Oxford Castle & Prison

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Looking for things to do in Oxford? Why not pay a visit to one of Oxford's top attractions and go on a journey into its fascinating history...

  • General admission to the Oxford Castle and Prison
  • 1 hour guided tour in English
  • Access to the Castle Mound
  • Free time to explore the premises after the tour
  • eTickets sent instantly by email and text

Dive into fascinating history in the centre of Oxford

Whether you come as a family or with a group of friends looking to unravel 1,000 years of chilling stories, you’ll find them at Oxford Castle & Prison.

You can’t help but be transported back all that time ago when you come face-to-face with the intriguing residents (your guides for the day), hearing the tales of romance, betrayal and executions that occurred here.

They’ll take you from one magnificent relic of the past to another, from crypts to tower tops and in between them all, intrigue you with stories of the past.

It only takes one step into the 900-year-old crypt to realise just how fascinating and ancient Oxford’s history is. As you descend below ground, you’ll get to hear how the renowned Oxford education is thought to have started here.

Ready to meet the residents?

We think the colourful pastimes of those who lived at Oxford Castle will keep you on your toes throughout the one-hour experience.

Get to know the likes of Anne Green, who survived her own hanging in 1650. She miraculously made a full recovery after showing signs of life after the execution, going on to have three more children and live for another nine years.

You’ll also get to meet John and Elizabeth Lilburne, a husband and wife who were both strong campaigners for English people’s rights.

John smuggled a letter to Elizabeth from behind bars at the castle in 1642, stating his trial for treason would start the following week.

Elizabeth walked from Oxford to the Houses of Parliament despite being heavily pregnant to deliver the letter and, ultimately, win John’s acquittal.

Make it a weekend trip

You’ll want to make this more than just a day trip, so we suggest a weekend getaway to make the most of this historical city.

The Malmaison Oxford – a former gaol – is a great hotel to stay in and only minutes away from the castle and prison. There are also plenty of restaurants and bars just a short stroll away.

Whether you’re into the tasty, rich textures of Italian cuisine, or the strong aromas of freshly ground coffee and sweet treats, there’s a delightful choice for everyone.

Stories of the past always manage to leave us feeling slightly altered. They shift our perspective for a moment and allow us a glimpse into a time when things were completely different.

Ready to discover a few?

44-46 Oxford Castle OX1 1AY
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