Ranking high on the list of York’s top attractions, the magnificent York Minster is one of Europe’s finest cathedrals and the largest medieval cathedral in the UK. Although the earliest parts of the building are from the 12th century, the Minster’s roots date back much earlier, with the present day cathedral built on the site of a former Norman church and Roman fortress. A masterpiece of gothic architecture, the Minster is renowned for its stonework and exquisite stained glass windows, as well as its fine acoustics.
Today, the Minster is not only an important center of worship and a popular venue for classical music performances (including regular recitals by the celebrated Minster Choir), but is home to a number of tourist attractions. Visitors can climb the 275 steps to the top of the Central Tower, the highest point of York; head into the underground chambers, where interactive galleries and exhibits that chronicle the Minster’s long history; or discover some of the world’s most important medieval art on display in the Orb, a special presentation of John Thornton’s stained glass art. Finally, don’t forget to kiss your loved one beneath the cathedral's Great West Window – local legend dictates that couples who embrace beneath the windows’ heart emblem, known as 'The Heart of Yorkshire', will have a long and happy union.