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Weekend in York Itinerary: How to Spend 2 Incredible Days!

The city of York, England has a rich history and is full of wonderful things to do. A weekend in York will give you the opportunity to really see much of what makes this English town so special.

Spending the Weekend in York England

The sights in our weekend York Itinerary allow you to see how York evolved through the times of the Romans, the Vikings, and the British.

York Pass

Those planning to spend 2 days in York should purchase the York Pass. It will give you access to most of the things on our York Itinerary.

The York Pass includes:

  • Free entry to attractions, tours and museums including JORVIK Viking Centre, York Minster, York’s Chocolate Story and many more.
  • Free 1-Day City Sightseeing “Hop on Hop off” Bus Tour ticket to explore York
  • Free guidebook packed with helpful info and maps
  • Exclusive special offers also available including evening entertainment, cafes & restaurants
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Weekend in York Itinerary: How to Spend 2 Incredible Days!

Weekend in York Itinerary

Day 1 York Itinerary

  • York Hop on Hop off Bus
  • Cliffords Tower
  • Jorvik Experience
  • Roman Bath Museum
  • Shopping

Day 2 York Itinerary

  • York Minster
  • York Chocolate Story
  • Yorkshire Museum

Things to See in York on Day 1

York Sightseeing Bus Tour
Courtesy Stephen Bowler

York Hop on Hop off Bus

If you get the York Pass, you will get a 1-Day City Sightseeing Hop-on, Hop off bus tour ticket to explore the city.

This is the perfect way to start your trip because you will get to learn about the history of the city while seeing some of the more famous landmarks.

Cliffords Tower in York

Clifford’s Tower

Clifford’s Tower is all that remains of York Castle.

Originally built by William the Conqueror in 1068 as a statement of his power over the region, the York Castle was built of wood and eventually burnt to the ground. In later years, Henry III ordered the tower to be rebuilt in stone.

The tower that is now standing was built in the 13th century, & has additions made in the 17th century.

There is plenty to see while inside the tower, but probably the best is the 360° view!

Clifford’s Tower is FREE with York Pass.

If you are not on the York pass, price is about £6 for adults and £4 for children.

Jorvik Viking Center in York

JORVIK Viking Centre

Did you know that once upon a time there were Vikings in York? When you have 2 days in York, you can spend some time at Jorvik Viking Center.

Jorvik Experience

This museum takes you under town where you will get a glimpse at what life was like in York when the Vikings lived here.

Not only will you be able to see actual ruins, but you will also get to go on a ride through a Viking village.

This is an absolute must do attraction when you are spending a weekend in York with your kids. Children enjoy the Disney-like ride and getting a chance to watch a viking create a coin that they can take home as a souvenir!

Admission Tickets: See Prices (Free with York Pass)

Roman Bath Museum in York
By Fingalo Christian Bickel

Roman Bath Museum

Just like the Viking ruins, Roman ruins have been discovered right beneath the city streets of York.

Roman Baths in York

This museum takes you on a walk directly over the actual Bath ruins.

Shopping in York

The Shambles

The Shambles dates back over 900 years. What was once the Butcher’s street, is now filled with quaint shops.

Walk along these narrow cobblestone streets and you will find the original 15th-century timber-framed buildings that have been repurposed for boutiques, cafes and restaurants.

Here are some of our favorite places in The Shambles:

Stonegate Teddy Bear Shop in York

Stonegate Teddy Bears

If you are traveling to York with children, don’t miss going to the best Teddy bear store in town. Stonegate Teddy Bear shop has every kind of Teddy bear imaginable.

13, Stonegate 

Fudge Kitchen

If you want to bring something from your trip to York, you should consider a box of fudge! You will find samples given out daily so you can try something you might otherwise not think to taste!

58 Low Petergate

Harry Potter Shop in York

The Shop That Must Not Be Named

There are so many cute shops in York, but if you are a fan of Harry Potter, one of the things to do in York is visit The Shop that Must Not Be Named.

