5 reasons to visit Staithes

Idyllically situated on the North East coast of England and only a stone’s throw from its big brother Whitby, whose fame lies in fish and chips, Count Dracula, and our love of the British seaside, nestles the village of Staithes. Staithes, a tiny fishing community, at one time boasted 80 full time fishing boats. The tradition still continues today, although on a far smaller scale. Staithes also has a deep rooted artistic heritage, stemming from the Northern Impressionists – a collective of artists who lived in Staithes and painted in plein air. Fast forward to the present day, and Staithes is now a creative haven, hidden from many traditional tourists due its location. Having recently visited, and looking forward to returning, here are my top reasons to take a peek yourself:

1) The art

Home to the “Turner of the North” George Weatherill, and steeped in the history of Northern Impressionism and the Staithes Group, Staithes now attracts artists from across the word thanks to the local art gallery. Offering a number of painting classes, the gallery has recently enjoyed the success of a pop up restaurant, offering fresh, local produce cooked by local chef, Lisa Chapman. Yum.

2) The air

It may sound fairly old fashioned, and even a bit of an obvious point, but the pure air of Staithes came as a welcome surprise even to a Yorkshire lass like me. Coming from London, the sea air did me as much good as any amount of green tea and hydrating facials could.

3) The food

The Cod and Lobster, situated on the sea front, serves the best crab sandwiches – it should do, it’s been established for over fifty years. It’s dog and people friendly.

4) The company

Although it’s a small village, the community welcomes visitors with open arms. Whether it’s a friendly hello in the local pub, or a chat with the bus driver, Staithes lacks the North Yorkshire snobbery that I’ve sometimes encountered.

5) The journey

Being an advocate of slow travel, the journey up to Staithes from London is almost as beautiful as the fishing village itself. The last leg of the journey through the North York Moors is simply breathtaking.

Charlotte Nicol is a Co-Founder of Most Curious Tours.

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