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Half Term Activities for all the Family in York

Keep the children entertained with plenty of things to see, do and experience over the school holidays. York is an ideal location for families, and as another half term is fast approaching get ready for a fun filled adventure in the city. With exciting attractions, brilliant museums and engaging entertainment, there’s an abundance of fantastic family friendly activities to do this half term. If you’re a resident or a visitor to the city, there is a vast array of great things to do this half term to keep everyone happy.

Take the kids to some of York’s most magnificent attractions this half term, and spend some quality time together with lots of fun and exciting things to do. If you’re looking for a fright-filled adventure and to discover some gruesome stories of York’s past, face your fears at The York Dungeon as you journey through 2,000 years of York’s darkest history, bringing together iconic characters, immersive sets and thrilling special effects in a unique and exciting actor led experience that you see, hear, feel and smell. However, the question is will you survive The York Dungeon? (The Dungeon is recommended for children from age 8 plus).

Half Term York Dungeon

Enjoy lots of family friendly activities in the heart of the city, step back in time to discover 10th century York at Jorvik Viking Centre and see life as it would have been nearly 1,000 years ago. Keep the children entertained on a ride experience as you travel around, learn more about the Vikings and discover the sights, sounds and even the smells of York as the Viking period is brought back to life. Watch your kids discover the most exciting artefacts from 2,000 years of York’s history at DIG, which is a hands-on archaeological adventure and based on real life digs in the city, children can grab a trowel and discover York’s past.

Half Term Dig Blog

Think York, think chocolate! York has a rich history with and is famous for its chocolate. There are so many ways to discover some of the stories behind the greatest names in chocolate and no trip to York is complete without finding more about the city's sweet past. From attractions, chocolate making masterclasses to independent chocolate shops, there’s something to tempt every taste.

Delve into York’s chocolate history and unwrap the secrets of chocolate making with an entertaining and informative guided tour as you take a closer look into the lives of York’s famous chocolate founding families and their finest creations. At York’s Chocolate Story, you will discover the origins of chocolate, how to make it and how to taste it like an expert. After your tour, you can put your knowledge into practice and choose from a selection of some of the finest handmade fresh chocolates to take away with you, or treat yourself to a delicious signature hot chocolate from their popular café. If you’ve got a sweet tooth and you're looking to enjoy more family friendly activities with your little ones this Half Term, York Cocoa Works also have a great variety of fun, chocolate-filled experiences to keep your family entertained during the school holidays.

Half Term Yorks Choc Story

Great Attractions to Visit This Half-Term

Ride on the hop-on-hop-off bus and see the famous landmarks of York, experience the official open-top tour of York with buses running every 20 minutes. Capturing the hearts of all ages, see all the main sights including York Minster and Clifford’s Tower. Escape the hustle and bustle and take the family on a lovely sightseeing cruise along the River Ouse and see York from a different perspective.

Wow the kids with a visit to the National Railway Museum and dive into the past, present and future of the railways. From robots to miniature railways there is so much for your mini engineers to explore, as they will also come face to face with the fastest steam locomotive in the world.

Head to Parliament Street for a great selection of children's rides opening on the 22nd February, including mini tea cups and hook-a-duck.

Pick up a York Pass and choose your adventure to enjoy top York attractions including Jorvik Viking Centre and The York Dungeon.

Family-Friendly York

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Fun Things to Do

Discover York’s most magical golf course as a fun activity for the whole family to enjoy. The Hole in Wand is a wizard themed mini golf experience located in the heart of the city and will go down a treat with the Harry Potter fans in your abode. Based on The Shambles, one of the most famous streets in the world and said to be the inspiration for Diagon Alley in Harry Potter, sits the Potions Cauldron. Keeping the history of magic alive on the Shambles and a shop that any Wizard would want to visit. Learn about the history of the World’s Most Magical Drinks Emporium and enjoy a magical drink.

Snap family selfies and panoramic views at York Minster, and enjoy some free fun activities over the half term holidays. With so many fantastic things to do there is plenty to keep the whole family entertained. Source the latest fashions for your wardrobe and head to York for a unique shopping experience. From designer stores, independent boutiques and your favourite high street names, there is no better place for some retail therapy.

Family Friendly Events and Activities

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Find Somewhere to Eat In York

There are plenty of family friendly places to eat in York, from independent cafes, restaurants and bars that welcome children or choose from a fantastic range of street food stalls with tastes from across the globe. York offers a variety of perfect places to refuel on a lunchtime, that are great for children with everything from special kids' menus, to fun activities and quirky food options. There are also some great ideas for takeaway and delivery if you decide on eating at home instead.

Book your Half Term Stay in York

Get a good night’s sleep after a full day of exploring the historic city of York, whether you are looking for a family friendly hotel, self-catering accommodation or if you fancy heading out of the city and want to sleep under the stars, in a caravan, lodge or luxury Shepherd hut then there are some great places for a family getaway. If you’re bringing your furry friends along, there is also plenty of dog friendly accommodation too.

Family Friendly Accommodation

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The Apple House

Newly renovated Grade 2 listed house with large private car park. Easy walk to the city centre, station and r…

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This is a beautifully renovated Georgian property in the heart of York, close to all the attractions and the …

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The Irishman's Cottage @ Dovecote Barns

The Irishman's Cottage is a multi-award winning converted 18th century eco barn based in Kelfield near York. …

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Beyond York

Discover the Dark Skies Festival for an unrivalled star gazing experience in the North York Moors National Park, providing a wonderful opportunity to get out and admire the starry skies of the International Dark Sky Reserve. So get your binoculars ready, expand your knowledge and enjoy a superb programme of events. Here are just some of the highlights of what you can expect to see at this year’s festival.

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