Guided tour

York: City Highlights Small Group Walking Tour

Activity provider: Yorktour

York: City Highlights Small Group Walking Tour

Activity provider: Yorktour
Likely to sell out
Likely to sell out

From US$ 22.64 per person

A 90-minute small group walking tour from the dawn of Christianity to the birth of the Kit Kat. Find out why York is still a city with Viking mud on its boots and a taste of cocoa in the air.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
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Duration 1.5 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide
Wheelchair accessible
Small group
Limited to 6 participants


  • Explore the labyrinth of medieval streets and snickelways in a small group
  • Discover a Roman fortress and ruined abbey within a Victorian botanic garden
  • Wander through the Shambles - the original Diagon Alley
  • Find out how the Minster grew to become the country's largest gothic cathedral
  • Locate the point where it is possible to see two thousand years of history - while turning on the spot
Full description
Contained within a ring of medieval stone walls, York concentrates 2000 years of history into a remarkably small area. This ninety-minute tour begins at Bootham Bar, the city’s northern entrance, from which every period of York’s development is visible, from Roman times to the present day. You’ll then enter the tranquil, green oasis of the Museum Gardens - a Victorian botanic garden which contains an 18th Century observatory, the remains of a Roman fortress and the spectacular ruins of St Mary’s Abbey. From here it is a short walk to the Minster - the largest medieval gothic cathedral in the country - which has dominated the city’s skyline for over 900 years. The Minster lies at the heart of a warren of ancient streets whose layout is Viking in origin. You’ll hear tales of Viking invasion while delving deep into the maze of secret passages known as ‘Snickelways’; passing an unhappy mermaid and a little red devil as well as catching a glimpse of a 15th Century banqueting hall. Finally you’ll emerge into the Shambles,York’s best-known cobbled street - once a row of butchers, now instantly recognisable to Harry Potter fans as the inspiration for Diagon Alley.
  • Professional, experienced and fully-qualified tour guide
    Covid-19 precautions
    Safety measures in place
    • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds

    Select participants and date



    Meeting point

    Meet in the square outside the Central Library (York Explore Library and Archive) YO1 7DS. The guide will have a sign with the names of all participants on the tour.

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    Important information

    Know before you go

    • Comfortable shoes are recommended as you will be on your feet though York is forgivingly flat.
    • Suitable for all ages - family groups especially welcome.
    Customer reviews

    Overall rating

    4.9 /5

    based on 262 reviews

    Review summary

    • Guide
    • Value for money
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    I really enjoyed this tour. Alfred was on time, very friendly and had a great knowledge of York. He took us to lots of places that we would never have come across without him and knew the answers to all our questions. I certainly know a lot more about York than I did before. Very enjoyable.

    April 11, 2022

    Great tour with an incredibly knowledgeable guide, loved the introduction to York’s Snickleways! I would highly recommend this tour for anyone who wants to find out more about the history and development of York. It really does take you back in time but in a really engaging and accessible way. Our guide Alfred was an absolute pleasure to spend an afternoon with Chris & Dixie

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    March 14, 2022

    We thoroughly enjoyed our guide last week with Alfred. He is insanely knowledge and talks with such knowledge and enthusiasm that it's hard for anyone not to be swept up in the history of York. My husband and I have vowed we will always book a tour when visiting a new city as we were able to pass on nuggets of information to our friends when we met with them the following day. We wouldn't hesitate to recommend Alfred and this tour to anyone who wishes to see York in all its historical splendour.

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    January 22, 2022

    Product ID: 169987