A Day Out in York

Places to Visit, Things to Do

York is a city that has a long history, and is only a 45 minute drive from our cottages here at Cliff House Holiday Cottages.  Making it a great place to go for a full on day out with lots for everyone in the family to see and do.

If you aren’t going to take the train from nearby Malton in to York, there is a park and ride on the ring road, but we recommend coming in to the city centre and parking between the train station and the National Railway Museum, which puts you right in the middle of things.  A trip to York would not be complete without a visit to the National Railway Museum. Its undergoing renovations (2024), but there is is still plenty to see and do. Its also free, but donations are encouraged. Continuing the railway vibe, you could have afternoon tea in the Cedar Grand Hotel just a short walk away, which used to be offices for the railways.

There is plenty to see and do to keep a family entertained for a whole day from visiting Clifford’s Tower (the site of the original castle in York with a gruesome history), JORVIK Viking Centre, the Shambles – particularly if you are a fan of Harry Potter.

Did you know for a short time York became the capital of the Roman Empire as Emperor Constantine (the Great) was proclaimed Emperor by his troops following the death of his father Constantius in 306 CE? Just out side York Minister there is a Roman column from a building unearthed in 1969 and placed where it is now, unfortunately upside down…

York, with its rich history, charming streets, and plethora of attractions, offers an enchanting experience for families looking to spend a memorable day together. Whether you’re a local resident or visiting from afar, there’s no shortage of things to see and do in this historic city. Here’s a list of  other things to do to make the most out of your family day out in York:

1. Discover York Minster: Start your day with a visit to York Minster, one of the most magnificent cathedrals in Europe. Marvel at its stunning architecture, explore the intricate stained glass windows, and climb the tower for panoramic views of the city.

2. Walk Along the City Walls: Embark on a leisurely stroll along York’s ancient city walls, which offer a unique perspective of the city’s historic landmarks and picturesque scenery. Don’t forget to stop at the various gateways and towers along the way for photo opportunities.

3. Visit the Jorvik Viking Centre: Immerse yourselves in the world of the Vikings at the Jorvik Viking Centre. Step aboard a reconstructed Viking ship, wander through interactive exhibits showcasing Viking artifacts, and experience life in 10th-century York through immersive multimedia displays.

4. Explore the Shambles: Take a wander through the narrow, cobbled streets of the Shambles, one of the best-preserved medieval streets in Europe. Admire the timber-framed buildings, browse quaint shops selling everything from sweets to souvenirs, and soak up the magical atmosphere.

5. Picnic in Museum Gardens: Head to the tranquil Museum Gardens for a relaxing family picnic amidst lush greenery and historical ruins. Let the kids run free in the spacious lawns, explore the botanical gardens, and discover ancient Roman and medieval artifacts scattered throughout the park.

6. Visit York Castle Museum: Delve into York’s past at the York Castle Museum, where immersive exhibits and recreated period rooms bring history to life. Explore Victorian streets, step inside a recreated World War II-era home, and marvel at the iconic Toy Stories exhibition featuring toys from generations past.

7. Take a River Cruise: Wind down your day with a relaxing river cruise along the River Ouse. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the scenic views as you glide past historic landmarks and picturesque landscapes, while knowledgeable guides provide fascinating insights into York’s history and heritage.

With its blend of history, culture, and family-friendly attractions, York promises an unforgettable day out for families of all ages. So pack your bags, lace up your walking shoes, and get ready to create cherished memories together in this enchanting city steeped in history and charm.

After a busy day out in York, come back to Cliff House Holiday Cottages for a dip in our indoor pool, or relax feeding our fish in our woodland pond. And if you are really tired, give the family chef the night off and head to our local pub just three minutes walk away for freshly prepared pub grub.

#visitlocal #supportlocal #thingstodo #holidayideas #holidayinspiration #cottageswithpool



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