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10 Best Seaside Towns In Yorkshire To Visit (+Villages)

These seaside towns in Yorkshire, a region known for its rugged landscapes and historic charm, blend the timeless allure of the coast with a rich cultural heritage.

Nestled along the North Sea coastline, these seaside towns in Yorkshire beckon you with their breathtaking vistas of rolling cliffs, golden sands, and quaint fishing harbours.


Seaside Towns In Yorkshire

Each town possesses a unique character, from the bustling resort atmosphere of Scarborough to the serene and historic appeal of Whitby.


Scarborough

Scarborough is one of the most popular and well-known seaside resorts in the United Kingdom and one of the best seaside towns in Yorkshire to visit.

Scarborough has several beautiful sandy beaches, including the South Bay and North Bay, which are popular for sunbathing, swimming, and various water sports.

The Scarborough Spa Complex is a venue for concerts, events, and entertainment. It includes the Grand Hall, the Spa Theatre, and the Ocean Room.

The Stephen Joseph Theatre is a renowned theatre that hosts a variety of performances, including those by playwright Alan Ayckbourn, who has strong ties to the town.

Sea Life Scarborough is an aquarium featuring a wide range of marine life and interactive exhibits to see when there. Perfect for the seaside.

Book accommodation in Scarborough here.

Whitby

Whitby is a historic seaside town located in North Yorkshire. It is known for its picturesque setting on the North Sea coast and its rich history and cultural significance.

Whitby is situated at the mouth of the River Esk and the town is part of the larger Borough of Scarborough.

Whitby has a long and fascinating history. It was founded by the Anglo-Saxons and has been a settlement for over a thousand years. The town’s history is intertwined with fishing, shipbuilding, and the jet industry.

One of the most famous historical figures associated with Whitby is Captain James Cook. Cook began his seafaring career in Whitby and later became a renowned navigator and explorer. The Captain Cook Memorial Museum is located in Whitby.

Perhaps the most iconic landmark in Whitby is Whitby Abbey, a ruined Benedictine abbey that dates back to the 7th century. It sits atop a hill overlooking the town and the sea. The abbey is famous for its Gothic architecture and its role in inspiring Bram Stoker’s “Dracula.”

Fishing has been a significant part of Whitby’s economy for centuries. The town is known for its fish market and the fishing industry’s presence.

The North Yorkshire Moors Railway provides a scenic train journey to and from the town. The nearest major city is York, and the area is part of the North York Moors National Park.

Whitby is a place of natural beauty, historical significance, and cultural charm, making it a popular choice for the seaside towns in Yorkshire to visit.

Book accommodation in Whitby here.

Staithes

Staithes is a charming fishing village located on the North Yorkshire coast, not far from Whitby. This picturesque village is known for its stunning coastal scenery, historic character, and its connection to art and history.

Staithes is situated within the North York Moors National Park and is nestled between steep cliffs along the coastline. It is known for its rugged, rocky shoreline and the beauty of the North Sea.

Similar to Whitby, Staithes has a strong fishing heritage. The village has a small harbour that has been used for centuries by fishermen, and it still maintains its traditional fishing character. You can see fishermen at work and small fishing boats in the harbour.

The rocky cliffs around Staithes are geologically significant. The area is known for its fossils, and it’s a popular destination for fossil hunters and geology enthusiasts.

Staithes has a connection to the famous explorer Captain James Cook. It was in Staithes that Cook began his seafaring career as an apprentice. There’s a plaque in the village commemorating this historical association.

Staithes has also played a significant role in the world of art. It was home to a group of artists known as the “Staithes Group,” who were active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The village’s picturesque scenery and unique character have attracted and inspired many artists.

Staithes has managed to maintain its historic character and has a small, close-knit community. It’s a peaceful and scenic place to explore, with colourful cottages and winding streets.

The village is a great starting point for coastal walks and hikes along the Cleveland Way, offering breathtaking views of the North Sea and the surrounding countryside.

Book accommodation in Staithes here.

Runswick Bay

Runswick Bay is a beautiful and tranquil village located on the North Yorkshire coast, not far from Staithes and Whitby. This idyllic bay and village are known for their stunning coastal scenery, sandy beach, and charming character.

Runswick Bay is situated within the North York Moors National Park, making it a part of one of the most scenic and protected areas in England. The village is perched on a hillside overlooking the bay.

