Well, you probably think like "what the hell is she talking about?" but you will understand what I mean if you continue reading.
Okay, there are few places in the centre of Oxford are important and I guess everyone should see them. You can see them on your guide books as well. Yet, those places are not really open to everyone. You can't just walk in and it is not about admission fee even. Right,
Lets start with Radcliffe Camera that is actually the best part of Bodleian Library but unfortunately this round room could be used only by academicians, students, lecturers with a reservation in advance.
But you can still see it from out side. It is in Radcliffe Square and very close to High Street. Since it is impossible to miss, I am not going to add a map for it.
But I am going to share a little story with you that was told by my friend.
During summers we get a lot of tourists especially from the US. I don't know why, don't ask.
Anyway, my friend told me that an american couple approached her one day and asked where the Radcliffe Camera was. Then she told them "It is very close by, just turn right at the end of Broad Street and go straight you will see it. It is a big round old building and part of the Bodleian Library." Then the guy goes like "ohh, so it is not a camera shop, then ? Cause I need batteries for my camera! "
I guess she just rolled her eyes on them. We laughed a lot, you can't even imagine, but yes, those things happen.
I believe, you won't try to buy a battery from the Radcliffe since you read this blog and know what it is. :)
Well, The Bodleian has an exhibition now and it is called Treasures of the Bodleian. You will be able to see some special maps, sacred prints, fair copies of very very very important books of Franz Kafka, Jane Austen, Dante, Mary Shelley etc.The exhibition is FREE and open to the public from 30 Sept 2011 to 23 Dec 2011.
For more info http://treasures.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/domains/shelleysghost.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/local/media/images/Treasures_of_the_Bodleian_exhibition_guide.pdf
Bridge of Sighs! The bridge links together the Old and New Quadrangles of Hertford College, and much of its current architecture was designed by Sir Thomas Jackson. It was completed in 1914, despite its construction being opposed by New College.
The bridge is often referred to as the Bridge of Sighs because of its supposed similarity to the famous Bridge of Sighs in Venice. However, Hertford Bridge was never intended to be a replica of the Venetian bridge, and indeed it bears a closer resemblance to the Rialto Bridge in the same city.
There is a false legend saying that many decades ago, a survey of the health of students was taken, and as Hertford College's students were the heaviest, the college closed off the bridge to force them to take the stairs, giving them extra exercise. However, if the bridge is not used, the students actually climb fewer stairs than if they do use the bridge.
So yes, you can see it from outside but you can't walk through the bridge unless you are a student of Hertford College. I am sure, you are not missing anything. By the way, Radcliffe Camera , Bodleian and the bridge are very close to each other.
Final place, The Sheldonian Theatre! Well, surprisingly they started to let people in to see around in last summer or I just realised that last summer. You just need to pay £2.5 and £1.5 for concessions.Monday to Saturday
10.00 to 12.30 hrs 14.00 to 16.30 hrs (Mar to Oct) 14.00 to 15.30 hrs (Nov to Feb)
(Opening hours will be curtailed when the theatre is in use for University Ceremonies or concerts)
Have a look at their http://www.ox.ac.uk/subsite/sheldonian_theatre/sheldonian_theatre/whats_on/ link so you can see what is on. There are very beautiful classical music concerts that I would definitely recommend you to attend. Definitely!