This week I have been exploring North Yorkshire with Premier Inn, taking part in their initiative to help us all discover some of the UK’s best hidden treasures. I chose North Yorkshire because, well, it’s not the easiest place in the world to travel to and it doesn’t get the recognition it deserves!
I set off early morning (5am!) so I could make the most of my time here, Robin Hood’s Bay has unknowingly been on my travel to list ever since I watched ‘Wild Child’ in 2008… you know which movie I mean right? Emma Roberts and Alex Pettifer meeting at a very traditional British boarding school and of course falling in love. Yes that one, in my opinion, it is one of the best. Anyone remember the scene of Freddie and Poppy on their date? In the cute hilly town by the sea? I ALWAYS wanted to go here, so one day I googled where it was filmed, turned out it was Robin Hood’s Bay and finally, ten years later (am I getting old that fast!?) I made it.
Seeing as the town is tiny there are not many places here to stay. So I booked into the Premier Inn in Scarborough, a 20-minute drive away. Turns out this was a very good idea, as I managed to fall in love with Scarborough itself whilst I was staying here, that was not in my original plan! Staying with Premier Inn is convenient and easy, you always know the room will be spacious and clean and the beds comfy, it is also accommodation at an affordable cost meaning I can take more of these trips. You can check out the exact hotel I stayed at here
I knew I would have a long day on my feet so I fuelled myself with a rather delicious breakfast provided by Premier Inn. You can have pretty much anything! Pancakes, croissants, pain au chocolat, fruit, yoghurt, cereal and of course a traditional English fry-up, so me being me decided to try a bit of everything.
With a full stomach and a good night of sleep behind me, I walked down to Scarborough Beach, from the door of the hotel to the beach it only took five minutes, if you are feeling tired you can get a cute tram that will take you up and down the cliff! I opted for the stairs, had to burn off those pancakes somehow…
Scarborough really surprised me, in fact, I don’t think I had given the town a second thought before. The sandy beach was home to a few clusters of sunbathers, it was to be another hot day. I felt as though I was back in the 90’s on a family holiday to the seaside, with ample amounts of 2p machines, rock shops, shells, plenty of buckets and spades, and even the option of a donkey ride on the beach! This was refreshing, I have been to a number of seaside towns in England before and it’s safe to say, they are not always the best. I took a walk along the seafront and used up all my willpower on not allowing myself an ice cream. At the end of the beach is a funfair for kids, a couple of shops selling shell boxes and dream catches, and the entrance to Scarborough Castle.
From here I headed back to town to pick up my car as I wanted to spend as much time as possible in Robin Hood’s Bay, the focus of my trip.
Like I said earlier, I first saw this charming town back in 2008 when I watched Wild Child. To be honest, I never gave it much thought in my everyday life since then until I saw it pop up on Instagram a couple of years ago. I don’t see photos of this place often, the town is tucked away in a small bay on the Yorkshire coast and takes a bit of a (beautiful) drive to get to from most places.
Located in the North York Moors National Park, it is unlikely Robin Hood ever frequented the small fishing village, however, there is an ancient legend of Robin Hood encountering French pirates who came to pillage the fisherman’s boats and the northeast coast.
Although now much smaller, Robin Hood’s Bay was once even more important than neighbouring Whitby in the 1600’s and has a long and interesting history involving smuggling! Smuggling was commonplace in the 18th century and rumour has it there is a network of subterranean passageways linking the houses. Vessels from mainland Europe would stop here and bring in contraband which was then distributed outside of the village
Unfortunately, if you have mobility issues, this would not be the top place on my recommendations due to the steep steps and narrow alleyways. However, there is step free access into the centre of the town so you can still enjoy some of the delightful shops and accessible eateries. Further exploration may prove difficult.
The village is easy to explore on foot as it is fairly small, my recommendation is don’t stick to just the main walkways, the town is full of alleyways to explore, each one with a different view! On sunny days visitors can walk down to the seafront and splash around in the rock pools and enjoy an ice cream (or two…). For those with young families, there are shops in town which sell buckets, spades and other beach items, just in case you forget to bring your own!
My main advice is don’t come to the town with a plan, just enjoy having a wander through the winding alleyways and enjoy the fresh sea air!
If like me you love exploring the UK, then you have to check out the Premier Inn Hidden Treasures here!