Activities and Excursions
It's not all study time at Oxbridge International Summer School - we have a packed schedule of brilliant trips and activities to fit in around your studies, and you will have lots of free time to explore the small, picturesque city of Oxford. Many of our previous students especially loved to explore the coffee shops and sandwich bars in the city at lunchtime, as well as the Colleges, theatres and concert halls in the evenings.
Explore some of the activities we have prepared below.
Day trip to cambridge
Our students always rate the trip to Cambridge as amongst their favourite memories of the summer school.
With a coach taking us to and from the city, we visit the gorgeous University of Cambridge Colleges on a private tour led by Cambridge students, and see behind the scenes at England’s second-oldest University.
In the afternoon, we are treated to a chauffeured punting trip along the famous "Backs" and dinner out in a student-favourite restaurant.
Debating workshop at the oxford union
The Oxford Union was established in 1823 and is one of the oldest debating societies in the world. The Debating Chamber at the Union is a venue where many young politicians have started their careers, and has played host to illustrious speakers such as four US Presidents, and actors Emma Watson, Judi Dench, Clint Eastwood, Ian McKellen and Kermit the Frog.
Oxford International Summer School students join them by speaking on the same stage at our debating workshop, where they will learn oratorical techniques of persuasion and how to structure a speech, with prizes for the winning team.
Punting is a distinctly “Oxford” activity not to be missed. Glide elegantly along the banks of Oxford's River Cherwell in style accompanied by your new friends.
Be careful though - it’s harder than it looks! After being chauffeured on a punt in Cambridge, it's time for students to learn themselves. Take care to look where you’re going, and don’t get the pole stuck in the muddy river bed or you might fall in!
Punting is always a student favourite on a sunny afternoon.
Visiting the covered market
The Covered Market was established in Oxford in 1774, and has been playing host to grocers, butchers, cobblers and cheesemongers ever since.
This is a favourite spot with Oxford undergraduates and Oxford International Summer Students alike for a bite to eat at lunchtime, as well as picking up souvenirs including the famous "Oxford Sweater"!
Top lunch recommendations include Sasi's Thai and Alpha Bar!
Museums and galleries
Oxford is endowed with fantastic museums and art galleries, including the Ashmolean Museum, the first public museum in the world.
The Natural History Museum next door to our accommodation is a must-visit, including it's famous specimen of the last dodo, the inspiration for the character in Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.
Day trip to blenheim palace
We visit the stunning Blenheim Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Birthplace of Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Seat of the Dukes of Marlborough and world-famous emblem of the English Baroque.
Learn more about English History and High Society amid Georgian grandeur, and enjoy the beautiful gardens, lake and hedge maze.
Tour of the university
No visit to Oxford would be complete without visiting the university’s beautiful buildings and Colleges. Students stay in a modern annex of Lincoln College, founded in 1427 by Richard Fleming, Bishop of Lincoln.
Students will visit college halls, cloisters and chapels at, among others, Magdalen, Merton and Christ Church Colleges, including the all-important visits to sites where Harry Potter was filmed!
Our accommodation is just two minutes’ walk from the 20-acre University Parks, a green space for everyone in the city to enjoy. Students enjoy sandwich lunches in the sun here, as well as jogging around the perimeter in free time.
The Parks also serve as a venue for our Cricket Tournament, Alternative Olympics and other outside games. Our Oxford-educated tutors even host outdoor seminars for the summer school when the sun is shining!
Shakespeare in college gardens
Every year, actors use the unique setting provided by Oxford College gardens as a stage for some of Shakespeare’s best known plays.
See colleges by night from your spot wrapped up in a blanket on a deckchair, tucking into snacks and enjoying accessible and entertaining Shakespeare plays.