When I was at University I lived beside a period mansion in the beautiful grounds with a lake, woodland and farmland all on my doorstep. It was the ideal place to complete an art degree! I also lived in York for a while and I loved it!
York is well known for its history and medieval architecture. There is something charismatic about the place. I have always felt calm here and there is so much to do. The land around York is surprisingly flat, which explains why it floods so much when the River Ouse bursts its banks on a nearly annual basis! The layout of the land also makes for perfect cycling. If you were to spend some time here I would definitely recommend hiring a bicycle.
There is plenty to do and see in York.
You can visit the towering Minister, which is where I had my graduation ceremony. It was a pretty awesome place to graduate, unfortunately I had the worst cold ever and the acoustics of the building made my sneezing echo embarrassingly loudly throughout the ceremony.
I have also been lucky enough to photograph a few weddings in York…its history makes for a fabulous backdrop (see photograph above)!
York Dungeon is a pretty awesome place to visit. The Dungeon depicts the history of the dungeon using actor led shows, special effects and displays of models and objects. It showcases factual events through history, such as a Torture Chamber, The Gunpowder Plot, Dick Turpin, and the Courtroom. In 2003 a Witch Trials section was added detailing the witch trials in York through the use of a detailed set and animatronics. I wouldn’t recommended if you are claustrophobic but the historical aspect of the experience is worth it.
If you are interested in history the Jovick Viking Centre also needs to be on your list of attractions to visit. It recently won the Tourist Award for 2015. More information can be found here: http://jorvik-viking-centre.co.uk The site of the centre is actually where archaeological finds of the remains of Viking village was found.
The Shambles is one of my favourite places in York. As a photographer I spent a lot of time here photographing at night in the rain. Unfortunately, my work was all on slides and is back in the UK so I will have to post these photographs another day.
By day, The Shambles is a brilliant place to shop and wander around. You can even visit the most haunted house in York. The Shambles has over hanging timber framed buildings with some of them dating to the fourteenth century!
There is also the castle walls and Clifford’s Tower which are easy to find and make for fantastic photographic opportunities.
I did a river cruise whilst I was living here and I would highly recommend it. Several of the buildings have metal black cats on the roofs which are easy to see from the river boat. There is also a piece of land where it is still legal for an Englishman to shoot a Scotsman although it can only be with a bow and arrow.
I hope I have inspired you to add York to your list of places next time you visit the UK. If you have already visited York and would like to add to my list please feel free to leave a comment below.