York, the capital of the North, has been home to Romans, Anglo-Saxons, Vikings, and Normans. There is a lot of history here and Alan did a good job of explaining it and highlighting some of the leading characters (or at least the most colorful ones).
Bootham Bar, a gatehouse at the northwest entrance to the town and the one closest to the Minster, has some of the oldest surviving stonework (11th century).
St. Mary's Abbey, dating from around 1080, was once one of the richest abbeys in England. The Abbey fell into decline with King Henry VIII's Dissolution of the Monastaries, and much of the stone was pilfered for other building projects.
|St. Mary's Abbey|
York Minster (aka Cathedral and Metropolitical Church of St. Peter in York - there's a mouthful) is the largest Gothic cathedral in northern Europe.
|Spires of York Minster|
The Shambles, with some buildings dating from the 14th century, is where the butcher shops all used to be located. All the blood and guts used to just run down the gutter. I'm sure it was a really pleasant place to go (especially with long skirts - yuck). Now a tourist mecca.
Clifford's Tower is the keep left over from the York Castle. After the castle was destroyed in the 1600's, the keep was used as a prison until 1929.
|Climbing the steps to Clifford's Tower.|
|View of York Minster from Clifford's Tower.|
|Spires of York Minster.|
After the tour, we took a break back at the guest house before dinner. Tonight, we did go into The House of Trembling Madness, but it was pretty packed and some of us just weren't feeling in the mood for pub food. We ended up at a Nepalese place called Yak & Yeti that was pretty good. Back to the Guest House in time for the final episode of Top Gear.