Picture this: cobblestone lanes snaking through a tapestry of charming corners and cottages. A symphony of seagulls serenades from above, lured by the fresh fish and chips aroma. The North Sea glistens in the distance. Welcome to Whitby!

Practically overflowing with classic English charm, Whitby is one of those rare places that seems to have been suspended in time. Tea rooms beckon at every corner, perfectly complementing those quirky boutiques and historical sites.

As every traveler knows, your choice of accommodation can easily make or break your trip, which is why it’s so important to find a place that matches your budget and expectations.

If this is your first time visiting this maritime town, don’t worry. I’ll guide you precisely on where to stay in Whitby, ensuring you get the best bang for your buck!

The white limestone cliffs of England
Let’s take you to Yorkshire!
Image: Nic Hilditch-Short

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Top 3 Recommendations for Where to Stay in Whitby

Planning a relaxing weekend in Whitby? Or perhaps you’d like to embark on an epic backpacking adventure across the UK? Well, be sure to check out my top 3 recommendations for where to stay!

Duke of York | Best Hotel in Whitby

A queen room in Duke of York

If you’re wondering where to stay in Whitby for the nightlife, I can absolutely vouch for the Duke of York Hotel. Guests can take their pick from numerous room configurations that can accommodate up to four.

Not only does this space offer comfortable rooms for two to four guests, but it’s also close to popular pubs and restaurants – perfect for taking in that lively nightlife!

When you don’t feel like going out, rest assured that the hotel does provide evening entertainment.

Centrally-Located Condo with Harbor Views | Best Airbnb in Whitby

Patio space with an harbor view in a condo located in Whitby town center

Enjoy stunning sea and city views from this centrally located loft apartment!

With two bedrooms for four guests, this space places you right in the heart of the city. You’ll find numerous tearooms nearby – not to mention the best fish and chip spots in Whitby.

After a day of sun and sea, you can always whip up a meal in the well-equipped kitchen or pop into the pub opposite the street for dinner.

YHA Whitby | Best Hostel in Whitby

A dorm room view from YHA Whitby Hostel

As one of the rare few hostels in Whitby, YHA has plenty to offer – including private rooms with en-suite or shared bathrooms. Other on-site amenities include a shared kitchen, bar, lounge, and meeting rooms.

Because it’s located on Whitby’s headland, this hostel offers easy access to the town center, the beach, and the cobbled quayside.

If you’re interested in the local history, you can always head over to the nearby Whitby Museum.

Curious to learn more? You can find amazing hostels in the UK. You’re sure to have the best stay!

Whitby Neighborhood Guide – Places to Stay in Whitby

FIRST TIME
Whitby Town Center
FIRST TIME

Whitby Town Center

If this is your first time exploring this gorgeous North Yorkshire parish, then I would say that one of the best places to stay in Whitby is in the lively town center! As the very heartbeat of this gorgeous maritime village, Whitby’s town center holds heaps of hidden treasures at every turn.

ON A BUDGET
Whitby Robin Hoods Bay
ON A BUDGET

Robin Hood’s Bay

Okay, this ridiculously charming area may not be exactly in Whitby as such, but it’s just a 15-minute drive away. More importantly, Robin Hood’s Bay is known for its laid-back vibe and affordable prices- both in terms of accommodation and attractions.

NIGHTLIFE
Flowergate Whitby
NIGHTLIFE

Flowergate

It’s no secret that one of the best places in Whitby for nightlife is the town center. If you would rather stay away from the crowds while still enjoying proximity to the pubs though, I would totally recommend Flowergate.

COOLEST PLACE TO STAY
West Cliff in Whitby
COOLEST PLACE TO STAY

West Cliff

As one of the coolest neighborhoods in Whitby, West Cliff certainly packs a punch! True to its name, West Cliff is known for its steep roads that run alongside the cliffside, providing dramatic views of the ocean.

FOR FAMILIES
Coastline at Sandsend
FOR FAMILIES

Sandsend

If you’re wondering why Sandsend is such a great summer destination, wait until you see this little coastal village located less than 2 miles from Whitby! One of the best things about staying in Sandsend is that it offers the same gorgeous coastline as Whitby without having to deal with the usual flocks of tourists.

