"The Gown Town" Top 5 Page for this destination Oxford by King_Golo

Oxford Travel Guide: 970 reviews and 2,057 photos

Old Town - New Home

More or less everybody will have heard of Oxford, that almost mythical city in the heart of England, home to almost 40 colleges of which most are several hundred years old, home to brilliant scientists and bizarre traditions - and from 2009 to 2013 my home as well.
I had moved here in order to teach German to 6 colleges, but I quickly found that the colleges are hiding much more behind their high walls and gates than just super-intelligent students and a few of the world's best academics. More often than not one will learn about a tradition or ritual that is so weird that nobody except an Oxford person could have come up with it. Find out more about that by reading my "Oxford Absurdities" travelogue or my tips.

Discovering Oxford

Oxford is one of those places that you think you know well only to discover something new (and often unexpected) every other day. I was constantly coming across new exciting places or traditions. It is hard to actually rank Oxford's sights as there is so much to see or do for even the most demanding visitors, but I have tried nonetheless. Here are my personal Oxford Top 10:

1. Relaxing in Exeter's Fellow's Garden, Oxford's best-kept open secret
2. Walking along Addison's Walk in Magdalen College on a bright autumn day
3. Climbing the tower of St. Mary the Virgin on a late afternoon with the soft light illuminating the city's most beautiful buildings underneath you
4. Browsing through the millions of books in Blackwell's
5. A pint or two in one of the city's pubs steeped in tradition
6. The labyrinth of nice shops and cafes in the Covered Market
7. A walk around Christ Church Meadow
8. Walking downstream along the Thames from Folly Bridge to Iffley Lock and having lunch and a cider at "The Isis Farmhouse"
9. An early morning or nighttime stroll through New College Lane
10. Oxford's best-known college, Christ Church

Updates

My pages will be updated quite regularly and I hope that they can be helpful to visitors. Best to check them once in a while to see what new contents I have uploaded. In case you're planning an Oxford visit, don't hesitate to contact me for more information.

For some general historic information or two proposed itineraries, check the general tips section. For more pictures, check my travelogues.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Incredibly many things to do, wonderful atmosphere, nice people
  • Cons:Horrible traffic, hordes of tourists in summer
  • In a nutshell:Simply and purely a great place!
  • Intro Updated Mar 5, 2014
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Reviews (63)

Comments (11)

  • Trekki's Profile Photo
    Apr 3, 2014 at 12:07 AM

    What a wonderful description of Oxford's colleges!! Especially of the interiors and the stories :-)) I haven't been in Oxford yet, but .. love (= adore) the crime series "Lewis" and have recognised some of the places they filmed scenes. BTW: the last episodes start Easter Sunday in ZDF :-)
    Back for more reading later :-)

    • King_Golo's Profile Photo
      Apr 3, 2014 at 6:12 AM

      Too bad - I'll be on holiday then...

    • Trekki's Profile Photo
      Apr 6, 2014 at 1:01 AM

      Fabulous page, Golo! I really want to visit Oxford next time I'll be in London! Maybe even for three days :-) Thanks for your very valuable insights!!

  • hopang's Profile Photo
    May 9, 2011 at 1:54 AM

    Oxford certainly has some interesting tourist attractions especially the museums, Christchurch, Oxford University and colleges. Thanks for visiting our France travel page. ~ho & pang

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Oct 29, 2010 at 12:02 PM

    Hi, Golo! Thanks for your interesting and detailed page! ><><><

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Oct 12, 2010 at 12:58 PM

    Our son in law and daughter were here last year for 2 month school session. They loved the area, and we plan to visit in next 2 years also. You have done a good job of taking pictures and the comments are wonderful

  • budapest8's Profile Photo
    Sep 12, 2010 at 12:04 PM

    C u spent some well invested time in making yr Oxford tips. Shame one couldn't read VT tips in hardback or paper format, would make wonderful use of lazy Sunday afternoons instead of a Sunday paper. Thx for sharing& good tips for a cultural pub crawl.:)

  • OOOx's Profile Photo
    Sep 4, 2010 at 9:36 AM

    Very interesting to read about women in Oxford and "town vs gown"!

  • christine.j's Profile Photo
    Jun 11, 2010 at 7:28 AM

    This is a great page, I especially liked your gargoyles! It's been some years that I was in Oxford, so reading about it brought back memories. I had a great run along the Thames, I remember.How did you like the "other place" ??

  • evaanna's Profile Photo
    Apr 26, 2010 at 4:19 AM

    Really enjoyed revisiting Oxford with you. Wish I had known about Exeter's Fellows' Garden when I was there. No chance again. Tried to rate all your tips but couldn't confirm some of the ratings due to VT slowness.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Apr 15, 2010 at 4:15 AM

    Fine new tips on Oxford! It's great that you are living and teaching there.

  • JoostvandenVondel's Profile Photo
    Jan 1, 2010 at 2:16 PM

    Hello Golo! Thanks for your comments on my Oxford pages, your pages are fantastic! Love Blackwells!

King_Golo Used To Live Here!

King_Golo

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