Things to do in
Whitby

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Our most recommended things to do in Whitby

North York Moors and Whitby Tour from York

1. North York Moors and Whitby Tour from York

See the best of Whitby and the North Yorkshire Moors on this fascinating and exciting full-day tour to one of Britain's most scenic areas. See the charming market town of Pickering before heading off the beaten track into the North Yorkshire Moors National Park, where there will be plenty of chances throughout your day to capture memorable photos and time to enjoy the picturesque scenery. Visit the scenic moorland village of Goathland and see the station turned into ‘Hogsmeade’ for 'Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone'. Discover the traditional seaside town of Whitby, enjoying a lunch of fish and chips and then taking a stroll along the harbor or visiting the dramatic ruins of Whitby Abbey, which was the inspiration for the novel ‘Dracula’. Drive through more classic Yorkshire countryside as you make your way through Egton and Egton Bridge towards Glaisdale. This peaceful village is home to Beggers Bridge, a 17th-century bridge with a fascinating romantic story behind it.  Enjoy uninterrupted panoramic views on the moorlands before stopping to view a collection of historic furnaces and explore the quaint market town of Helmsley. Visit the bustling market square, dramatic castle ruins, charming tea rooms or inviting inns.

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From York: Day Trip to Whitby and The North York Moors

2. From York: Day Trip to Whitby and The North York Moors

The tour heads out of the hustle and bustle of the city for a scenic drive through the Vale of York. The first stop is at the Kilburn White Horse hill figure on the boundary of the North York Moors National Park, where your guide will tell you the story of how it was carved into the hillside in 1857. The next stop is in the picturesque market town of Helmsley, where you can view the medieval castle, explore the quaint shops, or just have a leisurely Yorkshire brew in one of the cafés. After Helmsley, you will head off through Hutton-le-Hole into the heart of the scenic North York Moors National Park for some photo stops, passing the 16th century Lion Inn on Blakey Ridge (the highest point on the Moors) and Ralph’s Cross.   Then, stop in the quaint and picturesque Yorkshire village of Lealholm to see the stepping-stones over the River Esk — a great photo opportunity. It is then just a short journey into Whitby. Whilst hearing stories about the seaside town’s history from your guide, you will also learn about the main places of interest that you may want to visit. As you arrive in Whitby, there will be a brief stop at the Captain Cook Statue and Whalebone Arch on the West Cliff then alternative drop-offs at the harbour or Whitby Abbey (recommended if you wish to start your visit there and avoid having to climb the 199 steps).   You will have a leisurely 3 hours of free time in Whitby where you can visit the town’s newest attraction, The Endeavour Experience — 1 of only 2 full-size replicas of the HM Bark Endeavour in existence. See also the Captain Cook Museum, take the Bark Endeavour scale replica boat trip around the harbour, or view Whitby Abbey, inspiration for the Dracula books. You may also just explore the shops and market of the seaside town and experience fish and chips from the famous Magpie Café. After Whitby, you will head back onto the North York Moors and arrive in the picture-postcard village of Goathland (filming location for Aidensfield in the Heartbeat television series and Hogsmeade in the Harry Potter movies) where you can explore the filming locations, or maybe just grab an ice cream from the village store. The tour leaves Goathland for a final stop to enjoy the stunning views at the Hole of Horcum before heading back to York.

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English Heritage: Attractions Pass for Overseas Visitors

