Oxford was great – we’ll definitely go back. On the day after arrival we had a good wonder round. I was disappointed I couldn’t get into the Bodleian Library, but otherwise an enjoyable day wandering. Drank coffee on the site of the oldest coffee house, meandered through a few colleges, and visited Gropec*nt Lane (whoops, sorry – Magpie Lane now, right).
After Oxford, we headed off to Hereford for a fleeting visit. We stopped at the Moody Cow for a delicious dinner, and then on to the B&B for a good nights sleep. In the morning, after a disappointing breakfast, we visited the cathedral, saw the Mappa Mundi, and gazed at the musty tomes in the Chained Library. The Three Choirs event going on at the time (and only have an hour long car park ticket) made it a bit of a rush in and out, alas.
Then on to Hay-on-Wye. We walked around about a dozen bookshops on the first day and found nothing to buy. Stayed – and dined – at the Famous Old Black Lion – where Cromwell is claimed to have stayed at one time. Good food, excellent service. Second day in Hay was more rewarding, with a half-dozen books bought between us – and a lost little albino gerbil, who we transported home in a small plastic cage and have named Pinky.
Overall, an excellent trip. Will definitely do Oxford again soon, and maybe Hereford to spend more time there. Hay I can manage without for a while, as many of the shops were quite disappointing compared to our last visit several years back.