On a summer’s day at Lendal Tower, sometimes all you need to do is head up to the roof terrace with an ice-cold drink or two and take in the views. But we’re sure you’ll want to head out and soak up the sun during your stay, and there’s plenty of magical things to enjoy this summer in York.


Visitors in early June have ample opportunity for mind expansion as York Festival of Ideas returns. It’s one of the UK’s largest festivals of its kind and features over 200 events designed to educate, entertain and inspire. Leading experts present talks on all manner of topics – from tech to the Tudors and Shakespeare to sharks, there really is something for everyone. You can also enjoy concerts from globally acclaimed violinists, pianists, guitarists and more, as well as a new musical production of Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse, presented by the man himself. There are also several events looking back at the D-Day landings, with the 80th anniversary on 6th June.

Following the great success of its inaugural year in 2023, York Georgian Festival returns in early August. Organised by York Mansion House, this year features star celebrated author Terry Deary, as he shares his new book, A History of Britain in Ten Enemies. There’ll also be a Bridgerton-themed candlelit cruise, guided tours of the city, and the first York Georgian Ball. Guests will be invited to don their finery and make way to the ‘Great Assembly Hall’. There, you’ll enjoy music from Eboracum Baroque, a two-course meal, and perhaps even a spot of dancing – a dance mistress is on hand to teach a few choice moves.

A summer of classical music

From mid to late July, the award-winning Ryedale Festival attracts classical musicians from around the world. Performances take place in charming locations around the rural area to the northeast of York. Venues include the iconic Castle Howard and Duncombe Park, as well as churches and arts centres in Helmsley, Malton, Pickering, and many more of Ryedale’s picturesque towns and villages.

A special season at York Minster

York’s famous Minster, one of the finest Gothic cathedrals in the world, has stood watch over the city for centuries. And as much as we love the view from Lendal Tower’s rooftop terrace, we have to admit that the view from the Minster’s Central Tower tops it. Climbs to the top can be booked on the day subject to weather permitting, and the view from the top on a clear summer’s day is truly unforgettable.

2024 is also a significant year for the Minster, marking the 40th anniversary of the fire that ripped through the South Transept following a lightning strike. Throughout summer, the regular daily tours include a fascinating retelling of that fateful day in the Minster’s recent history.

A sunlit area of a town with grass and flowers, a street and some buildings, with a cathedral looming in the background

A surprising Yorkshire tradition

Winemaking is something you usually associate with the sun-baked Mediterranean or the dusty hills of South America. But you can also find vineyards on the rolling hills of North Yorkshire, with not one but three fantastic vineyards just a short drive from Lendal Tower. Throughout summer, they all offer excellent tours and tastings, offering wine-lovers the chance to sample unique wines from some of the UK’s most northerly vineyards. 

Yorkshire Heart offers tours of their beautiful vineyard with options for a light lunch or afternoon tea.

Dunesford Vineyard offers a wine tour with a bit of history, as it is situated near Aldborough, one of the largest urban centres in the north or Roman Britain. It’s believed that wine has been pressed in the area since the Romans ruled here.

Rydale Vineyards offers a relaxed and fun-filled tour led by Jack, the owners’ son and Winery Manager, who was voted Wine Personality of the Year 2022. You can also sample cider from their small orchard, and a selection of local cheeses.

A day at the races

York’s iconic Knavesmire is one of the country’s premier racecourses, and it hosts several prestigious events throughout the summer. The John Smith’s Cup in July is one of Britain’s top middle-distance handicap races, and the atmosphere is always lively. In August, the Ebor Festival showcases the best riders and runners in the world, with tens of thousands of race fans dressed to the nines and cheering on their winners. The Juddmonte International, widely ranked as one of the world’s top races, is a highlight.

Al fresco dining…

It just so happens that possibly York’s best restaurant for outdoor dining is next door to Lendal Tower. Star Inn the City is an award-winning brasserie nestled in the corner of the Museum Gardens. In the warmer months, you can sit out on the gorgeous terrace overlooking the River Ouse and savour some wonderful food and drink in the evening sun.

And much more…

We’ve barely scratched the surface when it comes to all York has to offer. It’s a hive of activity all year round, and in addition to the summer highlights we’ve picked out here, you’ll find endless evergreen activities in and around the city, from globally renowned historic landmarks to unparalleled shopping and dining experiences. 

Check the Tower’s summer availability here (and don’t forget, if we’re fully booked, take a look at our sister properties).