The Best Hotels to Book Near the Bodleian Library, Oxford

You cant miss the Randolph Hotel, with its imposing facade right in the centre of Oxford
You can't miss the Randolph Hotel, with its imposing facade right in the centre of Oxford | Courtesy of the Randolph Hotel, by Graduate Hotels /
Elle Redman

As one of the oldest libraries in Europe, the Bodleian draws in thousands of visitors each year. We’ve hand-selected the best places to stay near to the library on your next trip to Oxford – and they’re bookable on Culture Trip.

Many famous people have walked the ancient halls of the Bodleian Library through the ages. If the book-lined walls could talk, they’d tell stories of monarchs, Nobel Prize winners, prime ministers and writers including CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien and Oscar Wilde. Fondly known by locals as Bodley or the Bod, the venerable Bodleian Library houses some of the rarest books in the world. It’s the second-largest library in Britain, and it would take even a keen reader more than 600 lifetimes to get through all the literary works here. Read on for our pick of the best hotels near this iconic landmark.

1. The Randolph Hotel, by Graduate Hotels


The Randolph Hotel, by Graduate Hotels
Courtesy of the Randolph Hotel, by Graduate Hotels /

You can’t miss the Randolph, a historic hotel opposite the Ashmolean Museum in the centre of Oxford. History fans will love the nods to the rich heritage of Oxford University, from the portraits of Oscar Wilde to the arched doorways echoing the neighbouring college architecture. After a long day pounding the pavements, kick back in the spa, with aroma steam room, hot tub, ice fountain and bio sauna.

2. The Old Parsonage Hotel

Boutique Hotel, Garden Hotel

Vivid pops of purple adorn a luxurious one-bed guest room at the Old Parsonage Hotel
Courtesy of Old Parsonage Hotel /

Picture a romantic English country house. Add collections of artwork, a garden library, climbing vines and stacked stone walls resembling something from a Jane Austen novel, and you’ve got the Old Parsonage. Inside the building, dating back to 1660, you’ll find 35 individually designed bedrooms with crisp linens, and gleaming marble ensuites stocked with Molton Brown products. Head over to the Parsonage Grill to enjoy a menu of modern British classics.

4. Malmaison Oxford

Boutique Hotel

Malmaison Oxford
Courtesy of Malmaison Oxford /

A night behind bars never seemed so comfortable. This boutique hotel is housed in a former Victorian jail, which was originally built on the site of an ancient medieval castle. While many of the original fixtures remain intact, such as thick cell doors and peephole windows, it’s now beautifully furnished with contemporary bedrooms, a neon-lit cocktail bar overlooking the Oxford spires, and an on-site brasserie.

5. Courtyard by Marriott Oxford City Centre

Chain Hotel

A spacious one-bed guest room with castle views at the Courtyard by Marriott Oxford City Centre
Courtesy of Courtyard by Marriott Oxford City Centre /

For a contemporary city centre base, look no further than this Marriott hotel. Rooms are fairly simple and understated – not that you’ll spend much time in them. The Bodleian Library is only 10 minutes away on foot, and there are regular bus services nearby to Heathrow and Gatwick airports. When you need a rest, head to the rooftop terrace for a G&T overlooking Oxford Castle.

6. Vanbrugh House Hotel

Boutique Hotel, Independent Hotel

Vanbrugh House Hotel
Courtesy of Vanbrugh House Hotel /

Cotswold stone and rustic fireplaces make up the fabric of this 18th-century hotel. Spread across two grand buildings, Vanbrugh House was created by architect Sir John Vanbrugh, famed for his work on Blenheim Palace. The bedrooms are small but stylish, with thoughtful touches such as Nespresso coffee machines, White Company toiletries and umbrellas for rainy days. Take advantage of the free minibar, stuffed with chocolates and soft drinks to keep you fuelled up while exploring.

7. voco Oxford Spires, an IHG Hotel

Chain Hotel, Spa Hotel

Voco Oxford Spires, an IHG Hotel
Courtesy of voco Oxford Spires, an IHG Hotel /

Trace the River Thames south from central Oxford and you’ll find the voco Oxford Spires hotel, surrounded by leafy parks and nature reserves. It feels a world away from the city centre, despite being only a 25-minute walk from the Bodleian. Make the most of the on-site swimming pool, complete with steam room and sauna, and the gym. When the weather’s warm, enjoy afternoon tea on the outdoor terrace. Parking is a doddle here, too, so ditch the car at your hotel and explore on foot.

8. Remont Oxford Hotel

Bed and Breakfast

Remont Oxford Hotel
Courtesy of Remont Oxford Hotel /

In the residential area of Summertown, North Oxford, is the Remont, a family-run B&B. What it lacks in central location it makes up for in quiet, comfortable surroundings and easy parking. Enjoy a good night’s sleep on a comfortable Simba Hybrid mattress before heading down for a complimentary buffet breakfast in the morning, packed with bacon, sausages and eggs. Enjoy with a piping hot coffee in the garden during the summer.

If you’re looking for somewhere different to stay, book into one of the best local bed and breakfasts or budget-friendly hotels in Oxford. And while you’re here, don’t miss out on the best things to see and do.

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