Complete guide to the Jorvik Viking Festival 2014

Lock up your daughters! They're back. Photograph: Jorvik Viking Centre
14 Feb 2014 @ 2.49 pm
| Entertainment
Lock up your daughters! They're back. Photograph: Jorvik Viking Centre
Lock up your daughters! They’re back. Photograph: Jorvik Viking Centre

It’s that time of year again, so dust off your hornless helmets, unsheathe your broadswords and don your chain mail for Ragnorak: the Norse Apocalypse

The streets of York are invaded by Vikings this month, for the 30th Annual Jorvik Viking Festival running from Saturday 15th to Sunday 23rd February 2014.

There’s plenty to see and do for kids and adults alike from bloodcurdling battle reeanactments to the lovely Best Beard Competition.

Here’s our guide. And don’t miss a single skirmish with our complete list of Jorvik events.

Live action combat

Have-a-go Sword Combat
Head to the Merchant Adventurer’s Hall to practice your sword skills ready for Ragnarok. Suitable for children, regular sessions from 10.30am-3.30pm, Monday 17th-Sun 23rd

Myths and Legends Arena
Watch legends come to life with live action battles between Viking warriors at the Guildhall. Mon, Weds, Thurs and Fri, performances at noon, 1.30 and 3pm

Strongest Viking Competition
The strongest Viking men compete for this coveted trophy at the Guildhall on Sat 22nd at 10am, come along and cheer for your favourite

March to Coppergate
The Vikings of Valhalla march across the city to Coppergate in a show of strength before the spectacular finale battle. Starts 1.30pm, Sat 22nd at York Minster

Ragnarok Battle Spectacular
It all ends here at the York Eye on Saturday 22nd from 6pm. There will be pyrotechnics, fire and of course lots of live action to befit Jorvik’s 30th Annual Viking Festival

Family Events

Anglo-Saxon Encampment
Learn how the Anglo-Saxon locals lived at this real life Viking camp at the Eye of York, and watch the two camps clash on Sat 15th and Sun 16 at 12 and 2pm

Coppergate Camp
The Vikings have landed at Coppergate, learn about their customs and adventures at sea daily Sat 15-22nd 11am-3pm

Creativity Corner
Make your own Viking pots or build a Viking shelter at the marquee in St Sampson’s Square from 10.30am Mon-Thurs

Little Diggers
Bring your little warriors along to DIG for some special play sessions at DIG on Sat 15th from 10.30am

Olaf’s Tales of Battle
Olaf the Viking tells tales of ancient battles at Clifford’s Tower Sun 16th to Sun 23rd daily at 11am

Animating the Legends
Younger children can get involved in making their own animations at DIG, with the best one receiving a prize at the end of the week! Sessions Mon-Fri 10am and 1.30pm

Viking Warrior Challenge
Viking themed games for children at DIG Mon-Fri 11-4pm

Viking Family Fun
Design and make a Viking Shield at York Minster Tue-Thurs 10-3pm and listen to some traditional viking tales

Viking Activity Workshop
Quizzes, crafts and stories for children 5-11 years old at Clifton Explore Library or Acomb Explore Tues 3-4pm or Haxby Explore on Weds 19th 3-4pm

Jorvik Alive
Enjoy a special Viking experience at the Jorvik Centre Tues 18th 6.30-8.30pm

Thor Double Bill
Catch Thor I and II at the City Screen in 3D for one night only Tues 18th from 8.30pm

The Lost Gods
Join Francesca Simon, author of the Horrid Henry series as she talks about her new book on Weds 19th at 2.30pm in the Merchant Adventurer’s Hall

Mini Musical Vikings
Music workshop with a Viking twist for children under 5 at the Mansion House Thurs sessions 11am, 1pm and 3pm

Talks, tours and history

Ships and Society
Gareth Williams talks about the ship’s role in Viking society at the Mansion House Sat 15th at 2pm

The Gospel of Loki
Popular author Joanne Harris introduces her new adult fantasy novel at the Mansion House Sun 16th at 2pm

The Digital Age
Meet the archaeologists capable of rendering ancient artefacts in 3D models at Barley Hall Mon 17 10am-12pm and 1-3pm

Viking Combs
Learn about Viking combs with Steve Ashby at the Mansion House, Mon 17th 2pm

Lindisfarne Lecture
Learn about the archaeology of Lindisfarne and new investigations into its past at DIG Mon 17th 7pm

Hidden Treasures
Drop into Barley Hall to ask York Archaeological Trust about fascinating medieval artefacts, Tues 18th 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm

The Genetic Legacy
Dr Turi King discusses the genetic legacy of the Vikings in the north of England at the Mansion House Tues 18th at 2pm

Conserving archaeology for the future
The team at York Archaeological Trust explain their techniques for historical conservation at Barley Hall Weds 19th from 10am

Dangerous Days
Join the author of the Horrible History series Terry Deary as he writes history for adults at the Mansion House Weds 19th at 6.30pm

Environmental Archaeology
Find out about the preservation qualities of York’s soil with the experts at Barley Hall on Thurs 20th 10am-12pm and 1-3pm

Forensic Archaeology
Build the human skeleton at Barley Hall and look into forensic archaeology Fri 21 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm

Knights of the Hawk
Meet author James Aitcheson at St Helen’s Church as he talks about his new series on Fri 21 at 2pm

Norse Nalebinding Workshop
Find out how to knit Norse hats and socks with Mari Wickets at Barley Hall Thurs 20th 10am and for more advanced learners Fri 21, 10am

Beowolf by Candlelight
The beautiful St Helen’s Church hosts an atmospheric interpretation of Beowulf at 4pm and 7pm Thurs 20

Music, Shopping and Dining

10th Century Traders
Join Vikings from around the world selling their wears at the Merchant Adventurers Hall and St Sampson’s Square Fri 21-Sun 23 from 10am

Ray Cooper
Ray Cooper returns to York for the Festival Folk Weekend at Barley Hall Sat 15th 7pm

Whispering Road
Barley Hall hosts a Scandinavian myth-inspired musical performance on Sun 16th at 7pm

Ultimate Viking Banquet
Join Jorvik for an exciting Viking feast at York Minster on Fri 21 at 7pm

European band Svartstot debut in the UK with their metal folk sound at Fibbers on Sat 22 at 8pm