There are lots of things to do in Oxford. The city has an industrial past, meandering waterways, and a thriving arts and music scene. It is a conservative city but has many hidden gems. The Ashmolean Museum, Port Meadow, St Mary’s Church, and the Cotswold Wildlife Park are some of the highlights.
One of the best things to do in Oxford is to visit the Ashmolean Museum. This museum is one of the oldest in Europe and has important art and archaeology collections. Its airy and spacious atrium is a beautiful way to enter the museum. The Ashmolean opened its doors in 1683 and has a huge collection of artwork and archaeology from different eras, including Egypt. There are special exhibitions and collections throughout the year, and it is also possible to book group visits to the museum.
After viewing the museum’s Egyptian exhibits, you can also head to the museum’s Asian Crossroads Orientation gallery, which shows how knowledge spread from Asia to Europe through trade routes. Similarly, the Eastern Asian Paintings gallery showcases themed displays of Asian art. There is also a gallery dedicated to the Islamic Middle East, which displays applied art from that region of the world from the early Middle Ages to the present day.
The Ashmolean Museum is free to visit. It is open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10am to 6pm during the summer, and 10am to 5pm the rest of the year. During certain special exhibitions, however, there may be an entrance fee.
Cotswold Wildlife Park
If you’re planning a trip to Oxford, you might want to consider taking your family to the Cotswold Wildlife Park. The park was founded over 50 years ago by John Heyworth, who wanted to rehabilitate a decrepit manor house and turn it into a wildlife park. It is situated in Bradwell Grove, a village near Burford, and has been expanding and improving over the years. Today, it plays a vital role in international wildlife conservation, education and breeding programmes.
The park’s spectacular collections of animals and landscaped gardens make for an excellent day out with the family. Visitors can get up close to many of the animals, and many exhibits are interactive. A petting zo is also a great way to interact with the animals. Whether you want to learn about the natural history of each species or see how they live, Cotswold Wildlife Park is a must-visit in Oxford.
The Cotswold Wildlife Park is situated in a beautiful setting on 160 acres of parkland, near the Cotswold town of Burford. It has its own narrow gauge railway, which runs between April and October. The park is close to many other attractions and activities in the Cotswolds. At the Cotswold Wildlife Park, you can see more than 260 species of wildlife.
Cotswold Wildlife Park is a great place to see reptiles. It has one of the largest reptile collections in the UK. You’ll find several species of lizards and frogs here, and you can even get up close to a Green anaconda. You can also see Egyptian Fruit Bats, Seba’s short-tailed bats, and the elusive Rodrigues Fruit Bat.
If you’re a nature lover, you’ll want to spend some time at Port Meadow, Oxford’s sprawling 30-hectare meadow. Just a half-hour walk from Oxford city centre, it’s a beautiful place for picnics and outdoor walks. Plus, it’s a great place to spot a variety of wild animals.
Port Meadow is also home to horses and cattle, along with ducklings in the spring. There’s also a wildlife report by Dr Judy Webb if you’d like to learn more about the local wildlife. It’s also home to several ancient monuments and a museum featuring local history.
One of the best free things to do in Oxford is visit the Ashmolean Museum, which was founded in 1638 and has been open for years. There are special exhibitions here, and you can enjoy free admission for the museum. The museum also boasts a huge collection of art and archeological items. Whether you’re an art lover or a history buff, there are plenty of ways to have fun in Oxford!
Another thing to do in Oxford is to visit the University Museum. The university has world-renowned museums. The Oxford University Museum of Natural History has excellent displays and stunning interiors. It’s also worth checking out the museum’s world-renowned ethnographic collection.
St Mary’s Church
Located on the north side of the High Street, St Mary’s Church is the spiritual heart of the University of Oxford. A vibrant community, the church welcomes all and offers worship in the Catholic tradition. It is also home to the University Choir and often hosts visiting preachers. The church is a popular choice for many visitors.
St Mary’s Church is filled with history and offers a unique view of Oxford from its tower. Free drop-in tours are available and last about 30 minutes. Volunteers are on hand to answer questions. The church has been in existence for over 1000 years, and the building is so old that colleges were built around it.
The church was built in the 13th century and contains a tower that gives excellent views of the city. It was also the site of the first university library, and the first gatherings of university students were held here. The church was also the site of the trial of the Oxford Martyrs. Archbishop Cranmer and Bishops Latimer were tried here in 1555, and one of the pillars was cut to support a small platform for Thomas Cranmer.
In 1852, the Oxford Catholics sought to build a church. They enlisted the help of the local Presbyterian minister and Cincinnati Archbishop John Purcell. In the beginning, the Oxford Catholics held mass in the homes of Catholic families. However, in 1853 the parish grew enough to require a permanent priest and a larger church.
Old Parsonage Hotel
Located on the edge of Oxford’s old city, the Old Parsonage Hotel offers historic character and contemporary luxury. Its 17th century stone building once housed Oscar Wilde. The stylish, understated rooms feature muted lighting and modern touches. There’s also a complimentary Dutch-style bicycle available to guests.
The Old Parsonage is a boutique hotel in Oxford that offers stylish rooms and suites. The 17th-century building is a few minutes’ walk from the city’s historical sights. The hotel’s restaurant features a romantic atmosphere and classic British dishes. It has a private dining room and is licensed to hold civil ceremonies.
The Old Parsonage Hotel offers 24-hour room service. You can also enjoy afternoon tea here. A full English and other dishes are available for breakfast. The restaurant also serves salads and hearty mains. It also offers a kids’ menu, as well as an al fresco terrace and fireside dining.
Nearby attractions and landmarks include the famous Ashmolean Museum. Guests can even enjoy free Wi-Fi. The hotel also offers shuttle services to and from the airport. The location of the Old Parsonage is ideal for exploring Oxford’s historic city centre. It’s located in the city centre and features an original front door from the late 1600s.
You’ll also find a modern supermarket at the Old Parsonage, Tesco Metro, which is open seven days a week from 7am to midnight. You can also visit the lively Covered Market, which hosts a variety of food stalls every day. There’s also an Oxfam Books, the city’s first dedicated bookstore. It has a great selection of academic texts.
Blackwell’s flagship store
Blackwell’s is a landmark in the history of bookselling in Britain. It opened on New Year’s Day 1879, and since then has become synonymous with literary integrity. Located in Broad Street, it boasts a mural by Edward Bawden, and an excellent Rare Books department. A visit to Blackwell’s is a celebration of the love of reading and learning.
Oxford has many bookshops, but Blackwell’s is a real institution. Their flagship store on Broad Street, near the Sheldonian Theatre, is the largest, with more than 250,000 books. They also have specialised stores for music and art, as well as a huge used books section.
Besides visiting the flagship store, you can also stop by the Garden of Oxford, a flower shop where the staff have an obsession with fresh flowers. The selection changes with the seasons, so don’t miss it. The store also sells seeds, which make them ideal gifts for gardeners and home-owners.
In addition to Blackwell’s flagship store, Oxford is home to one of the country’s most famous bookshops: Waterstones. This branch of the UK book chain is in a beautiful grade II listed building, William Blake House. It is home to the UK’s last remaining branch.
The Pitt Rivers Museum, located on Parks Road, is another museum worth a visit. This free museum contains a vast collection of art and history. The museum is open daily except Monday. Admission is free and donations are welcomed.