Oxford, a city in central southern England, revolves around its prestigious university, established in the 12th century. The architecture of its 38 colleges in the city’s medieval center led poet Matthew Arnold to nickname it the 'City of Dreaming Spires'. University College and Magdalen College are off the High Street, which runs from Carfax Tower (with city views) to the Botanic Garden on the River Cherwell.
A visit to Oxford, which dates back to Saxon times, is a trip into the brains of a nation. Tour the hallowed halls of the university and follow in the footsteps of Prime Ministers, poets and the one and only Harry Potter. Several scenes from the Harry Potter movies were shot here, some in locations you can visit. For instance, you can get a guided tour of Oxford University’s Bodleian Library – which will be familiar to fans as Hogwarts Library. Take a tour of the Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology - the first purpose-built museum in England, which opened in 1683. Or wonder at the anthropology collections at the incredible Pitt Rivers Museum. Did you know?
To the city’s east, you’ll find wooded wonderland, the Chilterns – a popular spot for a country getaway. To the west lies the idyllic Cotswolds and to the north, the spectacular Blenheim Palace. For leisurely sightseeing, take a trip on a punt (a traditional flat-bottomed boat) or if you prefer to stick to dry land, take a hop-on and off bus tour. If you're opting to travel by car, make sure to check out Park and ride which makes sightseeing a blast. Fashion lovers (and bargain hunters) flock to nearby Bicester Village, a designer shopping outlet selling big names brands like Ralph Lauren, Nike and UGG at discount prices.
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