I don’t know about you but I always feel there’s no place like home when you get to the festive period and home is definitely Yorkshire. I was born in North Yorkshire but now live firmly in the west variety. I have no idea what Christmas is like else where, but I know that those friendly Yorkshire folk I love to call my fellow brothers and sisters, immerse themselves in the Christmas spirit.
Whether it’s shopping in Harrogate and York (both have a Betty’s Tea room as a very welcome side attraction) or braving one of the larger shopping centres such as White Rose or Meadow Hall I am convinced Yorkshire has it all and can accommodate the simplest taste right through to the eccentric or flamboyant. Personally I like Leeds city centre, but that’s because there’s nothing like forgetting about the Christmas shopping and losing an afternoon in Whitelocks pub instead. Whitelocks is hidden just off the main shopping thoroughfare and specialises in traditional and local bears. It has that warm old fashioned feel to it (first licensed in the 1700’s), which seems to intensify the closer to Christmas you get.
Away from the larger well established towns and city is where you really find the heart of Yorkshire though. The small towns and villages towards the dales and moors are, in my opinion, where the best of Christmas is to be found. For one they actually get snow at Christmas, well some of the time. Imagine a roaring open fire in a small stone built country pub when it’s cold outside with snow in the air. Fantastic home cooked food served with speciality local bears and ales – how Christmassy do you want to get, and there’s not just one or two like this, there’s hundreds of welcoming Yorkshire country pubs.
I could list a whole host of must see places that still have markets once a week, or independent boutique shops selling everything from Charity Christmas Cards to handmade diamond jewellery, but there’s simply too many to mention. There’re also the regular farmers markets in just about all the towns, cities and villages selling the most exquisite organic food – your Christmas has never tasted so good.
Now I’m not sure I should be spreading the word about how wonderful Yorkshire is at Christmas, but it’s simply the truth. I can’t believe there’s anywhere that does Christmas quite like Yorkshire. You may argue that Yorkshire has an unfair advantage with it being gods own county, but I suggest you just try it for yourself.