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15 Best things to see & do in Oxford

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

Blenheim Palace

  • Woodstock, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

  • Bucket List Experience

The palace from above with a lake on the side

Experience

One of Britain’s greatest country houses, and the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, Blenheim boasts 300 years of history in a spectacular setting.

Adult price 32

Good for age: 13+

Ashmolean Museum

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

  • Bucket List Experience

The outside of the Ashmolean Museum. A stately building with pillars on either side of the entrance. There is a crowd of visitors walking up the stairs.

Experience

A world-class collection of art and architecture in the heart of Oxford that ranges across 3,000 years of history, with Egyptian rooms to rival those of the British Museum.

Good for age: 13+

Oxford University Colleges

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

  • Bucket List Experience

An aerial view of All Souls College cloister. An intricate sandstone building with arched windows and a clockface, has a rectangular grass court in the centre. A public road is visible to the left, and other Oxford buildings and the treeline is visible in the background.

Experience

Oxford’s extraordinarily beautiful colleges have housed everyone from prime ministers to presidents, and pair centuries of British history with spectacular architecture.

Adult price 3

Good for age: 18+

Punting on the River Cherwell

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

  • Bucket List Experience

Four numbered wooden punts (boats) lined up next to each other on the river's edge. In the background there is a bridge with two arches, and a man standing, pushing a punt along with a large pole. There are two passengers in his punt.

Experience

Glide along the Cherwell in a traditional punt, and take in the spectacular architecture of Oxford’s iconic colleges from the tranquillity of the river.

Adult price 16

Good for age: 6+

Duration: 1+ hours

Oxford University Museum of Natural History

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

  • Bucket List Experience

Inside the museum. There are many intricate metal and stone pillars in lines throughout the room. Glass display boxes with yellow-painted metal edges contain artefacts, and two skeletons are visible on plinths.

Experience

An extraordinary collection of 7 million exhibits from the natural world, including the world-famous ‘skeleton parade’, housed in one of the country’s finest Victorian Gothic buildings.

Good for age: 6+

Bridge of Sighs

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

The bridge runs between two buildings above a cobblestone street underneath which people are walking. The bridge is arched sandstone with rectangular glass windows.

Experience

One of the city’s iconic Insta shots, this raised bridge, linking two sections of Hertford College is notable for its similarity to the Bridge of Sighs in Venice.

Good for age: 18+

Pitt Rivers Museum

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

Inside the Pitt Rivers Museum. The room is full of glass display cabinets full of objects. A large totem pole rises from the centre of the room and there are several floors visible.

Experience

An overwhelming array of archaeological and ethnographic finds from all over the world, with over half a million objects alongside early photographic and sound archives.

Good for age: 8+

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Bodleian Library

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

Inside the Bodleian Library Divinity School. The room has dark wooden seating and a vaulted, intricately carved stone ceiling.

Experience

Dating back to the 14th century, the Bodleian buildings – including the Divinity School, Oxford’s oldest teaching room – are some of Oxford’s most beautiful. Visits by pre-bookable tours only.

Good for age: 18+

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Oxford Castle and Prison

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

The exterior of Oxford Castle and Prison. Buildings made out of pale stone. The closest building has white painted bars across the windows. There is a small strip of grass in front of the buildings.

Experience

An imposing, partly-ruined Norman castle, kids will love exploring the 18th-century prison cells, the candlelit crypt, and the climb up St George’s Tower (101 steps) gives wonderful views across the city.

Adult price 15

Good for age: 8+

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Museum of the History of Science

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

The outside of the Museum of the History of Science building. A cylindrical pale yellow sandstone building with arched windows and a wooden door.

Experience

An extraordinary collection of scientific instruments and artefacts, dating from the Middle Ages to the 19th century, with highlights including Einstein’s blackboard and a Roman disc sundial. 

Good for age: 13+

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Church of St. Mary [and climb the spire]

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

The exterior of University Church of St Mary. A sandstone church with shrubbery outside, illuminated by golden hour sunshine.

Experience

A 13th-century church which was the first university building. Climb the spire for wonderful views over the Oxford Colleges and the surrounding Oxfordshire countryside.

Adult price 5

Good for age: 6+

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University of Oxford Botanic Garden

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

A view inside the Oxford Botanic Garden. A small pond has lily pads floating on top, and there is lots of plants and greenery.

Experience

Founded in 1621 and one of the oldest Botanic Gardens in the world, this is a horticulturalist’s dream, with over 5,000 different species of rare and endangered plants.

Adult price 6

Good for age: 4+

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Oxford Covered Market

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

Arcade of shops with a lady looking at a flwoer stall

Experience

First opened as a food market in 1774, the Covered Market is now home to fifty different stallholders, selling everything from vintage clothes, jewellery and flowers to specialist foodie treats.

Good for age: 13+

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Coffee Concerts at Holywell Music Room

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

A small room with pale wooden floors, white walls, and two golden chandeliers. Rows of red cushioned tiered seating rise up from a central space. There is a dark wooden organ with golden pipes against the back wall.

Experience

Held every Sunday, these classical concerts are the chance to see world-class performers in the Holywell Music Room, the oldest, purpose-built music room in Europe.

Adult price 15

Good for age: 18+

Duration: 1+ hours

When: Sunday

Freq: weekly

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Modern Art Oxford

  • Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom (UK)

Inside the gallery. The room has pale wood floors, and high ceilings with skylights. There are people walking around large sculptures.

Experience

One of the country’s leading galleries for cutting edge, avant-garde art, there is a rolling programme of temporary exhibitions, alongside film and music events.

Good for age: 18+

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