Preparing for the JourneyOxford

To travel is to live. — Hans Christian Andersen

After months of anxious anticipation, the day has finally arrived.

On Saturday 5th May 2018 bid farewell to the Oxford you know and, dressed in black tie, begin your expedition through the continent.

The journey begins...

Front QuadBarcelona

“Barcelona,” Don Quixote exclaimed, is a“fountain of courtesy, shelter of strangers, hospice to the poor, land of the valiant, avenger of the offended, reciprocator of firm friendship, a city unique in its location and beauty.” — Miguel de Cervantes

Capital of the state of Catalonia, Barcelona has its own unique culture including its own language, and distinct take on the traditional Spanish food scene. Get lost in the narrow winding streets of the Gothic Quarter, take a stroll down the famous “La Rambla” boulevard, or lounge around sipping cocktails on one of Barcelona’s white, sandy beaches.

Grove QuadFlorence

To see the sun sink down, drowned on his pink and purple and golden floods, and overwhelm Florence with tides of color that make all the sharp lines dim and faint and turn the solid city to a city of dreams, is a sight to stir the coldest nature. — Mark Twain

Commonly referred to as the “cradle of the Renaissance”, Florence is steeped in artwork from the period, much of which can be found not only in the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia, but also throughout the city’s churches and within its famous cathedral, The Duomo. Florence also boasts a concentration of the finest Tuscan cuisine, where an emphasis is placed on the care and simplicity applied to each dish.

Chapel QuadIstanbul

If one had but a single glance to give the world, one should gaze on Istanbul. — Alphonse de Lamartine

A wonderous collision of food, architecture and culture – attested to by the number of music, film, dance and theatre festivals hosted by the city – Istanbul lies on the Bosphorus Strait, straddling both Europe and Asia. Navigate the bustling Grand Bazaar in the morning, and in the afternoon enter one of the magnificent mosques built by the Ottomans, or some of the churches and palaces built by their predecessors, the Byzantines, which they festooned with colourful frescos and mosaics.