York is such a wonderful city. Picturesque and full of history, it’s no wonder that it draws thousands and thousands of visitors there over the festive period. For me, living in the Midlands, there’s something more more Christmassy about a Northern City. Perhaps it’s because it’s colder, or perhaps because I find Northern people much more friendly, it’s such a lovely break to go ‘Up North’. With this in mind, I have put together a bit of a top 5 reasons to visit York in The Winter. So let’s take a look…
The Simply Stunning Scenery
It’s no secret that York has some gorgeous scenery. The medieval walls and the cobbled streets are a lovely destination for a day out walking around York. If you are a major Harry Potter fan, like me, you need to head to The Shambles. It is the inspiration for Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley. Apparently this “medieval thoroughfare was once lined with butchers, and blood was said to run down the cobbles.” Nice! Now though it’s less bloody, and more cakey, as it’s lined with cafes and cake shops.
St Nicholas Fair comes to York over the festive season and is one of the most cosy and pretty of all the festive markets. Take a leisurely stroll along St Nicholas Fair and soak up the festive atmosphere, as you discover fine Yorkshire produce from crafters and makers showcased at the Made in Yorkshire Yuletide Village. If you’re looking for more traditional Christmas gifts, don’t forget to wander amongst the many alpine chalets on Parliament Street. Sample festive food and drink at the St Sampson’s Square rustic Yorkshire Barn with delicious treats including hot chestnuts and glasses of warming mulled wine.
The Luxury Destinations
York is most definitely very pretty, and very homely, but there are also many key luxury destinations you can visit that will most certainly make you feel like royalty. Aside from having their own castle, York has a plethora of posh pubs and hotels. For a truly exquisite stay, you can book a luxury room at The Grand, the only 5 star hotel in York! It also has a spa so you can extend your stay and make it completely relaxing.
Not only are there some fantastic shopping opportunities at the fair, but in actual fact, York has some great shopping destinations. With a web of winding streets flaunting designer stores, independent shops and boutiques, each distinct shopping area has its own speciality. Parliament and Coney Street are home to the high street favourites, as is Coppergate – which is situated on the site of a Viking village. Stonegate and Swinegate are home to a mix of stores hidden amongst medieval and Georgian architecture. For independent shops that are off the beaten track, wander along Gillygate and Petergate. Or explore the daily Shambles Market with more than 85 stalls offering a diverse selection of goods. There is also a McArthur Glen, where you can save up to 60% on great range of designer brands.
Have you ever been to York before? What’s your favourite thing about it?