The medieval castle of Oxford and 1,000 years of history

By Renato
Oxford Castle
44-46 Oxford CastlOxford - OxfordShire (United Kingdom) (OX1 1AY)
Phone: +44 1865 260666
Price: £10.95
Opening Times:
Mo-Su 10:00-16:00

Oxford Castle is in the historic center of Oxford. It is a Norman medieval castle built on the banks of the River Thames in 1071 by the Norman Baron Robert D’Oyly. When King Gulherme I conquered the Norman the city of Oxford had a good part of its buildings destroyed, so for the protection of the city, the King ordered that the Castle be built. The Castle was a fortification in the inner Medieval City of Oxford, which was all surrounded by walls. The construction of the castle followed all the characteristics of medieval castles, similar to what we see in films. It was built in wood in the west area of the city using as natural protection a tributary of the River Thames that passed by. The Rio was diverted to flood the whole environment of the Castle. It was built a high hill, with a privileged view of the region.

The Anarchy

With the death of King Henry in 1135, England entered a Civil War, known as the War of Anarchy, because the deceased King had left no heir, which made the kingdom run out of King. War was a struggle between the nephew Of the deceased King, Stephen of Blois who had taken the throne, and Henry’s daughter Matilda. Oxford Castle played an important role in this battle, because it was on the border between the area of domination of the two claimants to King. In 1153 the two entered into an agreement, with the maintenance of Stephen as king and the son of Matilda, his heir .

From this the castle underwent a series of reforms, replacing its wooden structures with stones and the construction of a great tower. The changes have proved opportune for the next few years until the First Barons War with the annulment of the Magna Carta. When the Baronic force invaded the castle in 1216, luckily the advance of the royal army managed to save the castle from its total destruction. After the War the castle became a prison until 1966. A new prison complex was built from 1785.

The Medieval Castle today

After the arrest was closed in 1966 and the castle suffered many destruction with the English Civil War, it was rebuilt as a hotel, with the rooms occupying old cells and medieval remains of the castle preserved. There are even guided tours of the castle’s historic buildings. The castle is open every day from 10am until 16:20. Adult ticket costs £ 11.95 and £ 8.25 for children (Check the prices in  oficial website). If you prefer, you can also visit the castle surroundings and climb the hill which has a great view of Oxford without spending any money. In the “gardens” of the castle, you can also have an English tea and eat in the castle cafe.  


Viajar é conhecer lugares diferentes. Nossa proposta não é apenas viajar para os locais, é ir além. É passar um período maior, interagir com as pessoas da cidade e sentir a cultura e o dia a dia de cada local. Da lista de países que conheci, optei por morar em alguns lugares para vivenciar a experiência com mais profundidade e poder compartilhar com mais detalhes e exatidão além de descobrir os segredos de cada local, não se limitando aos pontos turísticos mais famosos.

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