Tag Archives: Oxford

Plunge into the rabbit hole – Discover the world of Alice in Wonderland

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll is one of the most beloved tales throughout history. Several characters and locations in Alice in Wonderland was based upon people and familiar surroundings Carroll knew.

If you want to explore where Carroll got his inspiration, Oxford is the place to visit. At the Museum of Oxford you can see Carroll’s watch which is worn by the White Rabbit. While in the museum, make sure you don’t miss the “Drink Me” bottle that causes Alice to shrink and expand, which in reality was a Victorian medicine bottle.

Are you a big fan of Alice in Wonderland? Visit the Alice’s Shop. Here you can find a variety of Alice-related products such as fabrics, clocks, jewelry and much more. This also is where the real Alice, Alice Liddell, used to buy her sweets.

Follow the footsteps of Alice in Wonderland and take the Alice in Waterland Walking Tour. During this 90 minute guided walk you’ll get to:
– see Alice Liddell’s former home of Christ Church Meadow
– learn more about the author, Lewis Carroll, and Alice Liddell’s real-life relationship
– see where Carroll got his inspiration for several of the episodes in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through The Looking Glass.

Experience a Mad Hatters tea party with Oxford River Cruises and pretend you’re drinking a “Drink Me” bottle and munching a “Eat Me” cake. This boat trip follow  the same route of Lewis Carroll and Alice Liddell, 150 years ago from when the tale was created.

Tim Burton’s magical and inventive version of Alice in Wonderland premiered in theaters earlier this year starring Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter and Anne Hathaway. The video below is the first Alice in Wonderland movie and was recorded in 1903.


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Filed under Attractions & Culture, England, For families, Music, Film & TV

Classic Britain – A winners travel tale, Part Three

St Albans

St Albans

In this last part of Ingemar Erikssons trip to England, we read about his last days in England, when he by accident find himself in the middle of a carnival. Check it out:

”Sunday. Went to St Albans, which was the total opposite of Luton. I visited the fantastic cathedral and took a walk through the city.

The visit in St Albans was too short, but I wanted to be in time for the race at United. Unfortunately I got stuck in traffic because of a car accident, so I just saw half the old Mini race, but I saw the whole new Mini race. The winner was a Swede!

After a last tour around the festival area I drove towards Oxford, which unfortunately was total disaster from a driver’s point of view. I passed Woodstock (Blenheim Palace), Burford and Kelmscott with one goal – To drive the around the River Thames. I was supposed to start at Pangbourne, but I messed that up, and it was dark when I arrived, so I drove back to Luton.

Next day I had the choice to go back and do the tour around the River Thames or stay in Luton and watch ‘Luton Carnival’. Chose the Carnival and that was a real adventure. Carnival processions from all corners of England was there with amazing costumes and masks in the parade.

Luton Carnival

After the carnival I drove back to Harwich and took the boat back home. The voyage was problem free, as well as the drive. The weather was good so I decided to drive with the top down over the Öresund Bridge, even in the tunnel. A very unpleasant experience as the echo from the tunnel top was hard and annoying for four kilometres. The last part of the drive was better when I took the ‘scenic route’ through Gränna and Ödeshög.

General impressions of England:
The traffic in England gives me mixed feelings. Nice little roads, perfect for the Mini! But most roads are covered on both sides with hedges, which give you a feeling of driving in a ditch and you can’t see the beautiful nature on the other side. Sometimes the hedges end and then it’s a great drive, reminding me of Scania. British traffic signs are annoying – very good when you’re supposed to slow down, not good at all when you are allowed to speed up. Combined with all the cameras it was quite a terrifying experience, mainly because of the lack of information. Another problem was cars parking everywhere, blocking roads, parking on the wrong side of a road etc, making a mess of traffic that I’m not used to in Sweden. The new M1 from M25 to Luton was probably the best motorway I’ve ever seen.

