The Ultimate Waterfall Near Whitby: Top 11 Waterfalls Near Whitby

Whitby isn’t known for its waterfalls. In fact, as far as the general tourist is concerned, the waterfall scene is really lacking because most of the waterfalls near Whitby are local secrets. If you fancy sprucing up your seaside getaway in East Yorkshire, there’s nothing better than walking to a scenic waterfall. Get ready to venture into the Nork Yorkshire Moors National Park, where you’ll find most of the waterfalls near Whitby. 

For those happy to drive up to an hour from Whitby in search of beautiful waterfalls, you’ll be massively rewarded. In this guide, we’ll provide all the information and inspiration to prove that Whitby is far from a one-trick pony. Check out these top 11 waterfalls, and let’s find your ultimate waterfall near Whitby.

1. Falling Foss Waterfall

Location: Falling Foss Tea Garden, YO22 5JD

Distance from Whitby: 15 minutes by car

Falling Foss waterfall – affectionately coined ‘Foss Falls’ – is the most famous waterfall near Whitby. The 30-foot waterfall is surrounded by woodland and opposite Falling Foss Tea Garden, making it an idyllic day trip spot for onsite refreshments. It takes just minutes to reach the falls from the Falling Foss car park, and this waterfall has a pretty, convenient commercial atmosphere.

This Whitby waterfall is also set on a scenic little trail that loops past Littlebeck for even more beautiful views. If you choose to complete the Falling Foss waterfall walk, the circular loop via Littlebeck takes 1.5 hours. It covers around 3.5 miles of wooded trails and open farmland, and you visit a second waterfall, a cave and hermitage. To complete the Falling Foss walk, just park in the Falling Foss car park, turn left, watch for a wooden signpost for Foss Falls, and continue over a wooden footbridge after you reach the main waterfall.

It is worth noting that the Falling Foss Tea Garden opens seasonally from April to October. Ensure it is open before you bank on refreshments at Foss Falls. It is also worth knowing that at Falling Foss, swimming is prohibited (if you are feeling brave enough for a cold dip). However, you should be mindful of swimming too close to the waterfall and be wary that the water may not be completely clean. If those risks sound too much, admire Falling Foss Waterfall from dry ground.

2. Mallyan Spout Waterfall

Location: Goathland, YO22 5AW

Distance from Whitby: 20 minutes by car

Mallyan Spout Waterfall is otherworldly. It has one of the steepest climbs to reach the falls out of all the waterfalls near Whitby, but those who climb are rewarded with a rainforest-like waterfall. Thick layers of bright green moss cloak the slippery rocks behind Mallyan Spout Waterfall, and green undergrowth and tree branches frame its grandeur. Mallyan Spout is a beautiful waterfall near Whitby – there’s no doubt about it.

Mallyan Spout is one of the Goathland waterfalls, a collection of falls on the outskirts of the North York Moors National Park. The North York Moors are just a 20-minute drive from Whitby and have some of the best nearby waterfalls. And if you fancy exploring some North Yorkshire Moors waterfalls, Mallyan Spout is one of your most photogenic options. The 70-ft waterfall can be reached on foot via the Mallyan Spout and Beck Hole Circular Walk, which is 3 miles in total. Bring a swimming outfit and towel, too, as Mallyan Spout’s plunge pool is perfect for wild swimming in the North York Moors National Park.

3. Hayburn Wyke Waterfall

Location: Hayburn Wyke, YO12 6LD

Distance from Whitby: 30 minutes by car

To reach Hayburn Wyke Waterfall, you’ll travel south by car for almost 30 minutes – finishing your journey just above the famous beach resort of Scarborough. This waterfall near Whitby is in the beautiful coastal nature reserve Hayburn Wyke. This partially wooded, partially sandy nature reserve has picturesque terrain and is ideal for a day trip and picnic. It is also home to the stunning Hayburn Wyke Waterfall. If you just head straight down to the beach, you’ll find this waterfall easily, where Hayburn Wyke Waterfall spills into a deep plunge pool with an impressive double flow.

This waterfall near Whitby is ideal for anyone visiting Scarborough on a day trip, as you can use Hayburn Wyke as a stop-off point. You can read our complete guide on Whitby vs. Scarborough here. There’s also Hayburn Wyke Inn nearby. You can either stay overnight or just stop by for lunch.

4. May Beck

Location: May Beck Car Park, YO22 5JE

Distance from Whitby: 15 minutes by car

You may be more familiar with the dream combination of May Beck and Falling Foss Waterfall than with May Beck as a standalone attraction. We are here to tell you that May Beck is absolutely something that you need in your life. This is more of a scenic river walk than individual waterfalls; the May Beck Waterfall experience involves woodland walks amongst singing birds and gentle little waterfalls that flow naturally down drops in the beck. May Beck is the perfect idea if you don’t want huge waterfalls near Whitby. The May Beck waterfall experience also combines excellently with a visit to Foss Falls – you can do a hike that loops the two together.

To reach this waterfall, you only need to head to the May Beck car park. We’d suggest accessing May Beck via the 2-mile circular hike that combines Foss Falls with the May Beck waterfall experience.

5. Waterfall Park

Location: Great Ayton, TS9 6NF

Distance from Whitby: 40 minutes by car

This waterfall is a bit of a drive from Whitby itself, so it might be a bit of a push to call it a ‘Whitby waterfall’. However, it is one of the best waterfalls near Whitby. Waterfall Park consists of a vast manmade waterfall in the centre of Great Ayton and was once a favourite spot amongst Victorians. There’s even only a Victorian urinal on the park grounds. A fun and quirky waterfall experience, it is ideal for anyone wanting a more suburban waterfall near Whitby. It is a beautiful park to walk around, with lots to sightsee in Great Ayton after – including the Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum.

