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7 Reasons Why Kids Love Whitby!

Pirates, vampires, sandy beaches, fossils galore, ice cream, and fish and chips—no wonder children love Whitby! Our little one has us visiting over and over again. Here are 7 reasons why kids love Whitby.

Whitby has loads to offer families with kids, and it’s one of our favourite places to visit. We asked our little one why he loves visiting Whitby and made his answers into a blog post. So here are 7 reasons why kids love Whitby!


1. There are so many beaches to enjoy

“You can find fossils and starfish on the beaches.”

Rain or shine, we always enjoy a walk on the beach. We’ve spent countless days playing, fossil hunting, rock pooling, building sandcastles, and paddling in the sea on the many beaches in Whitby.

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Starfish on the beach in Whitby.

Our child’s favourite beach in Whitby is Tate Hill Beach because he loves to hunt through the stones for sea glass, shells, fossils, jets and other treasures. He also loves watching the boats coming in and out of the harbour. He has spent hours playing here.

Tate Hill Beach

For classic beach fun, his other favourite is Whitby Sands Beach (Whitby West Cliff Beach). He will spend hours playing in the sea and making sandcastles. Both beaches are close to the town, with pubs, restaurants, shops, and amenities nearby.

A seasonal dog ban is in place between May and September at Whitby West Cliff Beach, but they are welcome all year round at Tate Hill Beach.


2. Many kids love the traditional British fish and chips

“Fish and chips are SO good in Whitby.”

Whitby is well known for its fantastic fish and chips; we can’t get enough of them!

Papas Fish and Chips in Whitby.

Our little one’s favourite place to get fish and chips is Trenchers. He loves eating indoors here, but they also offer takeaway. Trenchers serves the usual battered fish options, including cod, haddock, and scampi. They also serve various meals, including a Seafood Salad, a gluten-free Seafood Chowder, and a vegan Spinach and Falafel Burger. The kid’s menu here is well-priced and has a good portion size. 

Fish and Chips on the beach.

From longstanding family-run restaurants to contemporary takeaways, we have rounded up the best fish and chip shops in this beautiful town. Click here for 13 of the best places to get fish and chips in Whitby.


3. Whitby Abbey hosts events that are wonderful for kids

“Whitby Abbey is fun to visit when they have games and competitions.”
Child at Whitby Abbey.

Whitby Abbey is an exciting place that is just as thrilling for kids as for adults! We always enjoy visiting Whitby Abbey, especially during their children’s themed half-term events. Over the years, we have visited Halloween trails, Easter egg hunts, and the Illuminated Abbey; we even helped break the world record for the largest gathering of people dressed as vampires!

Whitby Abbey witch children.

It’s ideal for stunning views of Whitby Harbour and the town. The Visitor Centre has an interactive audiovisual exhibition. Take advantage of the intriguing discoveries from the Anglo-Saxon and medieval periods. Additionally, there’s a coffee shop near the Abbey entrance. You can book tickets to Whitby Abbey online here.


4. You can spend hours crabbing with kids in Whitby Harbour

“Crabbing in the harbour is so much fun.”

When we visit Whitby, one of our cherished activities with young ones is crabbing, evoking memories of our childhood trips to the coast. 

Crabbing at Whitby harbour.

Crabbing is an easy and fun pastime involving using a single fishing line with a small weight to sink the bait. There is a designated fishing area near the swing bridge where you can participate, and many local shops sell bait and nets.

Crabbing at Whitby harbour.

It’s important to note that the crabs from the harbour should be returned carefully. Read our full guide to crabbing in Whitby here.


5. There are traditional arcades to enjoy together

“I love saving my money up to spend in the arcades in Whitby.”

Like every seaside town, Whitby offers its own arcades that we secretly love as much as the kids do. 

Whitby Arcades.

Fun City and Funland Amusements, situated along the harbour, are great places to entertain little ones and even win a few teddies. There’s a fantastic pirate-themed indoor crazy golf course and a ten-pin bowling alley.

Arcades Whitby.

You’ll also find plenty of arcade-type games to enjoy. Afterwards, grab an ice cream and stroll along the pier, but watch out for the seagulls!


6. There are lots of boat trips to choose from, which are exciting for children

You can sail with pirates!

Exploring the coast of Whitby by spending time on the water is a fantastic way to create lasting memories and have a great time.

Boat trip from Whitby Harbour

For a unique perspective of Whitby, consider taking a 20-minute sea trip with Whitby Coastal Cruises. Kids under five can board for free, and you can easily hop on at the harbourside without making a reservation.

The Black Pearl Pirate Boat trip is a blast for families who love a fun pirate theme. The pirate crew ensures an exciting adventure from start to finish, with plenty of photo opportunities on board and with pirates on shore.

Whitby Whalebones.

The trip usually takes about 20-25 minutes, and everyone can fully immerse themselves in character thanks to the array of costumes and props provided. Learn more about Whitby boat trips here.


7. There’s even a zoo you can visit!

I love going to the zoo on the way to Whitby.

Flamingo Land, located just 40 minutes from Whitby, is ideal for families with children of different ages. It features a zoo and a theme park, offering a wide range of attractions for kids. 

Flamingo Land.

The zoo showcases a variety of birds, mammals, and reptiles. You can purchase food on-site or bring your picnic. Additionally, the park hosts themed events throughout the year and now provides accommodation for overnight stays. Read our Flamingo Land review here.


Why do kids love Whitby?

Child in Whitby.

Of course, kids love Whitby for its fun activities for children, sandy beaches, fossils, fish and chips, and exciting history. But as parents, we know it’s so much more than that – it’s a place where they can ditch the iPads and be present, engaged and immersed in quality family time. We love making memories in Whitby.


For more inspiration here are 14 things to do in Whitby with kids. Do your children love Whitby, too? You can share your memories with us in the comments.

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