When I decide to visit someone I just go to that place without thinking about special places I should visit, without even looking at the map of the city. It may sound crazy for all of you control freaks out there (not that I’m not one) but when you are visiting your soul mate- you know what I mean? So I visited Jaksa who spent Michaelmas in the University of Oxford. I came completely unprepared but went home with so many great addresses to share with you! Usually I recommend people to visit places in spring, but visiting Oxford in late autumn changed my mind completely. Even tough it was pretty cold we had the sun almost all the time! Imagine- no umbrella in the UK! Once on THE island you have to prepare your eyes on a different style of architecture – don’t be afraid to open them wide! After visiting Cambridge in the March 2013 this was my second visit to the island and I loved it even more!
There are 38 independent, self-governing colleges at Oxford University (here you’ll see the photos of some of them). We started with the New College (one of the largest in Oxford) to which Jaksa was affiliated. It occupies one of the most beautiful sites in the centre of the city. When you enter the cloister you can actually feel that you are standing in the medieval Oxford. The five minutes video will revel you everything you should know about it (I just love the parallel between city walls and shopping malls :).
The court yard of the Bodleian Library
The library Radcliffe Camera and the All Souls college which is now primarily an academic research institution with strong ties to the public domain. Traditionally, there are no undergraduate member. It was made clear that its numbers be restricted to a Warden and forty Fellows, all of whom were to have studied for three years in the University and to be between eighteen and twenty-five years.
Every college has its own chapel. I recommend you to go listen their choirs preforming evensong around 6 p.m. You will spend a really solemn hour.
In Oxford you HAVE to visit the Ashmolean museum. Entrance is free, there are no queuing, no controls, you just enter this magnificent place to admire art. How cool is that? From Ancient Cyprus to an Anglo-Saxon Discovery the collection of this museum will blow your mind!
Reading some ancient Greek inscriptions :)
Tea time! I have the stupid obsession to try as much as possible of tea rooms and restaurants instead of sticking to that perfect one once you find it! The Grand Café in Oxford is really the perfect one! Its interior is inspired by typical Parisian restaurants. They serve the best cream tea in the city (tea taken with a combination of scones, clotted cream and jam). In The Grand Café we had the most perfect scones ever with a great Twining’s melange Lady Grey I first discovered there. I recommend you to come around 15h-16h, a little bit earlier than the real tea time is (17h!) to avoid queuing.
The other cream tea worth mentioning was the one in a hotel Cotswold Lodge in a very cosy atmosphere of the grandma’s living room. The scones were good but not as good as the first ones, but on the contrary the porcelain there was very sophisticated. The budget for these gourmandises is from 6 to 8 pounds. If you are taking a high tea (light meal- tea accompanied with some scones, sandwiches, fruits) you should count from 10-20 pounds.
Just a few minutes from the center there is a residential part of the city /other people actually do live in Oxford, not just students/. Charming streets and adorable houses make you wanna stay there forever.
I now you are humming this one now. :)
Breathtaking beauty of fallen leaves in late November. It was so easy to imagine one of these houses as our own!
Magdalen College has some of the most beautiful buildings and grounds in Oxford. We made a big tour around the college: cloister, chapel, meadows, lake. It was a peaceful and relaxing walk on the sun.
Some personalized punts ( flat-bottomed boat with a square-cut bow) on the river Thames (with this section of the river being called The Isis). Aren’t they sweat? Did you ever try it?
In love with everything around me!
The best place to take some rest and eat really good food or just take a tea is colled Gee’s. Don’t miss it!