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Things to do in York for couples

York is a small city jam-packed with romantic things to do. Whether York is your home or you are just visiting, here are 15 things to do in York for couples.

York is an ideal destination for a romantic getaway; it’s a city full of magic, history, and beautiful architecture. You could explore the medieval walls and winding alleyways, visit the iconic York Minster, stroll along the River Ouse, enjoy a romantic dinner in one of the city’s many restaurants, or even go on a ghost tour to add excitement to your trip. We’ve compiled a list of the top things to do in York for couples so you can try them out and let us know your favourite.


1. Make your own chocolate at York’s Chocolate Story 

Chocolate making is a fun activity for couples in York.
A great date for those with a sweet tooth! Image from Facebook.

If you’re looking for a fun and unique date idea in York, look no further than York’s Chocolate Story! This museum is a must-see for locals and tourists, especially couples with sweet teeth. Take a fully guided tour through 3000 years of chocolate history and taste some delicious samples. The museum hosts various events and exhibitions, including chocolate-making workshops and masterclasses. You’ll leave with a newfound appreciation for the art of chocolate-making and a full stomach! It’s hands-on and makes an entertaining date.

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2. Admire panoramic views from Clifford’s Tower

Clifford's Tower at sunset in York is perfect for a date.
Climb to the top of the Tower and take in stunning views.

Clifford’s Tower was originally a motte, and bailey castle built by William the Conqueror, Clifford’s Tower served as a prison and royal mint before becoming the popular tourist attraction it is today. Climb to the top of the Tower and take in stunning views; on a clear day, you can see as far as the North York Moors, as one of the few remaining parts of York Castle Clifford’s Tower offers a glimpse into the city’s medieval past. After your visit, continue your exploration of the castle by walking along the York City Walls and enjoying the city from a unique perspective.

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3. Get creative and paint pottery at Bish Bash Pot

Bish Bash Pot Pottery Painting for couples in York.
This pottery painting studio and café offers couples a fun and relaxing experience. Image from Facebook.

If you’re looking for a unique and creative date idea in York, Bish Bash Pot is the place to go! This pottery painting studio and café offers couples a fun and relaxing experience. You can choose from various pottery items, such as mugs and plates, and decorate them with paints, stencils, and glitter. While you paint, you can enjoy refreshments at one of their cosy tables for two.

It’s the perfect way to spend quality time with your significant other, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Plus, you leave your creations at Bish Bash Pot to be glazed and fired and pick them up in a week. Don’t worry if you are visiting the area; you can have your pottery delivered to a nominated address and pay for the postage. Don’t miss out on this fun and creative activity – it’s perfect for a date or a fun outing with friends!

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4. Scare yourself silly at York Dungeon

Scare yourself silly on a romantic date at York Dungeon.
You’ll get to explore the scariest bits of York’s history, from the bloodiest Viking battles to the terrifying witches and disgusting doctors. Image from Facebook.

While York Dungeon may not be your typical idea of a romantic evening out, I promise it will be worth it once you give it a try! We had a fantastic time that we couldn’t stop raving about afterwards! You’ll get to explore the scariest bits of York’s history, from the bloodiest Viking battles to the terrifying witches and disgusting doctors. The actors are incredible, and their costumes, make-up and talent will make you feel like you’re in the middle of a witch trial in 1659. It’s a thrilling, heart-racing experience that will have you both laughing at each other’s frights. And don’t forget to snap some photos – you’ll want to remember this unforgettable experience for years.

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5. Rent a boat and cruise along the Ouse

Rent a boat and cruise along the Ouse.
You can rent and become your boat captain to experience something new and exciting with your partner.

If you’re feeling adventurous and up for a challenge, renting a self-driving boat to explore the River Ouse could be a great date! York City Cruises is the perfect place to start. You can rent and become your boat captain to experience something new and exciting with your partner. Who knows, you may even discover a hidden talent for boat driving! The boats have comfortable seats, so you can sit back and relax when you’re not at the helm and enjoy stunning views of the Museum Gardens, Minster, and architecture. If you prefer to avoid being in control, there are plenty of other boat cruises to try.

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6. Wander along the River Ouse

River Ouse at sunset is the perfect York date.
Sunset is widely known as the most romantic time of the day, and with accessible paths running for miles down both sides of the river, you’ll have fantastic views.

If you’re not into boating but still want to experience the beauty of York with your partner, taking a romantic stroll down the river at sunset is a beautiful alternative. Sunset is widely known as the most romantic time of the day, and with accessible paths running for miles down both sides of the river, you’ll have fantastic views of the iconic Millennium Bridge and Rowntree Park, among other sights. You and your partner can pack a picnic and stop at various points down the river to enjoy food and drinks while resting on the many benches that line the River Ouse. This is an excellent idea for a date night that’s simple and affordable.

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7. Join the Deathly Dark Ghost Tour of York

The theatrical style of the ghost walk is something we love.
The theatrical style of the ghost walk is something we love, and we recommend checking out the fantastic reviews before embarking on this adventure.

If you’re looking for an entertaining evening, The Deathly Dark Ghost Tour of York is an excellent choice. You’ll be led by a guide well known for their dark humour, and the tour is suitable for families. It delves into the sinister side of York and covers various topics, including the plague, Vikings, butchery, and murder. You’ll also have the chance to visit iconic landmarks like York Minster, the Shambles, and Whip-Ma-Whop-Ma Gate, the silliest street in England while listening to spine-tingling tales of bygone days, heinous crimes, and supernatural occurrences. The theatrical style of the ghost walk is something we love, and we recommend checking out the fantastic reviews before embarking on this adventure.