The general impression of England was really good. Prices are good from a tourist point of view, since the Swedish Crone is stronger than the pound. Nice countryside and good roads. There are a lot of attractions, which makes England interesting to travel in. I think I am going to travel more by car in the English countryside sometime.”



Links to the places Ingemar visits in part three:

St Albans
River Thames
The official Guide to River Themes
Blenheim Palace
Kelmscott Manor
Luton International Carnival

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Harry Potters England

Lacock Abbey

Lacock Abbey

Today the new Harry Potter movie has world premiere and as most of you already know, most film locations for the Harry Potter films is found in England. Please join us in the first part of our Harry Potters England-cavalcade(for Scotland locations, please click here):

Kings Cross Station in London is where you find the platform 9 and ¾, where Hogwarts Express leaves from. At Kings Cross, you will find a sign on the wall that Harry Potter and his friends uses to get on to the platform. The actual platform used in the films is platform no. 4.

Leadenhall Market in London was used to in scenes about The Leaky Cauldron and Diagon Alley. The market dates back to the 14th century and is still in use.

Lacock Abbey in Wiltshire is a 13th century Abbey in the village of Lacock in Wiltshire, Southwest England. The abbey was founded by the Countess of Salisbury as a nunnery. When Henry VIII bought the house in 1539, he demolished big parts of the buildings, like the church. But the beautiful cloisters, used as part of the interior of Hogwarts School, is still standing until this day. Take time to visit the gardens when you visit the Abbey and while in Wiltshire, don’t miss Stonehenge on the Salisbury Plains, one of Britain’s most famous historic landmarks. Please visit National Trusts homepage for further information.

Bodleian Library, Divinity School in Oxford is used in three Harry Potter films. Duke Humfrey’s Bodleian Library is used as the Hogwarts library and the Divinity School features as the infirmary where Harry Potter gets his arm back. Find out how you can visit Bodleian Library here.

Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral in Durham is the Greatest Norman building in England, probably even in Europe. The cathedral, founded in 1093, is on UNESCOs list of World Heritage sites. In the films Harry can be seen walking through the cloisters of the cathedral. The cathedral interior is also used when filming classroom scenes as well as the insides of McGonagall’s office. Find out more about Durham Cathedral here.

Christ Church College in Oxford is used for the magnificent scenes in Hogwarts Dining Hall. The Church is open every day except Christmas Eve. Also, please note that the Church is a working academic and religious institution and some areas, including the Hall and the Cathedral, may close, occasionally without notice. However, there are arranged ‘Behind the Scenes’ tours where you have the possibility of visiting hidden areas, only accessible with a guide. For further information, visit Christ Church homepage

This was all for today, keep tuned for more Harry Potter-updates and don’t forget to go and see the new film tonight!


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Filed under England, For families, London, Music, Film & TV, Nature & Heritage

More squirrels



Speaking of roaming squirrels, Britain has loads of these little fellas jumping around! Living in Oxford, I had squirrels outside my bedroom window, and they do brighten up your day!      


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Pub crawl in Oxford


Oxford has a number of great pubs, and the city actually has a map of (almost) all of them! So when I studied in Oxford 4 years ago, a couple of classmates and I decided to go to every pub on the map during the year we were there. And that’s 62 pubs! We had to drink a pint at each pub, and then we would colour the pub on the map. It has to be said that not all pubs where too easy to find, so I walked around with a street map while pub crawling. So one could say I was real persistent to win this competition. And I did!
If you’re going to Oxford, this is a fantastic way to get to know the city! And of course it helps if you like beer:-)

– hanne-

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The Bear


This cosy, little pub is one of the oldest pubs in Oxford. I was here several times while I studied in Oxford, and found it to be a place I had to show my friends and family. It is a small pub, but that is what’s so great about it! I think pubs should be small and cosy, instead of these huge football pubs, however they of course need their size. The thing that’s so special about The Bear, is that the walls and ceiling are covered with ties. The story has it that customers left their ties in exchange for a pint. That seems like a good deal to me!


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Filed under England, Food & Drink