3. English Heritage: Attractions Pass for Overseas Visitors

Get a range of benefits with a 9-day or 16-day single or family English Heritage Overseas Visitor Pass, offering free entry to more than 100 stately homes, castles, prehistoric remains and gardens the length and breadth of England. Only available to non-UK residents, the great value pass will save you money even if you only visit 2 or 3 attractions, making a 9-day pass suitable for a weekend break. You can visit as many English Heritage attractions as you like, and come back as many times as you want to. But the more places you visit, the more money you save! Plan your vacation with the help of our overseas visitor Guidebook. The English Heritage website will also help you plan your visit before you travel. Once you have decided which attractions to explore, there is no need to get your money out at every attraction, and no need to keep track of your spending. The monuments bring the story of England to life, and have all been selected for their historic significance. Located in some of the most beautiful settings in England, they include mighty castles, tranquil monastic ruins, pleasant gardens and grand stately homes. Many host special events throughout the year, and your pass also gives you free or reduced price entry. You might even come face-to-face with a knight in shining armor. All sites have reduced opening times during the winter months (October to March). Detailed information available after booking. The full list of places you can access with your pass is as follows: In London: Apsley HouseChiswick HouseEltham Palace and GardensJewel TowerMarble Hill HouseRanger’s House - The Wernher CollectionWellington ArchIn the South East: 1066 Battle of Hastings, Abbey & BattlefieldBayham Old AbbeyCarisbrooke CastleDeal CastleDover CastleFort Brockhurst (as part of a pre-booked group)Home of Charles Darwin (Down House)Lullingstone Roman VillaMedieval Merchant’s HouseOsborne HousePevensey CastlePortchester CastleRichborough Roman FortRochester CastleSt Augustine’s AbbeyWalmer Castle & GardensYarmouth CastleIn the South West: Berry Pomeroy CastleChysauster Ancient VillageCleeve AbbeyDartmouth CastleFarleigh Hungerford CastleHailes AbbeyLaunceston CastleMuchelney AbbeyOkehampton CastleOld SarumOld Wardour CastlePendennis CastlePortland CastleRestormel CastleSt Mawes CastleSherborne Old CastleStonehengeTintagel CastleTotnes Castle In the East of England: Audley End House & GardensBerney Arms Windmill (as part of a pre-booked group)Castle Acre PrioryDenny Abbey and the Farmland MuseumGreat Yarmouth Row Houses and Greyfriars’ CloisterGrime’s GravesFramlingham CastleOrford CastleSaxtead Green Post MillTilbury FortWrest Park In the East Midlands: Ashby de la Zouch CastleBolsover CastleHardwick Old HallKirby HallKirby Muxloe CastleLyddington Bede HousePeveril CastleSibsey Trader WindmillLincoln Medieval Bishops’ PalaceRushton Triangular LodgeIn the West Midlands: Boscobel House and the Royal OakBuildwas AbbeyGoodrich CastleHaughmond AbbeyKenilworth Castle and Elizabethan GardenStokesay CastleWenlock PrioryWitley Court and GardensWroxeter Roman CityIn Yorkshire: Aldborough Roman SiteBrodsworth Hall and GardensByland AbbeyClifford's TowerHelmsley CastleKirkham PrioryMiddleham CastleMount Grace PrioryPickering CastleRichmond CastleRievaulx AbbeyRoche AbbeySt Peter's ChurchScarborough CastleThornton Abbey and GatehouseWhitby AbbeyYork Cold War Bunker (pre-booked visits only)In the North West: Beeston Castle and Woodland ParkBrougham CastleCarlisle CastleFurness AbbeyLanercost PrioryStott Park Bobbin MillAt Hadrian's Wall: Birdoswald Roman FortChesters Roman FortCorbridge Roman TownHousesteads Roman FortIn the North East: Aydon CastleBarnard CastleBerwick-Upon-Tweed-BarracksBelsay Hall, Castle and GardensBrinkburn PrioryDunstanburgh CastleEtal CastleLindisfarne PrioryPrudhoe CastleTynemouth Priory and CastleWarkworth Castle

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Heartbeat TV Locations Tour of Yorkshire

