University of Oxford
Literary Activities

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Our most recommended University of Oxford Literary Activities

Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with Divinity School Entry

1. Oxford: Harry Potter Tour with Divinity School Entry

Follow in the footsteps of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger and other characters from the Harry Potter movies. J.K. Rowling applied to study at Oxford University and so she was familiar with Oxford. Thus, when they were producing the films, Rowling walked the producers around Oxford, pointing out various sights which they could use, such as the statue that looks like 'Nearly Headless Nick', and Turf Tavern Lane, which looks like Knockturn Alley. This tour showcases where the Harry Potter movies were filmed in Oxford. It includes entry to 1 film site only via the Divinity School, where they filmed the classroom, dance, and infirmary scenes. You will be passing the city's famous sights and colleges from the outside. You will also be provided with lots of insights about the actors, the producers and about JK Rowling's inspirations. As you walk around, you will take part in a Harry Potter quiz to test your knowledge of the books and films. The guide will also describe how student life in Oxford compares with Hogwarts.

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Harry Potter Studio Tour & Oxford Day Tour from London

2. Harry Potter Studio Tour & Oxford Day Tour from London

Join this fantastic full-day excursion from London which combines a trip to the magical Warner Bros Studio Tour - The Making of Harry Potter with a trip to the historic city of Oxford. Start your tour at the historic city of Oxford, home to England's oldest university. Enjoy a guided walking tour that takes you past famous college buildings, cloisters, quadrangles, and cobblestone squares. See the Bodleian Library, Radcliffe Camera, the Sheldonian Theatre, and selected colleges. Enjoy free time to explore all that Oxford has to offer at your own pace. Continue to the Warner Bros. Studio Tour and begin your magical experience at The Making of Harry Potter. Discover behind-the-scenes secrets and hear about the filmmaking techniques used to make the magic of the Harry Potter films. Visit the most recognizable set features from the films: the Great Hall, Dumbledore’s office, the Gryffindor common room, the Ministry of Magic, 4 Privet Drive, the Weasley kitchen, Hogwarts Express, and Diagon Alley. Board the original Hogwarts Express train and see a recreation of Platform 9-3/4. Explore the interior train carriage set that was featured during filming and take a selfie with a luggage trolley as it disappears through the brick wall.

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Oxford: Official University and City Walking Tour

3. Oxford: Official University and City Walking Tour

Explore Oxford, the city of Dreaming Spires, on a walking tour with an expert guide from the city’s tourism board. Be shown the city’s most famous sights, uncover its hidden history, and enjoy all the astonishing stories about Oxford's key characters- real and fictional. Meet your guide at the grand and very old Broad Street (once the city's ditch) let them know where you come from and any special Oxford interests you may have and they will do their best to incorporate those.  Go to Martyrs' Memorial, the scene of terrible religious retributions in medieval times, and on to the oldest tower at St Michael of the Northgate built in Saxon times. Then, make your way to the very heart of the University and the inspiration behind Harry Potter's Hogwarts School. Pass by the pubs where the Inklings used to meet to discuss their writing as well as the pubs where Inspector Morse was filmed and the most popular student drinking holes in days of old. Discover the city that is home to several of Britain's most famous literary characters - both fictional and real - such as JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis, Philip Pullman, and Colin Dexter as well as some of their most famous creations like Lyra and Will, and Inspector Morse. Admire Oxford's stupendous architecture, gargoyles and grotesques, so wonderfully preserved from every historical period and style, and take a stroll through the breathtaking Radcliffe Square. Cross the whimsical Bridge of Sighs as it's fondly known, just like the ones in Venice and Cambridge. See the Bodleian Libraries from the outside in the splendid Old Schools Quadrangle. Learn about the city’s famous museums including the Museum of the History of Science, containing Einstein's blackboard, The Pitt Rivers, once home to shrunken heads, and the fabulous Ashmolean, which was one of the very first ever museums in the world. If time allows, walk as far as to the beautiful Christ Church Meadows, where punting happens and cattle graze; a truly pastoral and quintessential English scene.

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Oxford: Official “Haunted Oxford” Ghost Tour

4. Oxford: Official “Haunted Oxford” Ghost Tour

Discover all the key haunted places in and around Oxford on a nighttime walking tour based on the book 'Haunted Oxford' led by the author himself, Rob Walters. Experience the best way to 'see' Oxford’s ghosts on a route that takes you around the heart of central Oxford and its University. Meet your guide and get whisked away into the night, starting on the corner of Turl Street and Broad Street, which was once the city ditch and site of terrible murders and religious persecution. Learn about the history of Oxford and hear many splendidly spooky stories dating back to Danish Viking times. Walk past Oxford University, Radcliffe Square, and peer into the Old Schools Quadrangle - of Harry Potter fame. Admire the gorgeous and imposing architecture of Oxford and feel the history in the walls, which are well preserved and represent every period of architecture from Medieval through Classical to modern.  Look up at the Bridge of Sighs, so-called as it is reminiscent of the one at Venice which led prisoners to their doom. Wind down the ancient walled lane to New College, built in the late 1300s, and see its dark gates against the gloom.

