Oxford & Hamburg

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We made a short, 3 night trip to Oxford accompanied by our friends Caroline and Bob in their Burstner.  Having visited Cambridge earlier in the year we thought we should take in Oxford as well to complete our cultural UK visits.

We stayed at the Camping and Caravanning Club site in Oxford. A lovely site but very noisy.  The railway runs just across the hedge and it is busy with passenger and freight traffic.  The freight trains seemed to take pleasure in hooting long and loud at 6:00am! However, the site is ideally located for a city visit. Just a short cycle ride to the Thames path and then a brief trip up river to the city.

Bikers ready themselves for the journey into Oxford—but not quite sure which direction to go in !

We chained our cycles together in the city centre and explored Oxford on foot.  George and Desnée took a guided walking tour, whilst Bob and Caroline opted for the open top bus tour.     Below are a few views of Oxford and the university colleges.

^ above left:  Christ Church College                                ^ above right:  Merton Street with a stormy sky



below left:  bicycles everywhere!             below right: famous 1638 Sundial at All Souls College

Above left:  Bridge of Sighs (actually the Hertford Bridge) which links the old and new Hertford College


Above:  Glimpse of Corpus Christi College


< left:  inside the Divinity House with the amazing vaulted ceiling


below: Radcliffe Square behind the Radcliffe Camera (part of the Bodleian Library). Church of St. Mary the Virgin (on the left) is now a popular café.

Oxford is an interesting city to visit and there is plenty to see and do. You could easily spend a couple of days or more, exploring.


From our point of view, we felt that Cambridge just has the edge if one had to choose between the two cities for a visit.

Day 2 and we decided to cycle down the Thames from the campsite towards Abingdon.  Cycling on this towpath can be quite unnerving as university students whizz past you without any audible warning!   The Thames is always pretty and this route was no exception.

Early on, across the other side of the river were several boathouses which are the rowing clubs of the various Oxford Colleges.





< left:  College Boathouses







Further downstream we arrived at Iffley Lock.  Very scenic and bustling with river traffic.  We took a detour here across the lock gates, into the village of Iffley and had a look around before returning to the river tow path.



Below:   Iffley Lock—a particularly pretty location!


It would have been easy to sit on one of the benches and watch the boats going up and down stream, however, we cycled on again towards Abingdon.  On the way we passed some beautiful riverside properties and one, in particular, caught our eye as it had a most unusual, globe shaped summer house in the garden.

At Sandford Lock we stopped off at the local hotel for a coffee break. After Sandford Lock the tow path became much narrower and the river was nor so interesting.  We made our way to Radley where we discovered the local pub and decided to stop for lunch.

The Bowyer Arms did not look much from outside but inside was a lovely restaurant and a comprehensive menu.  The food was simply delicious! A good find!

We cycled back along the minor roads and then cut right, back to Sandford Lock to follow the tow path back again. A very pleasant day out cycling in the beautiful Oxfordshire countryside.


After such a good lunch we just had a few nibbles for dinner. 


All agreed this had been an excellent few days.




We were home for only a few days before we were off on our travels again.  This time to Hamburg in northern Germany.

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There are many wonderful sundials around the city and there is even a ‘Sundial Tour’ that you can take.