Bodleian Library

Bodleian Library, Oxford: Hours, Address, Bodleian Library Reviews: 4.5/5

Bodleian Library
4.5
Historic Sites • Architectural Buildings • Libraries
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The world-famous Bodleian Libraries is a must-see cultural destination in the heart of Oxford. The Bodleian Library was founded by Sir Thomas Bodley and officially opened in 1602. Since then the Bodleian libraries has grown to be the largest academic library system in the UK. In its reading rooms generations of famous scholars have studied through the ages, amongst them monarchs, Nobel Prize winners, British Prime Ministers and writers including Oscar Wilde, C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. At the site, you can explore historic spaces that you might recognise from popular films and TV series such as Harry Potter and A Discovery of Witches. We also offer free, inspiring exhibitions featuring the libraries’ rich collections, two unique gift shops and a lovely café.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Tours & experiences
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Popular mentions

4.5
2,336 reviews
Excellent
1,640
Very good
521
Average
131
Poor
24
Terrible
20

StephenCross
Dublin, Ireland15,872 contributions
Magnificent Building - one of the best!
Oct 2021 • Couples
The Bodleian library and the buildings around it are simply stunning and very much worth a visit. See attached photos - I could have done hundreds!
Written 17 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

ukmavrik
London78 contributions
Enjoyable audio tour if guided tours all booked up
Sep 2021
It almost goes without saying that you are going to see beautiful buildings, quadrangles and sculptures. We didn't plan well enough to be able to join a guided tour - all booked up! But I wanted to recommend the audio guide as a very worthwhile alternative if you haven't set your heart on seeing the innards and workings of the library but want to admire the historic architecture. The audio guide was very easy to use, being the size of a small mobile phone that you held up to your ear to listen to - no fiddly earpieces. You would hear a description of your current location and then be directed to a new area of the library where you would point the device at a placard and it would spring back to life and recite the information relevant to your new position. It worked very well, provided an interesting and enjoyable commentary on the library, Radcliffe Square and the various quadrangles as well as many of the historic characters associated with the library and university. It does NOT allow access to the library buildings, but does guide you into the Divinity School which is very impressive in its own right (see photo). At £4.50 for a good 45 minutes of strolling round the library, I thought it was excellent value for money as well.
Written 12 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Patrick567234
Woking, UK110 contributions
Beautiful
Oct 2021
Learn more and buy a ticket with guide. Unmissable.
Stunning architecture and interesting historic account of the Building and library..
Written 12 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Cristian
1 contribution
Superbe
Oct 2021 • Friends
The walking tour was fantastic. Made even better by our guide Joanna. I wanna come back and do the tour again with her as she was superbe. Very well done
Written 11 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

readingweasel
Abingdon, UK132 contributions
Fabulous tour
Oct 2021 • Couples
Amazing informative 90 minute tour with David. Really recommend to see the working of the library and the Radcliffe Camera.
Written 9 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Anna K
1 contribution
Great tour with lost of information and lovely host
Oct 2021 • Family
It was super interesting. Christine was a lovely host and provided us with heaps of interesting information, insights, and tips. Would highly recommend! Every minute was well spent and it is well worth the money.
Written 5 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Charlotte E
Swindon, UK47 contributions
Fantastic visit to the library
Jul 2021 • Couples
We had an hour long guided tour of the Bodleian Library. We were fortunate enough to be part of a very small group (there were 3 in total, and we took up 2!).
The first half an hour was spent mostly talking through the history of the library within the one room. Following that, we got to have a tour of the rest of the building.
Unfortunately you can’t take pictures within the library itself, but it was a wonderful experience. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and passionate, and I think we could have easily spent another hour with her learning more about the library.
I hope the small groups remain post COVID-19 as I imagine larger groups will be harder to facilitate when exploring.
Written 27 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Peter C
Melton Mowbray, UK7 contributions
A great insight into the Bodleian and it’s history
Sep 2021 • Couples
This was a fascinating tour, thank-you to our guide Michael, who was interesting and very knowledgeable about the library. We intend to return and take the extended tour.
Written 24 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Refia Y
1 contribution
Short and sweet visit to the library
Sep 2021
We joined the 30min tour of the library. Jessica, our tour guide, was fantastic. She was so engaging, answered all our questions and she was very knowledgeable. Highly recommended!
Written 19 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Katie O
3 contributions
Jenny was a super guide!
Sep 2021 • Friends
Jenny was a super guide, bringing us through lovely little streets we wouldn't have found alone and full of interesting anecdotes. Her french mannerisms were charming and she made sure the group stayed with her (physically and mentally)!

We got a really good feel for the city, the history, and the key spots. The length and pace was perfect 🙌
Written 16 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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