The Cinder Track, Whitby To Scarborough, Walking And Cycling The Cinder Track

The Cinder Track is a picturesque coastal route from Whitby to Scarborough. It boasts fantastic views, secluded coves and access to visit local attractions, including Scarborough Castle, Whitby Abbey and the Captain Cook Memorial Museum.

The Cinder Track is a 21-mile walk along the rugged coastline, it can be started from Whitby and end at Scarborough or alternatively started at Scarborough. The old railway line closed in 1965, the track is still there, providing a wonderful off-road route for cyclists and walkers right along the fantastic part of the North Yorkshire coast.

Cinder Track Copyright Michael Dibb
Copyright Michael Dibb and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Where does the Cinder Track start in Scarborough?

Scarborough Seafront

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The Cinder Track from Scarborough to Whitby begins next to Scarborough Sainsbury's car park, past the children's play park and off Falsgrave Road. Click here for the location.

From here follow the signs for Whitby, the trail continues north through and passes under several bridges, before skirting alongside the playing fields, at the site of the former Northstead Carriage Sidings.

Where does the Cinder Track start in Whitby?

Whitby Harbour

If you choose to start your journey in Whitby which is technically the end of the route you can start from Southend Gardens with Pannett Park in front of you. Click here for the location.

This is great if you are staying in Whitby and fancy exploring more of the coast.

Can I get on/off the track and do shorter walks?

Cinder Trail to Robin Hoods Bay

Our simple answer is yes! The Cinder Track is perfect for doing just that, in fact, it's recommended for even the most experienced, super-fit walkers to complete it over two days. The route is well signposted all the way along and there are lots of different walking routes that include the Cinder Track as part of them.

Cinder Trail to Robin Hoods Bay View

One of our favourites is Whitby to Robin Hood's Bay and back, it's a very popular route and can be challenging especially in wet weather conditions. We usually take the Cleveland Way on the outward, southbound route and then follow the Cinder Track for the return. There are buses from Robin Hood’s Bay at peak times too. This route will take 6 hours if not longer, to complete. Also, take into consideration tide times for certain parts of the route.

If that's a bit much for you don't worry you will definitely find a walking route to suit you, a quick google search and you will find plenty or check out our walking routes post here.

How long is the Whitby to Scarborough Cinder Track route?

Cinder Trail Bike Ride

The distance from Scarborough to Whitby along the Cinder Track is 21.5 miles. It's easily possible for strong cyclists to ride there and back in a day. Take care though as it can be a bumpy ride in parts!

Cinder Track history, how did it get there?

The Cinder Track was previously an uneconomical coastal line that follows the route of the old railway from Scarborough to Whitby. The railway was in use from 1885 to 1965. It closed during the Beeching axe period in the 1960s.

By 1972 all of the track had been removed, however, the route remains as a designated track for walking, cycling and even horse riding. The track was made from cinders rather than crushed stone which gives the route its name the Cinder Track.

Towns and villages on the Cinder Track route

Robin Hood's Bay Town

There are so many beautiful towns and villages you can visit and enjoy the day at via the Cinder Track. Even if you just need a quick refreshment you will find a number of refreshment stops and charming pubs available along the route. Scarborough, Scalby, Cloughton, Ravenscar, Robin Hood’s Bay, High Hawsker, and Whitby are all perfect to explore.  

We love to visit the quiet bays such as Crook Ness, Cloughton Wyke, Hayburn Wyke, Stoupe Beck Sands or Maw Wyke Hole you can stop at one of these pretty bays and make your walk into a circular route easily by taking in part of the Cleveland Way.

Copyright Michael Dibb Cinder Track
© Copyright Michael Dibb and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

If you enjoy learning about early industrial heritage the Cinder Track is perfect for you to explore, and you can stop at the Peak Alum Works which is considered the birthplace of the British chemical industry. Here locally mined rock was combined with human urine, brought up by barge from London, to make Alum. This then helped fix the dye to cloth for the UK textile industry.

Or stop and wonder at the 13 spans of the 120 feet (36.5 metre) high Larpool Viaduct over the River Esk in Whitby.

So do you fancy exploring the Cinder Track? You can also hire a bike from Trailways at Hawsker.

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