Covered Market

A treasure trove of market stalls, souvenir stalls and kooky eateries - perfect for a quick bite.

TravelCurious Tip

Be sure to try the distinctive, local Oxford sausage. They contain veal, as well as pork, and lots of spice seasoning.

The Covered Market was opened on November 1st 1774 and, barring a few interruptions, it has been open straight through to the present day. Covered markets are a must in England, where most of the time rain is the rule, rather than the exception. It also helped keep the smelly stalls from the streets.

Today the market is home to many independent shops, of which half are food retailers. These range from traditional market shops selling fresh food, such as greengrocers and butchers, to more specialised ones, like the cobblers and pet supplies shop. It’s a little microcosm of old-fashioned commercial life.

Brown’s Café is the original student greasy spoon in Oxford. Come here on weekend mornings and smile at the hung-over students silently working their way through a full English breakfast and cradling a steaming mug of tea.

If you’re from England, you’ll have had a pie before. But if you aren’t, then this is something you need to try. England does not have much in the way of its own distinctive cuisine - generally preferring to copy bits from other cultures, and badly - but the humble pie is a speciality. Pieminster does an excellent range of hot pies to help you survive the cold; nothing is more fortifying.

If you see crowds pressing their noses to the window of any store in the market, chances are its The Cake Shop. Here you can watch the artisans at work, pouring cream and carving icing, melting chocolate and sprinkling sugar. The end results are on show too, and some are marvellous. Look out for the huge Radcliffe Camera cake.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in London
Home to the world's most famous university, dreaming spires and a million bicycles.
Christchurch College
One the oldest and most famous university colleges has over 800 years of history.
Harry Potter Great Hall
This magnificent interior featured in the Harry Potter films as Hogwarts' Great Hall.
Oxford Pubs
Hidden gem pubs, overflowing with academics. The above pub claims to have the highest IQ per square metre.
Radcliffe Camera
Known as the 'beating heart' of Oxford, this library has stood since the early 18th century.
Bodleian Library
One of the oldest libraries in Europe and mostly underground, it has served the university for over 400 years.

Related Tours

Gown and Town: Oxford the City of Dreaming Spires (including travel from London)
  • Meet your guide at iconic Paddington Station, and journey together to Oxford - the city of dreaming spires! 
  • Experience the enchanting myriad of Oxford’s spellbinding streets and uncover the city’s fascinating history.
  • Visit one of the world’s best-known universities and explore the array of colleges, courtyards and the famous ‘Bridge of Sighs’.
  • Soak up the quintessential English atmosphere of Oxford.
From authentically magical locations used in the Harry Potter films, to one of the most-famous universities in the world, Oxford awaits – just a short train ride away from London. Deserving of a full day trip and not just a flying visit, Oxford is full of historical corners waiting to be discovered, as well as picturesque streets perfect for meandering and escaping the hustle and bustle of London. 

One of the best-known universities in the world and also one of the most beautiful, Oxford is a charming place to spend a tranquil day. Our guide will accompany you on the hour long train journey through the English countryside and take you on a fully guided stroll through the city streets through the most beautiful colleges, hidden courtyards and quadrangles, libraries, and Oxford’s ‘Bridge of Sighs’ – a distinctive landmark and highly-coveted photo opp. 
Oxford Tour: With a Former Oxford Union President
  • Take the very unique opportunity to enter The Oxford Union - the historic epicentre of debate at the University
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  • See the iconic Bridge of Sighs, Covered Market, The Bodleian Library and an array of colleges. 
  • Hear of strange traditions, its medieval beginnings and contributions to academia and humanity.
  • Take centre stage with your guide. No other groups or noise to drown out the experience.

Begin your day at London Paddington Station. Escape smoky London and zip across the rolling English countryside to sleepy Oxford. Steeped in history, outstandingly beautiful and famed for its ancient University (founded in 1096).  An institution which has produced some of the greatest minds throughout time. From Oscar Wilde, Edwin Hubble, to Stephen Hawking. 

Meet your friendly guide - a former President of The Oxford Union, a prestigious student position held by numerous former British Prime Ministers. Accompany your guide through the beautiful cobbled streets and squares of the City Centre. Explore the local market, churches,  hidden gardens, quaint shops and ancient pubs. And gain unparalleled knowledge and access to the University and its array of beautiful colleges. Hear of the University's ancient beginnings, strange traditions and invaluable contributions to academia and humanity. This is a very unique opportunity to see Oxford from a less travelled perspective. And a sure highlight to your trip!


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