Spend a week living at historic Oxford University and sample life as a student at Merton College. Study with renowned Oxford tutors and delve into one of our fascinating courses.

Starting at: $4,995 Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Merton College, Oxford University  Welcome reception at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  Oxford tutors (July 2018). Credit: Wade Jennings  Smithsonian Journeys travelers during lecture break. Credit: Wade Jennings  The dining experience at Merton College, with High Table. Credit: Wade Jennings  Conversation over dinner. Credit: Wade Jennings  The dining experience at Merton. Credit: Wade Jennings  Introduction to Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  Smithsonian Journeys travelers at a lecture. Credit: Wade Jennings  Merton College Library  Interior of the Merton College chapel. Credit: Wade Jennings  The chapel at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  The quadrangle at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  Smithsonian Journeys travelers at Oxford. Credit: Wade Jennings  Smithsonian Journeys travelers during a lecture break. Credit: Wade Jennings  Smithsonian Journeys traveler at Merton. Credit: Wade Jennings  Enjoying a few moments at a local pub. Credit: Wade Jennings  Lecture break at Merton. Credit: Wade Jennings  Housing at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  Garden walkway at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  The gardens at Merton College. Credit: Wade Jennings  An evening walk near Merton. Credit: Wade Jennings  Skyline of the medieval town of Oxford  On excursion at the Birmingham Museum. Credit: Wade Jennings  Interactive exhibit at the Staffordshire Hoard. Credit: Wade Jennings  Treasures of the Staffordshire Hoard. Credit: Wade Jennings  The beautiful Oxford skyline  The Radcliffe Camera, Oxford  Bridge of Sighs landmark, Oxford University  View near Oxford's Main Street  Loch along the Thames River, Oxford  Sculptural detail found in Oxford

Smithsonian at Oxford

8 days from $4,995

Spend a week living at historic Oxford University and sample life as a student at Merton College. Study with renowned Oxford tutors and delve into one of our fascinating courses.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

The Smithsonian at Oxford provides an accessible educational experience, nicely balanced with opportunities to visit nearby sites of interest. The Smithsonian at Oxford also provides an opportunity to experience true student life again.

- Christopher B.

Living and studying in a centuries old setting that famous people have lived is just...awesome!!

- Philip P.

The warm reception we received at Merton College made us feel that we really were Oxford students -- a very special sense of belonging.

- Lyn G.

I love Shakespeare; I love to study and to study Shakespeare at Oxford and to see the Royal Shakespeare Company perform is a dream come true!

- Blanche M.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Overview

Spend your mornings learning from an expert from Oxford's Merton College. For September 2019, choose from two featured course subjects: The Vikings and The Development of Politics and Society in Victorian England. Please select your course at the time of booking to ensure your choice! Space is limited for each course. (Information on experts can be found on the Enrichment tab.)

Classes will be interspersed with excursions, including a visit to Pembroke College, which was attended by James Smithson—the founding donor of the Smithsonian Institution. Each course will also feature an additional special excursion tailored to its theme.

The Vikings

Ravagers, despoilers, pagans, heathens - the Vikings are usually regarded as bloodthirsty pirates, whose impact on Europe was one of fear and terror. As they plundered the British Isles and the North Atlantic, these pagan invaders were seen by their Christian victims as a visitation from God. Yet the Vikings were also traders, settlers and farmers with a highly developed artistic culture and legal system. Their network of trade routes stretching from Greenland to Byzantium and their settlements resulted in the creation of the Duchy of Normandy in France, and the foundation of the new Kingdom of Russia in Kiev and Novgorod as well as the development of Irish towns including Cork, Dublin and Limerick. This course will use recent findings from archaeology together with documentary records, to examine the Viking world and to give a balanced view of this fascinating period.

Field Trip: Visit the earthwork defenses and street layout of an Anglo-Saxon town created as part of King Alfred’s defenses against the Vikings.

