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Whitby - Cruise

For the first time, the historic port of Whitby will be opening
its harbour gates as an International Cruise Destination
in 2019


Whitby harbour has been working successfully with cruise vessels for many years, and can offer:

• A friendly, dedicated team to help your cruise go as smoothly as possible
• Very competitive fees
• Landing facility and linkspan in the centre of the town
• Adjacent coach parking and taxi hire
• Disabled-friendly, enhanced access pontoon
• Predominantly sheltered anchorage
• Short tender transfer with panoramic historic views
• Ability to handle two large tenders in tandem or a multitude of Zodiacs
• Coach or car hire is easy to arrange locally
The Port of Whitby is just one hour by road to Durham Tees Valley International Airport for the transfer of
crew and stores and is the gateway to Yorkshire and the north of England.

For more information about Whitby’s port and ship services, please contact Captain Chris Burrows at Whitby & Scarborough Harbours Office on 01723 373530 / 01947 602354, or at

To find out more, call our friendly tourism team on 01723 383636


Cross over the swing bridge to the east side of Whitby, take a left up Sandgate and reach the heart
of Whitby’s curious shops, brimming with quintessential coastal charm. The market square still
buzzes with street vendors on market days (Tuesday and Saturday). Arriving on Church Street you’ll
discover clusters of jewellers crafting and trading the rare and local gemstone derived from this very
coastline - Whitby jet.
Time for refreshment? - ‘take two’ in one of the many pit stops brimming with fresh cakes and choice
teas, a Yorkshire delicacy! At the top of Church Street, peering around the corner you’ll discover the
stone feet of the 199 steps, which replace the original wooden steps dating back to circa 1340,
beckoning you to climb them. Don’t forget to count as you go, and look out for the roman numerals.
As you reach the summit of the steps you’ll be rewarded by the Church of Saint Mary coming into
view, swiftly followed by Whitby Abbey – both buildings famed for their mention in Bram Stoker’s
As you take a moment to catch your breath, turn on your heels and let the stunning views
of the town, coast and moors take it away again.


Head up Bagdale and slip through a gate which leads to the charming gardens of Pannett Park.
Here you will find Neolithic rock art, Jurassic & South Seas Gardens and the Floral Clock - originally installed in 1953 for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. Once you reach the top and have taken in the views, take in some of the curious artefacts of Whitby Museum.
Uncover the astonishing natural and social history collections, relics from famous whalers the Scoresbys and explorer Captain Cook.
From here, walk through to Pannett Art Gallery, hosting an eclectic mix of 19th and 20th century works alongside the modern, well worth a gaze. Leave the park onto St Hilda’s Terrace and wander down the hill taking a left up Skinner street.
This is the perfect street for a spot of window shopping as you amble along and emerge at West Cliff.


Whitby is an ancient town, set amidst some of England’s most breath-taking coastal scenery.
The old harbour shelters beneath the haunting, cliff-top ruins of world-famous Whitby Abbey, one of England’s holiest places and the ‘birthplace of horror’.

For centuries, Whitby has been home to sea-faring adventurers, including the world’s greatest explorer Captain Cook, and the town is still one of the top fishing ports on the coast, with some of the north’s best seafood restaurants. Whitby is also internationally celebrated for its unique jewellery, handcrafting precious jet and amber in its 150 year old workshops.

A Gateway to Yorkshire
Whitby is an easy gateway to Yorkshire’s premier attractions: the magnificent and historic landscapes of the
Yorkshire Coast and North York Moors; Britain’s finest stately home, Castle Howard; steam-train journeys on
the North Yorkshire Moors Railway, star of ‘Harry Potter’; the ‘Dinosaur Coast’, a magnet for fossil-hunters;
England’s best beaches for water-sports; major festivals of music, culture and sport, and much, much more!

World Class Cruise Destination
Whitby has been welcoming ships from across the world for over 250 years. It is one of England’s most
historic and picturesque ports, but also one of the friendliest: cruise ships can anchor close to Whitby’s
piers, so the journey for passengers from ship to shore is very quick. Once on shore, the town and its
attractions – and also a coach park – are just a few steps from the harbour.


• Wander Whitby’s maze of historic streets with its quaint pubs and shops, and climb the 199 steps for
stunning views over Whitby’s old fishing harbour, or hunt for fossils on the beach. Along the way, taste local specialities including traditional Yorkshire cakes and biscuits, and fish & chips – the best in Britain!