The bay itself is a picturesque, horseshoe-shaped cove with a sandy beach, surrounded by steep cliffs and rocky outcrops. The bay’s natural beauty and tranquillity make it a popular destination for beachgoers, walkers, and nature lovers.

The village of Runswick Bay is characterized by its narrow, winding lanes, traditional fisherman’s cottages, and charming gardens. It has a timeless, peaceful atmosphere, making it a perfect place for a relaxing getaway.

Similar to Staithes and Whitby, Runswick Bay has a strong fishing heritage. Although the fishing industry is not as prominent as it once was, you can still see remnants of this history, such as the old fishing cobles on the beach.

The sandy beach at Runswick Bay is ideal for swimming, building sandcastles, and picnicking. The bay’s sheltered nature makes it a safe spot for families to enjoy the water.

The surrounding area provides excellent opportunities for walking and hiking. The Cleveland Way National Trail passes through Runswick Bay, offering stunning coastal views and the chance to explore the cliffs and countryside.

While the village is small and peaceful, it has a few cafes and shops where you can enjoy refreshments and purchase local crafts and products.

Runswick Bay is a place of natural beauty, historical significance, and tranquillity. It offers a more serene and laid-back atmosphere compared to some of the larger seaside towns in Yorkshire, making it an ideal destination for those seeking a relaxing escape in a charming coastal setting.

Withernsea

Withernsea is located on the Holderness Coast in the East Riding of Yorkshire. It is a relatively small and traditional British seaside resort with a history dating back to the Victorian era.

Withernsea became a popular Victorian seaside resort during the 19th century, and it still retains many elements of that era. The town’s beach and promenade have traditionally attracted holidaymakers.

One of the notable landmarks in Withernsea is the Withernsea Lighthouse, which houses a museum. It was built in 1894 and is a key attraction for visitors, providing insights into the town’s history and maritime heritage.

Withernsea Beach is a Blue Flag beach, indicating its cleanliness and high water quality. It is a popular spot for families, sunbathers, and those who enjoy traditional seaside activities.

The town’s iconic Pier Towers are a historical remnant of an old pier that used to extend out into the sea. While the pier itself no longer exists, the distinctive towers remain and are a recognizable feature of the town.

Withernsea offers traditional seaside entertainment, including amusement arcades, ice cream parlours, and opportunities for boating and fishing. There are also annual events and carnivals, such as Withernsea Carnival Week.

Withernsea is a typical British seaside town with a rich history making it a great choice out of these seaside towns in Yorkshire.

It offers a relaxed coastal atmosphere, and its heritage and natural beauty make it a pleasant destination for those looking to experience traditional seaside charm.

Bridlington

Bridlington is a popular seaside resort town known for its beautiful beaches, historic attractions, and a range of recreational activities.

Bridlington boasts several sandy beaches, including the North Beach and South Beach, which are ideal for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports. The town’s clean and well-maintained beaches make it a popular destination for families.

Bridlington is home to several historical attractions, including Bridlington Priory, a beautiful medieval church with a long history. Sewerby Hall and Gardens is another notable attraction, featuring a stately home, gardens, and a zoo.

Bridlington Old Town is known for its charming cobbled streets, historic buildings, and independent shops. It’s a great place to explore the town’s history and enjoy traditional English pubs and tearooms.

The Bridlington Spa is an entertainment venue and conference centre that hosts various events, including concerts, theatre productions, and conferences.

Flamborough Head, a prominent headland located near Bridlington, offers breathtaking coastal scenery and is known for its chalk cliffs and the distinctive Flamborough Head Lighthouse.

Like many coastal towns in the region, Bridlington has a strong fishing heritage. You can still see fishing boats in the harbour, and the annual Bridlington Seafood Festival celebrates the town’s maritime connections.

The nearby Bempton Cliffs, a nature reserve, is famous for its seabird colonies, particularly puffins, gannets, and razorbills. Birdwatchers visit the area to observe these remarkable birds in their natural habitat.

Bridlington is a quintessential British seaside resort, offering a mix of historical charm, natural beauty, and modern amenities, making it a popular option out of these seaside towns in Yorkshire.

Book accommodation in Bridlington here.

Robin Hood’s Bay

Robin Hood’s Bay is a picturesque coastal village renowned for its natural beauty, historic character, and connections to smuggling folklore.