The Development of Politics and Society in Victorian England

The Georgian era was steeped in controversy from the very start with its dazzling displays of marked excess, from royal corruption to the fear of the mob. By the time of Victoria’s death in 1901, a remarkable transformation had apparently taken place, with Britain a model of polite respectability and global influence. The nature of that transformation will form the basis of this course as we seek to explore how the Victorian culture was made through an investigation of those evolving themes which helped make and shape Victorian England.

Field Trip: Visit the former home of the celebrated and controversial Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli– and a great favorite of Queen Victoria herself.

The Smithsonian at Oxford provides an accessible educational experience, nicely balanced with opportunities to visit nearby sites of interest. The Smithsonian at Oxford also provides an opportunity to experience true student life again.

- Christopher B.

Living and studying in a centuries old setting that famous people have lived is just...awesome!!

- Philip P.

The warm reception we received at Merton College made us feel that we really were Oxford students -- a very special sense of belonging.

- Lyn G.

I love Shakespeare; I love to study and to study Shakespeare at Oxford and to see the Royal Shakespeare Company perform is a dream come true!

- Blanche M.

July 2019 Itinerary

Our July 2019 course selections include The Archaeology of Britain, The Age of Winston Churchill, Medieval Castles, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire, and The Legendary History of the British Isles. Please enroll in your choice of course subject at the time of booking. Enrollment is limited. 

Day 1 — Depart the U.S for London

Depart the U.S. for London on individual flights.

Day 2 — London, Oxford

Arrive in London this morning and transfer to Oxford. This evening, enjoy a welcome dinner and plenary talk. (D)

Days 3–7 — Oxford

Lectures take place at Merton College, Oxford University.

Course Subjects: The Archaeology of Britain, The Age of Winston Churchill, Medieval Castles, The Rise and Fall of the British Empire, and The Legendary History of the British Isles.

Excursions: Explore highlights of Oxford, including the connection between James Smithson (the founding donor of the Smithsonian Institution) and the university, which he attended as a student. 

Plus, take an additional special excursion tailored to your specific course. Those enrolled in The Archaeology of Britain will visit the Staffordshire Hoard in Birmingham, the largest collection of Anglo-Saxon gold ever found. The Age of Winston Churchill features a field trip to Chartwell, Churchill’s country house and home for over four decades. Those in the Medieval Castles course will travel to Kenilworth Castle in Warwickshire. The excursion for The Rise and Fall of the British Empire will be a trip to Dashwood House in West Wycombe. Travelers in The Legendary History of the British Isles will visit Binsey Church and the ruins of Godstow Abbey, where Rosamund Clifford—known in legend as the Fair Rosamund—was buried. (B,L,D) ​

Day 8 — Oxford

After breakfast transfer to Heathrow Airport for individual flights back to the U.S. or travel to London for the optional extension. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

September 2019 Itinerary

The Vikings and The Development of Politics and Society in Victorian England. Please enroll in your choice of course subject at the time of booking. Enrollment is limited. 

Day 1 — Depart the U.S for London

Depart the U.S. for London on individual flights.

Day 2 — London, Oxford

Arrive in London this morning and transfer to Oxford. This evening, enjoy a welcome dinner and plenary talk. (D)

Days 3–7 — Oxford

Lectures take place in Oxford.

Course Subjects: The Vikings or Victorian England.

Excursions: Explore highlights of Oxford, including the connection between James Smithson (the founding donor of the Smithsonian Institution) and the university, which he attended as a student. 

Plus, take an additional special excursion tailored to your specific course. Those enrolled in The Vikings will visit the Burghal defenses at Wallingford—the earthwork defenses and street layout of an Anglo-Saxon town created as part of King Alfred’s defenses against the Vikings. Travelers in Victorian England will visit Hughenden Manor: the former home of the celebrated and controversial Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli– and a great favorite of Queen Victoria herself. (B,L,D)​ 

Day 8 — Oxford

After breakfast transfer to Heathrow Airport for individual flights back to the U.S. or travel to London for the optional extension. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)