University College, Oxford

The oldest and one of the biggest of the thirty-six colleges of Oxford University, situated on the High St.

Customer rating: Average: 4.1 (156 ratings)
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The Main Quad


  • 17th century buildings
  • 18th century buildings
  • 19th century buildings
  • 20th century buildings
  • Breakfast included
  • No parking onsite
  • No smoking
  • B&B
  • Historic Property


  • Free broadband access (wifi)
  • Shared gardens
  • Outdoor terrace
  • Garden furniture
  • Squash court
  • Linen included
  • Towels included

Food and Drinks

  • Continental breakfast (included)
  • Cooked breakfast (included)

Nearby recreations

  • Recommended walks
  • Pub (walking distance)
  • Museums (walking distance)
  • Gardens
  • Recommended restaurants (walking distance)
  • Theatre (walking distance)

University College is the oldest of the thirty-six colleges of Oxford University. It is located at the centre of the city, minutes away from shops, restaurants, pubs, parks, museums, theatres and the river. The historic buildings have been modernised for 21st century needs and there are several peaceful courtyards and gardens.

The study rooms available, occupied in term time and vacation periods by our students, are equipped with bed linen, towels and a hospitality tray with tea and coffee
making facilities including a small refrigerator and will be serviced daily by the friendly scouts. All rooms are fitted with a hand basin and there are showers and toilets in each staircase or block.

We regret that our rooms are unsuitable for those with mobility problems.


History to the present day

University College (in full, the Master and Fellows of the College of the Great Hall of the University of Oxford, colloquially referred as Univ)
owes its origins to William of Durham, who died in 1249. A legend grew up in the 1380’s that Univ was really founded even earlier, by King Alfred in 872. Nowadays, however, William of Durham is accepted as Univ’s true founder, but that still gives University College a claim to be the oldest college in Oxford or Cambridge.

As Univ slowly grew in size and wealth, work began in 1634 to replace its medieval buildings with a new Front Quad, paid for with gifts from many Old Members. Although half the new Quad was finished by 1640, it took almost thirty years to complete the remainder, because of the Civil War. The College was luckier with its other main quadrangle, Radcliffe Quad, built in only three years, 1716-1719, thanks to a bequest from one Old Member, John Radcliffe, whose statue can be seen there.

Univ is amongst the largest colleges in terms of population: 360 undergraduates and in excess of 200 graduates as well as The Master and the Fellows. Amongst our most known Alumini you’ll find: Percy Bysshe Shelley, William Beveridge, John Radcliffe, Clement Attlee, Prof. Stephen Hawking, Harold Wilson, Bob Hawke, Bill Clinton, C. S. Lewis and many many more.

Food and Drinks

Rooms are offered with breakfast included in the price.

Breakfast is self service and eaten in the Great Hall of the College.  A unique experience.

Times for Breakfast:  Monday - Saturday  8am - 9am, Sundays 9am - 10am

Grounds and gardens

Considering the central location, Univ’s quiet courtyards and gardens are perfect to relax, read a book or simply enjoy the weather when suitable.

Other facilities

Guests staying at the College are most welcome to visit the Shelley Memorial and the Chapel. 

The Shelley Memorial houses a statue by Edward Onslow Ford of the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, a former member of the college, who was expelled for writing The Necessity of Atheism.  The Chapel was begun in 1640 and consecrated in 1666, with fine Van Linge's stained glass windows and Ante Chapel screen. In 1862 George Gilbert Scott designed a new roof in the Gothic style, a new East window and a stone reredos at the East End.

Arrival information and how to find us

Address: University College, High Street, Oxford, OX1 4BH, United Kingdom

Check In: From 12 noon Check Out: By 10am

On arrival you need to report to the Porter’s Lodge located in the main entrance. If your arrival time is before noon you might leave your bags safely with the porters until the room becomes available. There is a porter on duty 24 hours a day.

University College is located on the south side of the High St, a few yards from the Queens Lane bus stops, and a 10-15 minute walk or a short taxi ride from the railway station.

We regret that parking is not available in college however Thornhill and Seacourt Park & Ride stop outside the college.

Guests are asked to respect college staff and property bearing in mind that students and tutors live and work on site.

Cancellation Terms

Cancellation fee as percentage of booking value depending on when the booking is cancelled.
More than 14 days notice: 0 % of booking value for night in question
Number of days notice: from 14 to 8 days: 25 % of booking value for night in question
Number of days notice: from 7 to 1 days: 50 % of booking value for night in question
Trying to cancel for same night (or if they don't show up): 100 % of booking value for night in question

More photos of University College, Oxford

University College from the High Street Quad Double bedroom in Helens Court Courtyard in Helens Court logic lane single study bedroom Shelley Memorial Chapel Window The Library Radcliffe Quad View of the Quad from a window Main Quad Typical single ensuite room

Customer feedback

We guarantee that all our feedback is genuine and can only be submitted by people who have booked through our websites.

