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Oxfordshire

Boats & yachts

Our most recommended Oxfordshire Boats & Yachts

Oxford: River Thames Sightseeing Cruise

1. Oxford: River Thames Sightseeing Cruise

Cruise along the glorious River Thames on a short but scenic boat ride departing from the quaint Folly Bridge and heading toward the charming Iffley Lock. Admire your beautiful surroundings, made up of lush trees and cozy brick cottages, immersing you in the lovely old-town vibe of Oxford. Board your boat to begin your journey, throughout which your skipper will point out all the major sites and answer any questions you may wish to ask. Marvel at the views of Christ Church meadows, college boathouses, and a mix of wildlife and countryside, whilst enjoying your time on board. You will either ride a stunning traditional-style vessel or a more modern cruiser. Either way, rest assured you'll have a spacious boat to sit back and relax on.

Oxford: Sightseeing River Cruise

2. Oxford: Sightseeing River Cruise

This river cruise takes you on a fascinating stretch of the Thames River, starting with the University Regatta Course and heading towards the quaint Iffley village. This section of the river – referred to by the locals as the Isis – is one of the liveliest, and paints an accurate picture of the bustling river life. As you make your way down the river, you'll see the ancient Folly Bridge, Christchurch College and Meadows, the university rowing houses, and Iffley Lock. The waterways next to you contain rowers, punt boats, and pleasure cruisers, and are equally interesting to watch. During the cruise, your captain will share some history of the river and gladly answer any questions. Your cruising vessel will be one from a fleet of many Edwardian-style river launches. These boats combine the elegant lines and teak interiors of the early 1900s with the environmentally-friendly, zero-emission electric technology of today.

Oxford: Afternoon Tea Sightseeing River Cruise

3. Oxford: Afternoon Tea Sightseeing River Cruise

Traveling down the University Regatta course, the boat passes Christ Church Meadows, the University College Boat Houses, and other landmarks on your way to Iffley lock. This is often a busy and vibrant section of the river where training rowing crews, punts, and pleasure boats jostle for river space in a wonderful display of Oxford at play. Passing through the lock at Iffley is an experience in itself. The river scenery and fascinating buildings combine to form a picture perfect location. Beyond Iffley you will travel into the tranquil water meadows that surround Oxford and there are abundant opportunities to spot wildlife amongst the green banks and overhanging willows. The boat turns for home at Rose Island, a favourite destination of Lewis Carroll and Alice Liddell on their river journeys. Aboard the boat an indulgent afternoon tea is provided by the renowned riverside restaurant, the Folly. The traditional menu typically includes: a selection of finger sandwiches, homemade scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream, a selection of cakes, tarts, or petit fours, and tea.

Oxford: River Cruise plus 3-Course Dinner

4. Oxford: River Cruise plus 3-Course Dinner

Your Oxford evening begins when you board an elegant Edwardian gentleman’s riverboat for a cruise to take in the highlights of river life in Oxford. See Folly Bridge, Christchurch Meadows, the university boat houses, and part of the regatta course while sipping a complimentary glass of Prosecco. This is the perfect time to be on the river as the light takes on a magical quality. Disembark at The Folly restaurant, where your dinner will be served in charming surroundings either inside the restaurant or, weather permitting, on the floating river terrace. The Folly's evening a la carte menu offers relaxed fine dining. You’ll find a comprehensive wine list if you’d like to purchase wine to complement your meal.

Oxford: Student Guided Punting Tour on the River Cherwell

5. Oxford: Student Guided Punting Tour on the River Cherwell

Relax in the beautiful scenery of Oxford on a punting trip with a student guide along the River Cherwell. Discover the grounds that inspired Lewis Carroll to write Alice in Wonderland as you pass the Botanic Garden and Christ Church Meadow before having the option to see the River Thames. Make your way to the bouthouse to meet your friendly guide for the day. Listen to the serene sounds of the river as you climb into the boat and set off along the River Cherwell. Have a chat about life in the city for locals and students as you cruise past the University of Oxford Botanic Garden, one of the oldest scientific gardens in the world. Be inspired as you pass Christ Church Meadow where Lewis Carroll once taught his students. Reach St. Hilda's College gardens and decide to head back to the boathouse or spend some more time on the river. If you're feeling adventurous continue south and ride in the punt along the River Thames.

Oxford: Punting River Trip with Optional Walking Tour

6. Oxford: Punting River Trip with Optional Walking Tour

See Oxford from the river on this punting or rowing tour. Your guide will meet you and walk you along Broad street to the boat house. On route there, you will walk past some of the most famous sights of Oxford and learn about them from your guide.  Then, go out on the beautiful river for an hour. While on the river, you'll get lots of insight into Oxford student life and traditions. This is in fact how almost every Oxford university student celebrates their graduation.  Locals often take picnics or Pimms on the river, which is sold at the boat house. The boating activity is ideal for private groups couples and families as the boats only fit max 3 or 4 customers. You also have the option to book a private group or a public shared group walking tour which lasts 90-120 minutes to schedule either before or after the 1-hour boat trip.

Oxford: River Cruise and Walking Tour to Iffley Village

7. Oxford: River Cruise and Walking Tour to Iffley Village

Embark on an active day out to visit Oxford. In the first half hour, you will walk past colleges of the University including Christchurch to reach the departure point for the river cruise boat. Then, glide for about 20 minutes along the Thames river to reach Iffley village. During the river cruise, watch the rowers and hear all about the Oxford rowing tradition. You'll travel along the same stretch of river that writer Lewis Carroll once rowed on and created the story for Alice in Wonderland. When you reach Iffley lock, you can see traditional narrow boats passing through the river lock. Disembark for a 1-hour walking tour to explore Iffley village which is a gorgeous village with many quaint thatched cottages and one of the oldest and most unique churches in England. This includes the option for a short drinks stop at a historic garden pub too. The default itinerary is that you then walk back 2 miles from Iffley village to Oxford city which takes approximately 1 hour. Along the way, your guide will point out specific points of interest and if you choose to learn more, they can also tell you all about Oxford lifestyles and heritage.

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Frequently asked questions about Oxfordshire Boats & Yachts

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Other Sightseeing Options in Oxfordshire

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What people are saying about Oxfordshire

We booked the river cruise as a last minute addition to our stay in Oxford and I’m so glad we did!! Our skipper (Zack I think… or was that the name of his boat ) welcomed us aboard and waited patiently while we settled with some drinks from the bar. The guide was both professional and entertaining…had us giggling at some really bad jokes haha. I highly recommend the experiencing the Oxford river cruise.

A lovey trip down the river taking approximately 40 minutes. Very knowledgeable and engaging tour guide. God value for money.

A relaxed beautiful ride down the river. Our guide/skipper was very informative and friendly. Well worth every penny.

Oscar was an amazing skipper with charm and witt. He took us on a tranquil journey which was what we needed.

So easy the book.. gracious when I requested a date change….wonderful guides. We’ll be back!