6 Aug 2019

If you read my previous post "THINGS ARE HAPPENING" where I rambled a little about finishing university, you will have read that I have moved to London after living in York for three years while at university. Throughout my three years in York, I feel I have definitely become well acquainted with the area. With this, I thought it's time I shared with you my favourite spots in York that, if you're visiting are definitely worth a gander. These picks are also suitable if you're already a local but maybe want to know about a few of my recommendations of things to do in the area.

The Shambles Food Market 

If you're already planning a trip to York, you will no doubt be heading down The Shambles at some point. Known as the place that inspired Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter books, The Shambles is a hit with the tourists. However, apart from just visiting the cobbled streets filled with shops, I recommend taking some time to explore the small but great market, specifically the small food court. When I first came to York, this was just a couple of stalls but it has since expanded to have stalls of different cuisines to please all. My friend and I are massive fans of the Thai stand that do a great sweet chilli chicken and pad thai.

If you are a local and working in the centre, this is a great alternative to your regular meal deal at lunchtime. They offer some great filling options for reasonable prices while you are also supporting some local restaurants and businesses.

The York Art Gallery 

This is a place I wish I went to sooner than I did as well as more often to fully appreciate the different exhibitions the gallery had on. From the handful of times I visited, the staff were extremely friendly and were up for a chat about the art and different exhibitions. In the past, they've had a Quentin Blake exhibition, which was great for the kids, as well as Aesthetic Magazine exhibition which I really enjoyed and allowed me to discover some new artists that I now love and follow their work.

It's not a big gallery but for a small city, it's a great addition. It's worth keeping up to date with the exhibitions on when visiting and dropping in during your stay. For those living and studying in York, you are able to get discounted, if not free, entry into the gallery along with other museums across the city. It's definitely worth looking into and you can find more out about this here.

The Waterstones Cafe

I know what you're thinking. "This is a weird recommendation. Isn't it just a Costa?". The cafe in the York Waterstones is much nicer than other Waterstones that do just have a Costa. It's a lovely coffee shop on the upper floor of the shop that is the perfect location for a drink and cake with a great view of the main shopping street of York below.

I spent many a day hear during my degree. If was wanting a to get out of the house for a change of scenery or if I had some time to kill before a shift at my part-time job, I always ended up here either with my laptop working or my head in a book. The coffee also isn't badly priced at all so it was great to grab a drink then head to peruse the thousands of books while resisting the urge to buy any more.

I also want to add an honorary mention to Spring Espresso which is a coffee shop I spoke about in "THE BEST PANCAKES IN YORK". This is another great location for a coffee; in my opinion, they do the best, iced mocha I've ever had.

Rowntree Park 

This is the perfect place to spend a summers day in York. With a park and play area for the kids to explore and enjoy, lovely gardens to walk through as well as a walk along the canal to get here by foot, it's the perfect open space to enjoy in the sun.

My friends and I have been there for a picnic in the past as well as a game or two of frisbee when it's been warmer as well as a visit to the reading cafe that's within the park when it's a little chillier or we just want to grab a drink.

The museum gardens are the usual place tourists chose to visit in the centre to soak up a few rays but, if you don't mind a short walk, I highly recommend going here to enjoy your picnic. It tends to be a lot quieter while being a lot bigger and, in my opinion, a little nicer to be just a bit out of the city.

Have you ever been to York? 
Hope you're doing great, 
Sarah x 

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