater which is still used by
Radcliffe Camera is a neo-classical building within the University of Oxford, built from 1737 to 1749 for the Radcliffe Science Library by James Gibbs. Radcliffe’s camera is considered one of the best
The Bodleian Library is one of the most famous places in Oxford. Among the oldest in Europe, it’s easy to visit and amazing to see. Anyone visiting Oxford should stop by
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If you’re exploring Oxford on your own, there are a few places you should consider stopping. This includes colleges (which are usually open to visitors during the day), museums, Botanic Gardens, shops and of course, if you can, the Bodleian Library!
Of course, Oxford has something for everyone, so if you’re looking for places to shop or parks to relax in, you can see some great options in the list below in this section. .
However, before continuing, if you are interested in visiting the best museums in Oxford (and combining them with a walking tour of the city), you can use this map.
There are two – maybe three – shops that you MUST NOT miss if you’re visiting Oxford and making a self-guided tour. These are Alice’s Shop (with tons of Alice in Wonderland memorabilia, all beautifully displayed in a small, historically significant building!), The Shop of Secrets (more merchandise than you could ever dream of Harry Potter), and Blackwell’s Bookshop, founded in 1879.
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Of course, as Oxford grows, there are several other places to visit if you’re looking for unique gifts or an unforgettable experience. Below is a complete list with all of them.
Blackwell’s Bookshop first opened its doors in 1879, on Broad Street, Oxford. They have been trading from there ever since. The History of Blackwell’s Bookshop The first Blackwell’s Bookshop
Alice’s Shop is a small well-appointed shop where Alice Liddell (the “real” Alice inspired by the books) used to buy sweets.
Arcadia is a popular bookshop in Oxford, offering vintage books and literature with a vintage and nostalgic vibe.
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The Shop of Secrets is Oxford’s Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts collectibles and merchandise. A must-go shopping destination in town, the Secret Shop is family owned
Oxford has many beautiful parks and meadows – which make great places for a picnic or a place to relax. These parks are large and often have exotic plants and students practicing sports or reading a book under the shade of a tree. The best thing about adding a park visit to your self-driving tour is that you can visit them any time of the year. For example, the University Parks are always green and have seats regardless of the time of year. In fact, if you like plants and tranquility you should not miss the Botanic Gardens, they are included in the map above and have rare species, many secret corners, and even a pool with fish!
The University of Oxford Botanic Garden is the oldest botanical garden in Great Britain and one of the oldest scientific gardens in the world. The Oxford Botanic Garden was founded in 1621
Christ Church Meadow, in Oxford, is open to the public all year round. This open space in the center of the city is the perfect choice for a stroll, a picnic or
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Oxford University Parks (or University Parks) is a large park in the north-east of the city. The park is open to the public during the day.
Port Meadow is a large open area to the north and west of Oxford. The River Thames flows through the middle of this old meadow, which is still in use
Explore new and unusual places, visit parks, attend college, or hit up one of the great shops Oxford has to offer. See All >
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