Things to do in York this half term, February 2014

14 Feb 2014 @ 8.53 am
| Entertainment

Half term’s here and York has a packed programme of events to keep families busy. Vikings and plague victims will be cheerfully going about their business in the city, you can learn to drive a steam engine or sketch a silhouette.

As ever, the full picture is in our comprehensive What’s On guide.

Jorvik Viking Festival


The beardies are back! The Jorvik Viking Festival celebrates its 30th anniversary with a Norse feast of family-friendly events from Saturday 15th – Sunday 23rd February. There’s living history reenactments in the Eye of York, combat training in the Guildhall and the small matter of the end of the world with the spectacular Ragnarok final battle on Saturday 22nd.

Valentines at York Dungeon


It’s not just Vikings out for blood this half term – plague-ridden Polly wants a piece of the action at York Dungeon. With her unhealthy visitors kissing booth and match making schemes, you’ll be in for a very creepy Valentines experience.

Victorians at the Castle Museum


If you don’t want to get down and dirty with Vikings or plague victims, head to York Castle Museum which is having a la-di-da time with those posh Victorian ladies who lunch. Find out how the upper classes spent their leisure time, create your own sentimental silhouette and discover their penchant for 12-course banquets. Care for some savoury cucumber soup anyone? More details here.

Engine driver training at the NRM


Do you have a wannabe train driver in the family? Take them along to the National Railway Museum’s half term special, Train For The Tracks. Find out what it’s really to like to drive a steam locomotive or construct a railway line, or find out how big things move fast – with the help of an elephant launcher and a cannon. Chuffing marvellous.

Smarties at the Chocolate Story

Photograph: Alexandre Duret-Lutz on Flickr
Photograph: Alexandre Duret-Lutz on Flickr

Want to know all about Smarties? Like why do the orange ones taste the best? York’s Chocolate Story is paying homage to one of Britain’s best-loved brands this half term with hands on activities including guided tours and an opportunity to break the Guinness World Record for sorting Smarties using a pair of chopsticks.

Teddy Bear Week at the NYMR


If you go down to the North Yorkshire Moors Railway this week, you’re sure of a big surprise. Here, it’s all about the teddies – every child that brings a teddy bear (oh, and a full paying adult) travels for free through some fabulous Yorkshire countryside. So if you’re heading over to Pickering station, don’t forget to take Mr Edward Teddingtons.