Things to See and Do
Explore York’s world-class cathedral with its medieval stained glass, and stone masterpieces and foundations rooted in the nation's earliest history. Listed as one of the History and Heritage Experiences in Visit England's '101 things to do before you go abroad.' Take a fascinating 2000 year journey through interactive underground chambers in Revealing York Minster in the Undercroft. Follow in the footsteps of Roman soldiers and discover the stories of some of the people whose lives have been influenced by York Minster. The underground chambers have been totally transformed with dynamic new audio-visual and interactive galleries revealing the significance behind the cathedral's most treasured artefacts. See the best views in York after climbing the 275 steps up the Central Tower, leading you to the highest point in the city.
JORVIK Viking Centre
JORVIK Viking Centre is based on the site of one of the most famous and astounding discoveries of modern archaeology. Between the years 1976-81 archaeologists from York Archaeological Trust revealed the houses, workshops and backyards of the Viking-Age city of Jorvik as it stood nearly 1,000 years ago. These incredible discoveries enabled the building of JORVIK Viking Centre on the very site where the excavations had taken place, creating a groundbreaking visitor experience where you take a journey through the reconstruction of Viking-Age streets and experience life as it would have been in 10th century York.
Clifford's Tower stands as a proud symbol of the power of England's medieval kings. Originally built by William the Conqueror to subdue the rebels of the north, it was twice burned to the ground, before being rebuilt by Henry III in the 13th century. The tower takes its name from one grisly incident in its long history, when Roger de Clifford was executed for treason against Edward II and hanged in chains from the tower walls. The tower offers sweeping panoramic views of York and the surrounding countryside.
National Railway Museum
Enjoy free entry at the award winning National Railway Museum. Home to iconic locomotives and an unrivalled collection of engineering firsts, the museum celebrates the past, present and future of innovation on the railways. Get up close to icons of the rails including Mallard, the world’s fastest steam locomotive. Climb on board the Japanese bullet train, discover how high-speed rail travel began and journey back in time to experience the working life of a station. You can visit Queen Victoria’s favourite saloon, explore over 200 years of history and find out how railways shaped our world. Watch turntable demonstrations, climb on board historic carriages and find out fascinating facts from our experts in daily talks and tours.
York Art Gallery
York Art Gallery has reopened after an £8 million transformation. The development of the 19th century Grade 2* listed building has created 60% more exhibition space, which includes a brand new mezzanine level which will house the Centre of Ceramic Art (CoCA) and expanded galleries that showcase major new installations and internationally important artwork. The opening displays include almost 2,000 ceramic works, including star pieces by Grayson Perry, Bernard Leach, William Staite Murray, Felicity Aylieff, Lucie Rie, Hans Coper and Kate Malone. The gallery’s renowned Lycett Green collection of Italian Old Masters from the 14th to 18th century is also on display, along with notable works by 20th century artists, such as L.S. Lowry, Paul Nash, David Hockney and Stanley Spencer, as well as works by William Etty, York’s most famous artist.
More visitor information is available at the official Visit York website.
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