Stay at the Hayloft Holiday Cottage for a weekend, a week or even a fortnight and you'll find Whitby and the surrounding area has something to offer everyone.

The beaches

A stay at The Hayloft isn’t complete without a trip to the beach. The cottage enjoys an enviable location which makes it the ideal base from which to explore some of the best beaches in the UK.

The beach at the aptly named and picture postcard village of Sandsend is less than a mile away and within half an hour’s walk. A further glorious sweep of sand runs all the way from Sandsend to Whitby and enables you to walk between the two depending on the tide (see

This four mile stretch of beach, which consists of Sandsend Beach, Upgang Beach and Whitby West Cliff Beach, is open to dogs from the 1st October to 30th April with certain restrictions in place from the 1st May to 30th September.

Whitby’s West Cliff Beach is also just one of two in the town (the other being Tate Hill Beach) with both enjoying coveted Blue Flag status for their water quality and facilities.

Plus, the beaches of Whitby and of other nearby villages and towns have earned this stretch of coastline the title, the Dinosaur Coast, due to the rich abundance of fossils dating back to the Jurassic Age which can be found.

St Marys.jpg

Whitby town

When you stay at The Hayloft, Whitby is yours to explore and enjoy.

The cottage is located just two and a half miles and less than five minutes drive from this picturesque seaside town which remains one of Yorkshire's most popular holiday destinations.

Steeped in history and with a rich maritime heritage, Whitby exudes an inimitable and spellbinding charm which captivates visitors, ensuring they return time and time again.

During your visit, you can wander along meandering and quaint cobbled streets lined with small, independent shops selling clothing, souvenirs and jewellery fashioned from Whitby Jet - a locally found, semi-precious stone of the deepest opaque black which was made popular by Queen Victoria.

You can also explore West Cliff with its statues and monuments celebrating the achievements of Captain Cook and Whitby's whaling past as well as climb the 199 steps up to the Abbey to experience stunning sea vistas and Whitby's atmospheric backdrop which has inspired writers like Bram Stoker, Wilkie Collins and even Charles Dickens.

Or why not experience Whitby from the sea by taking a trip aboard the Bark Endeavour, a 40% sized replica of Captain Cook's ship, or aboard the former Whitby lifeboat, the Mary Ann Hepworth - one of the RNLI's longest serving boats dating from the 1930s?

Those with a taste for fine dining will find they're well catered for too. The town boasts a large number of high end restaurants, top flight gastropubs and traditional taverns serving everything from freshly caught seafood and locally sourced game to, of course, Whitby's world famous fish and chips.

Swing Bridge.jpg

Whitby Abbey.jpg

Whitby Abbey

Situated high on a headline and with an approach up the famous 199 steps, Whitby Abbey dominates the town’s skyline. 

Built in 657AD, it was home to Abbess Hilda (niece of the first Christian king of Northumbria) and to England’s first recorded poet – Caedmon. 

The Abbey's rich history is celebrated in a nearby Heritage Centre, a building which also houses countless examples of archaeological material unearthed in the area, including artefacts dating from Roman times. 

In addition, the Church of St. Mary (c.1210) can be found adjacent to the Abbey and is worth a visit in itself. It remains one of the finest examples of an Anglo Saxon church in the UK.

Visit the Whitby Abbey website
Tel: 01947 603 568

Captain Cook.jpg

The Captain Cook Memorial museum

Captain James Cook is without doubt Whitby’s most famous son. 

Born in nearby Marton-on-Cleveland, he served his seaman’s apprenticeship in the town. 

Several years later he set sail from Whitby in a Whitby built vessel – The Endeavour – on  journey that would take him into the history books. It was on this exploratory voyage to chart the Southern Pacific that Cook discovered Australia. 

Today, his legacy lives on in Whitby thanks to The Captain Cook Memorial Museum and a highly prominent statue situated on the town’s West Cliff. Here, Cook stills looks out over the harbour and, almost lovingly, to the open sea beyond.

Visit the Captain Cook Memorial Museum website
Tel: 01947 601 900

North York Moors national park

Whether you like walking or simply enjoy being out and about in the great outdoors, you’ll love stay at The Hayloft.

