Whitby truly is one of our favourite places to visit in Yorkshire. That’s probably why we write about it so much! During the past couple of years, we’ve shared our favourite shops, restaurants and places to stay to help you plan your next visit. With the peak season almost upon us again and most of us eager to get out and about, we thought we’d share with you some of the best cafes in Whitby.
One of Yorkshire’s finest and most popular tourist destinations; Whitby welcomes thousands upon thousands of visitors each year. There’s much to see and do in the scenic coastal town including climbing the famous steps to the abbey ruins, browsing the eclectic array of independent shops, visiting historical attractions museums and exploring the picturesque coastline from one of the numerous daily boat tours available.
However, all that exploration can take its toll on one’s feet and you’re bound to find yourself in dire need of a proper Yorkshire brew and a bite to eat at some point or another. Luckily, Whitby is home to some superb independent cafes and wherever you may be at the time, there’s always one in close walking distance.
Check out our guide to some of the best cafes in Whitby…
97-98 Church St, Whitby YO22 4DE
Tel: 01947 606935
The Blitz is a fabulous 1940’s themed café and restaurant on Whitby’s Church Street. They open for breakfast from 9:30 am and then lunch is served from 11:30 am until 2:30 pm. On their daytime menu, you’ll find a selection of homemade hot dishes plus freshly prepared platters, sandwiches, wraps and salads.
During the day, expect to pay around £5.00 for a sandwich or £8 for a hot main or platter. The Blitz also offers two different afternoon teas. The Clementine’s Afternoon Tea includes all the traditional components such as finger sandwiches and small cakes. The Randolf’s Cream Tea is a more rustic offering comprising rustic sandwiches, savoury tartlets, pork pies and pickles alongside a delicious homemade scone with cream and jam.
Overall, an excellent little venue catering for all mealtimes and offering a truly unique experience with it’s wartime décor and unique ambience.
Hetty & Betty
7 Baxtergate, Whitby YO21 1BW
Tel: 07398 175309
Hetty & Betty is Whitby’s oldest Fish & Chips serving cafe. This grade II listed building began operating as a business of this kind in the year 1928 so has been serving the British favourite for almost a century. Originally “Mill Cafe” the business was taken over by the current owners in 2018 and, in true family business style, was named after their daughter and niece.
Now a café, restaurant and popular wedding venue, Hetty & Betty continues to be one of Whitby’s most popular eateries. In addition to their marvellous Fish & Chips, you’ll find all manner of tasty treats on their café menu. However, they are probably best known as being home to Whitby’s famous Fish & Chips afternoon tea – a 3-tier stand overflowing with freshly battered fish, chips, mushy peas, bread & butter and delicious homemade scones. Traditional afternoon teas are also available.
1 Skinner Street, Whitby, North Yorkshire YO21 3AH
Tel: 01947 602970
Mademoiselle’s is a lovely little French-inspired bistro on Whitby’s Skinner Street. Beautifully decorated with French-style furniture, glittering chandeliers and ornate mirrors, it has a more sophisticated ambience than your average café. They also have a cosy courtyard dining space for al fresco dining on those warmer afternoons. One of the quirkiest cafes in Whitby!
As both the name and the splendid interiors suggest, their menu offers far more than cooked breakfasts and delicate sandwiches. It’s a delightful combination of British favourites and traditional French cuisine! Lighter bites include Moules Mariniere, Baked Camembert with Red Onion Marmalade and, Haddock Goujons with homemade tartare sauce. Prices start at £8.50 and a standard portion of Fish & Chips will cost you around £11.50.
The Magpie Cafe
14 Pier Rd, Whitby YO21 3PU
Tel: 01947 602058
We couldn’t compose a list of cafes in Whitby without including this one. Probably the most famous of cafes in Whitby, The Magpie Cafe with its iconic white exterior always has long queues outside during peak seasons and has been visited by more than few celebrities over the years. Often thought of as the “must-visit” eatery for Fish & Chips in Whitby it does, in fact, offer far more.
Their menu really is rather extensive and features a long list of fine seafood dishes, hearty mains and vegetarian delights. If you are a fish lover, however, this really is a must-visit eatery as their menu is absolutely bursting with super fresh dishes including Whitby Crab, Poached Salmon, King Prawn Tails, Halibut Fillet and Lobster Thermidor. Simply divine!
Prices start at £5.50 for starters and a standard portion of their Fish & Chips will set you back £11.50.
3 Silver Street, Whitby YO21 3BU
Tel: 01947 825111
Rusty Shears is a dog-friendly vintage café and restaurant in the heart of Whitby. Known for its amazing cakes and extensive selection of gins, it’s an incredibly popular eatery with both tourists and locals.
With traditional vintage tearoom style interiors and food served on dainty floral-patterned china, eating here is a real treat due to its quirky yet homely atmosphere. They also have a great outdoor area which is perfect for those boozy summer lunches.
Obviously, the food here is just as beautifully prepared and presented as the café itself and their menu includes something to suit all tastes and dietary requirements. Their deliciously fresh salads and flatbreads are perfect for a light lunch and their platters are a great option for those who like to taste a bit of everything. Expect to pay around £8 for lunch at this wonderful vintage café in Whitby.
Sanders Yard Bistro
95 Church Street, Whitby YO21 4BH
Tel: 01947 600200
Sanders Yard Bistro on Church Street is a friendly eatery with a cosy lounge area, formal dining room and beautiful vertical garden space. Passionate about local produce and boasting a menu that includes numerous gluten-free vegetarian and vegan options, it’s a great little spot to enjoy a quiet lunch away from the crowds of visitors that fill Whitby’s streets during peak seasons.
Open for breakfast, brunch, lunch and homemade cakes, it’s a charming little café and they often use their own homegrown produce in their dishes. These guys are proud dog lovers and allow dogs in their casual lounge area. They even provide treats for four-legged friends!
On the daytime menu at Sanders Yard, you’ll find delicious brunches such as Croque Monsieur, Smoked Salmon with eggs and the famous Whitby Fortune kippers. For lunch, you can choose from a selection of hot dishes, burgers, sandwiches, salads and sharing platters. Brunch at Sanders Yard costs around £7 and lunches start at a very reasonable £4.50.