ISBE 2022 Conference: York Guide

For all ISBE 2022 conference delegates, we’ve put together this York Guide just for you. We hope it helps make your visit to the conference as memorable and enjoyable as possible.

As a regular exhibitor and supporter of the Institute of Small Business and Entrepreneurship conference, our team were thrilled to hear the conference this year would be held in York.

Since two SimVenture Directors have lived near York for many years, we asked them to share their top tips to help conference city visitors. After all, local knowledge is always best when it comes to advice.

As an ISBE 2022 delegate, we know you have a busy programme. However, York is a beautiful place. If you only have a couple of hours spare, we want you to discover the best this wonderful city has to offer.

As such, we’ve prepared a bespoke and fully independent ISBE 2022 conference delegate guide so you can make the most of your time in York.

What’s covered in the York Guide for ISBE 2022 delegates

On this page, you’ll find:

  • Coffee cafes with cosy corners
  • Pubs for larger groups to meet and drink
  • Where the ‘one-hour’ tourist goes
  • Secret pub gems loved by locals
  • What’s on for free!
  • Original gifts for friends and family (and yourself)
  • A brief guide to York’s Library
  • Vegetarian and vegan dining
  • City walks for thinking minds

Throughout this York Guide, we’ve also referenced all points of note within an interactive Google Map that can be accessed by clicking the image below.

Coffee cafes with cosy corners

York has an abundance of wonderful cafes. From the world-famous Bettys in St Helen’s Square to the array of independent cafes, you will find many places to get a coffee, tea or drink of choice.

ISBE 2022 Bettys of York

But to save you time, here are selection of delightful cafes with cosy corners that are within easy walking distance of the ISBE 2022 conference venue.


ISBE 2022 Visit Partisan in York

Find yourself a quiet table in this popular café gem. Queues regularly form outside so you know it’s a quality cracker loved by locals and tourists alike.

112 Micklegate, York YO1 6JX

Opens: 9am – 3pm Daily

Coffee Culture

ISBE 2022 Visit Coffee Culture in York

Delicious food and delightful drinks. Escape to this unique café and be assured the team will not only serve you well but also have a great attitude to sustainability and minimising waste.

41 Goodramgate, York

Opens: 9am – 5pm daily

Brew & Brownie
ISBE 2022 Visit Brew & Brownie in York

Boasting generous northern hospitality, the Brew & Brownie is all about locally sourced fare and craft coffee and tea all served in a welcoming setting.

5 Museum St, York YO1 7DT

Opens: 9am – 4.30pm daily

Pubs for larger ISBE 2022 groups to meet and drink

Like-minds love to meet and chat, so where can you go? Whilst we can’t provide cast-iron guarantees that you will find booze of brilliance or ambience of choice, a tavern trip to any of the following watering holes should give you the social space you seek and probably much more.

Eagle and Child

Lose yourself in this oldie-worldly popular pub on High Petergate. Seek out the separate rooms with plenty of tables for larger groups on the first and second floors. Uneven surfaces are part of the ambience and see if you can find the globally renowned band members who signed their names on one of the walls.

9 High Petergate, York

The Cross Keys

Enjoy a trip to this spacious tavern which offers generous tables all on the ground floor. A wide range of excellent ales to suit all tastes.

34 Goodramgate, York

Golden Ball

Unfussy pub loved by locals and away from the city centre. Renowned for its array of drinks and friendly atmosphere. Range of sizeable rooms on the ground floor.

2 Cromwell Road, Bishophill, York

Where the ‘one-hour’ York tourist goes

When your conference schedule offers you that luxury of a small window of time (to escape and explore on a whistle-stop tour), this is where we suggest you go.

Minster & Snickleways

At 61 metres or 235 feet, the stunning York Minster is the city’s tallest building and greatest architectural wonder to boot.

