Great Britain

Things to do in the North York Moors

The North York Moors National Park has it all - colourful heather moorland, Jurassic coastline and sandy beaches, lush rolling dales, wide open star-filled skies and gorgeous market towns and villages.

Explore this hidden corner of England to uncover centuries of English history - ruins of 1000 year-old abbeys and castles set in fantastic landscapes, fine historic houses, and coastal and market towns. Take a heritage train journey through the National Park or visit Whitby Abbey, Helmsley Castle or Rievaulx Abbey to find fascinating stories of the past.

Uncover Jurassic geology along its 40kms of unspoilt coastline, a great hunting ground for fossils and even dinosaur footprints. Or simply enjoy its beautiful sandy beaches, such as Runswick Bay, or the atmospheric coastal villages of Robin Hood’s Bay and Staithes.

Easily accessible from Europe, the North York Moors National Park is just a 90-minute drive from Hull which makes it ideal for those travelling on our Rotterdam to Hull ferry crossing. North York Moors accommodation options are wide. There are plenty of self-catering holiday cottages, campsites, seaside or farmhouse B&Bs, as well as charming country inns with lovely rooms. For something special, there are boutique through to luxury spa hotels and several off-grid and glamping options.

EUR

Rotterdam Port

HUL

Hull Port

Mon-Fri

21:00

Sat-Sun

20:30

Things to do in the North York Moors

Things to do in the North York Moors

Centuries of English history

Discover fascinating stories of a land with an important past. From abbey ruins, such as Rievaulx and Whitby, reflecting nearly 1,000 years of spiritual, commercial, and romantic history, to magnificent castles dating back 900 years, such as Helmsley and Pickering. The wonderful Castle Howard is one of Britain’s finest historic houses and is situated in the nearby Howardian Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. You can still feel the depth of history all around you in the towns of Whitby and Helmsley and many coastal and rural villages. Whilst at the village of Hutton-le-Hole you can also visit the Ryedale Folk Museum to learn all about the rural crafts.

North York Moors - Whitby Abbey

North York Moors / VisitBritain

North York Moors - Sutton Bank

North York Moors / VisitBritain

Panoramic moorland views

Experience the impressive panorama over the Hole of Horcum or soak up the views from Sutton Bank, said to be the ‘Finest View in England’. The moorland, criss-crossed by paths and trails, is perfect to explore on foot or bike and discover the history embedded in the landscape, from ancient monks’ trods, to stone crosses and boundary stones. A visit to the Moors National Park Centre at Danby will reveal much more about the moorland and the people who have lived and worked there.

Outdoor adventures in the North York Moors

Walking here is all about fresh air, huge skies, and a chance to get close to wildlife local to the area. There is a choice of well-signed routes from short meanders all the way through to the long-distance Cleveland Way National Trail (175km). There are plenty of options for cycling too. Dalby Forest offers extensive natural cycling and mountain biking trails, or you might like to try one of 5 cycle routes at Sutton Bank. Many off-road or quiet tracks can be found, such as the Cinder Track, connecting Whitby to Scarborough on a former railway. For the more ambitious, the North York Moors Cycleway offers 276 km of strenuous riding, and e-bikes are always an option! Bring your own bike to England on a P&O ferry or hire from various providers. If you’d prefer an alternative view, then try Stand Up Paddle-boarding as a way of exploring the rivers and coast.

North York Moors - Cleveland Way

North York Moors / VisitBritain

North York Moors - Dark Skies

North York Moors Dark Skies

The views can be just as dramatic at night and in winter. Designated an International Dark Sky Reserve, the North York Moors National Park is officially one of the best places to see stars. The North York Moors Dark Skies Festival celebrates this each year in February. As well as star gazing, you can try night navigation, mindful walks, night-time photography and learn about the area’s nocturnal wildlife.

Visit the market town of Helmsley

The gorgeous market town of Helmsley stands on the banks of the River Rye, beneath the striking ruins of the 900-year old Helmsley Castle. The five-acre Helmsley Walled Garden is well worth a visit. Wander through the traditional walled gardens, the North York Moors’ own ‘secret English garden’ and visit its Vinehouse Café. Mooch around the market town with its selection of independent shops and eateries. Helmsley also offer a great base to explore the area around Rievaulx Abbey, the White Horse of Kilburn and visit the Sutton Bank National Park Centre from.
North York Moors - Helmsley

North York Moors / VisitBritain

North York Moors railway

North York Moors / VisitBritain

North Yorkshire Moors Railway

Step back in time with a scenic train journey on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. This iconic heritage steam railway runs along 39kms of National Park countryside from the ancient market town of Pickering and through majestic moorland before arriving at the coastal town of Whitby.

Explore this hidden corner of England and uncover centuries of history and stunning National Park landscapes when you visit the North York Moors via our Rotterdam to Hull ferry crossing.

Easily accessible from Europe, the North York Moors National Park is just a 90-minute drive from Hull which makes it ideal for those travelling on our Rotterdam to Hull ferry crossing.