Largely popularized by Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Whitby is positively infused with historic charm! The good news is that it’s quite a compact town, making it easy for you to comfortably explore this beautiful place in the UK on foot.

If this is your first time visiting Whitby, I would recommend that you stay in the Town Center, known for its lively ambiance and historical landmarks like Whitby Abbey.

Travelers who are after a more energetic ambiance may wish to drop anchor in Flowergate, an uphill neighborhood known for its pubs and coffee shops. Friday nights are quite animated in Flowergate with locals and tourists alike spilling into the pubs for a classic pint.

Whitby isn’t an overly expensive destination, but if you’re a budget backpacker, you can always check out Robin Hood’s Bay. Located just outside Whitby, this neighborhood was designated an Area of Outstanding Beauty.

For dramatic views, head to the West Cliff neighborhood, which packs plenty of great activities, including golfing, historic lighthouses, or even Goth festivals.

In my opinion, one of the best Whitby destinations for families is Sandsend, located within walking distance from the town center. This neighborhood is also known for its Old Railway Line and Geocache Arts Trail.

5 Best Areas to Stay in Whitby

Ready to rumble? Let’s take a look at the 5 best areas in Whitby!

1. Whitby Town Center – Where to Stay in Whitby for First-Timers

If this is your first time exploring this gorgeous North Yorkshire parish, then I would say that one of the best places to stay in Whitby is in the lively town center!

As the very heartbeat of this gorgeous maritime village, Whitby’s town center holds heaps of hidden treasures at every turn.

Whitby Town Center
Whitby has that British charm!

In my opinion, a visit to the iconic Whitby Abbey ruins should absolutely feature at the very top of your list of things to see in the town center. Infused with history (and a hefty dose of folklore), this abbey also offers the ideal setting for taking in magnificent coastal views.

With art galleries, cafes, and boutiques galore, the town center is also ideal for indulging in a bit of shopping. You’ll find homemade souvenirs at every turn – including plenty of traditional confectionary stores offering Whitby classics like Liquorice Allsorts, rock candy, and fudge.  

The Angel Hotel Wetherspoon | Best Hotel in Whitby Town Center

The Angel Hotel Wetherspoon Reception

Located just 10 minutes from the coastline, The Angel Hotel Wetherspoon offers numerous room configurations, including family-friendly accommodation.

The property commands an excellent location in one of the best Whitby neighborhoods. You’ll also enjoy proximity to Whitby Harbor, Sneaton Castle, and Whitby Abbey.

After an exciting day of sightseeing, treat yourself to a scrumptious meal at the on-site restaurant, which serves classic British pub fare.

Centrally-Located Condo with Harbor Views | Best Airbnb in Whitby Town Center

Patio space with an harbor view in a condo located in Whitby town center

Enjoy stunning sea and city views from this centrally located loft apartment!

With two bedrooms for four guests, this space places you right in the heart of the city. You’ll find numerous tearooms nearby- not to mention the best Fish and Chip spots in Whitby.

After a day of sun and sea, you can always whip up a meal in the well-equipped kitchen or pop into the pub opposite the street for dinner.

YHA Whitby | Best Hostel in Whitby Town Center

A dorm room view from YHA Whitby Hostel

As one of the few hostels in Whitby, YHA has plenty to offer, including private rooms with en-suite or shared bathrooms. Other on-site amenities include a shared kitchen, bar, lounge, and meeting rooms.

Because it’s located on Whitby’s headland, this hostel offers easy access to the town center, the beach, and the cobbled quayside. If you’re interested in the local history, you can always head over to the nearby Whitby Museum.

If you’re looking for a vibrant and welcoming community atmosphere, check out our curated list of the best hostels in York.

Things to Do in Whitby Town Center

Whitby Abbey
Whitby Abbey is a must-visit spot in the UK
  1. Take a self-guided audio tour to learn more about Whitby’s fascinating legends.
  2. Be awed by Whitby Abbey, a 7th-century Benedictine Monastery that served as inspiration for Dracula.
  3. Mosey around the Whitby Museum, home to Captain Cook exhibits, ship models, fossils, and artifacts.
  4. Relax at Pannett Park, a lovely green lung speckled with fountains and floral displays.
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2. Robin Hood’s Bay – Where to Stay in Whitby on a Budget

Okay, this ridiculously charming area may not be exactly in Whitby as such, but it’s just a 15-minute drive away. More importantly, Robin Hood’s Bay is known for its laid-back vibe and cheap accommodations.

