York City Walls
York City Walls—interchangeably known as the Bar Walls or Roman Walls—form an essential part of the fabric of York and are a must for visitors of all ages. Explore them on your own time and enjoy the exceptional views over striking city attractions, such as York Minster. Some travelers may prefer to stop by the York City Walls as part of a convenient and flexible hop-on, hop-off bus tour, although history fans who want a more in-depth look at York’s medieval past should consider private, customizable packages—or even themed tours—instead.
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Things to Know Before You Go
- Narrow paths and steep steps mean York City Walls may prove difficult for travelers with mobility issues to navigate.
- Sensible shoes should be worn when wandering the uneven paths of York City Walls.
- York City Walls provide an excellent starting point for a broader exploration of the city.
- Travelers who want to learn more about the walls should consider exploring them as part of an organized tour.
How to Get There
York City Walls, as the name implies, circle the once-Roman periphery of the city and there are several staircase access points for travelers to choose from, most notably Bootham Bar, Monk Bar, Micklegate Bar, or Walmgate Bar. The full loop takes around two hours. Meanwhile, York itself can be reached most readily by train. Travelers should depart at York Station.
When to Get There
York City Walls are open year-round, but given their slippery, exposed nature, exploring them on rainy, snowy, and blustery days isn’t recommended and they often close in such conditions anyway. Instead, stop by when it's sunny—between 8am and roughly dusk—and make the most of the elevated vantage points for photo opportunities.
Explore other Roman remnants in York
York City Walls aren’t the only reminders of Roman influence in York and interested travelers should make a point to stop by the Yorkshire Museum if they want to learn more about this period. There, you can see a number of Roman relics, while the impressive Roman Multangular Tower still stands in the Museum Gardens.