• Visit one of the North of England’s most iconic landmarks: 1500 year-old Whitby Abbey is the burial place of ancient kings and saints, and a site of holy miracles, but those haunting ruins are also known as the birthplace of Dracula.

• See one of the world's rarest and most treasured gemstones, Whitby Jet, handcrafted into exquisite jewellery in Whitby’s world-famous, traditional workshops. As the favourite jewel of Queen Victoria, jet has been exclusively worked in the town for over 150 years, and you can explore this unique heritage in local museums, and marvel at the world’s largest piece of jet, 21-feet long!

• Join Whitby’s friendly surf school to experience one of the country’s best  beaches for water-sports. Play golf at Whitby’s friendly 125 year-old club, popular for its vast coastal panoramas.

• Lace up your boots for a walk along magnificent cliff-top footpaths – you might even spot a whale, dolphin or seal out at sea. Or join the ‘Baron’ for a costumed history walking tour to Whitby’s secret spots.

• Explore the life of the world’s greatest explorer in the award-winning Captain Cook Memorial Museum, or take a cruise on a thrilling replica of Cook’s tall ship, the Endeavour.

• Time your visit to enjoy one of Whitby’s major festivals, including Whitby Regatta – one of England’s oldest boat races, or the world-famous Goth Weekend, with live music and bizarre bazaars.


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Experience endless miles of dramatic coastline set against the backdrop of the North York Moors National Park, the Yorkshire Wolds and Holderness Coast.

Visit the popular Coastal towns of Scarborough, Whitby, Filey, Bridlington, Hornsea and Withernsea or visit quaint fishing villages such as Robin Hood’s Bay with its maze of cobbled streets once haunt of many a smuggler or Staithes renowned for its famous group of Artists following in the footsteps of Dame Laura Knight, now celebrated at the annual art and heritage festival.

Visit one of the many villages set upon the heather clad moors where the sheep graze freely along the roadside, Goathland renowned for the TV programme Heartbeat and also used in the Harry Potter Film. Take a trip on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway which winds its way through the beautiful North York Moors National Park. Take in the beauty of the Yorkshire Wolds, inspiration for world-renowned artist David Hockney to produce works of Art which feature the sweeping roads, majestic sky scapes and rolling hillsides. For the only place in Britain to see puffins without setting to sea visit the RSPB Reserve at Bempton Cliffs, these spectacular chalk cliffs are twice as high as York Minster, and home to over 200000 nesting seabirds from April to September.

Discover why the Yorkshire Coast has been attracting visitors for centuries. Scarborough, known at Britains 1st Seaside Resort due to its medicinal spring waters boasts a 12c Castle depicting over 2500 years of history.

Explore the superb Jurassic Coast by visiting the unique Rotunda Museum (home to the work of geologist William Smith). Further along the coast you will find Whitby, rich in maritime history, where Captain Cook began his career as a seaman before his epic voyages of discovery.

Down the coast is the beautiful unspoilt Edwardian resort of Filey, steeped in local history and offering superb examples of fine architecture such as the Crescent and Crescent Gardens where you can stroll along and enjoy the fine musical performances just as the Edwardians enjoyed. A little further down from Filey is Bridlington, with its flat promenades, ideal for exploring the destination on the towns land train. Bridlington is also home to a 900 year old working harbour which is now England’s largest shellfish landing port.

The Yorkshire Coast provides visitors with all year round entertainment and events. Scarborough boasts the fabulous Historic Spa, home to the only remaining professional seaside Orchestra which recently marked it centenary celebrations. Visit the Stephen Joseph Theatre a fine example of an art deco building showcasing the amazing work of World Renowned playwright Sir Alan Ayckbourn. Or why not enjoy an evening of big live entertainment at the unique Scarborough Open Air Theatre originally built in 1932 where acts such as Olly Murs, Katherine Jenkins, Status Quo, Elton John and JLS have all played.

In Bridlington you could take in a top band at the 20 million pound refurbished art deco venue The Spa Bridlington also popular for many events including the annual scooter rally held in October. Whitby Pavilion perched upon the West Cliff is a multipurpose venue offering a diverse programme of entertainment including cinema, comedy club, variety festivals and events.

