Destinations England

A Guide To Whitby, North Yorkshire

Whitby Dock - Airbnb Whitby

Whitby is a beautiful seaside town in North Yorkshire. Perhaps most famously known around the world due to it’s Gothic Whitby Abbey which was Bram Stoker’s inspiration for “Dracula”.

You can spend anything from the day visiting this seaside town right up to a week here. There really is that much to see and do. This is a complete guide to visiting the seaside town of Whitby, North Yorkshire.

How To Get To Whitby

By Car

Whitby is embedded within the North York Moores National Park which makes for a beautiful sightseeing drive.

Easily accessible from the likes of Newcastle, Leeds or York. I recommend finding the best route from your current location using Google maps.

Whitby Car Parks

If you’re driving then you’re going to need to consider the best Whitby car parks. This will depend on the level of security you’d like to ensure for your car, the location and the price. Despite a lot of car parking in Whitby, it can easily fill up during a public holiday or on a particularly sunny day.

Here’s a list of the different car parking options in and around Whitby town;

As you can see you can find free parking in Whitby. These car parks are often the first to fill up on a busy day so if you’d like to guarantee a spot here then we recommend arriving early.

There are also some Whitby guest houses with parking included, these are highlighted within the listing of the property. Further details about Whitby guest houses with parking included is available in the accommodation section of this post.

By Bus

There’s a direct bus available from York to Whitby thanks to the coastline route. This route takes around 2 hours 20 minutes thanks to more than 92 stops on the route and is by no means the quickest method to travel to Whitby.

If you’re looking to travel from a little further afield then it’s worth mentioning that Leeds to Whitby by bus is also possible. You can check out the journey, departure times and cost in detail on the Traveline website.

By Train

Whitby has a train station that serves North Yorkshire as well as the North East of England. You can access Whitby from anywhere in the UK via train although it may require some changes at different train stations.

Direct services to Whitby by train are available from Middlesborough with a journey time of just over one and a half hours. All train journeys should be booked through Trainline for maximum savings.

Where To Stay

Whitby Camping

Camping in Whitby or on the outskirts of Whitby is made possible thanks to a number of different campsites. Camping in Whitby is an affordable way to see the town and embrace the outdoors.

Click on any of the campsites on the map above to read reviews, get directions and learn more.

Airbnb Whitby

If you’re new to Airbnb then consider using our link before booking to get a £25 credit applied to your first booking.

The popular website Airbnb has a whole host of different properties suitable for different budgets available in Whitby.

These include private rooms like this one, that can be booked here for as little as £48 per night.

Alternatively, why not treat yourself to a stay in a private Airbnb Whitby apartment with a balcony looking out onto some amazing views from just £78 a night.

If you’re new to Airbnb then consider using our link before booking to get a £25 credit applied to your first booking.

Hotels + B&B’s

There’s an amazing range of hotels as well as traditional Bed and Breakfast accommodation for visitors of Whitby to stay in. I’ve highlighted some of the best deals in the window below.

Best Places To Eat In Whitby

While you’re in Whitby you’ll no doubt want to sample some of the best food the town has to offer. Below is a short list of some of the best places to eat in Whitby.

Of course, if you find anywhere that you believe should be on this list leave us a comment at the bottom of this article.

Breakfast in Whitby

Breakfast is the biggest and most important meal of the day. The cafés of Whitby know this and want to ensure that you have a full stomach before visiting some of the many attractions the town has to offer.

If you’re on a budget then visit The Singing Kettle, this place is the place. Open from 5.30am until 1pm you can even try out the full English breakfast and packed lunch combo for £10. For the full menu and directions visit the café’s website.

If you’re looking for something a little more upper-class then check out Becketts Coffee Shop.

Another fan favourite with the locals of Whitby, Becketts is a super friendly dog-friendly cafe so if you’re coming to the seaside with your pooch then this one’s for you!

Traditional Food To Try

For lunch and dinner, you want to try some of the foods that Whitby is best known for, and being on the coast that means one thing and one thing only. SEAFOOD.

