Friday, 19 October 2018

A Day Out In York: The Dungeons and The Ivy St Helen's Square


Since moving to York, I've been trying to make the most of having the city at my fingertips as it's something I'm not used to at all. For my entire life I've been a lil north east gal, living in the countryside at least 20 minutes drive from anywhere half exciting so living so close to the city centre is still a bit of a novelty for me. The other day, I headed into the city centre to give some of York's attractions a try, one of which was afternoon tea at The Ivy. The other was York Dungeon for their Halloween special and it was such a great way to spend one of my rare days off.






YORK DUNGEON
York Dungeon is the Home of Halloween and it definitely lives up to the name. First, I love the decorations. I mean look how cool those pumpkins look around the sign! Secondly, I'm always up for anything even remotely scary and love horrible tales, ghost stories and things that are made to frighten you. I've been to York Dungeon before a few years ago when they reopened after the flooding and it was great so I was excited to see what new things they had in store, especially when it was guaranteed to be extra spOoOoky Halloween stuff! 

Since I last visited, a lot has changed, including the layout of the Dungeons. They now have the ticket desk downstairs then you walk up the stairs to go into the Dungeon itself. They also have at the end a super cool little bar area that sells themed cocktails and drinks, including "blood cocktails" and I imagine it's a super cosy place to sit on a cold Autumnal afternoon after you've just finished being spooked in the Dungeon. 

As for the show, there has also been a few changes since I last did the Dungeon. Some of the classics remain and my favourites were still there, including the story about the Black Plague and the old courtroom but the new features were fantastic with some brilliant effects. After doing quite a few horror walks in my time, I would say that the Dungeon is more family orientated and is recommended for those aged 8 and above. There are some jumpy parts where you are plunged into darkness or where you have to find your way out of a maze, but for the most part I would say it is hilarious with great acting, interesting stories and fantastic effects, right down to the smell of some of the rooms. The actors get you involved and make the whole experience really enjoyable so it's a great day out if you like this sorta thing, especially at Halloween! 

YOU CAN BOOK TICKETS TO THE YORK DUNGEON ON THEIR WEBSITE. 









AFTERNOON TEA AT THE IVY
Going out for afternoon tea is one of my favourite little treat days to have so you can imagine my absolute horror when I discovered that my boyfriend, in all of his 28 years of living, had never experienced afternoon tea before. We headed over to The Ivy for his first afternoon tea experience (and my ten thousandth!) straight after we'd been to the Dungeons and as I'd never been inside The Ivy before, I was very excited.

First of all, I love the decor and the atmosphere in The Ivy. It's modern, sophisticated and very Instagrammable but it's still appealing to the older generations and for me, I think that is a balance that is extremely difficult to get right. It's located in the very centre of York so is in the perfect location for everyone, whether you're a York local going for drinks after work or a visitor looking for somewhere super cool to grab some food. 

I had champagne afternoon tea (yep, at 3pm on a Wednesday afternoon because why the f not?) and Andy went for the traditional afternoon tea and as you can tell by the photos, it was delightful. First, we tucked into the sandwiches. I don't know about anyone else but I LOVE miniature food and afternoon tea sized sandwiches don't get much better than this. There was a truffled chicken sandwich each, a cucumber and dill sandwich and, my personal favourite, smoked salmon with cream cheese and chives. 

We got two scones each (it's definitely jam then cream on the scone, anyone who says different is definitely wrong) and then a beautiful selection of little desserts. There was raspberry cheesecake, chocolate and caramel mousse and no word of a lie, the best doughnut that I've ever had the pleasure of eating - the creme brulee doughnut. I wish I could give you a lil sample taste through the computer just so you could taste it because it will complete your life I tell you. 

I was expecting the prices to be pretty steep in The Ivy too because it seems so classy and high-end but actually, I was pleasantly surprised. The afternoon tea is priced at £18.95 which in terms of afternoon tea, is actually very reasonable, particularly when you look at just how much food you get with it and with how luxurious and modern the surroundings are! 

YOU CAN SEE THE MENUS FROM THE IVY YORK BY VISITING THEIR WEBSITE.

Have you ever been to either of these places? Where should I try next?

Amy x

THIS IS A COLLABORATIVE BLOG POST BUT AS ALWAYS, ALL WORDS AND VIEWS REMAIN MY OWN. 
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