Nestled between two headlands north of Whitby, Staithes is a pretty base from which to explore the coast. Once one of the busiest fishing villages on the coast, this charming village is now a great location for geologist and fossil hunters who come to explore the rock pools and, perhaps most famously, the home of a community of well-known artists.

The Staithes Group were active in the village in the late 19th centuries, often painting local scenes including fishermen’s wives in their distinctive draped cotton bonnets (which can still be seen being worn occasionally to this day). The group comprised up to 30 artists at any one time, including Dame Laura Knight, her husband, Harold, Ernest Dade and Joseph R. Bagshawe. Over the past few years, Staithes has staged an heritage and arts festival weekend in the autumn which sees homes and shops converted into art galleries and pop-up cafes, and street food stalls cater for the thousands of visitors who descend on the village.

One of the village’s most famous residents was Captain James Cook who, aged 16, came to live in Staithes as an assistant to shopkeeper William Sanderson, before moving to Whitby to become an apprentice seaman. Pay a visit to the Staithes Heritage Centre in the old Methodist Chapel to find out more about Cook’s life and voyages, or head into Whitby to the Captain Cook Memorial Museum for even more history.

The village is also well-known in the TV and film industry. If you have young children, chances are you will recognise the beautiful Staithes. It is the location for the much-loved CBBC series Old Jack’s Boat, starring Bernard Cribbins as Old Jack and, of course, Salty the dog!

Check out the list below for the best of what Staithes has to offer including accommodation, places to eat and things to do.