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approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

sandy, utah
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approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

Our family of 4 will be visiting for the first time from the US this May and with only a day in York and the need to plan a realistic itinerary, We'll be staying at the Bentley Guest House, about .6 mile walk from the Minster. I'd appreciate some input on approximately how long it would take to do the following, how you would prioritize the list, what order you would see things, etc.:

-Take a guided tour of the Minster (I'm assuming we'll want some more time afterwards for more pictures)

-Visit the Yorkshire Museum/St. Mary's Abbey (there's an optional combo ticket with the Minster starting in April)

-Walk along the walls from Bootham Bar to Monk Bar (could do this before or after other attractions close)

-Walk through the Shambles (are any of the shops worth checking out and what are their opening and closing hours on a Saturday?)

-Visit the highlights of the National Rail Museum (I'm not really into trains but the free price makes it sound tempting, especially if you can enter some of them)

Anything you'd skip or other must-sees including at night like one of the ghost walk tours? If it makes a difference, our son and daughter are 21 and 19.

Thanks a lot for your advice.

Liverpool, United...
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1. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

2 hours minimum to visit the NRM.

Newbury, United...
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2. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

A days just wandering around, its all fairly compact but there is so much to see you can't do it in a morning..

National Railway Museum highlights start from the moment you walk in until the moment you leave. Like trains or not its a stunning museum.

London, United...
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3. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

What would help is to know how long you have available in York. Trying to read between the lines, I think that you will arrive in York one day and check into your hotel, tour around York the following day and move on somewhere else at some time that day. If that's the plan then you may have time to visit somewhere on your list on the day you arrive - the walk along the walls perhaps? - but on the other hand, possibly not. Also, if my understanding of your itinerary is correct, perhaps you could stroll along The Shambles (it's one fairly short street, not an area, which takes about two minutes or so to walk along without stopping) in the evening and assess if there are any shops that you wish to visit the next day. But I'm guessing at what your overall itinerary is and if you could come back with the approximate times you expect to arrive in and depart from York, that might help people to answer your originally posting.

sandy, utah
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4. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

We'll be arriving in York from the Lake District around 8:30 pm on Fri. May 18th so if sunset is close to 9 pm, might be able to check in our bed and breakfast and walk along the walls until it's dark.

**Are cars allowed to drive into the York city center/park for free at night?

We'll be spending 2 nights in York (a requirement for most lodging places) and heading south towards London first thing Sunday morning.

My biggest dilemma is this:

With only one day possible in York, I would dearly love to also visit Fountains Abbey and was told it's about a 50 min. drive from York and that if we left York by 3 pm, we'd be able to see most of it and the water gardens before it closes. Of course this choice takes away from more sightseeing in York but I'd have 6+ hours before 3 pm to see as much as I could. I also can't just wait until the day we're therefor our family to decide because we're buying National Trust touring passes and they're available in one or two week passes. Fountains Abbey is the only NT attraction we'd be seeing during week two of our trip so I don't want to purchase the extra week and not use it or vice versa.

What would you do in my situation? It's no wonder that I can't sleep at night.

Southport, United...
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5. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

I hope you have booked a B & B with parking, as parking is very difficult in York. I believe there are evening parking charges in many places. If you google York parking you will get onto the York council parkng pages with all the information.

To drive for the best part of an hour to get to Fountains Abbey and have possibly an hour there seems completely pointless to me. I'd stay in York and enjoy all it has to offer and just enjoy it rather than rushing all over the place. Or just go to Fountains Abbey for the day. The parts you wish to see close at 5pm.

The walls close at dusk so you may not be able to go all the way round on the night you arrive. There is a York walls website.

I could spend all day in York and happily just go to the Minster and the Railway museum.

London, United...
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6. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

"if sunset is close to 9 pm, might be able to check in our bed and breakfast and walk along the walls until it's dark." - probably not, as York Council website states that in May the walls are closed from 8pm.

"Are cars allowed to drive into the York city center/park for free at night?" - no need to drive into the city centre. Your guest house is about a ten minute walk away from the centre and the nature of the place is that it is really impractical to drive into the centre. Google Streetview gives the impression that there is on-street car parking available outside your accommodation, but I would check that with the proprietor. If necessary, it's likely that the proprietor would provide a parking permit, so parking would be free from your point of view anyway. My previous comment, about walking around the city centre and taking a look at the Shambles on your first evening, still stands.

I would say that you'd be able to visit everywhere listed in your first post on this thread on the Saturday, but to want to visit Fountains Abbey as well involving more travelling time than you'd have available before closing time - well, you don't seem to make life easy for yourself. Your (and your family's) holiday, but I'd be inclined to spend the whole day in York.

UK
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7. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

In my HO anything less than at least half a day at Fountains Abbey is not worth considering. It would appear that this trip is just ticking boxes without really seeing anything.

Canada
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8. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

In your situation (which no offence, I hope I never find myself in, because this trip is less of a vacation than a route march)

When I got to York - I'd have a light supper, a well deserved drink and go to bed..

Next morning - I'd go to Fountains first thing and spend the morning there, return to York - do the Railway Museum, the Minster and then amble around the walls and the Shambles. I'd skip the museum in the Abbey gardens - its interesting and like all British museums worth a visit, but its just too much to do on YOUR particular day.

Illinois
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9. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

Everyone is different, so it's hard to say how long you will need for somewhere, but I put some times into my trip report from a day trip to York here (post 96):

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g186338-i17-k47637…

I went back in Dec with my daughter (14) and she really liked the ghost walk. I think we went on the Original Ghost Tour. It started outside the King's Arms pub on the riverfront. I got a reservation for the Horror Tour of York, but it wasn't running the day we tried to go.

York, United Kingdom
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10. Re: approximate touring times for the walls, Shambles, etc.

You are coming from the Lake District -Why dont you stay near Fountains Abbey -say somewhere like Mallard Grange where friendly owner ,Maggie,would take you under her wing. Have a nice meal in the countryside and arrive at 9pm to hear the Ripon Hornblower. Lovely man marvellous history to it.1100 years of history and we know how much visitors like history Early breakfast and set off to York and so everything include the Castle Museum. What is the point of going to the Railway Museum just because it is free. The Shambles you need to look up to look at the architecture not so much to bother with the touristy shops.Ghost walk later in the day with a trip down the river.and then maybe some place to stay like the Travel Lodge -cheap and cheerful on the edge of town .