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From London: Harry Potter Studio and Oxford Small Group Tour

5. From London: Harry Potter Studio and Oxford Small Group Tour

Depart London and journey to the city of Oxford to explore the real college buildings, including the medieval Divinity School (admission included). Upon arrival in the university city founded in 1167, take a 1.5-hour guided tour of the historical center and admire some of the most famous college buildings, cloisters and quadrangles. Delve down alleyways and into chapels, look inside dining halls and across cobblestone squares under the shadows of the legendary "dreaming spires." Enter the hallowed heartland of academia, including the Bodleian Library, Radcliff Camera, Sheldonian Theatre and other select colleges.  You then depart Oxford before journeying towards Warner Bros. Studio to take "The Making of Harry Potter" tour. Located in former aircraft hangars in the residential district of Leavesden, the unique attraction recreates the magic of Harry Potter and all your favorite characters. Board the original "Hogwarts Express" train at a recreation of Platform 9¾, and explore the inside of the train carriage featured in the films. Take a selfie with a luggage trolley as it disappears through the station's brick wall. The guides will reveal the behind-the-scenes secrets and unveil the intricate prosthetics and make-up that transformed actors into creatures in the blockbuster films. See sets from the original movies, and get a peek inside the college of Hogwarts during the 4-hour studio tour. Journey through attractions such as The Great Hall, Gryffindor Common, Hagrid's Hut, the Weasleys' kitchen and the Ministry of Magic. Take a tour of the back lot and a special effects tour, see a model of Hogwarts Castle and much more.

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Oxford, Stratford, Cotswolds & Warwick Castle Day-Tour

6. Oxford, Stratford, Cotswolds & Warwick Castle Day-Tour

Walking tour of Oxford Follow in the footsteps of Oxford's famous students, from C.S. Lewis to Bill Clinton, as you stroll the captivating college courtyards and cobbled lanes of this historic university town. Take in the famous 'dreaming spires' and see Bodleian Library, one of the oldest libraries in Europe. You'll be captivated by the unspoilt narrow alleys and ancient squares of this naturally beautiful town. Brasenose College Brasenose College takes its name from the unique door-knocker of the Hall. This beautiful Oxford University college was founded in 1509 by Sir Richard Sutton, a lawyer, and William Smyth, Bishop of Lincoln. Brasenose is a stunning example of traditional university architecture and is surrounded by lush green lawns and relaxing gardens. The college has been used as a filming location for both TV and movies. Past students include the writer William Golding and Prime Minister David Cameron. The Cotswolds Enjoy views of the breathtaking countryside, sleepy villages, and bustling market towns as you drive through the charming scenery of one of England's most beautiful regions. Stratford–upon–Avon  A unique market town, famous as the home of William Shakespeare, arguably the world's greatest writer. Visit the picturesque half–timber house where the legendary bard was born, and gain fascinating insights into his childhood. Shakespeare’s birthplace: See where the famous playwright grew up and spent his years as a married man. Warwick Castle  Be part of Britain’s greatest medieval experience! Deep in the heart of Warwick Castle, the Great Hall is a hive of activity! Immerse yourself in battle preparations and feel the weight of a medieval sword. Become a soldier – try on a battle helmet for size! Visit the spectacular State Rooms and feast your eyes on Victorian party preparations.  Arrival time back in London at approximately 18:45.

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Oxford: Private City Tour & University Historical Highlights

7. Oxford: Private City Tour & University Historical Highlights

Meet your guide outside Oxford's famous Ashmolean Museum with its fine collections of art and artefacts and start your walking tour. Pass by the Martyr's Memorial, dedicated to the Oxford Martyrs, and sop in Broad Street, close to where the old city wall used to be. From here you begin to expand your knowledge about the history of the University.  Get a chance to visit a typical college of the university with its quaint quadrangles and see how the students live and work. Continue your tour and pass by the Sheldonian Theatre, the University's ceremonial hall and then head to the quaint Bridge of Sighs.  Enjoy some time for a photo in front of the bridge and before visiting the Old Schools Quadrangle of the Bodleian Library, where Harry Potter was filmed.  Stop at charming Radcliffe Square with its cobblestones and the splendid Radcliffe Camera. See several colleges in this area before the tour continues to Christ Church Meadows. Marvel at the location of Christ Church College, where Alice in Wonderland was inspired and Harry Potter was filmed.  Walk back towards the Carfax Crossroads, the very centre of the city and have a chance to window-shop as you walk through Oxford's Victorian Covered Market. Your tour finishes in the Cornmarket, giving you an opportunity to enjoy lunch in one of Oxford's pubs, cafes or restaurants or to explore the shops in the Covered Market or the modern Westgate Centre.

