For all fans of the most well known writers in the Oxford literary group known as The Inklings, this is the specialist tour to take! Now famous throughout the world, the lives and work of these seminal authors are explored in this 2 hour tour. The works of C.S. Lewis have inspired many religious thinkers since – and J.R.R. Tolkien’s books, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, have been made into blockbuster films.
All Oxford Official Walking Tours (apart from the Oxford Pub Tour) meet outside the Visitor Information Centre here at 15-16 Broad Street Oxford OX1 3AS.
What you’ll see
Your expert Green badge guide will take you to see The Eagle & Child pub where Lewis, Tolkien and other Inklings used to meet every Tuesday, to talk about their work. You will also see Exeter College where Tolkien lived and studied and the University Church where Lewis preached in WW2.
You may even glimpse how even today, with its splendid mix of medieval architecture Oxford acts as a window into the past, and can transport you into those imaginary worlds created by these celebrated writers.
What you’ll learn more about
Because Lewis and Tolkien were students at Oxford, on this you tour will hear about all of the three other colleges associated with these writers: University, Merton and Magdalen College. You’ll discover more about their unique writing styles and what influenced them, as well as seeing where they used to meet and discovering what they used to talk about – the interests closest to their hearts.
An expert in their field and possibly even an ex-student of Oxford themselves, your guide will have in-depth knowledge to impart on the writers as well as their work. With a blue or Green badge awarded by the Institute of Tourist Guiding, and membership of the Oxford Guild of Tour Guides your guide will be professional and highly trained and knowledgeable, ready to answer any questions you may have.
‘As a student of University College myself I love to show people round there on my tours, if possible, and talk about how these two great authors enjoyed meeting together’
You can buy tickets on the day at the Visitor Information Centre but we suggest booking in advance to avoid disappointment for this tour. You can book either by phone 01865 686 441 or online via our eshop. After booking, you should receive a Sagepay payment confirmation, a Booking Confirmation and an eTicket by email – if not, you can present your Sagepay payment confirmation on your phone. If you would like to see your eTicket, please check your spam filter or whitelist us at firstname.lastname@example.org – or phone or email us for another copy. For more details and full t’s and c’s please see Additional Information.
Vouchers as Presents!
Vouchers for the CS Lewis and Tolkien Tours make great Christmas presents! To order, please just call us on 01865 686 441 to pay by credit card. All the recipient need do is call us when they are ready to book! Vouchers are valid for one year.
Tickets are limited to 14 to ensure entrance to Exeter College – and also so that you have a pleasant experience and can ask your Guide questions as you go. Running just once a month, please ensure that you book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
Your tour will cover 1.5-2miles. It stops every so often to see colleges and University buildings from the outside and overall does not involve walking traveling further than 15 minutes away from the city centre and Visitor Information Centre.
The city centre is quite flat and walkable – however, some of the ancient colleges on this tour do have unavoidable steps. Please let us know in advance before booking this tour, if you have any mobility difficulties, so that we can arrange ahead of the tour how to best accommodate you, and to check whether it is the best tour for you to join. For mobility services please see the Westgate Guest Services pages and let us know if you book these or are bringing a wheelchair or scooter.
We highly recommend the Park and Ride service. The nearest Park and Ride location will be signposted on your entry route to Oxford and the buses leave regularly for the City Centre – please allow at least 20 mins for the journey and ask for the nearest stop to the Visitor Information Centre in Broad St. For more information please see https://www.oxford.gov.uk/parking.
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