The King's Arms Oxford Pub - Image courtesy of Britt-Marie Sohlström via Flickr Commons.

Visiting Oxford > Things to Do > Gastronomy and Hotels > Pubs

The King’s Arms

The King’s Arms is one of Oxford’s oldest pubs. Students and visitors have been drinking here since it opened its doors in 1607! It is also a beloved option for the locals, and one of the busiest pubs in Oxford. The King’s Arms still stands in its original position and claims to have ‘the highest IQ per square foot’ in the world. 

The King's Arms History

The King’s Arms is located on the former place occupied by Augustinian friars’ buildings. The Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1540, the land where the pub now stands passed to the city of Oxford – who gave license to Thomas Franklyn to set up an inn in 1607. 

During the 17rh century, the pub was a popular location to see plays. In the following years, it also became a coaching inn and a hotel. It’s said that some dons held tutorials in the pub until the 1970s. In 1973, the back bar (or the “Don’s Bar”) was still not open to women. An electrical fire caused the room to be converted into an extra space for the bar (although many mistakenly blamed ‘radical feminists’ for the fire!). 

Where is the The King's Arms pub?

You can visit the King’s Arms any time of the year. This Oxford pub is open from 12 pm until 21:30 (9:30 pm) and has a great menu no matter the season. The pub tends to be quite busy, so it’s always better to give them a call and book a table so you know you’ll have a place to sit!

Opening Hours: Every day 12:00 to 21:30.

Service options: Dine-in · No takeaway · No delivery.

Address: 4 Holywell St, Oxford OX1 3SU.


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