York is a city unlike any other. Its rich ancient history and beautifully preserved architecture are celebrated both within the city and beyond, making York one of the most visited places in the country. Alongside this, modern life buzzes with a vibrancy caused by the array of attractions for tourists and locals alike. For all of this, York is well known and much loved.

But explore a little further, and there are lesser showcased charms throughout this wondrous city. Bubbling beneath the surface are an abundance of independent shops, venues, cafes, restaurants, theatres, pubs and bars, all offering their unique piece of York. And so, to help people discover them, we have created the Book of York. 


This guide to the city provides all the practical information that you’ll need to get around, whilst delving deeper to reveal the real York. From food and drink, through shopping and lifestyle, to entertainment and culture, we’ll take you on a trip around York’s neighbourhoods to gain an insight into the independent businesses there.

And that’s not all! The Book of York will also head out of the city to learn about the fabulous market towns and coastal resorts within the YO postcode area. In Hambleton, Ryedale, the Yorkshire Coast and the Yorkshire Wolds, where their respective charms and local independents are uncovered. 

Throughout it all, we’ll go behind the scenes with features that introduce you to the owners and creators pursuing their passions and keeping the independent scene alive and thriving. There’ll be recommendations, directories, maps and more! Everything you’ll need as a resident or a visitor to experience your favourite York. 

Whether you’re a newcomer or an old-timer here, getting to know the independent scene can often feel like you’re being let into a little secret. We believe independent businesses help to shape communities and would like the Book of York to offer folk a helping hand in getting a little more familiar with those that do so much for us in return. 

And because this year has been exceptionally challenging for everyone, we are proud to say that the Book of York | City to Coast has been entirely funded by the independent community. To continue to pass on the love during these dark times, we are asking for people to donate £2 per copy to SASH either using the details on the back of the book if you pick one up in person, or by purchasing a copy online, using the button here!

Happy adventuring!