The village is a labyrinth of narrow, winding streets and alleys, which makes it unique and charming. The historic cottages, many of which are built of local stone, contribute to the picturesque setting.

Robin Hood’s Bay is situated within the North York Moors National Park, nestled along the cliffs of the North Sea. The bay itself is a sandy cove flanked by rocky cliffs.

The Cleveland Way National Trail passes through Robin Hood’s Bay, offering you a chance to explore the rugged coastline, take in breathtaking views and discover the area’s natural beauty.

The village’s name is associated with the legendary outlaw Robin Hood. Local legend has it that he once visited the bay and hid from authorities in the area’s caves. The village’s name is also linked to smuggling activities that took place in the past.

Historically, Robin Hood’s Bay was a fishing and smuggling village. Today, fishing is still part of its character, and the local fishermen can often be seen at work.

Robin Hood’s Bay is a unique and captivating destination, offering a combination of natural beauty, a fascinating history, and a distinctive character. It’s a place where you can immerse yourself in the charm of a traditional English coastal village.

Hornsea

Hornsea is known for its pleasant beach which stretches for several miles along the coast and its peaceful and family-friendly atmosphere.

Hornsea Mere is a large, natural freshwater lake situated to the west of the town. It is the largest inland freshwater lake in Yorkshire and offers opportunities for birdwatching, boating, and fishing.

The town was once known for Hornsea Pottery, a renowned ceramics manufacturer. While the pottery has closed, you can still find Hornsea Pottery items in local antique shops.

A pleasant promenade lines the seafront, providing beautiful views of the beach and the sea. There are also attractive floral gardens to enjoy.

Hornsea has two museums: the Hornsea Museum, which highlights the town’s history, and the Hornsea Seafish Museum, which focuses on the town’s fishing heritage.

Hornsea offers a relaxed and family-friendly seaside experience, making it an ideal destination for those looking to enjoy a traditional British coastal holiday.

Book accommodation in Hornsea here.

Filey

Filey is a charming town known for its beautiful beaches, natural surroundings, and a relaxed atmosphere. Filey is situated between the larger towns of Scarborough and Bridlington.

Filey boasts a stunning sandy beach that stretches for several miles. The beach is known for its cleanliness and family-friendly environment, making it a popular spot for sunbathing, swimming, and picnicking.

Carr Naze is a prominent headland that provides panoramic views of Filey Bay and the surrounding area. Filey Brigg, a rocky promontory, extends into the sea and is a popular location for rock pooling and fishing.

The nearby Filey Dams Nature Reserve is a haven for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. It offers a variety of habitats and attracts a wide range of bird species, making it a popular spot for wildlife observation.

Filey’s town centre is characterized by charming streets with shops, tearooms, and restaurants serving traditional British fare, seafood, and international dishes.

Filey is a great place to choose from out of these seaside towns in Yorkshire, especially for its beach.

Book accommodation in Filey here.

Sandsend

Sandsend is located on the North Yorkshire coast near the town of Whitby. It is known for its natural beauty, sandy beach, and serene atmosphere.

Sandsend boasts a beautiful sandy beach that stretches for approximately two miles along the coast. The beach is known for its cleanliness and is popular for sunbathing, swimming, and beachcombing.

Sandsend has a peaceful and unspoiled atmosphere, with traditional cottages, gardens, and small shops. It’s a great place to relax and enjoy the coastal surroundings.

The Cleveland Way National Trail, which offers excellent coastal walks and views, passes through Sandsend. There are also walking paths along the cliffs and the surrounding countryside, making it a great destination for hikers.

The Sandsend Viaduct is an iconic landmark in the area. It was part of the Whitby, Redcar, and Middlesbrough Union Railway and is no longer in use, but it provides a unique visual element to the landscape.

Sandsend is an ideal place for those seeking a quieter, less crowded coastal experience while still enjoying the charms of the North Yorkshire coast.


Yorkshire

Each of these seaside towns in Yorkshire has its unique character and attractions, making them perfect for a variety of coastal experiences and getaways.

If you want a good guidebook that covers the region then The Rough Guide to Yorkshire is a good choice and one of the best.

For more seaside towns in the UK that go perfectly with these seaside towns in Yorkshire take a look at the 20 best seaside towns in Cornwall.


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