Punting down the river in Oxford is a quintessentially English pastime, offering visitors a serene and picturesque way to experience the city’s historic charm and natural beauty. The River Cherwell and the River Thames (locally known as the Isis) provide ideal settings for this leisurely activity, drawing locals, tourists, and students alike.

Embarking on a punt is a delightful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Traditional punts are flat-bottomed boats propelled by a long pole, offering a unique and tranquil way to navigate the water. Visitors can rent punts from various locations, including the boathouses at Magdalen Bridge, Folly Bridge, and Cherwell Boathouse. Opting for a self-hire punt allows for an adventurous experience where one can try their hand at punting, while chauffeured punts offer a relaxed journey steered by an experienced punter.

As you glide along the river, you are treated to scenic views of Oxford’s iconic landmarks and lush greenery. Passing under centuries-old bridges, such as the Magdalen Bridge and the Folly Bridge, provides a sense of stepping back in time. The route along the River Cherwell is particularly enchanting, taking you past the Botanic Garden, Christ Church Meadows, and the elegant college gardens of Magdalen and St. Hilda’s.

Punting is not just about the destination but the journey itself. It’s an opportunity to unwind, enjoy the peaceful rhythm of the water, and soak in the natural surroundings. Picnicking on the punt or stopping at riverside pubs for refreshments adds to the leisurely charm of the experience.

Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned punter, this activity offers a unique perspective of Oxford. It’s a delightful way to appreciate the city’s blend of history, academia, and nature, creating memories of a timeless tradition that is both relaxing and invigorating.

Other adventures for your Great Scenic Journeys collection?