Hidden away in the North York Moors is the pretty village of Goathland. This moorland village is a great base for walkers, history buffs and holidaymakers.
Goathland is a bracing moorland village situated on the eastern edge of the North York Moors National Park. Close to Whitby, York and the Yorkshire Coast, it’s an ideal base for walkers, history buffs and holidaymakers alike. To help you plan your visit here is some information about the local area, including the best places to eat and drink, a shortlist of the best places to stay and the best things to see and do. Goathland is situated approximately 20 minutes from Whitby (approx 9 miles). Click here to get directions.
A Brief History of Goathland
Historically known as ‘Godelandia’, the area was gifted to Osmund the Priest and the brethren of the hermitage by King Henry I. The king granted this land in memory of the soul of his mother Queen Matilda, as recorded in the charter of 1109, which is held at Whitby Abbey.
Another thrilling tale of the history of Goathland is that of Wade’s Causeway, which runs across Wheeldale Moor, and is widely known as the ‘Roman road’. The causeway has been confirmed to pre-date the Roman legacy and could possibly be medieval in age, but local legend has it that the road was built by a certain Wade the Giant. Well worth a look when you’re there to see what you think.
Goathland, or ‘Good Land’, or even ‘Goda’s Land’, is a popular tourist village situated in the North York Moors and is 40 miles from York and just nine miles from Whitby, which makes this wonderful moorland village a top choice for walkers seeking easy access to the best of the region.
Goathland has a number of famous connections including an appearance in the hit ITV show ‘Heartbeat’, you may remember the village was called ‘Aidensfield’, with characters such as ‘Greengrass’ and housewives favourite Nick Berry, playing the role of local bobby, ‘PC Nick Rowan’. More recently Goathland Railway Station appeared in the internationally known Harry Potter films, as ‘Hogsmeade’. Is that Ron Weasley over there on the platform?
Places to eat and drink in Goathland
Although a relatively small village, there are plenty of pubs and hotel bars to help you stay hydrated during your visit. One of these includes the famous The Goathland Hotel. You may have heard of the Goathland Hotel by its other name – ‘The Aidensfied Arms’. The pub was filmed as ‘The Aidensfield Arms’ in the hit ITV series, ‘Heartbeat’, which was a very popular television programme in the UK during the early 1990s.
For those of you seeking a sweet treat, served with a smile is guaranteed at the Goathland Tea Rooms. Serving up a wide selection of baked goods; pastries, pies, cakes, sandwiches and many other delicious home-baked goodies, this charming tea room, situated in a former doctors surgery, is just what the doctor ordered. Wash down your favourite slice of heaven with a ‘proper’ cup of tea, made with Yorkshire Tea, the finest brew in all the land. Don’t forget to visit the gift store next door for all those last-minute souvenirs and curiosities.
Things to do in Goathland
Walks around Goathland
When researching things to do in Goathland walking is high on everyone’s list. Our favourite walk is the Mallyan Spout/Beck Hole loop. Starting at the Goathland Car Park, this route is a brisk 3 miles whisk that is suitable for all abilities; particularly families, nature enthusiasts and woodland wanderers. Typically this walks around three hours long so it’s a great way to spend a morning with the kids before a tasty lunch back in the village. The route takes in delightful woodland and follows the water at West Beck before returning along with the original Pickering to Whitby railway line trackbed. There are toilets at the start and finish of the walk. Find more information and a map for this walk.
Visit the Mallyan Spout Waterfall
This wonderful natural waterfall is the reason that many Victorians locked to this former spa village in the 1900s. The 21m of tumbling waters enchanted the visitors of yesteryear, putting Goathland firmly on the tourist circuit of the era. Be sure to visit this sublime attraction on your visit to Goathland. Set in a deep gorge in the North York Moors, the Mallyan Spout is the highest waterfall in Yorkshire, a must-see activity for all visitors to this wonderful village.
Places to stay in Goathland
Fairhaven Country Guest House
You’ll find everything that you need for a relaxing stay in Goathland at Fairhaven Country Guest House. This excellent bed and breakfast is the perfect base to explore the North York Moors, Yorkshire Coast (Robin Hood’s Bay, Scarborough and Whitby are just a few miles away) and of course there are the local attractions including the Mallyan Spout Waterfall and the North York Moors Railway steam service from Pickering to Whitby. This Edwardian property has nine bedrooms and provides an impressive breakfast to start your day.
Orchard Cottage is one of two stone-built barn conversions that have been sympathetically restored at Sadler House Farm. This excellent Goathland cottage with parking has original features such as exposed wood beams and stonework. The quirk here at Orchard cottage is that the layout is upside down; the bedrooms are on the ground floor while the living area on the first floor is accessed by a hand crated spiral staircase. The property also benefits from an orchard garden in which you can relax and watch the steam trains roll by on those lush summer evenings.
The Long Barn
The Long Barn is the larger of the two properties at Sadler House Farm, with four bedrooms and sleeping eight. The Long Barn has been carefully and lovingly converted to provide a very special Goathland cottage indeed. This fantastic Yorkshire holiday home benefits from underfloor heating and a wonderful Travertine, perfect for those cosy nights in. This stunning detached stone-built holiday cottage in Goathland is an excellent choice for those seeking a luxury stay in the North York Moors.
Brow House Farm Camping
Once the home of the fictional character ‘Claude Jeremiah Greengrass’, Brow House Farm Campsite is a great option for those seeking an outdoor adventure for their Yorkshire holiday. Located just outside the village of Goathland, Brow House Farm Campsite is just a few minutes trek to the local pub, Mallyan Spout. With 60 pitches available from March to November, this Goathland campsite is a great choice for hikers, bikers and a night under the stars.