Visit the largest Viking Festival in Europe

York, North Yorkshire

Immerse yourself in the gruesome world of the Vikings as the city of York celebrates its Norse past.

Horned helmets at the ready…This nine-day festival of all things Viking attracts 40,000 enthusiasts to the city of York each February, for live battle re-enactments, combat performances, and, er, leg wrestling.

Might sound strange, but when the Vikings ruled York, 1,000 years ago, this was how they marked the coming of spring. The (no doubt raucous) celebrations were called Jolablot, and were held to mark the end of winter.

If you’re feeling strong enough, why not have a go in the modern-day equivalent as the Jorvik Viking Festival revives this lively party. Plus you can visit a Viking long-ship prepared for war, at the Coppergate encampment, and witness the fiery festival finale where the city will become a battleground. 

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