Oxford: an ideal student city

Download illustrated map of Oxford

Bursting with things to do, see and experience, Oxford is an ideal student city. Whether you’re looking for green spaces and culture or a buzzing nightlife and diverse community, you’ll get the best of both worlds in Oxford.

“Oxford is a wonderful city, full of history, people and excitement. It’s a young city as well, so there’s always a lot of events to join in.”

Sabrina Andrade, Media, Journalism and Publishing

Inspiration every day

As a student in Oxford, you’ll be living and learning in the heart of a knowledge economy, where research, technology, science and motorsports are thriving. Add to that a healthy arts and culture scene with museums and galleries round most corners, you won’t fail to be inspired.

Students in Natural History Museum
Two girls in car factory
Museum of Modern Art

Cowley Road: A street that has it all

Diverse and vibrant, The Cowley Road is packed with places offering food from around the world, great pubs, clubs and music venues. You can search for vintage treasures in the charity shops and pick up your international groceries while you’re there too.

Oxford street graffiti
O2 Academy
Group of students eating at restaurant

Beautiful green spaces

Picnics in South Park, admiring the Spring snowdrops and the arboretum in Headington Hill Park - you’re never far from a beautiful park in Oxford.

Further afield you can explore what the rest of the county has to offer, The Cotswolds, Waterperry Gardens and Blenheim Palace are perfect for a day trip and can be reached by bus.

Oxford Botanic Gardens
Oxford skyline over South Park

Historic and magical

Oxford is an Instagrammer’s dream. A walk in the city centre can have you feeling like you’ve wandered onto a film set. With its beautiful buildings, winding lanes and cobbled streets, Oxford is picture perfect.

Punting is a unique way to see Oxford from a different angle. Glide leisurely along the idyllic waterways as you sit back and admire the stunning architecture and landscape. Or try it yourself – without falling in!

Male and female walking down Oxford street
Group of students punting
Ashmolean Museum

Retail therapy

You’ll find a mix of high street brands and independent shops in Oxford. The Westgate Shopping Centre is the main place to shop or grab a bite to eat. While the covered market gives you a unique experience and dates back to 1774! If independent and charity shops are more your thing, Cowley, Headington and Summertown are all worth a visit.

Oxford Covered Market
Oxford Westgate Centre
Cowley Road shops

Well connected

Oxford is well connected to the rest of the country. Whether you want to spend the day in London or explore other cities like Bath or Bristol or visit home, the M40 is a stone’s throw away or you can hop on a bus or train.

Travelling between campuses is easy with the BrookesBus connecting Headington, Wheatley and Harcourt Hill campuses with our halls, the city centre and other popular student areas.

Explore Oxford

We know that choosing where to go to university is a big decision and that not all students want the same thing. Happily, Oxford has something for everyone

Illustrated Oxford map
  1. South Park
    Two minutes walk from our Headington Campus, this green space is great for a picnic or lunchtime kick-about.
  2. Cowley Road
    A vibrant area with places to eat from all corners of the globe. With pubs, bars and cafes, it’s a firm favourite with students.
  3. O2 Academy Oxford
    An iconic Cowley Road venue hosting headline acts, as well as club nights. Brookes Sport student nights take place here every Wednesday during semester time.
  4. The Ultimate Picture Palace
    Offering student discounts, this is Oxford’s first independent cinema, showing everything from the latest blockbusters, to foreign language films and the classics.
  5. Punting down the river Cherwell
    A quintessentially Oxford experience, punting is a unique way to see the city from the river.
  6. Oxford Botanic Gardens
    With free entry for Oxford Brookes students, you can explore Britain’s oldest botanic garden that has over 6,000 different plant species!
  7. Queen’s Lane Coffee House
    A great place to grab a coffee or slice of cake. Opened in 1654, it’s reputed to be the oldest continually working coffee house in the whole of Europe.
  8. Westgate Shopping Centre
    Find over 100 stores, a cinema, restaurants, cafes, junkyard golf, a gym and much more. There’s plenty to see and do, with many places offering student discounts.
  9. Modern Art Oxford
    Free and open to all, this gallery showcases cutting-edge exhibitions and innovative programmes.
  10. Ashmolean Museum
    With free entry, this art and archaeology museum has world famous collections, including Egyptian mummies and the largest collection of Raphael drawings.
  11. Natural History Museum and Pitt Rivers Museum
    From dinosaur skeletons to ancient artifacts – these museums are free to enter and hold more than 5 million specimens!
  12. Radcliffe Camera
    One of Oxford’s most photographed landmarks, the area around here will have you feeling like you’ve stepped back in time.
  • Harcourt Hill Campus
    Distance from Headington Campus: 6 miles
    Bus journey length: 40 mins
  • Marston Road site
    Distance from Headington Campus: 1.5 miles
    Bus journey length: 10 mins
  • Wheatley Campus
    Distance from Headington Campus: 5 miles
    Bus journey length: 13 minutes
  • Oxford is close to London, with coaches running 24/7. An Oxford Brookes student return is only £10!
  • Airline buses connect Oxford with London Heathrow and Gatwick airports day and night airline.oxfordbus.co.uk