Punting in Oxford is not easy! Last weekend, with a little help from @Roomorama and @TravMonkey, I decided that for the 28th anniversary of my birth I would flee the dismal grey skies of London and head west along the M4 and then north west a bit up some A road I cant remember the name of, to the historically educated city of Oxford … where the skies were just as grey :-( #fail.
I took the Mrs. along for the ride, once I’d opened all the presents she’d bought me (I was particularly impressed she knew I wanted size 10 adidas finger save goalkeeping gloves!) and we made our merry way to Oxford via Didcot and our apartment.
Once in Oxford I knew there were a few things I most definitely wanted to do. I wanted to attend an Oxford Jazz festival event. I wanted to walk around one or two of the prestigious college campuses and pretend to be smart for a bit, and I also wanted to go punting in Oxford.
If you’re unsure what punting or a punt is, here’s everyone favourite, not always reliable and totally editable web based encyclopaedia to help …
A punt is a flat-bottomed boat with a square-cut bow, designed for use in small rivers or other shallow water. Punting refers to boating in a punt. The punter generally propels the punt by pushing against the river bed with a pole. A punt should not be confused with a gondola, which is propelled by an oar rather than a pole.
Punts were originally built as cargo boats or platforms for fowling and angling, but in modern times their use is almost exclusively confined to pleasure trips.
The term “punt” has also been used to indicate a smaller version of a regional type of long shore working boat, for example the Deal Galley Punt. This derives from the wide usage in coastal communities of the name “punt” for any small clinker-built open-stem general purpose boat.
Right, now that you know what i’m talking about here’s a few picks from our punting adventure. Luckily we didnt fall in as it was pretty damn cold and wet the day we took to the water, but thats not to say we didnt crash on the odd occasion … our chauffer was very good about it though. I highly recommend the chauffered rides, punting is a lot harder than it looks!