My favourite restaurants in Oxford, UK

Wonderguide by

Nína Þorkelsdóttir

My Favourite Eateries in Oxford

It took me a while to come across decent restaurants in Oxford. After living there for several months, I finally had a list of places I could count on. The restaurants, cafes and bakeries I've included in this list are of different styles and price-ranges, but I promise they are all worth it.

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I know that many tourists head straight into the pubs to grab a drink and something to eat. Although Oxford's pubs tend to be very charming, the food is usually nothing to write home about. Luckily, there are restaurants in the city too and some of them are quite good. Here are some of my favourites:

Image - Arbequina
Nína:One of the most stylish little places in Oxford. The food is tapas-style, that is, you order small plates to share with the rest of the table. The menu is curious yet well put together. Many of their options are vegetarian/vegan.
Image - Za'atar Bake
Za'atar Bake
Nína:This Palestinian restaurant was an instant hit when it opened a couple of years ago. It offers superb middle-eastern dishes, amazing flatbread and dips. The lemon-chicken tagine is my absolute favourite. Note that alcohol is not served at ZB.
Image - The Magdalen Arms
The Magdalen Arms
Nína:The Magdalen Arms is actually a pub, but the food is top quality. It's a bit far away from the city centre, but a must-visit if you're in the neighbourhood.
Image - Oli's Thai
Oli's Thai
Nína:One of Oxford's hidden gems. If you ask someone who has lived in the city for some time for restaurant recommendations, they will very likely mention this quaint little Thai place. It's a bit far from the city centre on foot though.
Image - The Punter
The Punter
Nína:A lovely pub with an ambitious vegetarian menu.
Image - The Perch
The Perch
Nína:This local favourite is situated in Port Meadow, a lovely green meadow in the northwest of the city. The Walk from Jericho (one of Oxford's neighbourhoods) to the Perch takes around 30 minutes. On sunny days, walking to the Perch and sitting down in their beautiful orchard is absolutely lovely.
Image - Gees Restaurant & Bar
Gees Restaurant & Bar
Nína:Gees is one of Oxford's most beautiful restaurants. It is on the pricier side - perfect for special occasions.
Image - The Ivy Oxford Brasserie
The Ivy Oxford Brasserie
Nína:The Ivy is a chain restaurant in the UK but it never fails to impress. Fancy interiors and a very classic a la carte menu. They also serve brunch on weekends.
Image - Pan Pan Restaurant
Pan Pan Restaurant
Nína:Pan-Asian street food in the Cowley-road area. You can choose from staples from all across Asia, such as Pad Thai, Pho, Chicken Katsu and Satay. They also have really nice Bao buns.
Image - Pizzeria Trattoria Mario
Pizzeria Trattoria Mario
Nína:This authentic pizzeria on Cowley road offers delicious Neapolitan stone-baked pizzas. The second best pizzas in Oxford, in my opinion (Il principe, an Italian deli close by has the best).
Image - Il Principe
Il Principe
Nína:Look no further - the best pizzas in Oxford are found here. The 'Vesuvio' and 'Noci' are personal favourites. Note that it's not possible to eat in. On sunny days, I recommend that you grab a pizza from Il Principe and eat it in South Park, a huge green area nearby.
Image - Branca Bar, Restaurant and Deli
Branca Bar, Restaurant and Deli
Nína:An elegant Italian restaurant and deli in Jericho.
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Some cozy spots for coffee or tea.

Image - Peloton Espresso
Peloton Espresso
Nína:Good coffee and good vibe. The staff is amazing and there's a little outdoor area in the back which is superb (in dry weather!).
Image - Missing Bean Turl St
Missing Bean Turl St
Nína:Great coffee and a very central location.
Image - The Handle Bar Cafe and Kitchen
The Handle Bar Cafe and Kitchen
Nína:A cycling-themed cafe in the city centre. Very hip and stylish.
Image - Green Routes Cafe
Green Routes Cafe
Nína:Green routes is a bit far from the city centre but it's such a nice place. They also serve great brunch and pastries.



Image - GAIL's Bakery Jericho
GAIL's Bakery Jericho
Nína:One of the most popular bakeries in Oxford. Good, but a bit pricey. You can eat in, which is a plus.
Image - Hamblin Bread
Hamblin Bread
Nína:The best sourdough in Oxford! They also serve
Image - Gatineau Artisan Patisserie & Bakery
Gatineau Artisan Patisserie & Bakery
Nína:Superb French pastries!

Wonderguide map

  1. Arbequina
  2. Za'atar Bake
  3. The Magdalen Arms
  4. Oli's Thai
  5. The Punter
  6. The Perch
  7. Gees Restaurant & Bar
  8. The Ivy Oxford Brasserie
  9. Pan Pan Restaurant
  10. Pizzeria Trattoria Mario
  11. Il Principe
  12. Branca Bar, Restaurant and Deli
  13. Peloton Espresso
  14. Missing Bean Turl St
  15. The Handle Bar Cafe and Kitchen
  16. Green Routes Cafe
  17. GAIL's Bakery Jericho
  18. Hamblin Bread
  19. Gatineau Artisan Patisserie & Bakery

Like these tips?
High Five Nína