Pack Your Bags: York, England

You've probably seen on Instagram 
that I'm on a fast & furious trip
around the UK (and soon-to-be Ireland).

While this is all fresh on my brain, 
I'm going to spend the next few days
spitting out pics & information
on new places that I'm discovering
so that, someday, you'll have some good options
for when you start planning a trip of your own.


What the US feels towards the North vs South
is similar to how the UK feels 
towards their North vs South...
except flipped.

The South of England is, stereotypically,
harsher, busier, ritzier, more educated... and snobbier.

The North of England is, stereotypically,
easy going, slow paced, cheaper, less intelligent.... and nicer.

Obviously, these are stereotypes
and you can meet both types
in either place.


There is something to be said for the 
kind attitudes 
and the cheap meals
and the crazy Billy-Elliot-esque vocabulary
that you start to experience 
once you roll up into the upper area of ole Blighty.

All of that to say,
I love when I find myself up north.

Especially if that means I'm in York.

York is a small town
(compared to the other "big" English cities),
but it has loads for tourists to enjoy.

I love these things:

Obviously, this church is a headliner
for most people's visit to York.

It's massive and it's stunning.

Go at 5:15pm for the daily evensong service
to get in and enjoy the church for free.

(You'll also hear some amazing choir singing in the 45 minute service-
but go 15 minutes early to snag a seat up close to the action.)

*  *  *

Yorkshire Pudding

I love nothing more than eating something
in it's birthplace.

While of Britain enjoys a Yorkshire pudding,
I've never seen them as big as they are in York.

{Editor's Note: A yorkshire pudding is not sweet. 
It's a savory bread-cup that is a perfect bowl shape 
for gravy on top of your roast meat & vegetables. 
Imagine a breadbowl... but less soggy.}

If you can get to a pub for a proper Sunday roast,
York makes it easy with two options 
that are centrally located and open daily:

Don't blow the chance to try this in person...

*  *  *

If you want tea
and you want to be fancy,
go to Betty's.

This gorgeous tea room & shop
give all the service and ambiance
you could ever hope for
in an English tea room.

This opulent surrounding
could hold its own 
around any fine establishment 
from the South.

*  *  *

I found myself eating cake & tea
in a places called, none other than, 

The downstairs is a teddy bear shop
and, up some narrow & windy stairs,
is a small tea shop + cafe.

It's not entirely impressive,
but the very top floor
has a great view overlooking the York Minster...
and you can get any cake + tea for £3.80

The carrot is awesome. 

I'd go back- baby or not.

{Though, admittedly, better with baby.}

*  *  *

sometimes it's fun to fall headfirst into a tourist trap... especially when you said trap lets you hold an owl.

If you go to York,
the other main tourist attractions you need to see are
(as in "Bloody Shambles")
and the Medieval Wall around the city.

Both are free to access, btw.

The Shambles are a tiny street of crooked buildings
and exposed-beam architecture
that draw your mind back hundreds of years.

The walk around the city walls offers gorgeous views
and a fun activity for an afternoon. 

*  *  *

And if you want to shop somewhere really neat?

Stop in the store,  The Imaginarium.

With curious objects, a luxe finish out, 
and friendly young men in dapper clothes attending you,
you'll find it hard to not walk away with something pretty in your hand.


Ah, I can't wait for you to experience York. 

Let me know if there are any favorites you have
from past trips there 
that I can try out 
the next time I find myself there!

*all images original to Aspiring Kennedy
Posted on November 15, 2013 and filed under "England", "travel", "york".