Dubbed ‘The Bay Town’ by the locals, this village supposedly earned its name after Robin Hood fought off French pirates who were trying to pillage the local fishermen’s boats.

Whitby Robin Hoods Bay
Robin Hood kinda energy!

Officially designated an Area of Outstanding Beauty, this former smuggler’s hideout features a landscape of multi-hued cottages built directly into the ocean-facing cliffsides.

The village also lends itself well to fans of the great outdoors since it offers excellent hiking opportunities like the Cleveland Way.

Keep your eyes peeled for the famous Boggle Hole, an absolute hidden gem in the UK. For a slice of history, you can also check out the Old Watermill, located on the clifftops. According to local legends, this is where the smugglers used to meet to devise their plans.

Grosvenor Hotel | Best Hotel in Robin Hood’s Bay

A queen room at the Grosvenor Hotel

Nestled right at the heart of the North York Moors National Park, this hotel features comfortable rooms with tea and coffee-making facilities.

Kickstart each day with a full English breakfast before heading out to explore nearby spots like Robin Hood’s Bay. Back at the hotel, you can chill in the family-friendly bar, which regularly features live music.

The Flask Inn | Another Great Hotel in Robin Hood’s Bay

The Flask Inn

Not only does this hotel house an award-winning restaurant, but it also has an excellent location smack dab in the gorgeous North Yorkshire countryside!

With Whitby and its exciting attractions just a quick drive away, this hotel boasts several room types, including Family and Quadruple units for groups. Each room provides a fridge for those late-night snacks!

Want to learn more? You can find incredible hotels with private hot tubs in Yorkshire. Don’t miss the experience!

Feathers Nest Cottage | Best Airbnb in Robin Hood’s Bay

Feathers Nest Cottage

Travelers looking for the best places to stay in Whitby may wish to check out the Feathers Nest Cottage, located just a short distance from the town center.

Ideal for couples and solo travelers, this reconverted barn offers glorious ocean and countryside views. All the comforts of home await, including a kitchen. With a stay in this cottage, you’ll be close to the coastal Cinder Track.

Things to Do in Robin Hood’s Bay

Falling Foss Waterfall Tea Garden
Robin Hood’s Bay is a hidden gem in the UK for sure!
  1. Go rock pooling and fossil hunting on Robin Hodd’s Bay Beach, one of the best spots in England for amateur fossil hunters.
  2. Hike the Cleaveland Way National Trail, which offers 109 miles of gorgeous scenery- including a secret spot known as Boggle Hole!
  3. Check out the Old Coastguard Station, which lies right by the harbor.
  4. Take in some history at St. Stephens Church that dates back to 1822.
  5. Treat yourself to Afternoon Tea, while enjoying waterfall views from the Falling Foss Waterfall & Tea Garden.

3. Flowergate – Where to Stay in Whitby for Nightlife

It’s no secret that one of the best places in Whitby for nightlife is the town center. If you would rather stay away from the crowds while still enjoying proximity to the pubs, though, I would totally recommend Flowergate.

First things first, though: Flowergate is located uphill, so you do need your best walking shoes! The ascent starts near the waterfront and takes you further inland through a gradual incline.

Flowergate Whitby
I’ll snag a coffee and keep going.
Photo: Spudgun67 (WikiCommons)

Since Flowergate houses some of the most popular independent businesses in Whitby, you’ll find plenty of interesting spots to break your climb, including coffee shops like Java or Sherlocks.

Located in West Whitby, Flowergate also happens to be one of the top shopping destinations in the city.

In the evening, you can always check out local spots like Little Angel, a lively pub that’s super popular among the locals. To experience classic British pub culture, I can also recommend a visit to The Station Inn and The Endeavor.

Duke of York | Best Hotel in Flowergate

A queen room at the Duke of York

If you’re wondering where to stay in Whitby for the nightlife, I can absolutely vouch for the Duke of York Hotel. Guests can take their pick from numerous room configurations that can accommodate up to four.

