Esk Valley Railway to Whitby
View view across the Esk Valley to Egton, photograph by Edward Nicholl
From the heart of Middlesbrough to the historic seaside town of Whitby, passing through the North York Moors National Park and serving 16 stations along the route
Esk Valley Railway line logo
 

Walking on the North Yorkshire Moors is an unforgettable experience. Definitely the best way to get to the heart of this magnificent landscape is by train.

The Esk Valley Walk

Esk Valley Walk waymarkA 35-mile waymarked trail which takes you from the source of the River Esk and brings you to the estuary where it joins the sea at Whitby harbour. A moorland-to-coast walk, it also leads you through riverside country and a steep wooded gorge

Esklets are a series of becks that join up down in the valley close to Castleton. The walk starts at Castleton Moor station and passes through or near eight of the villages along the Esk Valley Railway line: Castleton Moor; Danby; Lealholm; Glaisdale; Egton; Grosmont; Sleights and Ruswarp. Follow these links to find out more about the villages, train times and travel connections.

Walking down Barnard's Road,  an ancient toll road, towards Grosmont, photograph by Edward Nicholl

The excellent booklet Esk Valley Walk, A Regional Route, includes Ordnance Survey mapping. It also breaks the walk down into sections for those walkers who wish to take a less strenuous meander through the valley. The Esk Valley Walk booklet can be purchased at tourist information centres.

>> View maps and dowload the Esk Valley Walk from the North York Moors National Park website.

North York Moor CAM offers an inspiring photographic record of the walk:

Stage 1: Blakey Ridge - Esklets - Westerdale - Castleton (9 miles)
Stage 2: Castleton - Danby - Lealholm - Glaisdale (10 miles)
Stage 3: Glaisdale - Sleights - Ruswarp - Whitby (10 miles)

The Cleveland Way

110 miles (176 Km), most of which lies in the North York Moors National Park. The Cleveland Way National Trail Guide can be purchased at tourist information centres or online from the North York Moors National Park Authority. The Cleveland Way website provides information about places to visit along the route and full details of accommodation.

Walks from the Moors Centre, Danby

Walking down Barnard's Road,  an ancient toll road, towards Grosmont, photograph by Edward Nicholl  An illustrated guide containing maps and directions for five walks from 2 to 9 miles in length from the Moors Centre at Danby. It can be purchased at tourist information centres or online from the North York Moors National Park Authority.

Five Walks in the Esk Valley

Each of the 5 walks (varying in length between 2 and 9 miles) start and finish at train stations on the Esk Valley Railway Line. You can download the walks sheets from the North York Moors National Park Authority website, or from the relevant station pages on this website.

Rucksack and Rail of the Esk Valley Trail

All the walks described on this website are based on catching the 1030 Middlesbrough to Whitby train and the 1600 return. View the seven walks on the Rucksack and Rail website.


St. Hilda's Way

St. Hilda’s Way is a new (2015) 40 miles long-distance trail in North Yorkshire, starting from Hinderwell and finishing at Whitby Abbey. The walk is designed as a pilgrimage and visits eight Churches and Chapels all dedicated to St Hilda, as well as two other churches named after St Hedda and St Mary. At each location there is a special focus on a different aspect of the saint’s life, something to find in the church and the opportunity for reflection and meditation.  You can join the walk at Danby and other stations en route to Whitby. More about the St. Hilda's Way

Walks from Stations

For descriptions and links to local walks from stations along the route, view the individual station pages

Car Free Walks website

A free source of walking route guides that encourage people to explore the country without using their car. You can search for walks and add your own favourites to the website for others to find.
www.carfreewalks.org

Always take appropriate equipment and all-weather clothing and footwear before setting out. The weather on the moors can change dramatically by the hour. Always check with the North York Moors National Park rangers and the Moors National Park Centre (tel: 01439 772737) for up-to-date information. For the NHS guide to walking for health, see here.

 

Walking

You can take bikes on the train free of charge and without the need to make reservations. Here are some cycle rides that link to the Esk Valley Railway:

A cyclist appreciating the view of a steam train running on the Esk Valley Railway line. Photo credit: Andy Scaife and Bernie CullenWhitby to Danby Cycle Route

A 15-mile undulating route with some some steep hills, mainly on tarmac, with a short bridleway section. Refreshments can be found at Danby, Aislaby, Egton, Ruswarp and Whitby.

Great Ayton to Danby Cycle Route

A 13-mile undulating route with some moderate climbs, on minor roads and a bridleway. Refreshments can be found at Great Ayton, Commondale, Castleton and Danby.

Esk Valley Railway Cycle Route

A linear 22-mile route which starts at Kildale station and follows the Esk Valley Railway, using the train to return to the start. View a description of the route.

Moor to Sea Cycle Route

Moors to Sea Cycle Route logo Moor to Sea Cycle Network booklet, providing more than 100 miles of cycle routes divided into 9 sections, with maps, timings and distances. It can be purchased online from the North York Moors National Park Authority

www.moortoseacycle.net offers details of more cycle rides through the Esk Valley

Cycle Safety

For information and tips on cycle safety, please see here.

Cycle Hire

Doctor Cranks Bike Shack, 20-22 Skinner Street, Whitby, YO21 3AJ Tel: 01947 606661

Trailways, The Old Railway Station, Hawsker, Whitby.
Tel: 01947 820207 www.trailways.info

The Bikes and Trains website

A useful website devoted to the enjoyment of rail and cycle travel and transporting bikes by train. www.bikesandtrains.co.uk

Always take appropriate equipment and all-weather clothing and footwear before setting out. The weather on the moors can change dramatically by the hour. Always check with the North York Moors National Park Rangers and the Moors National Park Centre ( tel: 01439 772737) for up-to-date information.

 

 



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Travel the route: follow the links to find out about the stations
Middlesbrough | travel east – towards the sea | travel west – inland | Whitby
2009-14 Esk Valley Railway Development Company
The Coliseum, Victoria Place, Whitby, North Yorkshire, YO21 1EZ
Telephone: 01947 601987
Email: enquiries@eskvalleyrailway.co.uk