Whitby is a stunning place all year round, and though it is its busiest in the summer a lot of people favour coming during the winter and residents of Whitby would suggest coming in the colder months. This could be due to it being quieter but there’s something about Whitby during the months of October to March, it’s peaceful and the true beauty comes out when it’s not bustling with people and for a moment you can stand still and take in the beautiful atmosphere. To convince you that Whitby is still as entertaining in the colder months, we have compiled a list of things to do in Whitby in winter.
You’re going to have to wrap up warm for this one but it’s completely worth it. There are various ghost walks but the one we recommend is Rose Ryland's ghost walk. By private booking only. Starting at the top of the 199 steps and taking in St Mary’s church graveyard then descending to the old pier, yards and alleyways of the old town. This walk is most enjoyable in the winter because with the darkness coming early, and the cold breeze it sets up an atmosphere that will have you set up and ready to be scared. Don’t worry, the walk is family friendly and pet-friendly and Rose is incredibly interesting with her knowledge on haunted Whitby, it is also a great chance for tourists to be shown around Whitby.
Twice a year Whitby is flooded with goths that have come far and wide to celebrate an old culture that is still popular to this day. There is one event in April, and another in October, which is usually over the Halloween weekend, the latter of the two is definitely the most popular. The whole weekend is packed with different events; music, theatre, and people adorn themselves in beautiful Victorian goth, Traditional Goth and Steampunk gear that is a wonderful sight. The whole of Whitby becomes another place filled with people buzzing and the town goes back in time with this amazing event.
This is another thing you’re going to wrap up warm for, but trust us when we say it’s worth it. Whitby has been well known for its fossil collecting and is even documented as having the most intact fossil of the Teleosaurus Chapman (an early ancestor of the crocodile). The best beach to go to for fossil hunting is Saltwick Bay, which is just near Whitby Abbey, Saltwick Bay is so full of fossils that you don’t even need to painfully look through all the rocks for a hint of a fossil, they are easily found. From dinosaur bones to dinosaur faeces, everything has been found on this beach and some days you will even catch a gentleman named John who will be happy to show you where you can find the best fossils and will explain what fossil you have found, something that kids absolutely love. The beach is relatively quiet during the winter as it’s a bit of a hidden gem in Whitby, you’ll usually have the beach to yourself (bar the odd dog walker).
You can now book guided fossil hunting trips with paleontologist Byron Blessed. Click here for more information
North York Moors Railway
For a warmer experience you can hop aboard the North York Moors Railway, there are several events run throughout the year including the very popular Pullman Dining Experience which lets you watch the beautiful scenery of the North Yorkshire Moors pass by as you sample some gorgeous food and wine. It’s a wonderful experience for adults, but if you have kids there are other daily opportunities for them to experience the famous National Park from the warmth and excitement of a train.
Phone: +44 1751 472 508
Eden camp is a few miles out of Whitby but is easily accessible for none drivers via train, and it is definitely worth the travel. It’s one of the biggest museums in the UK which are solely dedicated to military history, more specifically World War 2, it is even based on an old POW camp. The museum is a fantastic day for all the family and somewhere that children love, even giving them the opportunity to learn whilst having fun. Don’t worry if you have a dog, dogs are allowed to also learn the history of World War 2 so long as they on a lead and kept under control at all times!
Phone: +44 1653 697 777