 Not only does this space offer comfortable rooms for two to four guests, but it’s also close to popular pubs and restaurants- perfect for taking in that lively nightlife!

When you don’t feel like going out, rest assured that the hotel does provide evening entertainment.

The Station Inn Whitby | Another Great Hotel in Flowergate

The Station Inn Whitby

Set just a short walk from the beach, the Station Inn Whitby features regular and executive rooms to sleep up to two guests.

Family rooms add a sofa bed to comfortably sleep groups of four. Every room has a coffee machine, ensuring that you wake up to a hot brew each morning!

Travelers will be glad to learn that there are lots of things to do in York and Flowergate. Dalby Forest, Robin Hood’s Bay, and Pannett Park are just a short distance away.

Fleur Cottage for 6 | Best Airbnb in Flowergate

Living area at Fleur Cottage Airbnb

Perfect for six guests, this 400-year-old cottage lies in a traditional courtyard just on the outskirts of Flowergate.

With a stay at this cottage, you’ll be within walking distance of the many vintage shops, cafes, and pubs speckled around Whitby.

Offering three bedrooms, this space comes with classic home comforts, including an open-plan kitchen.

Things to Do in Flowergate

The Little Angel Pub
The Little Angel Coffee Shop <3
Photo: David Merrett (Flickr)
  1. Sip on a pint at the Little Angel Pub, a historic, pet-friendly institution that’s quite popular with the locals.
  2. Take a gin distillery tour, complete with tasting sessions.
  3.  Hit the many Flowergate boutiques offering art, jewelry, clothing, and unique crafts.
  4. Head to the Elsinore Inn, a traditional pub with a delightful goth ambiance, live music, and quality cask ales.
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4. West Cliff – Coolest Neighborhood in Whitby

As one of the coolest neighborhoods in Whitby, West Cliff certainly packs a punch!

True to its name, West Cliff is known for its steep roads that run alongside the cliffside, providing dramatic views of the ocean.

Easily one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in Whitby, the West Cliff area offers the ideal setting for enjoying a moment of seclusion after exploring the bustling center.

Houses lined on West Cliff in Whitby with coastline views and a rainbow

One of the (many) great things about staying in West Cliff is that it has something fun for everyone. Golf aficionados, for example, can check out Whitby Golf Club or the Arnold Palmer Putting Course, which features a watermill, a windmill, and a lighthouse.

If visiting in April or October, you can also attend the legendary Goth Weekend which is usually held twice a week at the Whitby Pavilion.

The Resolution Hotel | Best Hotel in West Cliff

The Resolution Hotel

Here’s an excellent choice for travelers who want to be right where the action is!

Housed in an old mansion building, this hotel is close to Whitby Abbey, the Crescent Gardens, and the South Seas Garden.

All rooms feature traditional décor with modern accents. Select units offer views of the harbor that was featured in the novel Dracula. The hotel also boasts an on-site bar and restaurant.

Victoria Hotel | Another Great Hotel in West Cliff

Patio with 2 chairs overlooking the ocean in Victoria Hotel

Victoria Hotel is easily one of the best places to stay in Whitby- and for good reason!

Nestled just 15 minutes away from West Cliff, this hotel offers refined family rooms that can easily sleep two adults and two kids.

Each morning, you can begin your day with a hearty complimentary breakfast before heading out to explore nearby spots like the beautiful Yorkshire Heritage Coast and Gothland.

West Cliff Fisherman’s Cottage | Best Airbnb in West Cliff

living area in West Cliff Fishermans Cottage

With two bedrooms to accommodate up to four guests, this classic Fisherman’s Cottage is conveniently located near Cook’s View and Whitby Beach.

After exploring the surroundings, you can always relax by the fireplace in the lounge or rustle up a snack in the kitchen. Plenty of rustic touches await, including spiral, lighthouse-like stairs, and a lantern-lit bedroom.

Things to Do in West Cliff

Whitby 199 Steps
West Cliff is one of the best places to stay in Whitby.
  1. Climb the 199 Steps that were mentioned in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
  2. Attend the twice-yearly Whitby Goth Weekend, one of the most unique festivals in the UK.
  3. Visit the Whitby Spa Pavilion, a lively venue that regularly hosts live shows.
  4. Attend the 170-year-old Whitby Regatta, which takes place in August each year.

