Besides being a very attractive small harbour town Whitby has three or four significant claims to fame. It has a large ruined Abbey set high on a promontory above the town and the sea. Captain James Cook was born there and all of his ships were built there. Bram Stoker chose the town as the port where Dracula arrived in England for his novel. And it is the home of the black gemstones called “jet”.
We started our day in York with a visit to the Minster which is yet another magnificent church, this time with a history which goes back to Roman times. It’s foundations are partly laid on the remains of an earlier Roman building where Constantine was first declared Roman Emperor.
In the Minster there were a group of school children all dressed in hi vis jackets. A guide had them enthralled as they stood under a central tower asking questions and gathering them close to let them into a secret.
The old part of the town has narrow streets with timber framed buildings leaning at all angles. The most famous street is called the Shambles which we finally found after walking right around the area. Well I guess we saw more of the city than we might have otherwise. Our last act in York was a good walk around the medieval city wall.
Back with the car we headed across the North Yorkshire moors to the famous Robin Hood’s Bay with its houses tumbling down the hill into the bay. It has a history of fishing and smuggling and, for the last hundred years as a tourist destination.
Our hotel in Whitby sits high near a cliff at the North of the town and after checking in we walked the half hour into the town for a fish and chip dinner and a wander around the harbour. By the time we got back we were pretty weary. Probably too much walking again.
Tomorrow we head to our holiday let near Durham where we’ll be staying for the next week.