A thrill in the air is forecast for the Yorkshire Coast this autumn, because 2022 is expected to be one of the region’s biggest blockbuster festival seasons ever. Hardly a weekend goes by without a major, live event happening somewhere along the coast between September and December, making it the perfect time to visit for anyone needing to recharge their batteries on an escape from the everyday this year.
“This is the place to be if you want to experience something new and different, if you need to be inspired and have some fun, or you want to make memories with your loved ones!” says Janet Deacon, head of tourism and culture at Discover Yorkshire Coast.
“As the home of horror, the Yorkshire Coast is one of the best places in Britain to spend Halloween. But on top of that, we’ve got a super-sports September of top UK live sporting action, record-breaking kites, prehistoric sea-monsters and Britain’s glitziest motorbikes. Christmas festivals that are not just wonderful, but wonderfully, uniquely weird, and, ripe for harvest-time, we have the welcome return of Whitby’s much-loved Fish & Ships Festival, celebrating the North Sea’s thriving and ancient maritime culture (and Britain’s favourite dish!).”
Festival season at the Yorkshire Coast this autumn
Get your diaries ready now, as there’s lots to do if you visit the Yorkshire Coast this autumn.
Scarborough Open Golf Week 4–9 September: for over 100 years, this festival has been attracting golfers to the Yorkshire Coast, one of Britain’s best golfing destinations.
Tour of Britain 7 September: cheer on some of the world’s top cyclists as they tackle an unforgiving uphill route around Whitby and the North York Moors.
Scarborough Goldwing Light Parade 10 September: one of the UK’s glitziest parades, starring a cavalcade of neon-lit Goldwing motorbikes lighting up the seaside promenade, followed by a show-stopping firework display – all in aid of charity.
Yorkshire Fossil Festival 16–18 September: bringing to life Yorkshire’s ‘Dinosaur Coast’ – which attracts fossil-hunters from across the world – with fun, free and hands-on activities for both enthusiasts and the simply curious! All taking place in Scarborough, the town that built the world’s first ever purpose-built museum to house its world-class fossils 200 years ago!
Filey Kite Festival 17–18 September: marvel at some of the world’s largest kites, including the record-breaking teddy bear Oscar, along with assorted animals and other fabulous creations.
George Ezra 23 September: the BRIT award-winning and multi-platinum selling artist will play a massive outdoor show at Scarborough Open Air Theatre – the largest open air theatre in Europe!
Steam Gala 23–25 September: world-famous North Yorkshire Moors Railway’s annual highlight featuring a magnificent 12 locomotives in steam (including fan favourite, Sir Nigel Gresley), visiting the vintage train stations between Pickering and Whitby.
Scarborough Jazz Festival 23-25 September: legendary jazz musicians from around the world perform alongside a new wave of trailblazing ‘One to Watch’ acts.
Yorkshire Trackrod Rally 23–24 September: part of the UK’s premier rally series and attracting drivers from across the world, the weekend includes British Motorsport UK championship events from the Historic Cup to the final round of the English Rally Championships.
Whitby Fish & Ships Festival 24–25 September: explore everything that’s special about the Yorkshire Coast’s magnificent maritime culture and food, from the building of its boats to its multi award-winning fish restaurants.
Scarborough Surf Festival,15 October: the Yorkshire Coast is one of Britain’s best surfing destinations, and this annual high-point includes competitions for young surfers, and plenty of hands-on fun – from yoga to surf simulators – to encourage everyone to fall in love with the waves.
Filey International Food Festival 15–16 October: enjoy the autumn harvest with award-winning Yorkshire street food, as well as prosecco, ale and cider bars!
Whitby Goth Festival
The Whitby Goth Festival 21–31 October: the largest event of its kind in Europe, welcoming those who love the bizarre and the life less ordinary, including:
- Whitby Abbey bathed in dramatic illuminations inspired by Bram Stoker’s Dracula (21–31 October). There are also creepy clue trails for families during half-term
- Tomorrow’s Ghosts Festival, live music performances, headlined by goth giants Fields of the Nephilim (28–29 October)
- Whitby Goth Weekend, featuring the Bizarre Bazaar (28–30 October)
- If you dare, follow the mysterious Dr Krank, Smuggler George or storyteller Rose from Whitby Walks uncovering the spooky secrets of Whitby (or Robin Hood’s Bay) on guided tours
Christmas Coast Festival
The Christmas Coast Festival, 18 November–26 December: get ready for a whirlwind of wonder because there’s always a few surprises in your stocking when you spend Christmas by the seaside, from magical monsters to Santa arriving on a fishing boat… Highlights include:
- Whitby Christmas Festival, 18–20 November, launching the coast’s festive season
- Scarborough Sparkle, 25–27 November: a magical and enchanting Christmas wonderland on the North Bay of Scarborough
- Cinderella, 2–31 December: the big panto in Scarborough’s famous Stephen Joseph Theatre
- Robin Hood’s Bay Victorian Weekend, 2–4 December: a magical event where the village goes back in time to Victorian ‘Baytown’ – traditional costumes (dressing up by all is encouraged!), beach games and street food, carol-singing, and general festive merriment throughout the village
- Whitby Krampus Festival, 3–4 December: the first of its kind in Britain, exploring the darker side of Christmas folklore with magical beasts and Father Krampus himself taking over Whitby’s streets
- Scarborough Christmas Festival, 9 December to 2 January: this glittering gala of festive entertainment includes an ice rink, rides in the town centre, and the Christmas market
- Boxing Day football match & raft race, 26 December: with the local fishers pitted against the fire fighters (and plenty of fancy dress) this traditional and exhilarating day of live sporting action is guaranteed to be a better show than anything on the telly, all in aid of the Fisherman and Firemen Charity fund.
With full schedules yet to be announced, there’s plenty more yet to be added to the calendar, and it’s recommended that visitors keep checking for the latest news via Discovery Yorkshire Coast (where you can also find a perfect place to stay this autumn).