The history books and guide books will tell you that the Romans formed the city nearly 2000 years ago in AD 71 and the city grew when the Vikings invaded in AD866 – but you don’t really need the history books to tell you about the past – a walk around the medieval city soon shows the visitor how special York is.

There is so much to see and do in York – and the nice thing is there is something for all ages and all pockets.

For travellers on a budget there are some wonderful free attractions – York plays host to Britain’s national collection of railway trains and artefacts – the National Railway Museum (NRM) houses a fine collection of old steam trains – including the worlds fastest steam locomotive, Mallard - newer diesel and electric loco’s and a fantastic exhibion of Royal trains, including Queen Victoria magnificent rake of royal carriages. The NRM must be the best value for any attraction in the area because it is absolutely free!

The walk around the City walls (again free!) gives visitors an opportunity to see the City and enjoy its history away from the bustle of traffic and crowded pavements,

As well as the magnificent York Minster there is a wealth of old churches to explore – in particular All Saints Church (North Street) with its fine collection of 14th century stained glass and the Holy Trinity in Goodramgate – which is hidden behind a row of houses reputed to be amongst the oldest in England. The 15th century church is notable for its 17th century irregular box pews. Both churches are free to look around (but they do have collection boxes if you feel you want to contribute).

York’s Museum Gardens in Museum Street houses the Yorkshire Museum (entrance fee) but the gardens and many of their attractions are free to enter which allows visitors the chance to look around St Mary’s Abbey a Benedictine Abbey ,once the wealthiest in the north of England, and its guest House the Hospitium; the ten sided Roman Multangular tower, built during the reign of Emperor Severus in the early 3rd century, or just laze in the gardens as peacocks show off their splendid fanned tails.

Street Entertainers throng to York escapologists, jugglers, dancers and traditional buskers fill the city with “free” entertainment – well free if you can get away before the “hat” is passed around the crowd!

You will have to spend some money if you want to see the top tourist attractions like JORVIK a Viking museum which takes you under the Streets to see the buildings which stood in York a thousand years ago. The centre had major improvements reopening in Feb 2010. But of course you must not miss the world famous YORK MINSTER (entrance fee applies - unless you go to a service and then take your chance to look around!) – one of the world’s largest medieval Gothic cathedrals, or walk though the cobbled Victorian Streets of the CASTLE MUSEUM, but thankfully York has a wealth of options to educate, entertain and inform the visitor on the tightest budget.