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8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford.

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford. Hogwarts & all.

It’s true! You will feel smarter (no guarantees you will be, though) by the time you leave Oxford. There are so many things to do in Oxford, make sure you plan enough time! The amount of history, knowledge and sheer genius that has come from this relatively small town is shocking. You are walking where some the of the great thinkers, inventors and leaders of  the world have been. Here’s a list of a few of the most famous Oxonians.

If you enjoy Inspector Lewis or the old Inspector Morse show, then this things to do in Oxford list is for you! Do you love a good mystery? Me too! The Inspector Lewis series totally fueled my desire to go to Oxford.  Be warned! They will make you fall in love with Oxford!

Maybe you and your family is all into Harry Potter.  Well, Oxford is for you too!

Maybe you don’t like either. That’s OK! Oxford has something for everyone!

The Bodleian

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - The Bodleian.

Yes! This library is in so many Inspector Lewis scenes, I lost count. Go in, explore and absorb the knowledge & history of this ancient university town’s most famous library. Need to convince the kids that this library is fun? Check out this video  and then head over and find out what tours are right for your family. Or, you can entice them by just saying you’re going to the Hogwart’s Library.

There's loads of great pubs in Oxford. No matter where you sit to enjoy a swift half or a pub meal, someone famous was probably there before you!Click To Tweet

 

The Ashmolean

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - The Ashmolean.

Did you see the episode of Inspector Lewis centered around the painting ”The Hunter in the Forest”? What a magnificent piece of art!  Much smaller in real life somehow than in the show. But no bother, I stood there and drank it all in.  The focal point of this painting is so intriguing and the Lewis mystery equally so. There is much in the Ashmolean that is not to be missed.  I was standing taller and feeling quite well educated upon my departure! The Egyptian art, drawing packs and family events are enough to lure any child into another museum. Especially if you promise a hot chocolate in the cafe at the end!

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8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - The Bridge of SighsThe Bridge of Sighs

It’s in every episode – I think. Well, as it should be. There is much to sigh about in Oxford: the history, the art, the diversity of students, the pub life of the famous. If those stones could speak, what secrets would be revealed? One will never know. Don’t confuse it with the bridge by the same name in Venice!

Punting

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - PuntingThe beauty of the Holywell Mill Stream & the River Cherwell is only embellished by the number of old colleges that can be seen from the river.  I counted 4 that I could recognize: Christ Church, Merton, St. Hilda’s, and Magdalen. These can all be seen whilst punting down the beautiful meadow-banked river that runs through Oxford.

I found this helpful “How to Punt” tutorial. The main punting tutorial is near the middle of the post.  Let’s just say punting can be rather inexpensive, unless you sink the punt or fall in.

Pubs 

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - Pubs

You’ve got the Eagle & Child (home of the Inklings), the Turf Tavern (where Inspector Morse & Lewis enjoyed a few pints) and The Bear Inn – Oxford’s oldest pub dating back to 1242. There’s loads of other great pubs in Oxford too.  No matter where you sit to enjoy a swift half or a pub meal someone famous was probably there before you!

Christ Church Cathedral  &  College 

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - Christ Church College.

Do the tour.  Don’t wait until the end of the day like we did and have to cram it all in is the last 45 minutes before they close.  Take time to bask in the heritage of the dining hall, the beauty of the intoxicating fragrance of the gardens & the history and art in the architecture and sanctuary of the cathedral. It is a beautiful place and deserves way more time than we could afford at the end of the day.

If you can’t convince the kids to take another tour of a museum & college, remind them Harry & the Hogwart’s ate, learned and lived here.  Maybe this Hogwart’s tour  will pique their interest. 

Student Life

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - Student Life.

Keep a keen eye out for students in their robes bustling off on their bikes to classes or study rooms.  You can also find them blowing off steam on the river, and in the pubs. If you are in Oxford during exams there will be trashing. What a way to celebrate the end of exams!

 

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - Student Life.

Oxford Traditions and Customs

8 IQ Boosting Things To Do In Oxford - Traditions and CustomsThere are so many unique traditions and customs celebrating everything from St. John the Baptist’s Day (which is celebrated with an open-air sermon) to the Encaenia Procession (ending at the Bodleian after a ceremony conducted entirely in Latin) which celebrates those being honoured with prestigious degrees. This post mentions a few other odd and old antics of Oxford.  Check What’s On to see what’s happening while you are in town.  

Oxford is a just a 90 minute bus ride and only an hour by train from London. You could easily watch an episode of Inspector Lewis on the way! What a fabulous day out or weekend away. It also makes a great addition to your itinerary if you are headed north toward Stratford-Upon-Avon or Edinburgh.

If you are flying long haul from North America, South America, The Middle East, Asia or Australia, you will likely  look at flights into London Heathrow. However, there are very inexpensive flights into London Stansted if your departure city is more “regional”. From London Stansted it’s a just bus or train ride.

Cheap Flights to London Heathrow

Origin Departure date Return date Find Ticket

Frankfurt

15.Jan.2018

17.Jan.2018

Tickets from 19

Luxembourg

03.Feb.2018

14.Feb.2018

Tickets from 24

Toulouse

01.Feb.2018

07.Feb.2018

Tickets from 24

Cheap Flights to London Stansted

Origin Departure date Return date Find Ticket

Frankfurt

15.Jan.2018

17.Jan.2018

Tickets from 19

Luxembourg

03.Feb.2018

14.Feb.2018

Tickets from 24

Toulouse

01.Feb.2018

07.Feb.2018

Tickets from 24

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Stay Captivated!

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