Bordered by the North Sea and the natural wonders of North York Moors National Park, Whitby is a scenic seaside town with a classic British harbour, atmospheric beaches and alluring seafood restaurants. Having inspired settings in Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, Whitby features a rich Gothic culture, but also reveals historic castles and tranquil parks.
Things to do in Whitby
Fans of Dracula literature and movies will enjoy a visit to the ruins of Whitby Abbey, which was built in the 7th century and is the burial site of many notable British rulers, including Edwin of Deira. Afterwards, wander down the hill to the 18th-century Church of Saint Mary, which has intricate decorations inside and landscaped gardens around it.
Are you interested in getting up close to the native wildlife? Organise a whale-watching cruise with Whitby Whale Watching, which also offers the opportunity to see dolphins and seals. You can also head to Saltwick Bay, which has a rocky coastline filled with seabirds and other marine life.
Keen hikers can take on the 177-kilometre-long Cleveland Way, which takes you around the outer edge of North York Moors National Park and along the rugged coastline. The national park is worthy of a deeper exploration to see its religious ruins, charming villages and wooded river valleys.
Venture over to the River Esk to see Whitby’s bustling harbour district, where you can dine on delicious seafood, see the iconic Whalebone Arch and explore the town’s maritime history at the RNLI Whitby Museum. Afterwards, catch the Whitby Sands Cliff Lift down to the beach to kick back on the sand, swim in the calm water or see a live show at the Whitby Pavilion.
Getting around Whitby
Whitby is easily reached by catching long-distance buses or riding the Esk Valley Railway. You can walk around town, but will need to use taxis or a hired car to travel further afield.