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Meeting point: The tour begins at 9-13 Grape Lane, York YO1 7HU. Your guide will meet you outside 1331 Bar and Grill.

Endpoint: The tour will conclude at Clifford’s Tower. Tower St, York YO1 9SA, UK.


8. Get magical at The Hole in Wand

Experience the wonder of a Harry Potter themed mini-golf.
Experience the wonder of a Harry Potter themed mini-golf. Image from Facebook.

Experience the wonder of a Harry Potter themed mini-golf adventure at the Hole in the Wand! With nine enchanting holes spread across two levels, you’ll encounter a few surprises. This activity is perfect for kids, although we noticed quite a few adults on dates like us enjoying the magic. The minimum age is three, and the maximum group size is six wizards with wands. After your magical nine-hole adventure, you can relax in our Wizard Tavern with a Cauldron Cake and enjoy a delicious potion (with poisonous options for grown-up spell makers).

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9. Walk York City Walls

Walk York City Walls.
The walls are open to the public from 8 am until dusk and don’t cost a penny to explore.

If you want to see the city in all its glory, a stroll along the York City Walls is a must. York boasts the most intact Medieval wall miles of any city in England, and you can still walk almost the entire circuit. The walls are open to the public from 8 am until dusk and don’t cost a penny to explore. It should take roughly two hours to complete the entire route, but you can always opt for a shorter section if you’re pressed for time. If you’re looking for a more romantic experience, try walking the walls at dusk, when there are fewer tourists and the soft light of the golden hour illuminates York’s beauty.

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10. Kiss under the Great West Window at York Minster

A local legend suggests couples should share a kiss beneath the Great West Window at York Minster.
A local legend suggests couples should share a kiss beneath the Great West Window.

If you’re looking for a peaceful escape from the busy city, York Minster is the perfect spot for couples to explore. A local legend suggests couples should share a kiss beneath the Great West Window, also known as the “Heart of Yorkshire”, due to its intricate heart-shaped stone tracery. They say that if you do so, you’ll stay together forever. There’s no way to confirm whether this is true, but it’s a lovely idea to remember during your visit! Plus, the Minster is a must see.

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11. Get cosy at one of the pubs

Valhalla is fantastic, well-themed, and a must-visit whilst in York.
Valhalla is fantastic, well-themed, and a must-visit whilst in York. Image from Facebook.

For a small city, York has its fair share of pubs! There are over 365 pubs in York! That’s right, one for every day of the year! Valhalla is fantastic, well-themed, and a must-visit whilst in York. I highly recommend the Three Tuns for a traditional and romantic pub experience. If you’re a beer lover, the House of Trembling Madness is a must-visit with its impressive selection of craft beers. And for gin enthusiasts, head to Evil Eye, where they take their gin very seriously and have a vast collection worldwide.

You can read our blog post on 18 of the best pubs in York here.


12. Take part in a wine tasting at Pairings

Pairings in York is a great place for a date.
This award-winning wine bar is located right next to Clifford’s Tower. Image from Facebook.

You can’t go wrong with Pairings in you are a wine lover. This award-winning wine bar is located right next to Clifford’s Tower. Pairings offer a wine-tasting experience that is truly unforgettable. If you and your significant other are wine connoisseurs, you must book an occasion hosted by in-house Sommeliers who are experts in the field. With multiple options to choose from, including wine tasting, gin tasting and food and drink tasting, you’re sure to find the perfect experience to suit you.

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13. Wander around the York Museum Gardens

York Museum Gardens.
We highly recommend strolling through the Museum Gardens. Image from Tripadvisor.

The Yorkshire Museum is worth checking out, but we highly recommend strolling through the Museum Gardens. This place is a true paradise with its diverse plant species, fascinating wildlife, and rich history. The Edible Wood is a must-see, designed to explore our connection with food and crop production through permaculture and forest gardening. Be sure to grab some goodies from Shambles Market in York before settling down for a romantic picnic amidst the charming ruins of St Mary’s Abbey. It’s the perfect spot to unwind with your significant other.

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14. Stroll along the Shambles 

York Shambles.
If you’re planning a trip to York, visit The Shambles before 9 am to enjoy the magic of this charming street without the crowds and get fantastic photos.

The streets of York are delightful for a stroll. If you’re looking for a romantic walk, you will want to take advantage of the incredibly picturesque spots in the city. One such spot is The Shambles – a medieval street that boasts stunning timber-framed buildings dating back to the 14th century. Interestingly, this spot is said to have inspired the fictional Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter series! If you’re planning a trip to York, visit The Shambles before 9 am to enjoy the magic of this charming street without the crowds and get fantastic photos.

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15. Enjoy a meal together!

Melton's in York.
We highly recommend Melton’s for a romantic meal. Image from Facebook.

York is a food lover’s paradise, offering diverse culinary delights. From cosy family-run cafes to high-end gourmet cuisine, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Foodies from all over Britain flock to this vibrant city to indulge in its famous street food and discover its unique dining experiences. As the home of the famous Yorkshire Pudding, you can expect many traditional dishes made with fresh, locally sourced ingredients and innovative and creative creations from top chefs. We highly recommend Melton’s for a romantic meal.

Read our blog post 15 of the Best Restaurants in York for more options. 


York is truly an excellent destination for couples seeking a romantic getaway. The city’s charming cobblestone streets and rich history create an extraordinary atmosphere. Whether you prefer quaint cafes or exciting activities, York has something to offer for every couple. I hope you found these suggestions helpful and sparked some ideas for your next date night. Don’t be afraid to try something new and exciting – York has plenty of adventures!

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