When it comes to festivals you will be spoiled for choice from the international Whitby Goth weekend, Bridlington Old Town Dickensian Christmas Festival, the Muston Scarecrow Festival to the Egton Bridge Old Gooseberry show (reputed to be the oldest Gooseberry show in the Country). For those who are interested in music or sport the choice is endless from Jazz Festivals, Acoustic Festivals and outdoor concerts to Motorcycle racing, Cricket Festivals and UK Pro Surfing - the coast has it all.

The Yorkshire Coast and North York Moors with its heather clad Moorland, lush green dales and stunning coastline provide the ingredients for some mouth-watering food and drink available from farm gates, delicatessens, award winning fine dining restaurants and a wealth of homely pubs and cafes.

Experience the Copper Horse pub style restaurant which has a unique theatrical theme with walls and ceilings covered in theatre memorabilia of stage and screen dating back to the 1950’s. Or dine with a difference on the Pullman Dining Train whilst enjoying the fabulous scenery of the North York Moors National Park. Why not visit Fortunes Kippers where you can take a peek and taste genuine authentic Whitby Kippers, or Alonzi’s Harbour Bar Ice Cream Parlour in Scarborough where you can experience award wining ice cream set in a 1950’s style environment. For a great taste of the sea visit the Bridlington sea food festival and savour freshly caught delights.

For those visitors who want to experience the Great Outdoors, Scarborough, Whitby and Filey and the surround countryside offers a whole range of activities. Take a walk along the coastline on the breathtaking National Cleveland Way and be stunned by the varied landscapes for a true ‘get away from it all experience’. A Lighthouse Trail begins at Spurn point, a sandy spit of land at the mouth of the River Humber and takes in the history of the regions Lighthouses including Withernsea which is unique in that it towers 127ft amidst the houses in the town. For those wanting to take to water why not try your hand at surfing, rowing, canoeing, sea swimming, jet-skiing, kayaking, paddle boarding or sailing. Experience one of the fabulous pleasure cruisers and enjoy the coastline from the sea, The Coronia which was involved in the evacuation of Dunkirk or The Hispaniola pirate ship are just two of the unique vessels on offer.

When it comes to biking The Moors to Sea Cycle Network criss-crosses the stunning Moorland, beautiful forests and dramatic heritage coastline. Or running along the Yorkshire Coast is the disused railway between Scarborough and Whitby know as “The Cinder Track”, a lovely way to enjoy an intriguing mix of natural and man made heritage.

The renaissance of the Yorkshire Coast has resulted in substantial investment into the quality of accommodation on offer. Why not stay in a Five star self catering penthouse apartment overlooking the North Bay in Scarborough at the fabulous Sands Development, or one of our superb four star award winning Spa hotels The Crown Spa set on the majestic Esplanade in Scarborough or Raithwaite Hall in Whitby set in over 80 acres of estate land. For something a little different experience the comfort and tranquillity of the grade II moated manor house Ryesome Garth situated on the Holderness coast with views over the Humber or stay at a former Church and Sunday School that has been sympathetically converted to provide a peaceful break close to the seaside resort of Hornsea.

Bram Stoker's Dracula

If ever a town was associated with a literary character, it's Whitby and Count Dracula. Author Bram Stoker stayed in Whitby in the late 1800s, and was so inspired by its ruined abbey and clifftop church he created his most famour character. Dracula arrives in this countruy after his ship runs aground off Whitby, and runs up the famous 199 steps in the guise of a black dog. Visit the spine-chilling Dracula Experience, look out for one of the regular Dracula events run by English Heritage at Whitby's dramatic abbey or join a guided 'In Search of Dracula' Whitby Walk.

Whitby Abbey

Founded by St Hilda in the 7th century AD, the majestic Benedictin Whitby Abbey inspired many writers from Caedmon, the earliest known English poet, Bram Stoker, creator of Dracula, and Michel Faber, whose murder mystery The Hundred and Ninety-Nine Steps is set in and around the Abbey.


In the care of English Heritage, the Abbey's imaginative visitor centre is behind the classical frontage of a mansion house which once belonged to the Cholmley family, and worth a visit in its own right.

Setting Sail

The best way to explore Whitby's rich maritime history has to be by actually getting out on the water. Take a trip on board the Bark Endeavour, a 40% sized replica of Captain Cook's ship built by local craftsmen. Join a whale-watching trip - species spotted over the last few years have included minke, fin, sei, northern and humpbacks, as well as seals, dolphins and porpoises. Or enjoy a pleasure trip aboard the venerable former Whitby lifeboat the Mary Ann Hepworth - dating from the '30s, she was one of the RNLI's longest serving boats.