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Nightlife & Entertainment in Oxford

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With a big student population, and a huge influx of tourists throughout the year, it’s no surprise that Oxford has a thumpingly diverse evening scene. You'll find a calendar full of events, from highbrow cultural shows to live music in local pubs, giving you plenty of chances to mingle and enjoy the city at night.


Chic cocktails


Down Oxford's narrow, cobbled streets you'll find many small bars and lounges serving impressive cocktails. Choose from sleek venues or cheap and cheerful themed bars where you can relax and try perfectly crafted drinks.


Duke of Cambridge


With plump leather sofas and low lighting, the cosy Duke of Cambridge is a laid back bar with a slightly preppy feel. Here you'll see well-dressed students and the suited, post-work crowd enjoying the long, potent cocktail list and bottles of fizz.


5-6 Little Clarendon Street, Oxford OX1 2HP. Tel:+44 1865 558173


Duke of Cambridge website
Freud Café


Freud Café is set in a converted 19th century stone church, with high ceilings, stained glass windows, and booths made from wooden pews. There's a menu of classic and modern cocktails, and at night there's plenty of space for dancing, with live music running until late at night.


119 Walton Street, Oxford OX2 6AH. Tel:+44 1865 311171


Freud Café website




While Oxford has no shortage of places to catch a big blockbuster, fans of indie films and arthouse cinema will also be well catered for on a cultured night out.


Picturehouse Phoenix


The Picturehouse Phoenix has gone under many names since being opened in 1913, and it now boasts several small, comfortable screening rooms perfect for sitting back and immersing yourself in the best new indie cinema, as well as old classics and kids’ faves.


57 Walton Street, Oxford OX2 6AE. Tel:+44 871 902 5736


Picturehouse Phoenix website




Oxford is a city that loves to party, and the student population will find any excuse to hit the clubs and dance the night away. In the city centre you'll find several megaclubs, with dancing and drinking over several floors, and huge seasonal parties.


Lava & Ignite


Student favourite Lava & Ignite has 4 rooms of music and 5 heaving bars, making it one of the largest clubs in the city. There's also a VIP area and a chill-out room, if you need to escape from the livelier dance areas. You'll find celebrity DJs, live music, and special promotional nights, as well as big events for New Year’s Eve and other special dates.


Cantay House, Park End Street, Oxford OX1 1JD. Tel:+44 1865 250181


Lava & Ignite website


The Bridge


The Bridge caters to a wide selection of party animals, with 3 dance floors, a pair of large bars, and a premium area serving cocktails and Champagne. Music includes RnB, hip hop, dance, and chart music, as well as more retro sounds to get you moving.


6-9 Hythe Bridge Street, Oxford OX1 2EW. Tel:+44 1865 248777


The Bridge website


Live music


There's live music a-plenty in Oxford, with major international acts stopping on their tours, and emerging local bands playing lively pub gigs. Events such as open mic nights also let you enjoy different genres of music throughout the week.


O2 Academy Oxford


One of Oxford's most prominent music venues, the O2 Academy is a magnet for mega-star musicians. From rock to pop, indie to reggae, there are a huge number of gigs going on throughout the year. As a mid-sized venue, the O2 Academy allows you to see big names in a more intimate environment, with a friendly and casual atmosphere.


190 Cowley Road, Oxford OX4 1UE. Tel:+44 1865 813500


O2 Academy Oxford website