Despite its manmade beginnings, Waterfall Park has one of the prettiest waterfalls in North Yorkshire. As you drive to Great Ayton, you’ll also pass some beautiful areas of the North York Moors National Park.

6. Thomason Foss Wood

Location: Birch Hall Inn, YO22 5LE

Distance from Whitby: 20 minutes by car

Thomason Foss Wood is one of the prettiest North York Moor waterfalls. Only accessible by a woodland walking trail from Beck Hole village, Thomason Foss Waterfall is beautifully set in a ravine along Eller Beck. Entirely surrounded by serene forest and near to a railway line (beware: it is in frequent use), Thomason Foss Waterfall is a stunning waterfall to choose to visit from Whitby. The bracken and moss-covered rocks around its plunge pool add a natural Jurassic appeal. The walk takes approximately 20 minutes if you take the signposted route from Beck Hole.

To reach the trailhead, set your satnav to Birch Hall Inn. From there, cross over the bridge and bear left at the signposted footpath. The drive takes just 20 minutes from Whitby, and Thomason Foss Wood is worth combining with a visit to the nearby North Yorkshire Moors Railway.

7. Peasholm Park

Rowing boats moored which you can use to get up close to the park’s waterfall.

Location: Peasholm Park, YO12 7TR

Distance from Whitby: 30 minutes by car or 1.5 hours by bus

Peasholm Park holds one of the most unusual waterfalls near Whitby. Tumbling down from a Japanese pagoda over blocks of rough-cut rocks, the Peasholm Park waterfall is a sight to see. The park is set in the centre of Scarborough, and for those wondering what you have to pay to enter Peasholm Park, don’t worry; the park is free to enter. If you’re planning a day trip to Scarborough from Whitby, it’s a top attraction to your itinerary. The Japanese culture around the waterfall makes it one of the most unusual and memorable waterfalls near Whitby.

Peasholm Park and its waterfall are just a 30-minute drive from Whitby town centre. Alternatively, you can also catch the bus from Whitby to Scarborough in around 1.5 hours using the X94.

8. Wileycat Beck

Location: Wileycat Wood, TS12 3DD

Distance from Whitby: 30 minutes by car

Wileycat Beck is where you’ll find some of the most hidden waterfalls near Whitby. If you’re happy wandering a woodland just inland from Saltburn-by-the-Sea without the foggiest idea of where exactly you’ll find its waterfalls, this is the spot for you. It is a real adventure spot, and you’ll get lost to stumble across its beautiful collection of waterfalls. Keep your eyes peeled for deer as well – its setting, Wileycat Wood, feels magical and secretive, with wandering deer and unmapped paths.

Wileycat Wood is best accessed from Charltons, just 30 minutes from Whitby by car. You can also take the X93 MAX in just 50 minutes, which is perfect if you want to visit a waterfall near Whitby but don’t drive.

9. Kettleness Beach Waterfall

Location: Kettleness Beach, YO21 3RY

Distance from Whitby: 20 minutes by car

This unusual Whitby Waterfall has one of the most scenic settings; it pours over a clifftop and directly onto Kettleness Beach. If you want the wow factor, Kettleness Beach Waterfall is stunning, especially after periods of heavy rain. Kettleness is a beach day with a difference. It is hugely different landscape-wise to the woodland surrounding the North York Moor waterfalls. It is a challenging hike down to the beach. You’ll be reliant on a rope for a handrail – so note that this waterfall near Whitby is best for those with great fitness looking for an adventurous waterfall option. However, it is an enjoyable and novel addition to the fantastic waterfalls near Whitby.

10. Old Meggison Waterfall, aka Kildale Falls

Location: Mill Bank Wood

Distance from Whitby: 40 minutes by car

The fact that this waterfall is not a major tourist hotspot is a travesty. However, it is also brilliant for you since you’ll practically get the place to yourself. Old Meggison Waterfall is nicknamed Kildale Falls and is a local secret and brilliant addition to the North York Moors waterfalls. The falls is located in Mill Bank Wood and drops nearly 100ft along a dramatic cliff that slopes like a natural staircase.

Once you arrive at Mill Bank Wood, it is just a short walk of less than 20 minutes to reach Old Meggison Falls. The falls have a deep plunge pool perfect for wild swimming in the North York Moors National Park. You may wish to bring a picnic, towel, and swimming costume.

11. Blow Gill

Location: Osmotherley to Hawnby route

Distance from Whitby: 55 minutes by car

If you want to find the prettiest Osmotherley waterfall, drive the Osmotherley to Hawby waterfall route. This 25-minute drive has one of the most stunning yet lesser-visited waterfalls in North Yorkshire. And if you are happy to drive a few hours on a day trip, it is the perfect miniature road trip to see a beautiful waterfall near Whitby. Blow Gill is a scenic waterfall that spills gently over multiple levels and is located 2 miles away from Hawnby. Running under the actual road is easy to miss, so get your inner sleuth on to find this waterfall. It is definitely worthwhile.

To Conclude: Which is the Prettiest Waterfall Near Whitby?

It is hard to pick the prettiest waterfall near Whitby, but if you want novelty, choose Kettleness Beach Waterfall. For a more woodland style of ‘pretty’, Mallyan Spout Waterfall stands head and shoulders above the others. If you want a comfortable waterfall experience, Falling Foss is popular for a good reason, and the Falling Foss Tea Garden is a brilliant addition to your visit, offering refreshments and a place to sit and relax. All these waterfalls near Whitby are worth visiting. You’ll have a wonderful time if you venture down the coastline or head inland to see the best of the North York Moors waterfalls. 

Still looking for inspiration on things to do in Whitby? Check out our guide on the best things Whitby has to offer.

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