Indie Oxford – student guide

Indie Oxford - student guide

Indie travel guides: Oxford is the enchanting little city of ‘dreaming spires’ dominated by the hugely prestigious university. Historic and literary, it can tend towards the surreal…

Indie Oxford – Fashion

There are many things to see and do in Oxford. Before presenting oneself to the myriad delights of the dreaming spires, one must first ensure one is dressed. Not only that, but appropriately dressed…

Geek Chic – For lecture and library sessions on a crisp autumn morning. Warm brown is the staple colour. Think baker-boy caps, geek glasses, blazers, knitted jumper-vests, pleated skirts, knee-high socks, heeled brogues, oxford shoes, vintage leather rucksacks, watch-piece necklaces, ‘prefect’ badges and bicycle.

Tea Party Chic – You have a spring-time tea party or meadow picnic to attend. Choose from among your straw hats, printed tee-dresses, cute tees, light blue jeans, quirky socks, ankle boots, Mary-Janes, vintage satchels, flower hair clips, and cameo jewellery.

Burlesque Glamour – The stars are out and the eyes of gargoyles are on you as you make your way to a soirée. Pin your hair up, throw on a purple lace corset dress, thick kohl eye-liner and some daring lip-liner, or think 1930s Murder Mystery with midnight blue dress, pearl necklace, long gloves and seam stockings.

Indie Oxford – Shopping

Bead Games (40 Cowley Road) Aladdin’s Cave of vintage clothes, toys and more, plus pick’n’mix selection

Unicorn (5 Ship Street) Slightly bonkers vintage clothes shop

Alice’s Shop (83 Saint Aldate’s) Alice in Wonderland memorabilia where the real Alice used to buy sweets, written about by Lewis Carroll just opposite at Christ Church

Aspire Style (21 High Street) Pretty fashion and accessories

Indie Oxford – Food

Queens Lane Coffee House (40 High Street) – Cosy and one of the oldest coffee houses in Europe, great for full breakfasts

Georgina’s (Avenue 3, Covered Market) Groovy retro café with healthy menu

Kazbar (25-27 Cowley Road) Beautifully-decorated Spanish and Moroccan-inspired tapas bar

Freud (Walton Street) Striking converted Greek Orthodox Church, best for pizza and cocktails

The Magic Café (110 Magdalen Road) All veggie food and relaxed vibe

The Grand Café (84 High Street) Opulent Viennese salon style, for high tea perhaps

Hi-Lo Jamaican Eating House (68-70 Cowley Road) Caribbean food, drink, and atmosphere, popular with the indie crowd

Indie Oxford – Visit

Merton College (Merton Street) Typically gaining the highest marks in Oxford, find some of the hippest geek-chic students here

Christ Church College (Saint Aldate’s) Breathtaking and ostentatious, where Brideshead Revisited’s Sebastian Flyte leads a hedonistic but ultimately miserable life. The Dining Hall is Hogwarts’ in the Harry Potter films

Shelley Memorial – University College (High Street) Dramatic memorial statue for Romantic poet P.B. Shelley who was expelled from Oxford for radical writing and rumoured to have later committed suicide

Indie Oxford – Drink

The Eagle and Child (49 Saint Giles) Pub where C.S. Lewis (Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe) and J.R.R. Tolkien (Lord of the Rings) met to discuss their writings

The Turf Tavern (4-5 Bath Place) Well-liked pub with homely feel

Purple Turtle (Frewin Court) Student dive bar vibe

The Star (21 Rectory Road) Indie hang-out with large beer garden and pool tables

Duke of Cambridge (5-6 Little Clarendon Street) Slick cocktail bar with estimable Happy Hours

Indie Oxford – Music

Zodiac/Carling Academy (190 Cowley Road) Oxford’s indie epicentre where Belle&Sebastian, Radiohead, The Strokes and Arctic Monkeys have played, plus a host of indie, rock, funk, soul and dance club nights

Jericho Tavern (56 Walton Street) Legendary live-music venue, Radiohead and Supergrass played first gigs here

The Cellar (Frewin Court) Goth, electro, drum&bass, reggae, ska and live music gigs aplenty in cellar bar setting

The Coven (Oxpens Road) Off-the-beaten-track cave-like setting for wacky dnb, dubstep, electro, trance and techno nights

Baby Love Bar (3 King Edward Street) Cute bar with some eclectic club nights in the basement

Truck Festival Small and indie by design, new bands in the open air on their way to bigger things

Out to Graze Festival Top boutique dance music festival

Thanks to Elinor for added suggestions

(Ben Whishaw as Sebastian Flyte, pic from Stylebubble)

Bead Games – photo by Spigoo