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Hidden Gems of the North York Moors

There are many hidden gems in the North York Moors awaiting your discovery. From tucked-away villages and local pubs to romantic ruins and scenic trails. This article lets you know some incredible spots you might have missed!

The North York Moors is a gorgeous natural landscape home to miles and miles of unspoiled terrain filled with secret pathways, fascinating wildlife, heather moorland and much more. But it is also full of hidden gems! From miles of sweeping moors to carefully preserved towns and villages, explore these hidden gems of the North York Moors with us as we uncover its many wonders.

Falling Foss Waterfall in the North York Moors.
Falling Foss Waterfall is a true hidden gem of the North York Moors.

Find Falling Foss Waterfall and Tea Garden

Discover our first North York Moors hidden gem just 6 miles from Whitby. Falling Foss waterfall is 30 feet high and sits amongst ancient woodland that you can explore. There’s even a cosy tea garden for visitors to relax with drinks or warm up with homemade soup whilst enjoying the atmosphere. While visiting and trying out the local trails, you may even come across the Hermitage, an incredible cave carved out of a large boulder believed to have been home to Yorkshire hermit during the 18th century. This is a perfect day out for families looking for an unforgettable adventure.

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Explore Dalby Forest
Explore Dalby Forest

Explore Dalby Forest

Dalby Forest is a beautiful place to explore, with natural beauty and adventure galore. There are 8,500 breathtaking acres to discover, with something suitable for everyone. There are thrilling activities at Go Ape and Dalby Activity Centre, which will get your adrenaline pumping. Woodland trails satisfy nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts, while Gruffalo orienteering course or Superworm trails are there to make magical memories with the family. Even when night comes around, look up into the sky as it transforms into a Dark Sky Discovery Site where you can witness thousands of stars twinkling away without even needing binoculars.

Goathland Railway Station
Goathland Railway Station, also known as Hogsmeade Station in Harry Potter.

Visit Goathland, Mallyan Spout Waterfall and Beck Hole

Another one of our hidden gems is Goathland, a spectacular village in the heart of the North York Moors National Park. This charming destination is full of natural beauty and rich history and is home to some of the most breathtaking views in Yorkshire. Goathland village was also the setting of the fictional village of Aidensfield in the Heartbeat television series set in the 1960s; many people visit today to see the recognisable garage, shops, and pub.

Nearby you will find Mallyan Spout Waterfall, Beck Hole, and Goathland Station. The Mallyan Spout waterfall is one of the most beautiful attractions in Goathland. This cascading waterfall plummets 100 feet and is the perfect place for photography and walking enthusiasts; plenty of trails lead up to this stunning spot. Beck Hole is a small valley village within the Goathland civil parish and the North York Moors national park.

Goathland railway station has a fascinating past; it was first built over 150 years ago with its original platform still intact. Today this station serves as a stop on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway line and makes for a great day out with your family or friends. Goathland station also has strong ties to Harry Potter! It was once the filming location for Hogsmeade station. So, whether you are a die-hard fan or simply looking for something fun to do on your visit, exploring these Harry Potter connections is a great way to spend an afternoon in Goathland.

Robin Hood's Bay Beach
Robin Hood’s Bay Beach

Follow in the footsteps of smugglers at Robin Hood’s Bay

Well, it is known for its secret tunnels and smuggling history. Robin Hood’s Bay is a small fishing village on the North Yorkshire Coast. Whether you want to relax, get active, explore, or do a bit of all three, Robin Hood’s Bay is the ideal location. It has plenty of places to stay, things to do, restaurants and pubs, and a lot of history. Walking from Whitby to Robin Hood’s Bay via the Cinder Track is a great way to explore the coastline. It takes around 3 hours and is 7.38 miles. This route takes you past the Larpool Viaduct, a grade two listed structure with thirteen arches built of brick. It was built by John Waddell and spans the River Esk.

Please read our guide to spending seven days in Robin Hood’s Bay here.

Path Down To Boggle Hole
Path Down To Boggle Hole Beach

Stay at Boggle Hole Hostel and visit Boggle Hole

Bursting with myths and legends, Boggle Hole is a fantastic place to visit for a day out on the coast. It’s a lovely beach for children to explore, hunt for fossils and learn stories about Boggles. For example, some people believed that boggles were small mischievous goblins with healing powers who lived in caves around North Yorkshire. After years of being worn by the harsh North Sea, Boggle Hole is now a small cove. You can reach Boggle Hole via the Cleveland Way footpath.

Boggle Hole Hostel has been fully refurbished and is the perfect place to stay with family and enjoy the area. It sits on the beach between Whitby and Robin Hood’s Bay, tucked away in an old smuggler’s cove. This Old Mill will exceed your expectations. It features treasure trails, sea views and wooded grounds. Reviews for this Hostel are fantastic.

Black Swan at Oldstead
Black Swan at Oldstead

Enjoy delicious food at the Black Swan at Oldstead

They are located between the Byland Abbey ruins and the Kilburn White Horse. Not only does the Black Swan at Oldstead show off stunning views of North Yorkshire, but they also produce some seriously incredible food. They offer a tasting menu which showcases their homegrown and foraged food from Oldstead. They also home their livestock on the field adjacent to the restaurant. After winning many awards, including a Michelin Star and four AA Rosettes, they are even named on TripAdvisor as the ‘Best Restaurant in the World.

Malton Food Festival
Malton Food Market

Try even more food in Malton and visit Talbot Yard Food Court

Known as Yorkshire’s food capital, this is a hidden gem for the foodies. Malton is a town passionate about its artisan food. The natural produce available in the area is superb; the freshest seafood, rare breed cattle and pigs and organic fruit and veg are all supplied here. The Talbot Yard Food Court is a great place to begin; you can sample pastries from the Bluebird Bakery and try macaroons and desserts at Florian Poirot, the UK Pastry Champion. Or devour ice cream at Groovy Moo Gelato.

The Malton Monthly Food Market takes place every second Saturday of the month, where you can visit specialist food stalls, try street food and soak in the atmosphere. The market takes place at Malton’s central Market Place from 9 am to 3 pm, it is free to enter, and there are 2 hours of free car parking nearby.

Captain Cook Memorial Museum
Captain Cook Memorial Museum in Whitby

Step back in time at the Captain Cook Memorial Museum

Step back in history and experience the legacy of Captain James Cook, Britain’s famous explorer credited for his discovery of Australia. Visit Whitby to explore its memorials commemorating him and learn more about his life in the Captain Cook Memorial Museum. Visitors can view the attic, which is believed to have housed Cook when he was on land. You can explore an array of souvenirs representing various parts of the captain’s past, including letters he wrote home during expeditions aboard Resolution and artefacts discovered on land and at sea.

The North York Moors are full of hidden gems and beautiful places to explore. We hope this blog post has given you some ideas of where to start your adventure. Are there any other hidden gems in the North York Moors that you recommend? Let us know in the comments below.

Header image credit: © Copyright saxman1597 and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

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