The cottage is located on the edge of the North York Moors National Park – one of the most iconic and breathtaking landscapes in Britain.

Alongside towering sea cliffs and secluded beaches, you'll discover rolling dales and England’s largest expanse of heather covered moorland which bursts into bloom in the late summer turning the hills a stunning shade of rich purple.

Pretty little rural villages dot the landscape (such as Goathland, where the television series Heartbeat was filmed), most with traditional country pubs serving great food and fine ales.

Not to be outdone, the coastline offers up more than its fair share of treasures too, such as Robin Hoods Bay and Runswick Bay – two picturesque fishing villages brimming with character and with historical links to smuggling and piracy.

Considering this rich tapestry of sights and sounds, people and places, it’s not hard to see why the North York moors are often described as a true ‘Walker’s Paradise’.

Visit the North York Moors National Park website
Tel: 01439 772 700

North Yorkshire Moors Railway

Whilst enjoying a stay at The Hayloft, why not take a trip back to the golden age of steam trains with a journey on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway? 

One of the nation’s most popular heritage railways, this lovingly restored and maintained set of locomotives and carriages, complete with engine sheds, is a must for everyone – not just train enthusiasts. 

Quite the star of the big and small screen having featured in the Harry Potter films, as well as TV’s The Royal and Heartbeat, the railway is an ideal way to enjoy a leisurely day out to a number of destinations including:

Pickering – a historic market town and the gateway to the North York Moors
Goathland – perhaps better known as Aidensfield from TV’s Heartbeat
Levisham – home to some beautiful forest walks
Grosmont – a 1950s themed station where you can enjoy a cup of traditional Yorkshire tea in the station café or take a walk around this pretty moorland village

Visit the North Yorkshire Moors Railway website
Tel: 01751 472 508

Other nearby places of interest

Whale bones, West Cliff, Whitby

Whale bones, West Cliff, Whitby

Tourist Information Centre
Visit website
Tel: 01723 383 636

Whitby Pavilion (theatre, cinema and concert venue)
Visit website
Tel: 01947 458 899

Whitby Lifeboat Museum
Visit website
Tel: 01947 602 001

Robin Hood's Bay

Robin Hood's Bay

Whitby Golf Club
Visit website
Tel: 01947 600 660

Whitby Museum and Art Gallery (Located in the beautifully kept gardens of Pannett Park Whitby Museum and Art Gallery features permanent and special exhibitions of local and national interest. This includes collections from Whitby’s historic whaling and jet industries.)
Visit website
Tel: 01947 602 908

Whitby Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool
Visit website
Tel: 01947 604 640

Jurassic sandstone, Dalby Forest

Jurassic sandstone, Dalby Forest

Robin Hoods Bay (A visit to this pretty seaside village is a must for anyone who loves unusual architecture, breathtaking scenery and sandy beaches.)
Visit website

Dalby the Great Yorkshire Forest (Over 8000 acres of woodland complete with picnic areas and waymarked cycle paths and walks suitable for visitors of all abilities.)
Visit website

Castle Howard

Castle Howard

Trailways Cycle Hire (Take in some fresh air
on a bicycle ride along the old Whitby to
Scarborough railway line.)
Visit website
Tel: 01947 820 207

Pickering Castle (A well preserved 13th Century mote and bailey castle.)
Visit website

Castle Howard (One of Britain’s finest historic houses and estates and widely featured in costume drama, ‘Brideshead Revisited’.)
Visit website



Staithes (A beautiful seaside town whose views have inspired artists for centuries.)
Visit website

Eden Camp (Occupying a former WWII POW camp, Eden Camp is one of the UK's largest and most comprehensive museums covering British military and social history from 1914 onwards.)
Visit website
Tel: 01653 697 777

Duncombe Park (Stately home, garden and parkland estate. Seat of Baron Feversham.)
Visit website
Tel: 01439 770213

Rievaulx Abbey

Rievaulx Abbey

Nunnington Hall (A picturesque Yorkshire manor
house situated on the banks of the River Rye.)
Visit website

Rievaulx Abbey (The first Cistercian monastery in Northern England, dating back to 1132AD.)
Visit website