Driving into Oxford.

My daughter and I are renting a car in England and will be driving in to visit Oxford on August 10. I have been told the parking is horrible there, and that I shoud find a car park outside of the city and take a bus in to Oxford. However, are there places to park in the city itself? We will only be there a few hours- we are visiting Christ Church, and eating at the EAgle and Child pub. Then we will be on our way towards Avebury. Suggestions? Tena

Posted by Philip
London, United Kingdom
1687 posts

There are car parks in central Oxford, but you'll be spending a long time sitting in traffic to get to them, especially on a Saturday morning. Definitely use the park and ride. If you can, use the park and rides to the north or south of the city centre, as the bus route linking them passes both sites you want to visit.

Posted by Marco
Oxford, United Kingdom
769 posts

Yes there are car parks around the centre of Oxford. The city council has a good summary section for the car parks it operates, including map locations and directions, as well as links to some run by others. As an illustration, for 3-4 hours on 10 Aug you'd be paying £11.10 for the most central surface parking with the Westgates multi-storey being the cheapest at £7.80 The ones right in the centre are often full in the middle of the day, and it isn't a trivial matter always to drive to another. By comparison, the Park and Ride would either be free for 11 hours or £2 (depending on which one you use) and £2.70 return fare on the bus. You don't say how old your daughter is, but if she is under 16 the bus is free.

Posted by Tena
Pinson, Alabama, USA
30 posts

Park and ride. If the city center is so congested, I would rather just park outside the city, ride in and walk to the 2 sites we want to see (Christ Church and Eagle and Child pub), then ride back out to the car. Thanks

Posted by Nigel
East Midlands, England
8727 posts

Oxford's official webpage about all things parking is at http://www.oxford.gov.uk/PageRender/decTS/Car_Parks_occw.htm Their page about Park & Ride is at http://www.oxford.gov.uk/PageRender/decTS/Park_and_Ride_occw.htm You might consider the Peartree or Water Eaton locations because they are near the A34 which you will use arriving from Birmingham, and I would use for the first bit towards Avebury. It is cheaper to park at Water Eaton (free) and the bus is the same price (£2.70 return) but the bus from Pear Tree is a bit more frequent. The Park & Ride buses are double deckers, so you can get a great view from the top deck.

Posted by Nigel
East Midlands, England
8727 posts

Street parking in the centre of Oxford is like gold dust. If you are able to score a space, be sure that no part of the car is outside the box (big tickets) and they are all pay and display at either £1 per half hour with a minimum and maximum of 30 minutes, or £1 for the first half hour or £2.50 for a whole hour, maximum of 1 hour. Either way, you must move your car at the expiration of the time (you must put the ticket face up clearly visible on the dash (driver's side) or affixed to the side window) and you can't return to the general area for the amount of time on the sign (big ticket). If you can get into the Westgate multi story car park ( the entrance has been repaved but not easy; the spaces are quite narrow) you wouldn't have to get back so soon. As driving is so hard in Oxford you are well advised to take the above advice to use the Park & Ride. I know I sound like a grumpy-gus but I do speak with the voice of experience. I have to drive to Oxford and park in the centre more often than I want to, at least monthly.

Posted by Tena
Pinson, Alabama, USA
30 posts

Thanks to all for the responses. Nigel, we will be driving from Birmingham. Probably around 2pm if we get into the Birmingham airport on time. Is there a car park coming from that direction?
Also, when we leave Oxford, we are headed to Avebury (we are spending the night with a host near there). Thanks Tena

Posted by Tena
Pinson, Alabama, USA
30 posts

Thanks to all for the responses. Nigel, we will be driving from Birmingham. Probably around 2pm if we get into the Birmingham airport on time. Is there a car park coming from that direction?
Also, when we leave Oxford, we are headed to Avebury (we are spending the night with a host near there). Thanks Tena

Posted by Marco
Oxford, United Kingdom
769 posts

Are you talking Park & Ride or still going into the centre?