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There’s so much to see and do on an Oxford hen party, whether you’re a culture vulture or a party lover. This quintessentially English city, affectionately known as the City of Dreaming Spires, boasts 1,500 listed buildings from every major period of British architectural history. The town’s appearance wouldn’t be out of place in a Disney or Harry Potter film as the old town centre is like an enchanted fairy-tale city.
What to expect during an Oxford hen weekend?
As the city is heavily influenced by historic culture, it seems fitting that there are various tours you can take part in during your hen do in Oxford. These will take you round all of the oldest and most pertinent landmarks. You’re allowed to wander round the university buildings without guidance. Though it’s fair to say, if you’re interested and wish to learn all the gruesome details of England’s bloody history then it is best to get a tour guide.
However, Oxford is so much more than the university, stifling lecture rooms and snap-happy tourists. There’s still a rich nightlife scene to explore and we have some unique day time activities to help you and the girls really let your hair down. So even if university and school are a distant memory to you, you can still come to Oxford for its eclectic mix of shops, bars and restaurants.
Being a student town, it’s no surprise that Oxford has its fair share of hen night friendly pubs, bars and clubs. Trust us, behind that posh and appropriate exterior is a fun town that really loves to party! Filled with sophisticated bars and restaurants and some of the best cocktail bars in the country, you really will be spoilt for choice in this glamorous city.
You really are spoilt for choice when it comes to things to do on your hen do in Oxford. And it’s not just sightseeing. Theatres also play a massive role in what the city’s entertainment offerings. There are a few dotted over the town, so if you are wanting to get cultural, then make sure you do your research and book your tickets. Punting along the river is another great way to see the landmarks of the town and it is also great fun! It’s much harder than it looks, so if you don’t want to brave it alone, there are men who can do all the hard work for you – so you can sit back, relax and soak in the sights.
If you ladies fancy a quirky activity that’s more than a little bit cheeky, you’ve got to try hen party life drawing in Oxford. It takes place in a private room in a city centre venue where you’ll be greeted by your dedicated art tutor. They’ll be your guide through the world of nude life drawing, giving you handy hints and tips to help you create a masterpiece. They’ll also introduce the fully naked, professional, male model. He’ll de-robe and pose for you to draw every detail, little and large (ahem!).
Looking for some competitive action? Look no further than the hilarious bubble football experience! This activity will see you and your hens each climbing into giant inflatable zorbs which will send you bumping, rolling and flying around a football pitch. The zorbs will cover your entire body, leaving just your legs dangling out at the bottom as you attempt to keep your balance and kick a real football. A referee will be on site to instruct you through challenges, games and forfeits. Trust us, you’ll be in fits of giggles by the end!
During your Oxford hen weekend, you've got to let you hair down, so a burlesque dance class is a must! Learn to swing, swirl and twirl you hips to the music as you hold feather fans and move your feet. A professional instructor will be there to teach you the classic steps and make sure you truly get into the swing of things. There'll be a warm up and a warm down along with plenty of time to practise. You don't need any previous experience, just a willingness to have fun and enjoy the hen's last weekend of freedom!
Celebrities who were born or studied here include theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, tennis player Tim Henman, Mr Bean actor Rowan Atkinson, Harry Potter actress Emma Watson, reality star Jamie Laing and authors JRR Tolkien, Lewis Carrol and CS Lewis. The bands Radiohead and Supergrass were also formed in the city.
76 Saint Clement's Street, Oxford, Ox4 1a
Get ready for a fabulous explosion of flavours and spicey cocktails at The Coconut Tree in Oxford. This popular eatery boasts an eclectic menu of Sri Lankan street food. You can try an assortment of dishes including spicy cheese cubes, pineapple curry, slow-cooked pork belly and coconut milk pancakes. Wash it all down with some mouth-watering cocktails and get in the mood to party with the lively atmosphere. You won’t be disappointed!
215 Banbury Road, Summertown, Oxford OX2 7HQ.
If you want to enjoy a classy evening out on the town, then Two One Five in Summertown is the place to go. Born from the success of the Michelin Star restaurant, The Oxford Kitchen, Two One Five offers the same quality of food, just a little less expensive! You’ll enjoy a twist on some classic pub food, reinvented by commended chef Paul Welburn. Accompny with an impressive wine list and first-class service, this is the way to dine in style — without breaking the bank!
