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How to Spend 2 Days in York

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How to Spend 2 Days in York
History-steeped York is home to more than medieval turrets, Roman relics, and half-timbered houses—it beckons with interactive museums, river cruises, and the stunning North York Moors on its doorstep. See below for our ideas on how to explore the city’s highlights in just two days.

Day 1: City Sightseeing
Morning: Begin with a hop-on-hop-off-bus tour around York’s landmarks. Pass sights such as Exhibition Square and the Monk Bar gateway, and alight at Clifford’s Tower to roam this last remnant of York Castle. Alternatively, do the rounds on a bike tour, river cruise, or guided walk that includes a foray into glorious, 13th-century York Minster.

Afternoon: Now’s the time to focus on York’s museums. Buy a York Pass that includes admission to 30 attractions, choosing a 1- or 2-day pass according to your plans. Then, use the card to unearth York’s Viking legacy at the Jorvik Viking Centre or its medieval heritage at historic gems such as the heavily beamed Merchant Adventurers’ or Barley Hall.

Evening: Love ghost stories? York has them in droves. Choose a private walk around its darkest corners with your very own guide to shed light on their paranormal history, or join a vintage-bus tour for a fun-yet-frightening drive around the most haunted hot spots. 

Day 2: Dig Deeper or Venture Farther
Morning: Spend today discovering York’s countryside or concentrating further on the city. Book a day trip into the North York Moors that includes a steam-train ride through its windswept moorland, or opt for a private tour showcasing the city’s Roman walls or Viking past. 

Afternoon: If you chose against a day trip this morning, this afternoon is great for covering York’s other sights—perhaps with a York Pass that includes admission. Learn about York’s chocolate-making history at York’s Chocolate Story, or roam the York Dungeon where dioramas bring Viking pillages and other grisly events to life.

Evening: End your stay in relaxed fashion with a sundown River Ouse cruise. Board a comfortable boat, buy drinks from the bar, and admire York’s sunset-washed towers and countryside as you wend along the river—the perfect finale to your stay.
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York Tours & Activities (13)
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Ghost Bus Tour of YorkBus Tours

Ghost Bus Tour of York

star-4.5
Delve into the dark recesses of York’s history on this evening ghost bus tour. With your spooky local guide, visit notorious local haunts of restless spirits, and pass eerie sites such as York Minster, Clifford’s Tower, and the grave of Dick Turpin, infamous highwayman and murderer. Throughout the tour, hear anecdotes and fascinating facts about York’s grisly past, and make key stops for a closer look at the city’s most haunted buildings. 
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$23.96 
From  
$23.96 
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

 The York Dungeon TicketAttraction Tickets

The York Dungeon Ticket

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Journey back to Yorkshire's dark days with this admission ticket to York Dungeon. This fully themed, sensory experience includes interactive attractions, engaging performances, rides, top-notch special effects, and elaborate staging. Experience the grisly histories of plague, torture, rebellion, and witchcraft that shadow this ancient city. Great for kids and adults, the York Dungeon will make you laugh, scream, and thank the stars it's all just a show!
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$18.57 
From  
$18.57 
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

Steam Trains, Whitby, and the North York Moors Full-Day Tour from YorkDay Trips

Steam Trains, Whitby, and the North York Moors Full-Day Tour from York

star-5
Venture into the wild and windswept lands of the North York Moors on this full-day tour from York. Drive through the countryside to reach North York Moors National Park and enjoy a walk amongst nature. Learn the legacy of Dracula and Captain James Cook in the seaside resort of Whitby. Next, spot filming locations from British TV series 'Heartbeat' and the Harry Potter movies in Goathland, where you board the famous North Yorkshire Moors steam railway for a spectacular ride home.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$65.21 
From  
$65.21 
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation

York's Chocolate Story Entrance Ticket and Guided TourAttraction Tickets

York's Chocolate Story Entrance Ticket and Guided Tour

star-4.5
Perfect for the palates of chocolate aficionados, this experience allows you to discover the history of chocolate in the historic heart of York. Guarantee your entry to York’s Chocolate Story and explore three floors dedicated o the sweet treat: alongside your guide, take an interactive journey through York’s chocolate history and watch a chocolate-making demonstration. This family-friendly, small-group tour is limited to 15 people to maintain an intimate atmosphere.
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$17.97 
From  
$17.97 
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  • 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

