Monday, 8 November 2010

Scarborough, Yorkshire

Scarborough is probably known as the premier resort on the Yorkshire coast and even though it is not as popular with holiday makers as it used to be, it still attracts a vast number of day trippers and weekend travellers. The 11th century ruined castle sits on top of a high headland peninsula giving commanding views of both the north and south bay.

I agreed with my friend ( the Richmond walk organiser) that we would share a car to go to Scarborough and see our Yorkshire friends once again for another organised day out ( 19th September ). Unfortunately, he had to attend a family function that evening and had to leave early so we went in our own cars. This was a day event with options to stay overnight on the night before and / or the following night but I was working until 9pm friday and had to be home for sunday morning.
I am not a regular visitor here as this is just about at the limit of a car day trip and there are certain magical places that I cannot pass ( future posts possibly). I can count on one hand the number of times I have been here before...two childhood holidays, a late teenage train trip and a weekend with friends a few years ago.

The journey over the North York moors was lovely and sunny with amazingly not a lot of traffic on the roads. It was only when came to the outskirts of Scarborough that I wished I hadn't been so smug about it as it took 20 minutes to enter the town and find somewhere to park the car.
As we were meeting at a pub/restaurant on the seafront on the south side of the bay, I decided to park at the south end of the town.

 After descending the hill from the title photo view I crossed the footbridge towards the Grand Hotel. In it's day, it was the place to stay... I've just had a quick look at Trip advisor ... maybe not any more !! From the footbridge there was at least a grand view of the sea....

The Diving Belle
Two bathing sculptures were commissioned in 2007 - 08 to celebrate the first UK sea bathing resort. The more historic figure is seen in the main shopping area whereas on the harbour wall, The Diving Belle is meant to represent the regeneration of the present day resort .... I don't think I saw many people diving into the North Sea today !

The ancient history of the town is partly linked with the sea and stretches back to the Romans who had a strategic placed camp on the headland where the ruined castle (English civil war destruction 1640 AD) now lies. Viking raiders arrived from the sea and built the town in 966 AD. There was a six week trading festival called Scarborough Fair that was popular with merchants from across Europe and ran for 500 years. It was immortalised in a traditional folk song.

Scarborough harbour is home to a mixture of fishing boats, private yachts and a pretend / bogus pirate ship !!

The sea is accessible to all as pleasure boats give the tourist a first hand chance to explore the waves of the North Sea !!... an experience indeed around these parts !!

The North sea is sometimes not a very forgiving place particularly in Winter so other precautions need to be taken !!

Life boat

Ghost performance @ the spa... or wondering if the next performance is going to happen.
The resort came to prominence with the discovery of acidic spa waters in the 17th century assisted by the publication of an associated book whilst bathing pools were added during the next century. The popularity of the town exploded with the arrival of the railway in the 1840s coinciding with the building of Hotels with The Grand Hotel being completed 22 years later.

The organiser of the day did a great job in providing us with opportunity to explore, have fun and enjoy good food.
After the introductory lunch, we started off by taking a walk up the hill to the castle....

... to enjoy the superb views of both north and south bays and to experience ...... and inhale the North Sea fresh air !!

Time to descend down the hill through some of the Scarborough's backstreets for the next stage of the day

Before a walk to the Spa and a fantastic evening meal to the end the day, we were given a great seaside activity to have a sand castle building competition. We had to have our eyes open to look for some hardware and armoury !!.....

After the purchase of spades, we arrived on the beach to construct something magical. My "team manager" (pictured below) had the idea to build a face .........

Scarborough sandcastle manager & .... sunbathing till the tide comes in !!

....and is seen here putting the finishing touches to it. Thankfully, we won by one vote but unfortunately seemed to clear everyone from the beach in the process !! Even the dogs were banned despite being desperate for a closer look.


  1. I'll have to get back here. I seem to remember walking up behind the harbour and seeing some grand old streets. Thanks for the trip round.

  2. interesting post.for me the photos about history are the best.

  3. So many nice an interesting pictures here. It looks like a beautiful place.Wishing you a nice day and a lovely week:)
    Greetings from Berit.

  4. I have only been here twice and on both occasions I was on a backpacking trip and walked straight on through. Perhaps next time I will spend some time exploring the place.

  5. Thanks a lot for that wonderful photo ride. Awesome images again and stories. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Thank you so much for this post and photos! We have enjoyed Thirsk as a hub for several days in Yorkshire, but never got to Scarborough (whose name I cannot even think without the acccompanying song!) There are just so many interesting and beautiful places to visit, it's easy to run out of time. I have always wondered which of the two places is the 'must-see' - Scarborough or Whitby?

  7. i like the ghost performance thingy, i actually checking it out twice.

  8. you take super nice pictures, mr. j! i like that you had a sandcastle competition, but i was totally bummed to see that us doggies weren't allowed to watch all the funsies takin' place! boohoo!

    the booker man

  9. What a great series of photos and such an incredible area. Thanks.

    Darryl and Ruth : )

  10. Thanks for the informative tour accompanied by your great pictures. I love the face in the sand.

  11. great captures. thanks for the free tour.i particularly like the shot of the Diving Belle. how magical.

