York Castle Museum

Reopening Visitor Information

We’ve missed you… and we’re delighted to be open!

The team at  York Castle Museum are really looking forward to welcoming you back  and prior to your visit, we  want to make you aware of  a few  changes that  we have introduced. 

To ensure that we can help maintain social distancing we will be operating on guided tours only basis. We’ve introduced advanced booking which will let you plan your visit and pick a tour of your choice up to week in advance. All visitors MUST  pre-book their tickets, even if  you’re  a  YMT card member, Friend of  York Art Gallery or an Art Fund member.

To ensure the safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers, a range of measures will be in place. These include hand sanitiser units on arrival throughout the building and on exit and monitoring of capacity.All our Visitor Experience  staff  have been supplied with protective face visorsand there will be extra cleaning of  the  toilets and public spaces. 

Please be aware that because of the new restrictions in York, you should only book up to six tickets for people who are part of your own household or support bubble.

For everyone’s safety, we  ask all visitors over the age of 11 to wear face  coverings.


Planning Your Visit 

We hope the below  list of questions and answers will help you plan your visit.  


What times will the York Castle Museum be open? 

The museum will be open for timed guided tours taking place Thursdays to Sundays. The tours will take place between 10am and 4pm.  


Will I need to book a ticket and is there an entry cost? 

To open safely we’re limiting visitor numbers on each tour and  all visitors to book  tickets in advance. 

You can find out more about the individual tour prices here.

Does everyone need a ticket? 

Everyone, including YMT Card members, need to buy tickets online.  


can’t book tickets online - what do I do? 

For those who can’t book online for any reason, please call 01904 687687 for assistance & to check tour availability.


Can I cancel my booking? 

All bookings for the tours are non-refundable and this is highlighted at the time on booking. 


Are there any discounts for YMT Card members? 

As these are specialist events rather than part of our standard opening, YMT Cardholders will need to pay to for these tours.  


What do I do upon arrival? 

To ensure the tours run on time, please arrive promptly at York Castle Museum’s main entrance at the start time stated on your ticket and have your printed ticket or QR Code available to show a member of our Visitor Experience Team. 

If there is a queue, please follow social distancing guidelines.  

Once your ticket has been scanned and processed, a member of our Visitor Experience team will guide you to the tour starting point within the museum. Each household will be allocated a waiting point in line with the social distancing guidelines. The tour will begin within 15 minutes of your arrival. 


What happens if I’m late for my time slot? 

If you’re more than 10 minutes late for your timeslot, unfortunately we won’t be able to guarantee entry. This is to help us keep the tours running on time and to ensure everyone is safe within the museum by keeping visitor numbers at the required levels. 


What can I see when you reopen?

Each of the tours will be guided by one of our experts who will give you a new perspective on some of the museum’s most famous displays and collections. Find out more about the tours available here.


Will there be refreshment facilities available? 

Unfortunately the café will not be running at the moment 


Will York Castle Museum shop be open? 

Unfortunately our shop will not be open at the moment. 


Will I have to wear a face mask? 

For everyone’s safety, we ask all visitors to wear face coverings if they are able to do so. Please note that from Saturday 8th August, as announced by the government, the wearing of face coverings will be mandatory in museums and galleries for everyone over the age of 11 unless they are unable to do so for medical reasons.


Will there be hand sanitiser available on site? 

There will be hand sanitiser units on arrival, exit and throughout the museum. 


Are there toilets? 

Yes, toilets will be open  for  visitors, with regular cleaning in place  


How do you contribute to prevention of the spread of COVID-19? 

The safety of everyone is our key priority and we ask our visitors at all times to respect each other, our staff and volunteers. If you’re showing any of the symptoms of coronavirus, or if you’ve been in contact with anyone that has the virus in the last 14 days and have been asked to self-isolate by the NHS Track and Trace service, please do not visit.  


We will ask you to provide your contact details that we will share with the Track and Trace service if needed. Your data will be used for the NHS Track and Trace service purposes only and will only be stored for 21 days. 

Please be aware that because of the new restrictions in York, you should only book up to six tickets for people who are part of your own household or support bubble.


What about social distancing? 

We also ask all visitors to adhere to social distancing and the current government guidance. Where we anticipate queues, signage about social distancing will be clearly displayed.  

We will operate a one-way system for visitors to follow at the entry and exit points, with appropriate signage to show the way. While on the tour you will be free to explore the spaces in a socially distanced way.  

Our Visitor Experience team will help to ensure a welcoming visitor experience for everyone. 

Have you competed a Health and Safety risk assessment? 

Prior to re-opening, we have reviewed our operational plans and policies. A comprehensive risk assessment has been produced in line with the  COVID-19 secure re-opening guidelines. A full copy is available here.