Places to Visit

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Whitby Town Centre

Whitby Abbey






Robin Hoods Bay


Runswick Bay

80135 Arriving at Goathland

Lambton 0-6-2T No: 29
at Grosmont

Pickering Market

Robin Hoods Bay from
Raven Hall Battlements

Old Saltburn and The Ship Inn



Whitby sits on the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors in the middle of nowhere. To escape, you can either use the A171 to Guisborough, the A171 to Scarborough, the A174 to Saltburn, or if its not winter and therefore not snowing, you could try the A169 to Pickering. Each destination is curiously 20 miles from Whitby. To escape you have to climb up and over the Moors. Generally speaking its better to just stay here. Its a nice place to be.

This historic fishing port straddles the mouth of the river Esk, Yorkshires only Salmon River. On the headland above the river are the ruins of Whitby Abbey, built in the 13th century. Not all the damage is due to old age, some is due to the Germans shelling part of it in 1914.

Explore the headland around the Abbey and you will quickly understand why Whitby is so special. Eventually your eyes will be drawn over to the West side, and the upper, and lower Harbour. If you visit once I am confident you will return again and again!

St. Mary's Church:

Climb the recently refurbished 199 steps, or use the donkey path to access the grave yard, with its breathtaking views of the coastline. At the top of the steps is Caedmon's Cross, a 19th Century memorial dedicated to the earliest known English poet. The Church, surrounded by gravestones has been here in some form for 900 years. The interior is Georgian with galleries, box pews, triple decked pulpit and silver candelabra.

Whitby Abbey:

Dramatic and magnificent the ruins of Whitby Abbey are much more than a spectacular cliff top landmark. Founded in 657 by St. Hilda, the Synod of Whitby settled the date for Easter in 664.

Robin Hoods Bay:

This charming village was once the haunt of smugglers and is now equally popular with artists, due to the coastal views which are unequalled. An attractive jumble of cobbled yards, footworn steps and spray soaked houses seem to cling precariously to the cliff as they tumble down to the shore. The sea has already claimed many houses and others are likely to follow.


This delightful picture postcard village is about three miles West of Whitby at the far end of Whitby's main beach. It sits astride the mouth of a small beck and on the East side along the sea front. To describe it as picturesque would be an understatement. To the West are spectacular perpendicular cliffs against which the sea crashes and foams during high tide with winds from the North. The car park is adjacent to the cliffs and with it's sea defence wall itself creating spectacular rising walls of white water. The beach around the mouth of the beck is a firm favourite with children, especially when the local Ducks are walking on the beach. The magnificent view towards Whitby along the golden sands varies with the weather throughout the day and the seasons.

Runswick Bay:

Nestling at one end of a long sandy beach, the fishing village of Runswick clings to the high cliffs sheltering the west of the bay, looking eastwards to Kettleness. The lifeboat has a brave history; on one occasion it was manned entirely by the village women when their men had been caught in a freak squall. The shifting cliffs reveal new fossils. A century ago the remains of a Plesiosaurus and a Ichthyosaur were discovered here and ammonites abound, locked into small ironstone pebbles scattered on the beach. At night you may hear the fairy Bogles of Claymore Well washing their clothes and welting them rhythmically with battledores, long wooden paddles eventually superseded by the mangle.


Any one who watches Heartbeat will know that Goathland is really Aidensfield. Its one of those places where time seems to slow down. As a visitor you will want to visit the locations TV makes you familiar with, such as The Goathland Hotel which is the Aidensfield Arms of course. If, however, you would just like to explore the area, take the walk past the Malyon Spout Hotel down the footpath to the waterfall from which the Hotel gets its name. You will not be disappointed.


When my Children where much younger they loved this place. Its so tranquil, yet its almost like being at the beach. The River (the Murk Esk), gurgles and flows over rocks and sand sometimes deep and fast flowing, elsewhere shallow and suitable for paddling! Its just an ideal place to spend quality time with the kids or your partner, or both. Ideal picnic site!


The North Yorkshire Moors Railway has its Northern terminus here, at the second largest railway station in North Yorkshire, boasting 4 usable platforms, (Scarborough being the Largest. York station doesn't count, its in the City of York). The engine sheds are quite impressive being one of the few places left, which can totally overhaul a Steam Locomotive. Grosmont once had a Steel Works and a Brick works, evidence and photos are plentiful!


The Southern Terminus of the NYMR and one of the most pleasant market towns in England. Make sure you visit the church at the top of the market place, even if your not very religious, its worth a look. Market day is Monday.


This village is a showpiece, ringed by moors and standing at the meeting place of two beck's. The Rydale Folk Museum houses a fascinating collection of exhibits illustrating the way of life, of ordinary folk from prehistoric to Victorian times.


This is an ancient fishing village with a picturesque harbour and cliffs plunging into the waves. The young James Cook worked here as a grocers apprentice before the call of the sea lured him away! The shop has long been washed away, but the cottage where he lived still stands. Two miles west at the end of Cowbar Lane is Boulby Cliff which at 700ft is the highest perpendicular cliff in England.


Ravenscar sits high up on the other side of Robin Hoods Bay. Visit the Raven Hall hotel for afternoon tea perhaps and sit outside on the terrace, or along the battlements and take in the view, which is absolutely magnificent.

If your feeling energetic walk down to the beach along the winding path, but be warned its very steep in places and it will take a lot longer to climb back up.

It's a pleasant walk along the disused railway towards Robin Hoods Bay. Its a bit longer than using the Cleveland Way (4 miles) but it is relatively flat. As you set off there is a small information centre and about half a mile further on is the old Alum Workings

May Beck:

If you drive towards Ruswarp from the Four Lane Ends garage on the A171 and continue towards Scarborough, you will come to a tight left hand turn, go straight across at the junction and in no time at all you will be at May Beck.

It's a delightful wooded area with a babbling beck. There are plenty of places to park and usually lots of Ice cream to be had, but its special attraction is that there is nothing else there. Take a walk for half an hour and relax.


In the mid 1700's Saltburn had a well known reputation for smuggling. Taxes were high on imported items and due to the war with the French, the most required items were scarce. The most highly taxed items were Brandy, Gin, tobacco, black tea and green tea. The local fishermen made excellent smugglers and knew the best places to hide their contraband. John Andrew was probably the most famous smuggler in the Saltburn area. He was a Scotsman, born approx. 1761, who in 1780 became the landlord of the Ship Inn, and he organized the local smuggling community. His activities led to his arrest in Hornsea in 1827. Found guilty, he was jailed for two years in York Castle.


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Updated 12/03/21