Colombia Coffee Roasters, 106-107, The Covered Market, OX1 3DY
Coffee lovers rejoice! Colombia Coffee Roasters in Oxford is here for all your caffeine needs and is a popular choice with locals and travellers alike. Whether you want a pick-me-up during a day of shopping or need a little help the morning after the night before, this independent café is the ideal place for you and your hens to put your feet up and people watch from the window.
Why not combine your love of food with a fun activity? If you and your best gals want to indulge your sweet tooth, then a chocolate making class during your hen weekend in Oxford is the activity for you. You’ll each learn to mold, cut and decorate your own delectable chocolate truffles. A professional chocolatier will teach you some tasty tips and tricks and you’ll take your homemade creations home at the end. You could save them and give them away as a gift to your loved ones or, more likely, scoff them all back at the hotel!
As Oxford is home to many of the world's smartest students, it seems fitting that the city has great pubs, bars and clubs for them all to hang out in and discuss the latest political forecast. So, Oxford isn’t all brains, it still seriously delivers with its nightlife. There are many, quaint little pubs and bars with higgledy-piggledy seating arrangements and wonky beams so you can get a real feel of the city’s history during your Oxford hen night.
Cantay House, Park End Street, Oxford OX1 1JD
Oxford is not short of nightclubs and after Atik’s refurbishment, you can now enjoy five glorious rooms that’ll see you dancing the night away. From the 80s to the 90s, to R7B and hip hop, there’s no shortage of music. You can expect DJs, sweaty dance floors, cocktail areas and VIP lounges.
If you fancy yourself as a bit of a wine connoisseur, you’ll want to check out The Oxford Wine Café. This late-night bar hosts a vast array of tasty tipples along with regular event nights including wine and cheese Wednesdays, The Big Quiz and wine tastings. You can try a wine cocktail, tasty bar snacks or a simple cup of tea. There’s something here for everyone!
6-9 Hythe Bridge Street, Oxford, OX1 2EW
Another one of Oxford’s popular nightclubs is The Bridge. Aside from the main dance floor, you’ll find the urban room, VIP lounge and garden area for when you want to break away from the crowds. You can book a VIP booth and package or simply rock up and get the party started!
56 Walton Street, Jericho, OX2 6AE
If you enjoy your rock n’ roll, you’ll want to head to The Jericho where you’ll find a lively bar with regular band nights hosted throughout the week. A little bit vintage, and a little rough around the edges, this bar is the perfect place to let your hair down and enjoy some live music during your hen do in Oxford.
There’s always something going on in this city but here’s a few annual events you might enjoy. Fashionistas will be pleased to hear that March and October are host to Oxford Fashion Week where you’ll see the work of a big range of designers who flock to the city to show off amongst the trend-setters. It’s a generally fun time to visit the city with a general buzz everywhere you go. Oxford’s International Women’s Festival also takes place in March with a diverse programme of walks, talks, debate, screenings and workshops in a range of venues, most of which are free to attend.
Each year, the first Saturday of July celebrates the CS Lewis classic book with Alice’s Day. Expect loads of Alice-themed events and activities for all ages throughout the cities that bring the book to life including parades, tea parties, theatre performances, croquet, workshops and more. The Foodies Festival takes place every August and is a must visit for any food lovers on a hen do in Oxford. There’ll be live cooking demonstrations from Masterchef and the Great British Bake Off plus free food and drink samples, competitions, challenges and musical performances from bands and soloists.
Being such an exclusive university, it’s hardly a surprise that the area has direct connections to London Paddington Birmingham New Street and other popular destination. So, wherever you’re coming from, Oxford is a pretty painless commute. The Visitor Information Centre sells maps and guidebooks, so you can go and explore the city on foot or by bike if you want to! The students love their bikes and it’s one of the few cities in the UK with a unique bike sharing programming. These Mobikes could be a great way to get around or simply a fun activity to burn a few hours and calories from all that prosecco!
The city is also served well by buses and taxis will always be readily available after a night out, though if your accommodation is near the centre of town it’s unlikely that you will need to book one, as everything is an easy walk on an Oxford hen do, making it ideal for a bar crawl. However, after dancing all night, you might want to give your tootsies a rest and hop in a cab, especially if you’re wearing heels. No judgement from us.
This historic British city pairs beauty, brains, culture, nightlife and loads of fun things to do for a last day of freedom that the bride-to-be will cherish forever. For more hen party ideas in Oxford, check out our full activity listings now.
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