Look towards the city from the conference hotel and you’ll see the Minster. A 10-15 minute stroll will take you to its impressive front doors. Nearby is the delightfully secluded ‘Precentor Court’ which offers one of the best views of the magnificent cathedral as well as a hidden Snickleway allowing you to circle back to the Minster via High Petergate.

Once back in front of the Minster, take a walk through the peaceful gardens (to the north side) and arrive at Minster Yard and see the renowned ‘Treasurer’s House’. By walking all the way around the Cathedral to its south side you’ll spy Stonegate and the start of your way home. Enjoy the Stonegate shops and the many Snickleways which will guide you to undiscovered corners of delight.

Shambles & Fossgate

Foodies, shoppers and lovers of living history will enjoy this outing. Located just to the east of the city centre’s Parliament Street, the Shambles is the picture to snap when visiting York (especially if you can arrive with sunrise and without the crowds).

We recommend you start this walk at Kings Square and walk along the Shambles. Take time to have a ‘butchers’ at the many shops and note the hooks of history above as you wander towards the southern end. Once at ‘Pavement’ take a left before an immediate right into ‘Fossgate’, home to many restaurants, cafes and delightful pubs including the tiny but famous ‘Blue Bell’ (see Secret pub gems).

A brisk walk back through the city centre will complete the hour.

Secret pub gems loved by locals

We all love a bit of peace and quiet. Whether on your own or with a colleague or two, here are some recommended pubs, each providing a little oasis of calm that locals hold in high regard.

Blue Bell

The website diacope is spot on when suggesting this is a ‘proper pub for proper pub people’. Situated at the top end of Fossgate, be careful not to blink when passing as you may miss this miniature gem. When heading inside, you’ll discover 2 cosy rooms either side of a central bar. Find a seat, raise a glass and let time pass.

53 Fossgate, York

The Fat Badger

Located on the north side of the city adjacent to Bootham Bar, this cracking tavern oozes personality and charm. Whether you seek a small hideaway room or prefer the main bar area, this place has a personality all of its own.

2-4 High Petergate, York

Minster Inn

Tucked away on Marygate and slightly off the beaten track, this popular pub has been loved by locals for decades. With food and a wide range of drinks on the menu, the Minster Inn is an ideal choice for those seeking to getaway from the traditional tourist areas. Top tip, walk to the Minster Inn via York station. Head across the railway footbridge to access Marygate & the pub.

24 Marygate, York

What’s on for free!

If you are keen to explore York on a Yorkshire budget, you won’t be disappointed. There is much to see and do in and around the city without having to reach for a coin, note, card or the mobile. We have a few suggestions for you…

Railway Museum

Even if you are not a train buff, the National Railway Museum complete with its free entry is a spectacular attraction deserving of your time. Situated close to York Railway station, mark this on your list of things to do especially if you are arriving early or plan to stay for the weekend.

York City Walls

Encircling the city, York’s walls are free to access from multiple points and offer a highly rewarding hour or more of exploration. Open during the day, the walls provide a plethora of viewpoints and are an excellent way to appreciate the whole city in relatively little time.

Museum Gardens

If you like to amble amongst trees, spacious lawns and historic buildings, this is the place for you. Open during the day, visitors to the Museum Gardens also benefit from multiple opportunities to find a seat and relax in the comfort of the stunning surroundings.

Original gifts for friends and family (and yourself)

Do you have time for a bit of retail therapy? To help you find local shops offering original gifts and goods that you may only find in York or Yorkshire, we’ve highlighted some must-visit stores for you below.

Yorkshire Soap

Home to some of the world’s most stunning soap architecture, Yorkshire Soap is a must-visit shop especially if you seek that elusive, original gift for someone special. Be warned, a few minutes is not enough as visitors cannot help but be enchanted by the many intricate soap styles and beautiful designs on offer.