4. Heartbeat TV Locations Tour of Yorkshire

Set in the 1960’s, Heartbeat proved a hit with audiences all over the world for nearly two decades.  Now, you can visit the locations of Aidensfield and Whitby where much of the show was filmed. The 7-hour tour will take you to some of the key locations from the show and showcase the beautiful scenery and history of the North Yorkshire Moors.  Setting off from York your first stop of the day will be Whitby, the seaside town perhaps most famously linked with Dracula and Captain Cook, but which featured as itself in Heartbeat. Here, you will get a guided tour of the town taking in locations used in the filming of the show.  Then you’ll have the opportunity to take lunch in one of the town’s world-renowned fish and chip shops. Finally, it’s off to the village of Aidensfield, the village most associated with the show and where most of the locations can be found.  A guided tour of this charming village will include Bernie Scripps Garage and Funeral Parlour, plus the train station that was featured as Aidensfield station in Heartbeat and as Hogsmeade in the first Harry Potter film. You will also see the post office and stores and, of course, there will be time to treat yourself to a drink in the Aidensfield Arms pub. Your tour will then return to central York.

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From York: Moors, Whitby, and the Yorkshire Steam Railway

5. From York: Moors, Whitby, and the Yorkshire Steam Railway

Leave the city and travel through the Vale of York, learning about life in Yorkshire as you head for the first stop in the traditional National Park village of Hutton-le-Hole. Pass the 16th-century Lion Inn on Blakey Ridge at the highest point of the moors. See some of the pretty villages on the way to Whitby and hear stories from the seaside town’s history. Choose how you want to spend your two and a half hours in Whitby. See the Abbey, visit the Captain Cook attractions, shop for gothic fashion or enjoy a fish and chips lunch, the choice is yours. Opt to spend less time in Whitby and climb aboard a steam train on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway at a special discounted rate, paid locally on the day. See Hogsmeade Station from the Harry Potter movies and more. Alternatively, journey to Goathland by minibus in time see the other passengers arrive by steam train. Explore the fictional village of Aidensfield from the TV show, Heartbeat. Learn the history behind the mysterious RAF Fylingdales Pyramid on Snod Hill and see the Hole of Horcum before heading back towards York through the Howardian Hills with panoramic views of Castle Howard.

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From York: Steam Train, Whitby, and North York Moors

6. From York: Steam Train, Whitby, and North York Moors

Depart York and travel through the quaint villages of North Yorkshire as you make your way to the medieval market town of Helmsley. Pass through the idyllic village of Hutton-le-Hole, and then enter North York Moors National Park. Learn the history of the people and natural surroundings as you travel up and down the hills. Go for a stroll amongst the heather and get breathtaking views across Rosedale. Arrive at the seaside town of Whitby, where Captain Cook learned to sail. Get about two hours to explore the ruins of Whitby Abbey and enjoy a fish and chips lunch. Take a boat trip from Whitby harbor to discover the town's vampire connections. Next, visit Goathland, where the TV series Heartbeat was filmed, and treat yourself to a drink in the pub that serves as the fictional Aidensfield Arms. Continue to Goathland railway station – Hogsmeade Station from the Harry Potter films – and board a steam train for a magical journey on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Board the minibus upon arrival in Pickering and journey back to York. Follow a scenic route through the countryside and stop to take photos of Kirkham Priory along the way.

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The Best of Northern England: 5-Day Tour from Edinburgh

