Oxford is a city that is steeped in history, and it’s famous the world over thanks to its esteemed university.
However, there’s plenty more that Oxford has to shout about.
It may surprise you that the city is packed full of fabulous bars and it has a buzzing nightlife, in no small part thanks to the student presence in the area.
If you’re looking for the very best rooftop bars in Oxford, then you’ve come to the right place, because I’ve compiled a list to fill you in on exactly that.
Settle in, have a read and head on over to your favourite rooftop bars in Oxford!
This article is written by Faraway Lucy writer, Lola Sherwin.
1. The Varsity Club
Address: 9 High St, Oxford OX1 4DB
Phone number: 01865 248777
The Varsity Club is one of the very best rooftop bars in Oxford, there’s no doubt about it.
The buzzing young bar is located in the heart of Oxford, so it has stunning views of the city’s skyline for you to enjoy while you sip on a drink.
It features an eclectic mix of contemporary décor combined with traditional features, giving it a unique vibe, which can’t be matched by any other bar.
Across its four levels, you’ll find everything from a bar to a nightclub, so make sure to check out all the floors before you leave – you won’t regret it.
It’s safe to say there’s something to suit every kind of night out here at The Varsity Club!
2. The Alchemist
Address: Westgate, Bonn Square, Oxford OX1 1TR
Phone number: 01865 792072
The Alchemist has become a firm favourite wherever you go in the country, and Oxford is no different.
Their creative cocktails and tasty food menu have been designed to create sensations of pleasure.
And you’ll be hard-pressed to find a drinks menu more exciting than theirs.
All their offerings are themed around alchemy, as the name suggests, so you’ll find colour-changing drinks, shots in test tubes, and a lot of dry ice.
If theatrical drinks are your thing, then you won’t find a bar better than The Alchemist.
What makes their Oxford location even better is the fact it’s got excellent views of the city.
This means you can admire the beautiful buildings below while sipping on your bonkers beverage.
And even better yet, The Alchemist is also one of the best places to go for bottomless brunch in Oxford.
One of the best rooftop bars in Oxford? I think so!
Address: RU5, Westgate Shopping Centre, 307 The Westgate, Queen St, Oxford OX1 1PG
Phone number: 01865 689064
Victors is a beautiful, vibrant, upscale bar that’s decorated with stunning florals that make for the perfect Instagram backdrop.
It’s located on the rooftop terrace at Westgate shopping centre, meaning it offers unparalleled views over the city, which is what you’re looking for, I’m sure.
Despite being a reasonably upscale bar, the vibe is friendly and pretty informal.
So don’t worry about having to dress super formally or anything!
It’s a truly gorgeous restaurant and bar, and everything they serve matches the quality of their aesthetic, so you’re in for a real treat here.
Over the winter season, they transform their terrace into an après ski area, bringing resort life to this little corner of Oxford.
Their tartiflette is said to be the stuff of dreams, so if you’re visiting in winter, don’t miss out on that!
If you can’t get away this winter, let Victors transport you to the Alpine resort of your dreams.
4. Dirty Bones
Address: 304 The Westgate, Queen St, Oxford OX1 1PG
Phone number: 01865 808040
One of the best rooftop bars in Oxford, Dirty Bones is a classic American restaurant that’s popping up all over the country, including in Oxford!
It can be found on the Westgate roof terrace, so you’ll be treated to some cracking views before you head inside.
Inside, you can tuck into incredibly yummy grub, which makes it even more of a destination, if you ask me!
Decorated like a 1970s Brooklyn bar, Dirty Bones takes you back in time, combining old with new in the perfect way.
The old school funk and soul playlist is perfect for dancing away the worries of the week, and the menu is absolutely to die for.
The Mac Daddy burger sounds right up my street, but it all looks pretty immense, to be honest.
Every Monday to Friday between 3 and 6 pm, they also serve signature cocktails for £5 each, perfect for blowing off some steam after work.
Get yourself up there and get ready to party!
5. Pizza Pilgrims
Address: Westgate Centre Roof Terrace RU12, Oxford OX1 1PG
Phone number: 01865 808030
Pizza Pilgrims is a cracking pizza spot for casual grub and bevs with your pals.
Luckily for us, it also has a banging rooftop terrace, with cute little tables, picnic benches and stools to hang out on.
The Ve-Du-Ya pizza is a personal favourite, so I’d recommend that, but they’re all pretty great!
What would your choice be?
Their restaurants are a firm favourite all around the country, so you’re in for a treat here.
It’s a taste of Italy in Oxford!
The vegan stuff is just as good as the regular pizzas, too, so this one is good for everyone.
Why not finish off your meal with a Nutella Pizza Ring?
How great does that sound?!
Address: Oxford Castle, 3 New Rd, Oxford OX1 1AY
Phone number: 01865 689944
Malmaison is located in what was once a prison, so one of their outdoor terraces is actually an old prison yard.
Kind of spooky, huh?
However, there’s nothing else spooky about this stunning hotel, with multiple bars dotted around the place.
Their rooftop terrace is a real beauty, offering beautiful views in a unique setting.
Unfortunately, though, it’s only available for private events!
But if you have a special occasion coming up and you want somewhere with unbeatable views, then Malmaison is a perfect fit for you.
Other than that, make sure to check out the Chez Mal bar, a cornerstone of Malmaison hotels across the country.
Live the life of luxury at Malmaison!
