Emptu sandy beach with tide out underneath a blue sky
Craggy white cliffs with tide in and unusual rock formation
The Sandsend Pier  - view from top of the cliff

Would you like to know our five favourite places for an unforgettable coastal adventure in North Yorkshire? 

One of the great reasons to stay at the Long Barn is how close we are to the wonderful  coast.

The Yorkshire coastline stretches 100 miles from North to South; there is just so much to see and do there.

Our tip would be to arrive early if you are wanting to visit at peak times, and also go to the lesser well know spots during the school holidays. Also check the tide times before you head off so that you aren’t thwarted by the tide being in.

There is something for everyone on the coast from fishing villages, seaside holiday towns, craggy cliffs and wonderful beaches. These are 12 of the best beaches to head for. And we blogged about some of the reasons to visit the coast here.

Here are our 5 favourite spots: 

Sandy beech at Sandsend with green grass in foreground.
Man in blue tee shirt sitting in fish restaurante smiling at camera
Waves breaking on sandy beach with people in foreground. Cliffs in distance on the horizon.

1. Sandsend is a pretty village strung out along the coast. It’s got a quieter feeling than Whitby; we often park here and walk along the beach to Whitby. The best place to park is on the main road along side the beach but it does get busy. There are quite a few places for food and drink. We recommend the Fish Cottage (best to book ahead on line) and the Sandside Café.

2. Saltburn  is a seaside resort full of Victorian character. It has some of the best surfing on this part of the coast; we have to admit that we’ve admired their skills rather than joined them. Saltburn has a pier, an amusement arcade and the UK’s oldest water balanced funicular lift.

It’s parking gets filled up really quickly unless you are there early. Our tip is to park up in the town at the top and walk down to the pier and beach. You can always catch the funicular back up.

There is a great market here on the second Saturday of the month; the small shopping area at the top of the cliff has some good independent shops. Try the Seaview Restaurant for fish and chips or great sea food. You can only book for the evening, so get there early to stand in line. Or order fish and chips to take out; sit on the pier and watch the surfers.

If you plan ahead, you can book a beach hut for that proper British seaside experience. These come with electricity, kettle and cutlery.

Fishing boat wih people in colourful jackets on board
BLue sea and sky with shoreline of rocks and rock pools
Fish and chips. With cup of tea, bread and butter, peas and scraps

3. Bempton Cliffs is home to the RSPB and half a million sea birds between April and July. We are regular visitors and blogged about it here.

4. Whitby has so much to see and do which means that it can get swamped with visitors at busy times. So either sharpen your elbows or choose to go at a quieter time as it’s well worth a visit. It has a rich maritime history, along with the famous Whitby Abbey. Along with some seaside tat, it also has some great independent shops and galleries. Pick up some kippers from Fortunes Kippers, iced lemon buns from Botham’s of Whitby, or some tasty deli treats from the Whitby Deli. Everyone has their favourite place for fish and chips in Whitby. We favour the Magpie but Royal Fisheries and Hadleys are also highly rated. For a coffee stop we recommend Rusty Shears. And for pizza’s, we love the excellent Pizza West.

There are often festivals and events taking place from Goth weekends to the famous Fish and Ships Festival in May. And Whitby is fast becoming a whale watching centre for the UK as more and more herring appear of the coast line followed by whales and dolphins.

The best place to park is to head for the main car park near the train station and Co-Op.  Whitby has beach chalets which can be booked on line here.

5. Robin Hoods Bay is a picturesque fishing village with twisting cobbled streets on a steep hill down to the beach. Full of lots of little cafes, and independent shops it’s a great day out. There are also some great walks from here along the coastline. Park at the car park at the top of the village and walk down through the village.

You just have the hard choice of which adventure to choose…