Early September is a lovely time of year to visit Oxford, when the students are yet to descend on the city, but the number of tourists drops. I took advantage of my trip to Oxford earlier this month to pop into Magdalen College, which was looking prettier than ever with an abundance of lime green Annabelle hydrangeas in full bloom.
Magdalen is one of the most beautiful Oxford Colleges, with its riverside location and famous deer park. The college was founded in 1458 by William Waynflete, Bishop of Winchester, and has many famous alumni, including C.S. Lewis and Oscar Wilde.
I spent a peaceful hour wandering through St John’s Quadrangle and the Cloister Quadrangle (lingering in the latter as I went a little mad with my camera!), before having a cup of tea overlooking the river (very entertaining to sit and watch the punters). After a refreshing cuppa, I walked to Grove Deer Park, which is where Magdalen’s herd of fallow deer live in the autumn-winter and spring months. As I was a little short on time, I didn’t get to the Hall, but I did manage to see the splendid Chapel, as old as the college itself.
If you’re feeling inspired to explore more of Oxford’s colleges, then I’d recommend the book Oxford College Gardens, which I received as a birthday present a year or two ago. I love looking through the book, as it features beautiful photographs and information about the university colleges. You can admire some of Oxford’s prettiest gardens without leaving the comfort of your armchair!