Yorkshire's Golden Experiences
Is it something in the air, or the countryside, or maybe the food in Yorkshire? The county has produced an outstanding 12 medals - seven gold, two silver and three bronze - in the London 2012 Games.
The medallists are also notable for the breadth of their skills, with Games poster girl Jessica Ennis mastering seven different disciplines, and the Brownlee brothers competing at swimming, running and cycling in the triathlon.
Yorkshire is equally varied in what it has to offer the visitor – here are 12 world-beating reasons to visit.
1. The county has some outstanding countryside, where you can walk, run or cycle, including three National Parks: the North York Moors, the Yorkshire Dales and part of the Peak District Park.
2. Yorkshire has six Michelin-starred restaurants, more than any other county in England, but you can sample good food and drink all over the county, in pubs, tearooms and cafes, with delicious local produce such as Yorkshire rhubarb, real ale, Wensleydale cheese and Harrogate bottled water. Explore more on an ale trail, or a fish and chips trail – one of the best places to sample the national dish is at the Magpie Café at Whitby on the coast. And don’t forget to sample a proper Yorkshire Pudding – in Yorkshire!
3. Bradford has a thriving multicultural population, reflected in the heart of the city - from shops and retail outlets to restaurants, pubs and cafes. The‘Go Global Guide to Bradford' will help you discover and explore some of the best international food, drink and shopping in Yorkshire. http://www.visitbradford.com/inspiration/bradford-world-food-shopping.aspx. Yorkshire has also featured in Bollywood films, and hosted the 2007 International Indian Film Academy Awards.
4. Yorkshire Tea is enjoyed the world over, and Yorkshire’s tearooms are globally recognised, notably Betty’s six cafes in Harrogate, York and elsewhere.
5. Harrogate is a leading spa town - among those who have visited to take the waters was Agatha Christie. Today you can relax in their Turkish Baths
6. The Olympic Stadium is competing with the Hepworth Wakefield art gallery on the shortlist for the 2012 Stirling Prize for architecture, and the county has some outstanding buildings to visit, both contemporary and historic – stately homes such as Castle Howard, Harewood House and Newby Hall, as well as impressive churches such as York Minster.
7. Even Yorkshire’s ruins are world-class: Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal is a World Heritage Site, while other inspiring ruins include Rievaulx and Bolton abbeys.
8. The county’s industrial heritage can be seen at Saltaire, near Bradford, a World Heritage Site, but very much still a living village: mill owner Sir Titus Salt built the village for his workers and today Saltaire attracts millions of visitors for its architecture and visitor attractions including the 1853 Gallery which features one of the largest collections of art by Bradfordian David Hockney.
9. Anyone inspired by the wildflower gardens of the Olympic Park will be spoilt for choice in Yorkshire. The Royal Horticultural Society has a garden just outside Harrogate, Harlow Carr, while Newby Hall, Harewood House and Castle Howard are all well worth a visit for garden-lovers
10. York can compete with the very best when it comes to ghosts: in 2002 the International Ghost Research Foundation declared York to be ‘Europe's most haunted city'. They are said to range from Roman legionnaires – only seen from the knees upwards, as the road at the time lower than today – to theatrical ghosts and a headless earl.
11. Nightlife: after all that hard work, healthy eating and early nights, the Olympians will want to party and the county offers some great nightlife, particularly Leeds, home of boxer Nicola Adams, which has two universities and the nightlife you would expect with so many students in town.
12. Yorkshire has also produced some outstanding writers and artists, including the Bronte sisters, whose home in Haworth, West Yorkshire is open to the public. David Hockney recently put the county firmly on the map pictorially with his blockbuster exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts and although popular playwright Alan Ayckbourn was born in London he has made his home in Scarborough where many of his plays have had their premiere at the Stephen Joseph Theatre. And that’s not counting the many museums and galleries devoted to art, sculpture and photography, film and television.
For more information contact:
- VisitBritain, the national tourism agency, is responsible for inspiring the world to explore Britain and for developing the UK’s visitor economy.
- Americans made 2.8 million visits to Britain in 2012 and spent $3.7 billion USD (£2.4 billion). The US remains in the top spot in terms of market value for inbound tourism and is one of the top three most important markets in terms of visitor numbers.
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