7. The Best of Northern England: 5-Day Tour from Edinburgh

Spend 5 glorious days exploring the very best of northern England on this exciting multi-day tour. Discover the beautiful East Lothian coastline and the amazing Alnwick Castle, spend some time in the city of York, and explore nature in the North Yorkshire Moors National Park and the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Visit the mysterious Castlerigg standing stones, travel to the shores of Ullswater,, said to be England's most beautiful lake, and much more along the way. Day 1 Your tour starts with a beautiful drive down the magnificent East Lothian coastline as you travel towards the walled border town of Berwick Upon Tweed. After stopping to admire the fortifications, continue to Alnwick Castle, whose magnificent interior and gardens have appeared in many films and television programs. Leaving Alnwick behind, travel towards the City of York on the Great North Road, and arrive in York in the late afternoon. [Overnight in York.] Day 2 This leisurely day gives you the flexibility to spend time exploring the medieval heart of York, a city whose rich history goes back to the time of the Roman’s, Vikings and the Normans before traveling to the North Sea coast of Yorkshire. Your journey begins in the late morning when you head for the magnificent North Yorkshire Moors National Park. Lunch will be in Whitby, a bustling fishing port and the inspiration for the fertile imagination of author Bram Stoker. After lunch and free time in Whitby, travel to the fishing village of Robin Hood’s Bay*, a perfectly preserved conservation village of winding lanes and narrow alleys before returning towards York. [Overnight in York. * The minicoach cannot access the main village because of local restrictions. The coach will drop you at the top of the village and you must walk down (and back up!) a steep hill to reach the old village centre. Day 3 Head west in the morning into the heart of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Established in 1954, the Yorkshire Dales National Park has outstanding scenery, a range of wildlife habitats and a rich cultural heritage. Continuing West, your route takes us through the Northern Dales, a beautiful area of natural beauty that is the centre of the Dales cattle trade. Throughout the day, you will have the opportunity to taste the flavors of Yorkshire when you visit the town of Masham, home to two of Yorkshires best known breweries and the cheese-making centre in historic Hawes. The final leg of the journey takes you high up into the remote hill of the Yorkshire Dales before descending into the lively market town of Keswick, where you will be dropped off at your accommodation and are then free to explore this charming town. [Overnight in Keswick.] [**During July this tour may stay in Windermere instead.] Day 4 After breakfast, head a short distance out of town to the mysterious Castlerigg standing stones, thought by many to have been built over 5,000 years ago. Then travel on to the shores of Ullswater, described as England’s most beautiful lake, for a forest walk to see the mighty Aira Force waterfall. Continuing south over the narrow and winding Kirkstone Pass, stop at Lake Windermere for a leisurely cruise on the lake or simply eat lunch while enjoying views of the mountains and lakes. After lunch, travel around the southern tip of Windermere and on towards Coniston Water, arriving at the picturesque conservation village of Hawkeshead. After exploring the village, take the narrow country lanes north towards Grasmere, and enjoy some free time to visit Wordsworth’s Dove Cottage or to enjoy the peace and tranquility of the Wordsworth Daffodil Garden by the River Rothy. Return to Keswick In the late afternoon. [Overnight in Keswick.] Day 5 Leaving the Lakes behind, start your climb towards Hartside Pass, at over 1900 feet above sea level, with the hills and mountains of Scotland and the English Lake District easily visible on a clear day. Follow the route of the old sheep drovers road between England and Scotland, stopping at Hadrians Wall along the way, and crossing the border into Scotland and towards the town of Jedburgh for refreshments by the ruins of Jedburgh Abbey. The final stop of the tour is at the world-famous Scott’s view with stunning views over the River Tweed and the Cheviot hills that form the border between Scotland before continuing North to Edinburgh.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Whitby

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What people are saying about Whitby

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 300 reviews

The whole day was excellent: the driver/tour guide, the scenery, Whitby, timing, well organised, even the weather was typical Yorkshire, plenty of sun and, later in the day, rain (though this didn't spoil the day). Mark, the driver, was marvellous, extremely knowledgable and friendly. Also, a very good driver. Thank you for a great day. Highly recommend it.

Trevor, our guide, was fantastic! It was super knowledgeable and brought us with minutes to spare with the commencement of local events (like the arrival of the steam train). It was a brilliant experience that I'd recommend to friends and family!

Wonderful trip highly recommend it and worth the money. Many places to see, The moors and Whitby excellent. Great to see the area where Heart beat was filmed. Couldn’t fault it.

Brilliant day exploring York and the moors! Had lovely fish and chips it Whitby! Tour guide as very informative with great knowledge of the area definitely recommend!

Lovely and full day. Our guide Lee was knowledgeable about the area’s history enriching our experience of the beautiful scenery.