Filled with tons of Harry Potter themed merchandise, you will find everything from trinkets to full on costumes! Harry Potter fans will absolutely love this shop.

30 The Shambles

Käthe Wohlfahrt in York

Käthe Wohlfahrt

No matter what town we travel in, one thing that I can’t help but enjoy is a Christmas shop.

Christmas ornaments are one of the things I collect, and Käthe Wohlfahrt Christmas shops never disappoint!

Things to See in York on Day 2

York Minster Exterior

Visit York Minster

York Minster is the second-largest Gothic cathedral of Northern Europe and is a must see attraction in York.

This cathedral was first started in 1220 and wasn’t completed until 1472. This means that it took 250 years to complete and was designed to be the grandest cathedral in England.

A visit to York Minster will make you understand just how magnificent it is. 

York Minster Windows

York Minster has the largest collection of Medieval Stained Glass windows in the country. 

Most of the important windows, including the Great East Window and the Five Sisters still have their original, Medieval stained glass. 

Stained Glass in York Minster

The West Window (above) contains a heart-shaped design known as The Heart of Yorkshire.

York Minster Artifacts

What sets this Cathedral apart from others is the Undercroft where you will find remains of Roman barracks and see artifacts like the 1,000-year-old York Gospels.

Tours of York Minster start at the top of the hour & take about an hour and are free with admission. 

You’ll find that the tour guide will give you insight into things you might otherwise not know to pay attention to.

If traveling with children, you can get a FREE Explorer Backpack that comes with things that will make looking through the church a fun experience.

Spending the Weekend in York England

Admission to York Minster: See Prices (FREE with York Pass)

York Chocolate Story

York’s Chocolate Story

Take a guided tour through the history of chocolate! At York’s Chocolate Story you will learn the stories behind the greatest names in chocolate, learn the art of chocolate making, and get to taste some yummy chocolate treats before making your own.

Making Chocolate lollipops in York

It is a great activity for anyone who loves chocolate!

York Museum

Yorkshire Museum

With only a few days in York, you should take time to enjoy the Yorkshire Museum.

The museum has four main sections to explore: Biology, Geology, Astronomy and Archaeology.

Roman Coins in Yorkshire Museum

As you can imagine, the museum heavily focuses on the Roman and Nordic influences including swords, helmets, coins and other artifacts. 

Roman ruins in Yorkshire Museum

Admission to Yorkshire Museum: Ticket Prices (20% off with York Card)

Visiting York England

If you are planning to spend a weekend in York and wondering how much you can fit into a two-day trip, I hope you find this post helpful.

Wondering what to do in York with children besides what we’ve already mentioned? Here are some of the things you can add to your trip to York that your kids will enjoy.

Have you had a chance to visit York for the weekend? What were your favorite things to do in York?

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Allison Wong

Saturday 17th of March 2018

I was in York just after Christmas and I loved it! Such an amazing city with so much history.


Friday 16th of March 2018

York is seriously one of my favorite cities in the UK! I was lucky enough to be there for the Viking Festival, and I got into the spirit of dressing up, as there were tons of shops selling Viking gear. I will also never forget the recreated "smell" of Old Jorvik in the museum - it made me so glad that I live in modern times! I also went on a fantastic ghost walk in the evening - York's history lends itself to lots of "hauntings". Also, for any fellow train geeks out there, the railway museum is amazing! :)


Sunday 20th of May 2018

Hello. What was the name of the Ghost Walk that you went on? What time of year is the Viking Festival? Thank you so much, Dee Lord


Saturday 27th of January 2018

Sooo many people have told me to go to York! Need to pay it a visit this year me thinks!

Reena @ The Lifestyle Enthusiast

Saturday 27th of January 2018

Big fan of York! I went two years ago and absolutely fell in love with it, such a stark contrast from London for all the right reasons!

My recommendation would be to go to Betty's Tea Rooms as they're so charming and their Yorkshire Parkin cake is unreal!

Carolina Are

Saturday 20th of January 2018

York is one of my favourite places! I managed to do most of these but will do more if I ever go back xxx

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