The town of Whitby on the North Yorkshire coast, although small, has a lot to offer for all ages! It’s the perfect seaside location with picturesque views, wonderful beaches and of course delicious sea food.
Many might not know that Whitby is where Captain James Cook, the popular explorer, started his ocean-going career. It’s also where the writer Bram Stoker was inspired to write his legendary novel, Dracula!
Whitby is one of the UK’s main fishing ports and some of the historical features of the town include the Whitby Abbey, the swing bridge, St Mary’s Church and many more.
Here are our suggestions of the top things to do during a day trip to Whitby:
Take a tour of the historic Whitby Abbey
The Whitby Abbey is one of the finest sites to see and the most popular tourist destination in the town.
Whitby Abbey was the first monastery in North Yorkshire and dates to around 657. The impressive Abbey is located on top of Whitby’s East Cliff and is open to visitors all year round.
199 steps to St Mary’s Church
One way to reach the Abbey is to climb the famous 199 steps to St. Mary’s Church. The 199 steps have become a tradition in the town and people climb them just to count the steps one by one.
Although 199 steps sound like a lot of steps, it is well worth giving it a try for the spectacular views you will see as you climb up and the stunning panoramic pictures you can capture. We suggest stopping while climbing up for little breaks and to take pictures of the harbour below.
Visit the Captain Cook Memorial Museum
The Captain Cook Memorial Museum is a 17th century house where the young James Cook started his career as an apprentice. The museum has a wide range of exhibitions and shows on a regular basis.
Some of the museum’s highlights include Cook’s letters describing the sights and events of his travels and the collection of artwork and material relating to Captain Cook and those who sailed with him.
Click here to find out more about the museum and prices.
Shopping in Whitby
Shopping in Whitby is a whole activity on its own – the town offers a bit of everything from famous jewellers to fish markets and craft shops.
We suggest visiting the original Whitby Jet jeweller’s shop. The shop is the oldest manufacturer of jet jewellery and is located at the bottom of church street where it has always been since 1860. All jewellery is handcrafted with the finest quality of Whitby Jet, collected locally.
Time for fish and chips
You can’t visit Whitby without trying a sample of the local fish! So, our final suggestion and the most important thing to do is to enjoy a large portion of fish & chips while walking along the harbour. Here are some of the most popular places to eat in Whitby:
The Magpie Café
The well-known family- run Magpie Café is really a ‘must see’ when visiting Whitby. The café makes it clear that it’s not just about fish and chips but exceptional and high-quality food. Tuck in to the finest fresh fish, seafood chowder and much more while overlooking Whitby Harbour.
Winner of the 26th National Fish & Chip awards, the Quayside is located in Whitby’s harbour with high quality fish and chips. The restaurant is hugely popular with visitors, occupying one of the town’s most historic buildings dating back to the 1820s. On the menu you can find cod, scampi, haddock, fish pie and much more.
The Pier Inn
Before you head home, enjoy a drink in an excellent location with stunning harbour and pier views at the Pier Inn. The traditional pub is only a four-minute walk from the town centre and offers a great selection of cask ales as well as food.
Take advantage of our Enterprise Travel day excursions and visit Whitby with your friends and family – our next day trip is planned for 27 June! Find out more about our offers here.
If you would like to request a day-excursion brochure, please use the contact form.