Welcome to 'A Local Guide'...
Welcome... to a sort of Bill Bryson's "Note's from a Small Island," from a lovely Goathland Guest House instead! Here you'll find local information, tips and 'what's on' information, plus anything else that springs to mind...
It's officially spring time and everything in the area suggests that it's true! There are daffodils everywhere, lambs are in abundance, everything is increasingly green, when the sky is blue it looks like a tropical destination, the list goes on. The sun has genuine heat within it - we can go for a walk without heavy coats and a hat!
Our comprehensive 'What's On' Guide is available from the homepage, to help you plan your stay... open air theatre productions at Castle Howard? Art exhibitions at the moors centre? One of the hugely popular agricultural shows? A weekend away to watch the Tour de Yorkshire whiz past the end of our drive? Take a look; it really is packed with great ideas.
It never ceases to amaze us, how much there is to do around the area throughout the year. As though acres upon acres of moor land, miles of coastline, footpaths that criss-cross the area and link to the Lyke Wake and Coast to Coast and views that can take a day of simply watching to fully appreciate, weren't enough; there are farmers markets, agricultural shows, craft fairs, theatre productions, galas... In August for example, Esk Valley Theatre at Glaisdale hosts a theatre production of brilliant quality, in a wonderfully quirky setting where you can enjoy a pre-show glass of wine in the garden with incredible views. Throughout the summer, you can catch a steam train on the Esk Valley line and enjoy great music and real ale whilst being whisked through stunning scenery. Or you can sit outdoors, enjoying a picnic and watch open-air theatre in the middle of Helmsley Castle or Castle Howard. Or enjoy one of the top-rated Jazz Festivals in the country, just down the road in Scarborough. And catch a steam train to Whitby and avoid all the hassle of parking in the town, arriving full of nostalgia for a bygone era and ready for fish and chips. Better still, the old Waiting Room at Whitby Station has become a real ale bar, with guest ciders and great wine!
What else? The Royal Scot arrives on the NYMR on 25th March and stays until 2nd April. From Monday 3rd April, the full timetable will be running from Pickering, via Levisham, Grosmont & Goathland and right up to Whitby. Use the train and forget about your car... hop on and off and explore the stations, enjoy a walk on the moors and put your feet up on the way back, walk the old Rail Trail from Grosmont to Goathland and back, potter the streets of Pickering and Whitby, both full of independent shops... the possibilities are endless. The moors aren't quite the same without puffs of steam punctuating the landscape! And just to complete the perfect picture, welcome this year's lambs and their proud mums!
You might like to know, for example, that if you've had a leisurely Saturday hopping on and off the NYM Steam Railway, eaten an ice-cream or two and whiled away an hour watching the sheep nibble their way up The Common, that you won't need to drive down to Whitby to enjoy fish and chips... Eskdale Fisheries in Sleights is a great spot, with picnic benches in the garden outside so you can enjoy fish and chips at their best - open, in paper, in the sunshine!
Ever heard about the little pub you just have to visit in Beck Hole? Just a mile from Goathland by car and little less to walk down the Rail Trail... The Birch Hall is one of the best and smallest pubs in Britain, complete with sweet shop and beer garden. Enjoy a 'Beck Hole Butty' and a pint of 'Beck Watter'!
Sandsend... glorious beaches, good coffee and cake at both 'Sandside' and 'Wit's End', art gallery, pub, a 'foodies' shop and just a couple of miles north of Whitby town centre. Perfect. But don't tell anyone else about it!
For fish and chips, 'The Magpie' is rightly famous. Cue the queues! Alternatively head over the swing bridge into the old town and keep to the right... you'll find Hadley's. It's good. And Fortune's own-smoked kippers (find them on Henrietta Street), can even be posted home for you.
For a walk from our doorstep, follow the Rail Trail down to Grosmont - head to the Geall's Art Cafe for coffee and cake to set you up for the walk back. Or pop into the Old School House Coffee Shop for a slice or scrumptious chocolate cake. And you can even cheat and catch the train back to Goathland Station.
One of our favourite 'drives' starts by heading out of Goathland towards Egton, then up through Glaisdale and on to Danby. If you're peckish en route, stop in Lealholm for a home-baked treat from the bakery and enjoy it whilst looking at fantastic views towards the North Sea. Beyond Danby you'll find Castleton before circling back towards Hutton-le-Hole. Stop off at the Red Lion at Blakey Ridge for a spot of lunch or just a cheeky drink. By Hutton-le-Hole you might need to stretch your legs around the shops and if you forfeited lunch after your hearty Fairhaven breakfast, head to the Blacksmith's at Lastingham for an early dinner and then head towards Pickering for a straightforward drive back to Goathland, or towards Stape for a more adventurous route across the top of the moors!
What's happening now?
And right now? You could be enjoying the latest exhibition at the Moors Centre at Danby (and nipping into the Stonehouse Bakery in the village - highly recommended!) You might want to encounter Whitby over the Spring Goth Weekend - 21st - 23rd April this year. There are tons of Easter events over the holiday weekend, at Scarborough Castle, Nunnington Hall, Ravenscar and Burton Agnes Hall to name a few. And Castle Howard House reopens on 1st April and remains open until October - a beautiful house to explore, amazing gardens, an arboretum, cafes, shops and the drive there and back is stunning! Or you might just pop on your boots and head out for a walk in the thousands of acres of moorland on our doorstep. Or sit in the lounge in front of the fire, munching on some homemade baking and watching the steady world of Goathland go by...
Hopefully, that's whetted your appetite. There are wonderful views, glorious walks, empty beaches and miles of unchartered heather moor right outside the front door and within miles in each direction. Inside, there are snugly quilts, an open fire, a well-stocked bar and a kettle that's rarely off the boil. We can think of few things better, than a few days away doing nothing more taxing than planning the next walk, via which pub and tea room and working up a healthy appetite for a hearty breakfast. We look forward to seeing you soon.