10 Blake Street, York

The Shop that

The shop that must not be named… Harry Potter meets the Shambles in this wonderfully intricate and creative ‘cave’ of curiosity. But if the popular character and thematic school doesn’t resonate with your gifting ideas, a watchful stroll past other shops on the Shambles will reveal other magical possibilities.

York Shambles

York’s Chocolate Story
ISBE 2022 Visit the Chocolate Story in York

Once home to Terrys and Rowntrees (now Nestle), York is a crucible for the concoction of many famous chocolate brands. At York’s Chocolate Story, enjoy learning more about the city’s sweet history; and if temptation gets the better of you, find favour with friends and family by returning with chocolate gifts aplenty to share (or otherwise don’t tell a soul and keep everything to yourself).

3-4 Kings Square

A brief guide to York’s Library

ISBE 2022 Visit the library in York

Libraries are a home for many academics and researchers. Should you need to visit York’s library whilst you are at the ISBE 2022 conference (only a view minutes walk from the main hotel venue), here is all the information you need to know.

Location: Library Square, York. YO1 7DS

Opening Times:

  • Monday to Thursday 9am – 8pm
  • Friday 10am – 6pm
  • Saturday 9am – 5pm
  • Sunday 11am – 4pm

Vegetarian and Vegan dining

Whatever your dietary preferences, York has a fabulous range of restaurants and cafes to suit all tastes. In addition to the three pictured suggestions, you may also want to check out the Doe Bakehouse (great doughnuts and coffee although on Layerthorpe which is outside the city centre) or York Source (Coppergate) which offers innovative vegan cuisine with a twist.

Orchid Vegan

A pure vegan kitchen with Asian fusion, Orchid Vegan gets rave reviews from visitors. Located at 16 George Hudson Street, only a five-minute walk away from the conference venue, you may need to book a table in advance if you want to eat here.

16 George Hudson St, York

Yemen Heaven
ISBE 2022 Visit Yemen Heaven in York

If you like a good walk coupled with cracking authentic food, head for Yemen Heaven at the far end of Walmgate. Middle East cuisine is seldom so good and this owner-run venture should appeal to anyone seeking to support a new start-up business that’s working hard to make a name for itself.

98 Walmgate, York

Cresci Pizzeria

With plenty of vegetarian options, Cresci Pizzeria is a popular destination for anyone seeking tasty, traditional food cooked really well. Located close to the centre of the city at 20 Piccadilly, Cresci Pizzeria is a 10-minute walk from the main conference venue.

20 Piccadilly, York

City walks for thinking minds

If or when you want to escape the conference and find some quiet, reflective time, here are some suggestions for you.

A walk at dawn
ISBE 2022 A dawn walk in York

York at dawn, especially on a blue-sky day is a delight. Wander the empty streets without worry, but if you’d prefer a suggestion, head for Stonegate and simply enjoy exploring the myriad of narrow passageways and cobbled routes that form part of the city’s DNA. Don’t stress about getting lost because you’ll find yourself quickly – or at least a helpful local or a Google map on your mobile.

Around on the Walls

York Walls (as referenced earlier) provide a guided route around the city. Access to the walls typically closes at night and during the day this free activity can be popular. As such, pick your time wisely and enjoy a higher-level stroll with ever-changing views.

Muse along the Ouse

A walk along York’s charming Ouse river is only a five minute stroll from the Conference hotel. To reach the river, walk towards the city centre and at Lendal Bridge take the steps down to the road running parallel with the waterway. Head north along the pathway (river on your right) and turnaround whenever you need to head back. For all conference delegates seeking to stretch some running legs, this is a good route to choose.

We’ll see you at ISBE 2022 in York!

We really hope you find this York Guide helpful and look forward to meeting you at ISBE 2022. Please share any tourist top tips with us and we will update the Guide: Email us at:

And don’t forget to visit our SimVenture exhibitor stand & claim your exclusive ISBE ‘Five for Free License offer’.

To learn more about what we do, see our SimVenture Evolution & SimVenture Validate pages.