York is known as one of the most haunted cities in the world. So naturally, we took a ghost tour. The reviews we read were very mixed, so I wasn't expecting much. Worst case was we got a guided walk of some of the city. Our tour guide looked like Alfred Hitchcock's little brother. It was fantastic. He was a very good story-teller. He spoke "in character" like a retired history professor at all times telling us stories of what happened many centures ago despite the occasional, interrupting, drama-breaking cars passing by. If I were 4 years old, I probably would've been very scared. To reach our final destination, we veered off a busy street into a dark, narrow alley that led to a dead end with a small courtyard where a 3-story building stood with a very Charles-Dickens-like door. Our guide walked up the few steps to the door, turned around, and delivered his final story. This time, he was interrupted only by restaurant workers throwing trash out the back door. When he finished, we were free to go. In a very gentlemanly manner, his arm gestured toward the narrow alley where we entered, and he stood that way like a statue for what felt like a longer than normal time than is needed to show someone the way out that is also the way they entered. We walked out having thoroughly enjoyed our animated city tour. But to our astonishment, as we looked back to the courtyard, our ghost guide was not there. Where he disappeared to is a mystery. And so goes the tale of the York Ghost tour Hithcock look-a-like.
York had a castle. I'm not entirey sure what happened to it, but this structure called Clifford Tower that sits on the nearby hill is all that's left that looks anything like a castle. It does have some historical sigifigance that affected the entire city. In 1190, a mob formed and attacked the Jews. One of the Jewish leaders led about 150 Jews to Clifford Tower for protection. The were surrounded and trapped. Some surrendered and promised to convert to Christianity but were killed anyway. The ones who refused to surrender collectively decided that they would rather commit mass suicide than surrender. So they killed themselves and set the tower on fire.
The old city walls are more or less still intact. We walked on them around part of city center. We got some nice views of the small city. There is also a tiny street called Shambles that is apparently very famous.
Aside from a delicious Indian meal, we stumbled on a restaurant of personal interest to me. It was good.