Head to Silver Street Fisheries for your traditional Fish and Chips open from 5pm – 7pm most days, with lunch-time hours in peak season. Check out their Facebook page for further info.

If you’re looking for something that says ‘Yorkshire’ then get yourself down to Church Street where you’ll find the Humble Pie ‘n’ Mash. This place serves exactly what you might expect, pie n mash in various different combinations. 

Things To Do In Whitby

Whitby, or more specifically Whitby Abbey was the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s worldwide famous horror novel “Dracula”. That alone provides us with many things to do while in Whitby, however… if you’re not into gothic horror novels, not to worry – there’s plenty of other great things to do in Whitby that don’t involve any fangs or ghosts!

Ghost Walk, Whitby

Perhaps the most popular and most famous ghost walk of Whitby is lead by Dr Crank of Whitby Walks. This 75 minute led tour will provide you with the opportunity to discover strange and supernatural tales of murder, mystery and suspense.

The Ghost Walk starts from the Whale Bone Arch opposite The Royal Hotel, West Cliff, Whitby YO21 3HA and while there’s no need to book in advance, we do advise you check the online diary to ensure the tour is running. The tours depart at 7.30pm and cost just £5 per adult and £3 per child (under the age of 12).

Captain Cook Memorial Museum

The Captain Cook Memorial Museum is hosted inside a 17th-century house on Grape Lane. Where back in 1746 the young James Cook served his apprenticeship.

The building belonged to Cook’s master, Captain John Walker and now hosts a superb collection of exhibits including; original paintings, maps, manuscripts and ship models.

Entry into the museum is £5.90 per adult or £3.50 for children with a discount for concessions. Family tickets (2 adults & 2 children) are available for £14.50. The museum is only open during the summer season so be sure to check online before travel.

If you really enjoy the museum then be sure to check out the Captain Cook Statue that’s situated on Cliff Street.

Whitby Museum

The Whitby Museum originally opened in 1823 and over the past almost 200 years the Museum has gone onto receive a number of amazing artefacts and donations.

So much so the museum has had to relocate and expand a number of times. The most recent of which was in 2005 when the Society opened its latest extension, which almost doubled the size of the building.

So, what can you expect to find at Whitby Museum? Well… aside from the ‘traditional’ historical museum you’ll find the art gallery as well as the library and achieve. Not forgetting the tea rooms, where you’ll be able to dine on traditional British snacks and local delicacies.

To learn more about the Whitby Museum and plan your visit be sure to check out the Whitby Museum website.

Whitby Abbey

In my opinion no trip to the seaside town of Whitby, England is complete without visiting Whitby Abbey. Founded in 657 Whitby Abbey quickly became one of the most important religious centres in the Anglo-Saxon world.

Then, over the period of 1,400 years, the Abbey saw wars, abandonment and much much more… That was until 1920 when the Abbey was handed over to the Ministry of Works. Over the following decade major excavations at the site, uncovering evidence of the Anglian settlement here.

Then between 1993 and 2008, English Heritage carried out archaeological excavation and survey work, they then construction of the visitor centre, and went to rescue archaeological remains threatened by the steady erosion of the cliff. Now the Abbey is one of the most celebrated sights in North Yorkshire.

RNLI Lifeboat Museum

There are six RNLI Lifeboat museums across England one of which is hosted inside the Victorian double boathouse on Whitby seafront. Inside you’ll be able to learn about the lifeboats that have been helping the people of Whitby in trouble at sea since 1802.

During the summer season, the Lifeboat Museum is open daily from 10am until 5pm and has free entry for both adults and children. For more information check out the RNLI website.

Guided Tours

If you’re looking for alternative things to do during your visit to Whitby, then why not consider one of the tours on offer by Get Your Guide;


There’s the great seaside town of Scarborough just down the road. So if you haven’t quite had your full seaside experience be sure to check that town out. Alternatively, if you’re still stuck for things to do in the area then be sure to visit our guide of things to do in Yorkshire that contains local museums, parks, zoos and more.

As always be sure to let us know in the comments below if there’s anything you think we’ve missed or should include.

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