York is by far one of my favourite places in the UK, it’s just so incredibly beautiful, with tonnes to discover and do. Whether I’ve visited with friends, family or even work, I’ve always managed to have an amazing time and I have completely fallen in love with the city. Alfie loves York just as much as I do and we actually had our first weekend away together there, so as it was our first anniversary last week, we thought we’d go back and the stay over for a couple days so we could create our Top 8 places to visit in York. It was a little difficult to visit all the places I wanted to as my back was causing me so much pain, but we still had an amazing time and managed to film it all too!
Alfie’s post will be coming up very soon and will feature a couple different places to mine as obviously beer isn’t really my thing, cocktails though…..
These are in absolutely no order as it’d be so unfair, we love some things more than others but to order them would be impossible!
1) York Cocoa House
3 Blake St
You’ve have just got to make time to visit York Cocoa House when you visit York, whether it be to just pop in and purchase some of their in-house made chocolate, sit in the cafe for a bite or to take part in one of their chocolate making classes like we did. It’s by far one of the funnest places I’ve ever been to. We’ve already made special Valentine’s Day love hearts last year but this time it was time for the most delicious chocolate bars! We made them ourselves so I’m totally being modest, I added coffee, a little orange, marshmallows and cute rose crystals to mine and it was flipping incredible. I ate most of it in York, how could I wait? But I did manage to get a little home to mum and she agreed that it’s definitely another talent of mine. The staff at York Cocoa House are amazingly friendly, the atmosphere and decor are so much fun and it’s just genuinely a cute, relaxing, and romantic place to visit. We’ll definitely be going back when we next visit and hopefully make time for another class! Classes run most days at 4pm but do see the links before to enquire about them!
2) Betty’s Tea Room & Little Betty’s
6-8 St. Helen’s Square
Betty’s Tea Room is the place that I was most excited to try after always seeing tens and tens of people queueing outside just to get in every time I’ve visited York! Surely this place was going to blow my mind? Well, it was a mixed reaction from both of us. The place itself was incredible, breathtaking even, so beautifully decorated and there’s no wondering why people love it so much. But, the food was really quite disappointing. For £20 for 1 person, I’d expect the best scones and freshest sandwiches in the world, but they weren’t and the afternoon tea didn’t actually come with tea? Disappointed from our first visit, we didn’t stay long enough to try the vanilla slices that we’ve heard so much about, so we trotted off to Little Betty’s the next day. After telling the lady about our experience, she said it must have just been the odd bad batch, which I can understand as we all have our bad days and our second visit to a Betty’s Branch more than redeemed it so it could be on my list! We had such a lovely time, the staff are truly so attentive and it is indeed what people say, an experience!
*I wore my Dolly & Dotty Dress for such a grand place!
3) Bill’s Restaurant York
12 Coney St
WE LOVE BILL’S. Seriously. We had only ever been to Bill’s once before this visit and that was in Liverpool, it really blew our expectations and was exactly what Alfie and I both love in a restaurant, with it’s quirky design, incredible food and a good range of drinks. It’s perfection. We were so excited for our second time at a Bill’s and the York branch is so beautifully quirky and has an incredible layout. We can’t lie, we definitely prefer York over Liverpool and the staff were definitely a big factor in that decision, they couldn’t be any friendlier – it was almost as if we’d known them for years. Bill’s blew our minds with the food and Alfie even said it was ‘the best’ burger he’s ever had, over Yeah Burger! Which is a really big deal for him. I let Jess, our incredibly funny waitress, decide what I had throughout the course of the evening and she suggested Duck Pie which is something I would never order. I’m now drooling thinking about it. I must have been ‘mmmm’ing and going on about how nice it was quite loudly as the two ladies sat close by ended up ordering one each too. Power of Jess! We forgot to vlog as the atmosphere there and our night was just so enjoyable. We would without a doubt go back on our next visit, we even considered going back for breakfast the next day but we slept in instead. Food or sleep is a hard choice. Everyone needs to go to Bill’s York immediately, we cannot recommend it enough!
