Europe Day 4: York
Saturday, June 6, 2015
Today was spent on foot exploring the old city of York. After another hearty breakfast, we walked on much of the old city wall, which gave us an overview of the northeast side of York. We then walked into the old city and went to a museum to learn about the Viking period of Jorvik, between 866 and 1066.
There is a tremendous amount of history a few meters below York. What impressed us was the amount of information they got from everything the archaeologists found. For example, they were able to tell from a skeleton how muscular a particular person was and what types of parasites they hosted. We were all glad to be living in the present.
When we emerged from the museum we were struck with how crowded York had become during the morning. Part of this was attributable to a food festival that was taking place. I spotted a bicycle ambulance whose paramedic was happy to pose for a picture.
After a coffee break, we bought tickets for another hop on hop off tour like we took in Stratford-upon-Avon. This one had an excellent live tour guide who gave us more background on York. We got off at the rail station and made our way to the National Railway Museum, where we had lunch and explored the many train cars and locomotives on display.
We then got back on the tour bus and rode back to York Minster, the church that is the most prominent symbol of York. Getting there late in the day, we had limited time to explore before the Choral Evensong service that we wanted to attend. As expected, the service was very formal and with little participation by the congregation other than to stand and sit at the appropriate places. We did recite the Nicene Creed and sang one (unfamiliar) hymn. But the music was excellent, including the singing of two Psalms by the male choir.
Being Saturday night, we had to hunt for a bit to find a place to eat that wasn’t too crowded. We eventually found a good fish and chips place that was quiet enough that we were able to have a good conversation to review the day.
This article is part of a series about our recent vacation in Europe. To see the introductory article in the series, click here.