, September 2016: Great service from staff 5/5

, August 2016: University College is a super location as a base from which to explore Oxford. As with many if the colleges it has no parking, but some of the Park and Ride buses stop outside. The oldest college, it has beautiful grounds and buildings. We stayed in the newly refurbished Goodhart block - how things have improved since I was a student! Excellent breakfast in the Great Hall. Thoroughly recommend. 5/5

, August 2016: Lovely clean and comfortable rooms. Bed a little small for a couple . Breakfast brilliant. Overall a great stay. Very quiet. 4/5

, August 2016: porters were excellent! 5/5

, August 2016: I have no regrets about this stay. Wonderful situation, we'll serviced, helpful staff. 5/5

, August 2016: Very kind service, nice people. We will book a room on a college for sure next time we visit Oxford 4/5

, August 2016: We stayed in a new block of buildings which have been recently refurbished to a very modern / good standard. Very generous breakfast in an amazing dining hall. Look out for the Shelley memorial . 5/5

, August 2016: Good service 5/5

, August 2016: An excellent choice if you want to stay in the middle of Oxford 4/5

, August 2016: the College is right in the centre of Oxford so convenient for everything... we stayed in a new accommodation block , room very pleasant and en suite shower rooms good... staff were amazing , very friendly and happy to help with what to see, where to eat etc. 4/5

, August 2016: Wonderful. Change nothing. Just keep up the excellent standards as they are. Only small problem is that we asked for two beds rather than one larger one because I am a fitful sleeper and my wife can't stand it, but besides that--perfect. 5/5

, August 2016: Very much comfortable room and so kind staffs! 5/5

, March 2016: You feel the spirit of Oxford here :) 4/5

, March 2016: 2nd visit to Oxford staying in University rooms. Enjoyed both stays. Staff very pleasant and helpful . No ensuite this time which was unexpected but turned out to be no problem. Enjoyed the experience of eating breakfast in the Great Hall- breakfast was great by the way. Well situated for a weekend exploring Oxford. 4/5

, March 2016: There is nothing better than staying at a College when at Oxford and University College is fabulous. The ambiance, the accommodation, the location - it all couldn't have been better. 5/5

, April 2015: thank you for the good care and pleasant janitor, nice and quiet room 4/5

, March 2015: Nice clean room. Well situated in relation to the City Centre 5/5

, April 2014: It would have been nice to have been able to have breakfast at Univ. Otherwise, a perfect location for my purposes. I shall return! 4/5

, April 2014: Being escorted to find the room was much appreciated, as was the opportunity to store luggage on check out day 5/5

, April 2014: The porter was really helpful and friendly. The room was lovely and clean. We had a wonderful stay and will definitely be booking again. 5/5

, April 2014: I have nothing but raves for my four night stay at University College. The room itself was excellent, and next door to the facilities which included a great, and easy to use, shower. But the unexpected topper of the whole stay was that I walked past the unforgettable, and unforgettably beautiful, Shelley Memorial when going to and from my room. I will definitely come back on my next trip to Oxford. 5/5

, April 2013: Very nice and pleasant stay, great staff, easy and fast booking! 5/5

, March 2013: Thanks 5/5

, March 2013: I didn't have breakfast as not an option in Univ. Staff porters lovely and accommodating. The proximity to the Examination Halls where the Evidence Live conference was great. For a first time visitor to Oxford, I am planning my second with my children. I would stay again. Many thanks, Aisling O'Leary 4/5

, March 2013: This was an excellent room which is located in the center of the city. I would Highly recommend it for anyone. 5/5

Ms Katharina S, April 2012: I really enjoyed my stay at the University College. Because of an undefinable mistake the system did not conclude my name, but the stuff could arrange another room (which was bigger than the one I have booked) and I also got breakfast on the next day. The stuff is really nice and always helpful whenever you need it. I definitely can recommend this College for everybody who wants to discover Oxford and to see how it is to leave in the oldest College in Oxford. 4/5

Dr Rebecca R, March 2012: Colin, the porter at University College, deserves incredible amounts of praise for his helpfulness and friendliness. While nicer accommodation could be found elsewhere, the porter staff at University College makes a stay there worthwhile. 4/5

Mr David C, April 2011: Had a lovely stay in a very convenient location. Room was very quiet, part in due to being out of term. 5/5

Mr Keith H, April 2011: The staff made my stay here particularly good. The room was comfortable and the breakfast was excellent served by very friendly people. The environment could not be bettered anywhere in England 5/5

eileen C, March 2011: Everyone I met was kind and helpful. Had hoped for a peaceful haven and that was what I found. The size of the bedroom amazed me. Lack of own bathroom was the only negative but then I didn't expect one. Wouldcome again. 4/5

David L, August 2010: No ensuite facilities, but a very good standard otherwise 4/5

antony D, July 2010: The Porter at University College provided us with a fantastic service and couldnt have been more helpful. He was particularly attentive to the needs of my disabled mother in providing easy access for our car and nearby parking. 4/5

Kirsten N, July 2010: We would like to thank the portners for all their help!:-) 4/5

Erwin T, April 2010: Very nice surroundings and lovely quiet room in the middle of town. Great service. One minor point was the lack of warm water in the (shared) shower. 4/5

Irene C, March 2010: We were delighted with the whole experience at University College and have had no hesitation in recommending it to others. 5/5

Elizabeth B, October 2009: I had a wonderful stay. Thoroughly enjoyed the central location. Everyone I dealt with was truly delightful. Perfect. Breakfast was fabulous. I love Oxford 5/5

Kirsty S, August 2009: It was good - the fresh fruit for breakfast was great, although breakfast was a bit early on the Saturday (but I appreciate that is probably unavoidable because of staff contract hours etc). 4/5

Alison M, April 2009: The overal experience was better than expected. It was so good to be right in the centre of Oxford. The breakfast was more than Continental which was a pleasant suprise. I would use the service again. 5/5

Mr George S, April 2009: Internet connection didn't work. Other than that everything was great. 4/5

Dr JV D, April 2009: I was very happy indeed with my room, and found the college lovely and the staff I met extremely helpful two VERY small points - it didn't matter on the night in question, but it didn't seem to be possible to switch the radiators on although there was constant rumbling in the pipes - the welcoming brochure invites guests to enjoy the splendid gardens but on the map both are marked as private. I learnt from a porter that part of the Fellows' garden is available, but this isn't made clear - and nor is there any indication of which part 4/5

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