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Oxford University Walking Tour

8. Oxford University Walking Tour

The tour introduces at least 9 colleges and describes college life, student traditions, famous literary, scientific, and political figures, and English history in Oxford. Follow the informative guide around the city as you visit the famous sights and learn about the history of Oxford – the guides speak various languages and most are Oxford students and graduates, English tutors, or actors and actresses. Get the most out of your trip to Oxford on this tour – the general tour can be scheduled to suit whatever requests and interests you have. This tour is ideal for small groups, language schools, or business organizations.  On this tour, you will go inside one of the Harry Potter film sites, the Divinity School at the Bodleian Library. Please note that currently in 2021, due to COVID-19 closures, the colleges are not open to the public, but you will still be introduced to many of the colleges and other famous sights on the route. Colleges are expected to reopen to the public from July 1, 2021. Divinity school can close without any advance notice given, entry is not guaranteed.

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From London: Oxford and Cambridge Universities Tour

9. From London: Oxford and Cambridge Universities Tour

Oxford We begin our day travelling across the Chiltern Hills to Oxford, the 'City of Dreaming Spires,' whose hushed courtyards have inspired generations of scholars including Bill Clinton and writers, Lewis Carroll who wrote 'Alice in Wonderland', C.S. Lewis who wrote 'Chronicles of Narnia' and the immortal J.R.R. Tolkien, author of 'Lord of the Rings'. On the walking tour you'll visit Christ Church college, where Harry Potter scenes were filmed, see the Bodleian Library and the picture-perfect college courtyards for which Oxford is justifiably famous. Cambridge Cambridge is a wonderful mixture of the everyday and the extraordinary, a living city that has shaped history and today reflects the best of historic and contemporary life. It was the inspiration for Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton and many of the Monty Python gang. We will have a guided tour of the magnificent chapel of Kings College, founded in 1441, and a fascinating walking tour of a city filled with beautiful buildings and historical quirks, including the famous 'Bridge of Sighs'.

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From London: Oxford & Cambridge Day Tour

10. From London: Oxford & Cambridge Day Tour

The tour begins in the captivating college town of Oxford. Here you can follow in the footsteps of Oxford University’s prestigious former students - from C.S Lewis to Bill Clinton - as you stroll the courtyards and cobbled lanes of this historic town. Marvel at the famous “dreaming spires” and visit the Bodleian Library - one of the oldest libraries in Europe. While you are in Oxford you cannot miss the opportunity to visit Christ Church. Not only is it one of the largest colleges at the university, it is also one of the major locations from the Harry Potter films. Marvel at the grandeur of the Great Hall, instantly recognizable to movie fans as Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The tour then moves onto the elegant city of Cambridge. Home to the famous University of Cambridge, you will have the opportunity to explore the renowned Cavendish Laboratory, King’s College Chapel and the Cambridge University Library. You can also visit the oldest college that still exists - Peterhouse - which dates back to 1284. The tour will finish at approximately 19:00 in London.

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Other Sightseeing Options in University of Oxford

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What people are saying about University of Oxford

Michiel was an excellent guide, and the tour was both interesting and amusing. Michiel combined just enough Harry Potter and JK Rowling knowledge, information, and trivia alongside some insightful facts about the city of Oxford, the University, architecture, and literature, all of which resulted in a fulfilling 90 min tour. Michiel also added a lot of dry whit to the experience. I would say if you are solely looking for Harry Potter movie insight then this isn’t the tour for you. But for an educational, interesting, funny and informative jaunt into the nature in which Oxford and the world of Harry Potter are intertwined then mischief managed!

Really interesting tour. A great way to see places used in the movies, and lots of other literary places of interest around Oxford. Alistair was very knowledgeable and entertaining.

We really enjoyed this walking tour.Hannah was very knowledgeable and told the ghost stories well, with the city streets around the colleges after dark adding great atmosphere.

Timing was excellent, the the guiding was amazing and the driving was perfect, Big thank you to Valentina for the amazing guiding and to Alan for the pleasant driving.

Amazing experience Very organized and friendly guide. The duration was good we had plenty of time in oxford and Harry Potter tour