This is the first in an occasional series of gifting ideas in the lead up to Christmas (yes that other C word) ... I am really keen to share inspiration for 'uncluttered gifting' so things that do not take up permanent house space. I have been inspired to head in this direction from my consultations with Jo at Less is More. I think there is so much more joy to be had from making memories and gifting a day out or an experience. Or indeed something that can be enjoyed and then finished, items like food, drinks, toiletries etc, that have a limited life span and even better if there is a natural or sustainable element. This was my post about it last year - and it includes ideas from Jo if you'd like to take a look - Decluttered and Conscious Christmas Gifting Ideas
My first recommendation, and I am delighted to include a discount code, is a private walking tour of one of Great Britains magnificent cities. My blog post today is specifically about Oxford and the brilliant tours my sister offers with her company 'Walking Tours of Oxford'. If Oxford isn't convenient for you then there are many others of course, but why not make a day of it, or a weekend and book an overnight stay?
Oxford is known as the City of Dreaming Spires and it is famous all over the world for its university. For over 800 years it has been home to royalty and scholars. It is a bustling town with students on their bikes at the forefront of daily life, but it also has an impressive business community, it is loved by tourists and is full of historic buildings, colleges and museums. It is a very popular location for film and TV crews and many of our most loved movies and programmes have been filmed in Oxford. There are lots of excellent bars and restaurants, a fabulous new shopping centre and it is easy to access via an impressive park and ride network.
On a personal note, my sister Heidi is an accredited and fully qualified tour guide for Oxford, running her successful business, Walking Tours of Oxford (which continues to be No 1 on TripAdvisor). We have been on several tours with her and loved finding out more about life in the city and the history behind the main shopping streets. My nephew, her oldest son, is a scholar at Worcester College, Oxford and we had an amazing visit to see him a couple of years ago. We were blessed with beautiful weather and a personal tour of his college gardens - you can see my post about it here - A day out in Oxford. Luke has now completed his engineering degree and is currently doing his masters. Just before lockdown we were lucky enough to attend formal dinner at Worcester College too!
Films that have been made in or around Oxford include the Harry Potter series, Alice in Wonderland, Mamma Mia! Here we go Again, Tolkien and many many more.
TV series include Morse, Lewis and Endeavour, In 1987 John Thaw hit our screens as the iconic Inspector Morse and Oxford has not been the same since! There were 33 episodes filmed over 13 years on the streets of Oxford. Then from 2006 to 2015 it was Lewis and finally the prequel Endeavour! The latest TV adaptation of The Golden Compass was also filmed in Oxford.
Heidi or one of her team of qualified Guides can show you all the famous sights and share lots of insight into your favourite movies or TV programmes - just let them know which ones you are interested in.
Then of course there are famous ex-students .... from our history and up to modern day. Many many of our Prime Ministers - Macmillan, Heath, Thatcher, Blair, Cameron, May and Johnson. Novelists and story writers like Kingsley Amis, Joanna Trollope and Evelyn Waugh. And one of the most famous, Lewis Carroll who wrote Alice in Wonderland.
Don't forget the stunning buildings and Oxford's interesting history though. A tour with Walking Tours of Oxford can include The Bodleian Library, The Weston Library, The Old Schools Triangle and the Radcliffe Camera .... The Bridge of Sighs, Brasenose College, All Souls College ... and many many more. Plus all the accompanying history and insights into life in Oxford through the years. It is a great location for budding photographers!
And don't think that the younger generation won't enjoy a tour! My sister is excellent at adapting for children and both my children have enjoyed her tours when they were younger (and didn't report any boredom), Heidi is really brilliant at remembering so many fascinating facts and presenting them in an interesting way. If the weather is good, doing some punting in Oxford is always popular!
Maybe you have a son or daughter or another relative that might be considering studying in Oxford, a walking tour would make a really good introduction to the city!
A tour of Oxford really does make a fantastic day out. The tours last 90 minutes and my offer is for a bespoke private tour of up to 6 people. You can let your Guide know in advance what you are particularly interested in. All tours are Covid safe and will be conducted outside with a suitable distance maintained. Your Guide can also help with other suggestions of what to do or where to eat in Oxford to help you enjoy your day.
A really fabulous gift for someone - husband, son, brother, dad .... wife, daughter, sister or why not get a small family or friends group together and make some memories? The cost of a private tour is usually £100 but if you quote the code fiftyandfab on your booking then you will receive a 25% discount on any tour conducted between now and the 31st March 2021. You can book on the website and get in touch with Heidi if you need any more information - Walking Tours of Oxford.
These photos were all taken over a series of visits to Oxford, I have loved every one of my tours, we have taken business clients, we have taken family from Australia, we have been to formal dinner and to celebrate Luke's birthday and we've shown friends around when they started at Oxford Brookes - we have made memories every time (and mostly been lucky with the weather).
Disclaimer: this is not a sponsored post or a collaboration, my sister suggested my readers might like a discount code and I offered to write a blog post. I will receive no payment for any bookings made (well Heidi might buy me a glass of wine on one of the lovely rooftop bars in Oxford if I'm lucky)!
I link up with:
Is This Mutton
Nancy's Fashion Style
What is a link-up?
It is a way to connect with other bloggers and share content and hopefully for me to be found by others and for my followers to discover new blogs!
Walking Tours of Oxford
No 1 on TripAdvisor
Recent reviews from TripAdvisor/Feefo:
Simply (wonderful) Oxford University Tour
The tour was pitched at exactly the right the level with endless historical, literary and movie factoids. Would definitely recommend!!
Informative and fun
Review of: 'Inspector Morse,' 'Lewis,' and 'Endeavour' Walking Tour of Oxford
An excellent tour (29 Sept) and guide (Heidi). Friendly, entertaining and informative. The audio worked extremely well so we missed nothing. Great fun and thoroughly recommended.
Walking Tours of Oxford was simply fantastic!
Heidi was a brilliant tour guide, very knowledgeable and experienced and kept the tour fun and interesting for the kids. We couldn't have chosen a better tour guide to show us around Oxford.
Welcome to Fifty & Fab, a lifestyle blog to inspire you. I am a blogger with a passion for writing about style, beauty, health and fitness with a focus on the over 50's. I am based in Marlow but work across London and the South East.
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Hi, I’m Michelle and my blog Fifty & Fab is all about my journey into and through my fifties. I share style tips, health and fitness inspiration, I talk about my holidays and days out and I tell you about my beauty regime and my lifestyle. I hope you might pick up a tip or two and get some inspiration!
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