4) Patisserie Valerie
Every single time I’ve been to York I’ve always looked at a Patisserie Valerie and never made the attempt to go in but thanks to my back needing a pit stop every half an hour, I finally got my wish. What a dream come true it was! Although the branch we went into was completely rushed off their feet, my two tier vanilla slice made up for it. It was one of those moments where your boyfriend says he doesn’t want one and then yours looks that delicious that you blink and a chunk is in his mouth. I don’t blame him, we nearly ordered a second but it was just too busy. It would have been worth the wait but we stayed for quite a while and it was time to move my back again. It’s a must visit when in York and not far from the Shambles either.
5) Shambles Kitchen
28 The Shambles
I have heard SO much about the Shambles Kitchen that it was time to try it out for myself and we’re so glad that we did. I’ve never heard Alfie be so quiet whilst eating his in-house made pulled pork sandwich. The Shambles Kitchen make everything themselves and have all their fresh ingredients on display so you can see how fresh they really are. I absolutely loved the history and story behind the company, the people behind it and everything they’re doing, such as lessons in schools and even catering for weddings now. It’s so amazing seeing how well people take to healthy fast food, it’s something we desperately need more of! Such an innovative and fun brand, that is definitely popular in York as whilst we were eating several regulars came in already knowing what they wanted, chatting away as if they were good friends and it just generally has an incredible atmosphere about it. Located right at the end (or beginning depending on where you start) of the Shambles. Healthy, affordable and most importantly, delicious fast food, it’s not hard to see why everyone raves about it!
6) Silvano’s Pizzeria & Ristorante
Everyone on Instagram, Facebook and the locals who we talked to whilst in York told us to go to Silvanos. We had walked past it around 8 times already and hadn’t noticed it, as it’s next to a busy road and Travelodge, so when we finally spotted it and exclaimed ‘this is it!!’ we couldn’t resist going in. It wasn’t the plan to stop for lunch until we got over the bridge, but how can you resist beautiful Italian food? Silvanos was SO tasty, like the mind blowing type tasty and we were so happy to have finally found it. Alfie was constantly trying to steal some of mine, whilst still eating his, I think the excitement of seriously fresh and delicious food took over. Quite reasonably priced too, and I imagine of a night time it’ll have an amazing atmosphere. Apparently 12pm on your last day of a mini-break isn’t an appropriate time for wine according to Alfie, pft!
7) York Minster
You can’t go to York without visiting the York Minster. You don’t necessarily need to go in as it’s so breathtaking from the outside, but if you do manage to go in, take it allllll in as it’s truly beautiful. It’s one of my favourite places in York to go just and sit outside of and look at its full beauty. It also photographs well whatever time of day meaning you can really practice being artsy. I probably have over 100 angles of it now!
8) The Old Siam
We were SO lucky to find such a charming establishment opened as late as we wanted food, and thankfully it was a delicious Chinese. It’s about half way back to the Premier Inn on Blossom St so it’s perfect for when you’ve been walking around for far too long. The menu was so hard to choose from but pleasing for us as we’re big Chinese fans. Whenever we head to a chinese restaurant we always order from a set menu just so we can try new things out, we also ordered a bottle of wine and we were so pleased that even though our first day there was a slow start, we managed to have a cute night out thanks to this place!
9) York Fudge Kitchen
58 Low Petergate
Okay, maybe I was saving the best until last? I LOVE FUDGE. But most importantly, I love the fudge from the Fudge Kitchen as it is the absolute freshest and most delicious tasting fudge I have ever had. My obsession with this place started about 2/3 maybe even 4 years ago, I even have a loyalty card that’s seriously old and full and I now get a free slab of fudge on my next visit, mmmm. They give out free samples constantly, you can try everything out before you decide which is great as it’s quite a BIG piece of fudge so if you don’t love it, it’s a waste. I really went over the top this time but I just needed my fix. Until next time!
Also, the staff were so lovely and funny on our visit in, one of the ladies actually randomly complimented me in the street the day before! So I bought even more because the staff was nice and not because I am utterly obsessed. Believable? It’s a good excuse anyway. On my vlog before you can hear me make the tough decision to get 6 slabs instead of 4, I already cannot wait to go back. I’ve ordered online before, well it was a present, but they bought a gift box of smalllllller pieces of fudge and they just weren’t as fresh, so maybe I’ll have to test out the big pieces from online… Research purposes, obviously.
Be sure to watch my vlog on our 4 days there too! A little bit of an abrupt ending as I was just SO tired and achy but I still hope you enjoy it.
*We did work with a couple of companies whilst there for this feature but all opinions are always honest and my own.