Lakes District, Day 4

Day 4 was ours to spend in York.  I made a friend at the hostel the night before, and we decided to explore the city together that morning.

If you made it to the York Minister (Cathedral and Metropolitical Curch of Saint Peter) before 9 your entry was free, so that’s where we headed first! It’s the largest cathedral of its kind in Northern Europe.

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Next up was Clifford’s Tower.

Then back to the wall we went, to cover the area I didn’t get to yesterday! Every so often there’s a fort, all of which look different.  It was nice to see some variety.

I really like finding the history of old buildings, so my new friend and I parted ways as I went to check out the Merchant Adventurers’ Hall. It’s a medieval guidldhall, and one of the most important buildings in a medieval city.

According to the pamphlet, this group become a guild in 1430 (“The Mystery of the Mercers”) before changing its name in 1581 to the “Company of Merchant Adventurers of the City of York”.  A Merchant Adventurer was someone who risked or ‘adventured’ his or her own money in overseas trade bringing back goods and wealth to the city.  These traders became the most influential citizens of the city. There was originally a religious aspect to the Guild but they had to really underplay it during the reformation.

First built in 1357, it’s now a fully functioning museum, wedding and hospitality venue.

My next (and favourite) stop was the Treasurer’s House.  One rich guy bought this giant house and continuously redecorated it to make the building look as authentic as possible, decorating it as it would have looked in the past. It wasn’t all terrible either, which I wasn’t expecting.

In another historical building across town, Barley Hall, you could find original movie costumes from an arrange of movies including Hamlet, Elizabeth, The Duchess, Pride and Prejudice, The Portrait of a Lady, Sweeney Todd, and The King’s Speech:

My day ended with my most favourite activity: shopping!  It had been so long since I had real time in an actual city, so I spent a few hours perusing the shops and updating my very limited travel wardrobe.

All in all, I really enjoyed York! It’s a great city with a perfect mix of historical and modern elements.  I was very jealous when a university friend decided to go the University of York for her masters. Very very jealous.

Lakes District, Day 3

We left Keswick for good this morning, and travelled to the small town of Appleby, where we just missed a horse-pulled caravan. They had a lovely market where I found some old cross-stitching books (which I’ve never used, or have any intention to ever use). Still thought it was a cool find though 🙂

We headed back to the car, and made our through the Yorkshire Dales National Park. It was too beautiful not to stop and take pictures, but please note, we were just hanging out at the side of the highway.

Our next actual stop was in Hawes, home to Wensleydale Cheese and Bolton Castle. The Castle was Mary Queen of Scot’s prison in 1568, and open for visitors.

We would have stayed in Hawes longer but it started to pour and it didn’t look like it would be letting up anytime soon.  So we decided to continue on to our last destination of the day — York.

The plan was to spend the day in York tomorrow as well, so it was all free time for us to do as we please. By the time we arrived, I wasn’t prepared to go line up at any of the attractions, so I decided to walk around the city walls and get an overhead view of what I’d be seeing the following day.