Thee third and final instalment of Reasons to Visit Oxford has come. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading Part 1 and Part 2, and that it has persuaded you to add the beautiful city of Oxford to your travel bucket list. Here we go! Here is Reasons to Visit Oxford Part 3.
THE RESTAURANTS & PUBS
1. Heroes Cafe
Located along Ship Street, this little cafe serves good food for an affordable price. This is one of the places I kept coming back to because it was budget-friendly. Side story: I may or may not have seen Emma Watson or her look-a-like walking down this street as I was eating my risotto here one time. I was too stunned to move. I’ll never know if it was really her or not, but at least she was smiling at me!
2. Byron’s Burger
If you’re looking for a delicious burger, this is the place to go! Be prepared to spend a bit, but every pound is worth it. I really enjoyed every bite!
3. Jamie Oliver’s
Because who can resist Jamie Oliver’s cooking? Their Epic Brownie is a must-try! The brownie is super chewy and is topped with their home-made Vanilla ice cream, chocolate syrup and caramelised popcorn! YUM
I visited this Italian restaurant once in Oxford and again when I stumbled upon it in London. They have delicious ravioli and risotto! It’s a bit pricey, but again, it’s worth the money!
5. Turf Tavern
This pub is famous, but quite hard to find! It’s an adventure to find it if you’ve never been. Thankfully, when I went with my friends one of them knew the way. It’s tucked away in a hidden corner that you have to access through Holywell Street, but it is actually located in 4-5 Bath Place.
6. Purple Turtle Union Bar
If you’re looking for creative drinks, The Purple Turtle Union Bar has them: Hogwarts & college-themed shots! Never actually tried any of their shots, but my friends who did, said they were good! The atmosphere reminds me of a punk club what with gig posters plastered around the wall across the bar.
7. G&D Ice Cream Cafe
This place is a MUST visit especially for those with a sweet tooth. They have humongous ice cream sandwiches called the Cookie Monster that are sure to get you on a sugar high.
8. The Eagle & Child
Because who wouldn’t want to go inside the pub where JRR Tolkien and C.S. Lewis frequented when they would discuss their stories?
1. Getting to Oxford: There are direct coaches that you can hire from Heathrow. The one I took was called The Airline. What was nice was that I was able to book my ticket online and the ticket is valid for a few hours from the specified time slot. For example, if you bought a 7PM ticket, you can leave earlier or after. A bus leaves every twenty minutes or so!
2. Go to the Visitor Information Centre—especially if it’s your first day. You can get free maps, brochures, and even ask them what are the best things to do while you’re in town. There’s even a money changer right beside it. Very convenient!
3. Always bring a map. Google maps was a life-saver. It works even if there’s no wifi and if you turn on your location, you can see which way you are headed with each step you take.
4. Accommodation: I recommend Keble College’s B&B because not only is it very affordable, but is spacious! The only downside is that you have to walk a bit to get to the main street and shops. If you prefer to stay more central, book a B&B along one of the main roads!
5. If you are a student—whether regular or summer school—admission is free when you want to visit any of the colleges at the University. Some establishments also offer discount to students—don’t forget to ask! It pays to bring your student ID with you at all times.
6. The umbrella is your best friend! I bought a lightweight and collapsible one from Primark and until now I keep it with me. British weather is very erratic. A British friend told me that we were spoiled for the first two weeks of our course because it hardly rained. On the last week of classes, we experienced the real weather: rain, shine, rain, and shine. The weather can change quickly within a few hours.