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Fantastic Festivals and Events in York

York is a thriving city with a major event taking place nearly every month, so you can easily time your mini-break with something entertaining which is going on in the city. There is the York Fashion Week and the York Literature Festival taking place later this month, the York Races over the summer and much more throughout the year. If you are planning a visit to the North Yorkshire city, be sure to read on to see what is on over the coming months and any festivals are happening that you won’t want to miss!

York Literature Festival, 15th – 31st March

The York Literature Festival is an annual event which celebrates the written and spoken word. There will be seminars and talks with some of Britain’s top authors, readings and debates and a chance for budding writers to learn more about the process of becoming an established author. There are also child-friendly activities which include story time and performances. The various talks that are part of the festival take place at several venues around the city and you can find more information on the official website.

Books on display at York Literature Festival

York Open Studios, 6th, 7th and 13th, 14th April

York Open Studios is a non-profit arts festival which gives the public a chance to meet and admire the work from selected local artists and makers. Over two weekends in April, these artists will be opening their studios, workshops and homes for people to see how their amazing artwork is made. From photography to sculpture, there will be several formats to see, and there is expected to be over 100 artists in nearly 100 venues around the city taking part in the festival. There will be several new artists featured this year, specialising in glass, sculpture, textiles and painting. You can find a whole list of who will be taking part at the Open Studios here.

Paintbrushes in an artist's studio

Chocolate Festival, 18th – 22nd April

Happening over the Easter weekend, the York Chocolate Festival is an occasion for everyone. The festival is held on Parliament Street, and you will be able to sample some tasty treats at the market, purchase some delicious sweets to take home and learn about the chocolate making process in the demonstration tent. While visiting the festival, you may also want to pay a visit to the Chocolate Story museum on Kings Square to get your fill of chocolatey goodness!

York Races, Several Dates.

The York Races brings people from all over the world to the city to watch the top racehorses, visit one of Britain’s finest racecourses, enjoy local food and have a good time with family and friends. There are music concerts, family-friendly activities and fashion at several of the race days over the summer. The musical artists announced for the concert race days are Busted on 29th June, Tears for Fears, James Arthur over the 26th and 27th July, so if you don’t want to miss out on a great performance combined with an exciting racing day remember those dates when booking! There are nine race events, starting with the Dante Festival from the 15th – 18th May, and ends with the October Finale on 11th – 12th October.

Horce race at York Racecourse

York River Art Market, Several Dates

On every Saturday throughout July and August, the York River Art Market takes place on Dame Judy Dench Walk by the River Ouse. Artists and crafters come from around the country to sell their unique pieces each weekend, and visitors can admire and buy the fantastic work on offer. The market is open from 10am each Saturday, and there have been two June dates added too; 22nd and the 29th. If you want to pick up some unique artwork when visiting York, be sure to plan your trip around these dates! The market is located near the gorgeous Museum Gardens, so you can double up your visit with a picnic in the sun!

York Walls Festival, 10th – 11th August

The York Walls Festival is a chance to learn more about the history of the city walls, one of the defining features of this historical city. There will be guided walks, archives on display at the library, talks by an archaeologist and more. If you have an interest in history, this festival is for you and is a great opportunity to find out about one of the city’s famous landmarks. Several of the events over the weekend are child-friendly too. The City Walls are perfect for taking a break from the hustle and bustle and offer stunning views of York, including the iconic Minster.

York City Walls

York Food and Drink Festival, 20th – 29th September

Food lovers won’t want to miss out on the York Food and Drink Festival which takes place in September. There is something for everyone, from wine tastings to cooking demonstrations and hands-on workshops. More details about the festival will be revealed closer to the date, but if you know you will love sampling local food and drink, don’t hesitate to plan your stay! The majority of the events take place around Parliament Street and the Shambles Market.

You will find our aparthotel, York, is the perfect accommodation if you are looking to attend the many festivals which happen in and around the city. Our luxury apartments are in walking distance to the best cafés, bars and restaurants in York and the venues of the events, and include all the facilities you may need for a self-catered mini-break. Contact us today to find out about availability.

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