Oxford is just 45 minutes drive west of Christchurch on Inland Scenic Route 72. It is nestled near the foothills of the Southern Alps and offers many recreation and leisure activities.

There is a real sense of an English village atmosphere and genuine warmth about the people that you meet in Oxford. The nearby mountains and river gorges are popular for bush walking, mountain biking, hunting, fishing, swimming and jet boating. The Waimakariri Gorge is the final transition point for the Speights Coast to Coast Multisport Event held in February each year.

Stay at accommodation in Oxford or nearby Ashley Gorge, which is a well known and popular summertime destination for friends and families.

Oxford is a visitor and tourist destination that attracts a steady stream of visitors calling into the cafes, boutique shops, art gallery and artists' studios and staying at Bed & Breakfasts and the Holiday Park.

Popular Walks and Parks

History of Oxford

Oxford started in early 1850s as a saw milling town. In the 1870s, it was home to 11 timber mills which would be hauled by beast to Christchurch. A major fire in 1898 curtailed milling in the area with the last mill closing in 1912. The town is named after Samuel Wilberforce, bishop of Oxford, who was also a member of the Canterbury Association. 

For information on Oxford for businesses development and support please refer to Enterprise North Canterbury