  12. A very informative and detailed tour together with beautiful pictures from a gorgeous place.

  13. Places you visit are beautiful, I love the photo with the rudder, the one with the lighthouse and the one with the door, I too would love to do the sand castles a fantastic idea!
    Have a good day!

  14. Well, Jay!
    What to enjoy first : the photography or the story?
    The photos you have on this post are so clear, so full of meanings inside...Each of it!My compliments, my friend!
    This week I have the 3rd aniversary for Photographis, even if I post only for one year! ha ha
    You are invited on my blog to celebrate!
    Thank you for your support!
    Best regards from Romania!

  15. Hi, again from Romania :) I liked this post very much. Among the photos, the more dramatic sky in that from marina and ruins on the hill. Congratulations1

  16. Well, well, what we found here, a wanderer...Great stories about Albion :).

  17. Thanks for being such a great tour guide, with all the lovely photos, of course the last one I see all the time, its funny when you look how many different ones there are!!!
    See Yea George xxx

  18. Adrian... Thanks, I never got the chance to see the north side. There are some narrow streets and interesting things around...not many but you have to look hard for them. I was planning to have a bit more time for looking around on my own first, but I accidentally bumped into someone I knew from the group. Luckily, we had an hour to spare and there was time for half the group to have a wander in the harbour area and get pictures 4, 6 and 8.

    Pharaonx... Thanks, I had to read some of the history as there were gaps in my knowledge. It was worth the effort I think. Pleased you enjoyed it.

    Berit... Thanks, I was pleased to be able to show you around.

    Trevor Woodford... There are other places on the Yorkshire coast that people seem to love. I know I'll get the chance to do one of them next year as they were talking about it on the day.

    Rizalenio... Thanks, It's always surprising to me which pictures I eventually take. I always knew I was looking for the standard shots of 1, 6 and 7.

    Cranberry Morning... Thanks,hope you liked the links I gave you by e-mail. For the benefit of everyone else reading... Scarborough is essentially a seaside town with a famous park, shops and other activities when it rains. Whitby is generally more for adults, has more character and I will probably be going next year with this group.

    Lily Riani... I remember visiting this as a child. The door was open today and I thought it was eerie how the seats were all set out and I was the only one inside.

    The Booker Man... Thanks, hope you are enjoying yourself here and maybe I'll have a biscuit ready for you next time !! Regular readers know that I'm a dog friendly person and you can see about 15 of your friends by clicking the appropriate link in the "labels:general" section.

    Darryl and Ruth... Thanks, It's just about being aware on the day for capturing images. I'm sure some of the local people may not recognise a few of these pictures.

    Sweet Virginia Breeze... Thanks, the face in the sand was great fun, most of us became children for 20 minutes... some didn't join in !!! They voted on who was to win.

    Life Ramblings... Thanks, It's my pleasure to give you a free tour. The Diving Belle was a magical moment, the sky was great for it although if I was on my own, I would have tried more angles. Some of the people I was with, I had just met for the first time !!

    Phivos Nicolaides... Thanks, pleased you liked it and good to see you.

    Sciarada... Thanks, It's always good to look for the unexpected things to photograph. I need a sixth sense to do it while spending time with other people. It was difficult but enjoyable. It keeps me interested !!

    Wind... Thanks, I tried to feed the whole person here with the eye : , the mind 0:-l and the smile :-) These pictures on their own don't stand up against up against anything that you do. The story on its own may bore me as I'm a visual person.... but together I hope I'm getting somewhere.
    Thanks once again for mentioning me on your "Best Virtual Friend" blog page, I still can't believe I was at the top of the list. I linked it on to my Facebook for you which I know a few people have looked at.

    Travelling Hawk... Thanks, I like to keep everyone interested as best that I can, not least myself !! I'm not competing with you this year for mileage as I have in previous years. From the evidence I have seen so far in the lifetime of this blog, the readers want me to stay in the UK next year as well !! ... Imprisoning me to the UK !!

    Richard... Thanks, Yes my feet are itchy and I need to explore. I am Alfred Wainwright meets Michael Palin with a touch of ... Columbo !! Eh ??

    George the Lad... Thanks, I was pleased to be able to take you for a walk even if you weren't allowed on the beach. As I said earlier to your mate, the booker man, there's loadsa ya pals hidden in this blog.... maybe you can sniff them out !!

  19. очень симпатично - так и тянет путешествовать) маяки мне всегда нравились

  20. Nice reportage, and congrats for wining the sand castle building competition.
    Poor american cocker, it seems looks like to want take a ride over the sand.

  21. maggie( isfierce... )... Thanks for your comment and follow. My computer ain't got those letters on for the translation so I's go' no idea wha' you's said !! ......hope it was nice !!

    Felisa... Thanks for commenting, the sand castle was great fun and a top day out. It was difficult trying to edit the photographs down to 15 as it was such a great day out. My "Scarborough Sand castle manager" as he will be known from this point onwards is already suggesting future trips that we can do next year to places I do not normally go to. I am considering all the options at the moment.
    I tried about 5 times to get the last picture... people walking past, the dog losing interest, think it worked out ok.


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