London & the Cotswolds
Outstanding beauty of the Cotswolds
If you head just a short distance to the northwest of Oxford and you will come across some of the loveliest honeycomb-coloured villages and market towns in all of England, within an area of outstanding natural beauty that makes it perfect for serious hikers and weekend ramblers.
A taste of rural England
The Cotswolds are also one of the country’s most 'foodie' areas, so whether you stumble across a local farmers’ market, such as the weekly one at Stroud, or stop for a Sunday 'roast' lunch being cooked in a 400-year-old pub. You can be sure you will eat well here.
If you to experience a small quintessentially Cotswold town, try Chipping Campden, whose wealth was traditionally based on the wool trade. It has an elegant high street, great shops and eateries, and is a good base from which to start a walk or cycle in the surrounding countryside, or from which to head north to Shakespeare’s Stratford-upon-Avon.
Alternatively, if you want to check off names from a list of very English-sounding places, go to Lower Slaughter, Poffley End, Waterley Bottom or Goosey.
London: the thrill of the capital
In the other direction, Oxford is ideally placed for exploring London, which is just an hour away by train, and not much longer on one of the many buses that make the journey, as often as every ten minutes at peak times. Direct coaches also link Oxford with Heathrow and Gatwick airports. The nation’s capital is bursting with things to do, from the world’s leading West End shows, to fantastic live-music venues, beautiful parks and an astounding variety of restaurants and shopping.