First Oxford Walkabout

Top of Totem Pole - Pitt Rivers Museum

Top of Totem Pole – Pitt Rivers Museum

I spent the day wandering around Oxford. Highlights include the University Parks, the Pitt Rivers Natural History Museum, the Bodleian Library (I got my library card, I’ll have to frame it when I get home) and a walk up and down High Street. I’ll include some of my favorite pictures here. More are available on Google+.

The Pitt Rivers is wonderful museum; straight out of Indiana Jones and it really looks the part. Walking in you pass several displays of taxidermy and fossils. The gallery of the museum has a tightly packed mass of display cabinets with everything from archery to food processing to headrests, stools, skates and snowshoes. Leaving you pass by a room of dinosaurs and minerals. The center of the museum appears to be under construction. Most of the dinosaurs were wrapped in plastic.

The Bodleian was amazing. This is one of the world’s most famous libraries. You can’t get in unless you have a good enough reason. Apparently mine was good enough (I’m on a two month work sabbatical studying systems theory and English history) to get me a library card. I ate lunch at the King’s Arms (traditional fish and chips) then explored the Radcliffe Camera (the large domed building) and Duke Humfrey’s Reading Room. The later has a huge collection of some of the oldest books I’ve every seen. Too bad my latin is so rusty.

I wandered down New College Land and Queens Lane and ended up at St. Edmunds Hall. This is the location of a very nice English garden where I took several pictures of flowers. I don’t know the names of the flowers though. Following St. Edmunds I enjoyed a cream tea at the Queen’s Lane Coffee House. Following tea I took a wrong turn on High Street and went in the exact opposite direction that I wanted to go. It was interesting looking at all of the shops, but very busy. Lots of tourists in town from all over the world.

I ate dinner at the Kazbar on Cowley Road. It’s a very fun tapas bar. If you’re ever in Oxford I recommend it.

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