5. Sandsend – Where to Stay in Whitby for Families

If you’re wondering why Sandsend is such a great summer destination, wait until you see this little coastal village located less than 2 miles from Whitby! It’s also perfect for family traveling full-time, regarding its accommodation options and family-friendly activities.

One of the best things about staying in Sandsend is that it offers the same gorgeous coastline as Whitby without having to deal with the usual flocks of tourists. In fact, you can easily walk the 3-mile coastal walk to Whitby while admiring gorgeous coastal views along the way.

Coastline at Sandsend

Sandsend’s Geocache Arts Trail is a super popular activity among families. Trail booklets are usually available for free at most stores, and you can easily download the geocaching app to your phone. Kids will also enjoy exploring the Old Railway Line, which runs from Whitby to Middlesbrough.

The Woodlands | Best Hotel in Sandsend

Queen room at The Woodlands

A lovely retreat for parents traveling with children, The Woodlands Hotel offers garden-view family rooms fitted with a large double bed and two single beds. Cots can be provided upon request.

With a stay at this hotel, you’ll be close to the Whitby Museum, the Captain Cook Memorial Museum, and the Alice in Wonderland Garden. At the end of the day, parents can treat themselves to a drink at the hotel’s on-site bar.

Penny Hedge, Whitby by Marston’s Inns | Another Great Hotel in Sandsend

Patio space in Penny Hedge Whitby by Marstons Inns

Here’s another great option for families visiting Whitby! Located near Whitby Harbor and the historic Abbey, this hotel offers Family Rooms to accommodate up to three guests.

The hotel does feature an on-site restaurant serving British cuisine, but you can also check out nearby eateries like the Riverside Fisheries, located just over one km away. Kids and adults will both appreciate the hotel’s proximity to family-friendly spots like the South Seas Garden and the Whitby Lighthouse.

Seafront 18th Century House | Best Airbnb in Sandsend

Seafront 18th Century House

Enjoy direct beach access with a stay in this delightful 18th-century house!

One of the best places to stay in Whitby for families, this space even comes with a play area for the little ones. With five bedrooms for eight guests, the house lies close to the North York Moors National Park.

A homely environment awaits, complete with a Pack ‘n’ Play and a kitchen.

Things to Do in Sandsend

A lush green valley with purple flowers blue skies in North York Moors
This isn’t a dream, this is Sandsend!
  1. Embark on a Captain Cook Cruise on a replica of the HMS Endeavour which was sailed by the real Captain Cook himself.
  2. Take the family to the Captain Cook Memorial Museum.
  3. Build sandcastles with the kids on the Blue-Flag Sandsend Beach.
  4. Climb onboard a classic steam train at the Whitby Railway Station.
  5. Amble through the North York Moors National Park, one of the most beautiful national parks in the U.K.
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What To Pack For Whitby

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.

Product
Description
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!

Ear Plugs

Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.

Keep your laundry organized and stink free
Keep your laundry organized and stink free

Hanging Laundry Bag

Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.

Stay Dry With a Micro Towel
Stay Dry With a Micro Towel

Sea To Summit Micro Towel

Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.

Make Some New Buddies…
Make Some New Buddies…

Monopoly Deal

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Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!
Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!

Grayl Geopress Water Bottle

Always travel with a water bottle! They save you money and reduce your plastic footprint on our planet. The Grayl Geopress acts as a purifier AND temperature regulator. Boom!

Check out my definitive Hotel Packing list for even more top packing tips!

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for Whitby

And don’t forget to take out travel insurance for your trip! Whitby is safe, but if you’re anything like me, you WILL need insurance. Stay protected and get insured for maximum peace of mind.

ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.

They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.

SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Whitby

From gothic haunts to heritage mansions, there are heaps of excellent spots to lay your head in this maritime town!

One of my favorite Whitby neighborhoods is no doubt the town center, since it’s got such a bustling, energetic vibe to it.

If you’re still not sure where to stay, I can totally recommend this Centrally-Located Condo with Harbor Views, which provides all the comforts of home at the very heart of the city.  

woman practising yoga on the beach at sunset
Have a great stay, friends!
Photo: Roaming Ralph

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