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Hunting the ghosts of York

September 11th 2008 11:54
If you don’t believe in ghosts, a ghost walk around the city of York will soon change your mind

Starting outside the west door of the York Minster at 7.30pm, (just go to the Minster and follow the crowds). It costs £4 and worth every penny. A guide leads you around the dark narrow cobbled streets, while telling you stories of murder, plague, and public beheadings.

York has a blood chilling past. Standing on those cobbled streets, I can almost sense the headless ghosts watching their heads roll down the blood covered streets.

See the window where the ghost of a young girl who was locked up, and forgotten about during the plague, is said to appear.

The walks take place whatever the weather in fact the darker and colder the better. I have been to York three times, and every time I visited, I do this walk.

The guides are superb and energetic storytellers; their knowledge of York’s grim history is spot on. One minute we were laughing the next we were filled with horror.

Really Long Link

York Ghost Trail


York - A Modern Medieval City

September 2nd 2008 00:53
To visit York in Northern England is to step back in time to the middle ages, when cities where protected by walls and public beheadings were entertainment.

With its cobbled streets, and fifteenth century architecture, surrounded by a medieval wall, York is one of the most beautiful historical cities in Britain.

It is a small city and easy to get around by foot. Therefore, we decided to spend our first day walking around admiring the architecture and orienting ourselves.

One of the biggest draw cards for visiting York was its age, and the fact that it is a walled city. So we started with a walk around the city wall. There are more miles of intact walls in York than any other part of Britain, some sections of which date back to Roman times. This beautifully preserved wall is 3.4kms long. Walking the perimeter of the wall is a great way to orientate yourself, there are also some fantastic views of the city to be had. Allow 2.5 hours if you want to do a complete circuit.

Next, we visited the St Peters Cathedral, one of the best-loved cathedrals in the UK. The cathedral is better known as the York Minster or just The Minster. It dates back to 1220, and took over 250 years to build. The Minster is one of the tallest structures in the area; it dominates the town and can be seen for miles. Inside there you will find some of the most spectacular stained glass windows, and an amazing ribbed ceiling. For those that do not want to strain their necks looking up mirrors are available in the nave.

Yorkminster ceiling
ceiling of York Minster

We climbed the 275 steps to the Minsters tower, where we could see not only the narrow cobbled streets of York but also some of the stunning countryside that surrounds the city.

york minster
York Minster

Back down at street level we decided to visit Europe’s most famous medieval street, Shambles. The buildings, which date back to the fifteenth century, are amazing; they lean in toward the middle of the street.

The Shambles was once a street of butchers; the street was made narrow in order to shade the meat from the sun. Along some of the lower windows of the buildings, the shelves remain over which the meat was sold.
The pavements are raised up so that the butchers could wash waste products, blood and offal, down the street twice weekly.


Today there are no butchers along the shambles instead; you will find a number of jewellery and antique shops catering for tourists.

York is a very easy city to walk around and you do not have to pay any money to see some of the most beautiful and historical sites. When you need to refuel after all that walking, stop at Betty’s Tearoom for a traditional Devonshire Tea (yum scones with clotted cream).

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