The honey-coloured stone of the Cotswolds once generated half of all England's wealth in the form of wool, said to be the finest in Europe. The towns and villages built upon this wealth are still here to be seen and enjoyed. In the afternoon we will head off to the university city of Oxford.
Oxford & The Cotswolds Tour
A day out touring in a tradional London Black Cab in that most quintessential part of England, the Cotswolds, followed by a tour of the dreaming spires of the university city of Oxford.
Our Black Cab tour takes us out of the city of London where we'll see the arch of Wembley Stadium, the Art Deco buildings of the Western Avenue and Northala Park, landscaped from the rubble of the old Wembley stadium. We'll pass the old Battle of Britain airfield of R.A.F. Northolt (look out for a model of Spitfire) before we head through the Chiltern Hills.
Our first scheduled stop of the day is the Rollright Stones—a circle of stones built around the same time as Stonehenge. Legend has it these stones were once soldiers petrified by a local witch. Here we can see the 'Whispering Knights’, 'The Circle of Soldiers' and the 'King Stone’.
For those who request it, a short drive takes us to 'Diddly Squat Farm’, the home of motormouth Jeremy Clarkson, who achieved much notoriety as presenter of the BBC television programme, 'Top Gear' and later Amazon's 'The Grand Tour' and 'Clarkson's Farm'. Here we can buy some 'cow juice' (milk) from the farm. We'll have a cooler bag with us so we can take some back to London.
From here it's another short drive that takes us to the heart of the Cotswolds, to the town of Stow-on-the-Wold, which boasts amongst others, to be the ‘antiques capital of England’. Look out for the ‘Hobbit Door’ in the parish church before we browse through the shops in the town, and maybe have a pint of ale in the oldest inn in England!
We continue our Black Cab tour to the town of Burford. According to local folklore the town was haunted by the spirits of a married couple and local landlords who were known for their cruelty, before being caught in a bottle by a priest and thrown into the river Windrush. Their tombs can be seen to this day within the parish church which also possesses a lead-lined font that bares the inscription of a rebellious soldier. Musket bullet holes in the back wall of the church are a grim reminder as to the fate of some of the mutinous soldiers.
Lunchtime now in the city of Oxford. Perhaps a traditional pub lunch by the River Thames or maybe tea in the Victorian covered market—the choice is yours.
After lunch we'll tour the city and visit some of the colleges and hear some of the stories of the eccentrics and characters who once attended. On our walk we'll see the Radcliffe Camera, which once housed the library, the Sheldonian Theatre where honorary degrees are awarded, the Bridge of Sighs, and Christ Church College—the refectory of which was the inspiration for the one at Harry Potter's Hogwarts.
Other sites visited will be the Victorian covered market and Golden Cross—the windows of which have remained the same since the days of Shakespeare, and where one of the earliest performances of 'Hamlet' was held in the courtyard. Other sites on our day include a real tennis court (if open), the Martyrs' Memorial and the exteriors of Balliol, Trinity and All Souls' amongst many others.
On our way back to London look out for the shark in a roof, and hear how a student foiled an attack by a wild boar with a book of Aristotle's work.
Our journey home takes us back over the Chiltern Hills, where we will learn about the infamous Sir Francis Dashwood and his 'mad monks of Medmenham'. These hedonistic aristocrats held drunken parties in the caves below the hills, where they indulged in all manner of debauchery. We will also pass by High Wycombe, which was once famous for its furniture manufacturing.
Add Oxford & The Cotswolds Tour to your itinerary
Itinerary so far...
Type: Black Cab Tour
Exclusives: Transportation in an iconic London Black Cab
Price: GBP 780 – GBP 870
Languages: English, French, German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese: other languages available on request
Pick up: Free pick up and drop-off anywhere in Central London
Booking: Pre-booking for all dates
Cancellations: 50% refund up to 5 days before reservation from the time of written confirmation. No refunds thereafter
- The Rollright Stones
- Clarkson's Farm (optional)
- Stow-on-the-Wold including St Edward's Church
- The following Oxford sites are subject to term times: Radcliffe Camera, St Edmund Hall, Magdalene College, Examination Hall, Real Tennis Courts, Merton College, Corpus Christi, Oriel College, Christ Church College, Carfax Tower, Golden Cross, Victorian covered market, Lincoln College, Jesus College, Baliol College, Trinity College, Keble College, Sheldonian Theatre, Clarendon Building, Divinity School, Hertford College (Bridge of Sighs), Rhodesia House, Natural History Museum and Saint John's College