York Walls Private Walking TourHalf-day Tours

York Walls Private Walking Tour

star-5
Uncover the medieval marvels of historic York on a bespoke walking tour with a private guide. Learn about York’s rich history as you walk around the centuries-old walls, pose for photos with a backdrop of the city or visit the wall museums (not included). Your private tour is yours to customize as you please, so you could also pay a visit to York Castle, stroll down the atmospheric The Shambles or take a peek inside the magnificent York Minster.
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
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  • 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation

Private Viking Walk of YorkPrivate Sightseeing Tours

Private Viking Walk of York

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Learn about York's history and legends on a 2-hour Viking walking tour with a private guide, Sigwulf. You'll walk through town to see historical landmarks and listen to stories from the Viking days. Departure time is flexible to suit your preferences.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

Ouse River Sightseeing Cruise in YorkDay Cruises

Ouse River Sightseeing Cruise in York

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See the historic city of York from a different perspective during a 45-minute or 1-hour cruise on the Ouse River. Relax during a leisurely sail, accompanied by commentary that details the history and culture of York, and enjoy unobstructed views of landmarks such as Clifford’s Tower and the York Museum and Gardens. Choose from several departure times to suit your schedule.
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  • 45 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$13.97 
From  
$13.97 
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  • 45 minutes
  • Taking safety measures

York Walking Tour including York MinsterFull-day Tours

York Walking Tour including York Minster

star-5
Delve into England’s colorful history and admire architecture dating back to the Middle Ages on this morning or afternoon York walking tour. Follow a guide through the streets of York and discover landmarks including Bedern Hall, Clifford’s Tower, Fairfax House, King’s Manor, the Multangular Tower, St. Mary’s Abbey, Stonegate, and St. William’s College. Hear how Emperor Constantine, Guy Fawkes, and Richard III shaped modern York, and learn of the English Reformation as you explore York Minster.
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  • 2 hours
From  
$26.43 
From  
$26.43 
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  • 2 hours

City Sightseeing York Hop-On Hop-Off Bus TourBus Tours

City Sightseeing York Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

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Journey back in time on a hop-on hop-off bus tour of York, England’s quintessential medieval town. Your flexible 24-hour ticket enables you build a custom itinerary of York’s main attractions such as The Stonebow, Clifford’s Tower, Museum Gardens and more. With unobstructed views from the open-top viewing deck and 20 possible stops around town, you have the best of the city at your fingertips.
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$21.29 
From  
$21.29 
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  • 1 hour
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

Private Ghost Tour of YorkPrivate Sightseeing Tours

Private Ghost Tour of York

star-5
Designed for travelers with a historical interest in the supernatural, this private 2-hour ghost tour of York — one of the most haunted cities in the world — allows you to customize your itinerary to suit you. Choose to visit sites with countless reports of ghost sightings, including York Minster, The Shambles, and The York Dungeon, and listen to frightening tales rooted in York’s 2,000-year-old history. The start time and location of your tour is up to you.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
From  
$73.20 
Price varies by group size
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures

Guided York Cycling TourMountain Bike Tours

Guided York Cycling Tour

star-5
With beautiful architecture and medieval history, York is widely considered among England’s must-see cities—but pounding the sidewalks on foot takes time and effort. On this tour, hop into the saddle and spin through the city streets by bicycle, and hit top attractions like York Minster with ease. Follow safe routes inside and outside the ancient city walls, with your guide bringing York’s colorful Roman and Viking history to life.
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  • 2 hours to 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From  
$33.59 
From  
$33.59 
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  • 2 hours to 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation

70-Minute York Evening River CruiseDay Cruises

70-Minute York Evening River Cruise

star-3.5
Set sail on a romantic evening cruise along the Ouse River and see York’s historic landmarks from the water. Sip a glass of Prosecco or non-alcholic beverage (depending on the ticket option) as you glide past the illuminated city skyline, and admire the riverside parks and buildings lit up by the boat’s floodlights.
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  • 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From  
$19.96 
From  
$19.96 
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  • 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Taking safety measures


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