7. Ashmolean Rooftop Restaurant
Address: Ashmolean Museum, Beaumont St, Oxford OX1 2PH
Phone number: 01865 553823
Ashmolean Rooftop Restaurant is a fashionable spot housed above the renowned Ashmolean Museum.
It serves modern European dishes with British flavours, and let me assure you, everything there is delicious.
You can join them for lunch or afternoon tea, and it makes for the perfect spot to gaze out over the rooftops of Oxford.
If you’re looking for a lovely lunch spot with stunning views, then the Ashmolean is it.
All restaurant bookings also include general admission to the museum following your meal, making it an even more enjoyable experience!
This one is perfect for any cultural buffs among us, so if that’s you, then get yourself up here.
You won’t regret it!
Address: 311, The Westgate, Castle St, Oxford OX1 1NZ
Phone number: 01865 237777
If you like sushi and outdoor terraces, then Sticks’n’Sushi is one of the best rooftop bars in Oxford for you.
The views of the city from the terrace are stunning, and the food is amazing too.
It’s one of Oxford’s favourite sushi spots, so you’re sure to leave here satisfied!
Enjoy a cocktail and some delicious food while basking in the sunshine on their terrace.
The rooftop is a green haven, which is an absolute treat on a summer’s day.
They serve a combination of traditional sushi and yakitori sticks but don’t worry if you don’t like fish as there’s a selection of meat and veggie sushi on offer too.
It’s the perfect restaurant for the whole group!
9. Quod Restaurant & Bar
Address: 92-94 High St, Oxford OX1 4BJ
Phone number: 01865 202505
Quod Restaurant & Bar is tucked away inside an upmarket hotel that’s adorned with young British art, so make sure you check that out on your way in.
The restaurant serves a tasty British-style menu which is sure to tantalise your tastebuds, and will have you going back for more again and again.
It’s more of a garden or terrace than a rooftop but it would be criminal to miss it off the list as it’s so beautiful.
Be on the garden terrace on a sunny day and you’ll think you’ve just been whisked off to the Mediterranean.
And that’s exactly what a good restaurant should do, in my opinion!
Their weekday set lunch menu is incredible value at two courses for £18.95 per person or three courses for £22.50 per person.
So if you find yourself free at lunchtime, then head on down!
10. The Folly
Address: 1 Folly Bridge, Oxford OX1 4JU
Phone number: 01865 201293
Although it’s not technically a rooftop restaurant, the views at The Folly are far too good to miss.
It’s a gorgeous riverside spot serving up modern British cuisine in charming surroundings, and it’s probably exactly what you expect from a city like Oxford.
Their riverside terrace is the jewel in their crown, and it’s the perfect place to enjoy a delicious meal while watching the river go by.
They also have boats for hire, which would be perfect on a summer’s day, don’t you think?
Another thing they offer is a unique Cruise & Dine experience: a thirty-minute cruise before disembarking onto the terrace for a delightful meal.
What a perfect way to experience Oxford!
How about doing that for your next date night?
It would certainly be hard to top!
11. Cherwell Boathouse Restaurant
Address: Bardwell Rd, Oxford OX2 6ST
Phone number: 01865 552746
Cherwell Boathouse Restaurant isn’t a rooftop per se, but I find riverside restaurants to be equally exciting, so it has made the list anyway.
Offering understated, upscale dining by the river, this restaurant is a true treat for your tastebuds.
Their menu is incredibly creative and it changes regularly, but some current stars of the show are their caramelised onion fondue and their vegetarian cassoulet.
Doesn’t that sound like the perfect winter warmer combo?
Additionally, they also offer punting, which is a quintessential Oxford activity.
You can’t visit the city without giving it a go!
It’s harder than it looks, though, so be careful you don’t topple over!
Address: 25-27 Cowley Rd, Oxford OX4 1HP
Phone number: 01865 202920
Again, Kazbar isn’t technically a rooftop, but it does have a delightful outdoor area, and I couldn’t miss it off when it’s as good as it is.
Serving up Spanish and Moroccan dishes in a restaurant decked out with North African lanterns and mosaic tables, this is a great one if you want a funky picture for your Instagram as well as some delicious food and drinks.
Moreover, they often run events with incredible live Spanish music.
These events are well worth going to, so check out their website to see if they have any coming up any time soon!
Their gambas y chorizo dish is a firm favourite, as are their patatas bravas, so definitely give those a go, among any others you fancy.
They’re all fab!
13. Gee’s Restaurant & Bar
Address: 61A Banbury Rd, Park Town, Oxford OX2 6PE
Phone number: 01865 553540
Gee’s Restaurant & Bar is a Mediterranean inspired restaurant that’s set in a gorgeous Victorian glasshouse, with a fantastic bar and terrace.
It offers a unique rustic dining experience in an iconic setting, and it’s not one to miss.
The food is simply prepared and expertly cooked and is centred around the wood fire oven and the charcoal grill, giving everything a delicious flavour.
It’s not technically a rooftop, but the glass walls allow you to gaze out at the streets of Oxford, which means you get a fantastic view anyway.
I think I would have the smoked haddock croquettes followed by the roasted red pepper, crème fraîche and basil risotto, as they sound delicious.
What would your dishes of choice be?
There you have it, a round-up of the very best rooftop bars in Oxford.
Although they’re not all rooftop bars, they do all offer stunning views, which is all you can ask, right?
Surely the only reason you want a rooftop bar is for the view, and that’s something that you can get at all of these.
So with that in mind, pick your favourites, get booked in and be ready to have a lot of fun, wherever you go!