Oxford has been on my ‘to do’ list for a while now and I’m so glad I got to finally visit it! The trip from Edinburgh to Oxford was about 6 hours long and took 3 changes with 4 different trains, which, I know, sounds like a lot of effort but honestly it wasn’t so bad. I got cosy and watched the moving coastline, read my book, listened to a podcast and just enjoyed that exciting feeling of traveling somewhere I’ve never been to before. We arrived on Friday afternoon and left on Sunday morning which felt like enough time to explore a good amount of the city. Let me tell you all about what I managed to see and do + my recommendations for a short trip to this lovely little place!
Stay at The Randolph Hotel
Ad | PR invite
A short trip from the train station – 13 minutes on foot or 4 minutes by taxi and you’ll be entering what seems to be one of the most iconic buildings of the city – The Randolph by Graduate Hotels. As soon as our taxi stopped, we were greeted by a concierge who helped us out of the cab and grabbed our bags – what a way to start a weekend! The hotel couldn’t be in a better location – all the main city attractions and restaurants are within a short 10-20 minute walk and our room had beautiful views of the Ashmolean Museum on the opposite side of the street.
Get lost in the streets of Oxford
Oxford is an extremely walkable city, you can visit most, if not all attactions by foot. Alternatively, if you happen to bring your own bike, it is extremely bike-friendly and how most locals choose to get around. I’ve been dreaming of seeing Camera Radcliffe in real life and it’s just as impressive as I thought it would be. I really enjoyed getting lost among the small and narrow streets not knowing where they would take me, and each time they would reveal yet another achitectural masterpiece.
Visit the Covered Market
If you’re looking for a place to hide from the rain (like we did!), Covered Market is a great place to visit. Visit a Boutique, grab a coffee and cookies from a cafe, get lost in an indie bookshop, treat yourself to a piece of jewellery as a souvenir or enjoy a hearty bowl of Chinese noodles! This place seems to have it all.
Here’s another one for a rainy day! Although a small city, Oxford is rich in museums and art galleries. The earlier mentioned Ashmolean Museum was just across the street from our hotel so it was the first one we visited, it was full of different sections, each more impressive than the other. You can also visit Oxford University Museum of Natural History (my favourite!), Museum of History of Science, Museum of Oxford and many more.
Get cosy at a coffee shop
There seemed to be lots of great coffee nooks around and they all had such great atmosphere! I was definitely happy to see that locals appreciate good coffee as most of them were completely full on a Sunday morning, creating a lovely buzz. Some of the best coffee was by Society Café, Missing Bean, Colombia Coffee Roasters & The Jericho Cafe (they have donuts!).
Until next time, Oxford!
While I didn’t discover all the gems of the city (a lot of the time I spent getting a massage treatment, enjoying the hotel spa or enjoying some wine in our bedroom), I do believe that 2 days are enough to explore most of the city’s gems and get a good feel of the place. I strongly recommend not following your google maps for a bit and simply enjoy exploring new places and buildings as they pop up, it’s such an exciting way to enjoy a new city!