Walking Tour of York, England
This walled Medieval city in England’s northernmost county is a wonderful place to stroll and relax. Life here is much slower than in the south, around London. It is also close the brooding Yorkshire moors, made famous in novels written by the Bronte sisters.
This walk begins at the fabulous York Minster, the city’s glorious Gothic Cathedral. The exterior of the massive church (the largest Gothic structure north of the Alps) is beautiful and dominates the town’s skyline, but it is the interior that truly impresses visitors. The stained glass is second-to-none while the height of the supporting columns and vaulted ceilings is truly staggering. Be sure to check out the Chapter House and the Five Sister’s Window, which dates to 1260 AD.
From the Minster, take Stonegate Street, probably the city’s most impressive street, southwest toward the Ouse River. Note the Norman House, #52A, oldest in the city. When you reach the river, check out Mansion House, residence of the Lord Mayor, straight ahead, and behind it, the Guildhall where the town’s business was conducted.
Now head south on Lendal Street (the name changes as you walk south) to the Ouse Bridge. Bear a bit left here and look for Coppergate Street. Take a left here to get to the very interesting Jorvik Viking Centre, an opportunity to travel in a "time car" back to the Viking town which existed here in 948 AD.
After your visit, continue on Coppergate then straight past Parliament Street to The Pavement, former site of York’s village marketplace and where criminals were punished. Take a left on The Shambles, a quintessential narrow, cobble-stone, Medieval street, once the "street of the butchers."
Just beyond the end of the street is Holy Trinity Church, worth a short stop. Next continue northward on Goodramgate Street which brings you to York’s well-preserved walls, At Monk Bar ("bar" is "gate" in Old English), take this opportunity to ascend and walk the City Walls. Head left (northwest) on the walls all the way to Bootham Bar, to the west.
Exit the walls and take Highpetergate eastward and back to the Minster where you began.