There is a RSPB reserve close to Scarborough at Bempton to the south of the town. Between April and August you can see guillemots, kittiwakes and puffins as you enjoy the wonderful cliff top views. There are 200,000 birds here.
The nearest viewing point is accesable be wheelchair but other viewpoints are a problem.
It is all free apart from the car park that costs £3.50.
Off the B1229 from Filey to Flamborough. Northern Rail trains stop here on the Scarborough to Hull line although I think it may be quite a long walk to the cliffs.
The visitor centre has toilet facilities and refreshments are available here too as well as take away packed lunches.
Another way to see the sea birds and cliffs is to take a puffin cruise from Bridlington and details are on my Bridlington pages.
Gun on the Pier
On the jetty by the lighthouse there ia this 1914 Vickers Pattern 13 Pdr Gun. It was raised by Scarborough Sub-Aqua Club and local fishermen in 1982 from the wreck of SS Hornsund, sunk by torpedo on 23rd September 1917, 2.5 miles south-east of its present location
My home town!
"It's a funny old town..."
I was born in Scarborough, and lived here all my life until I went away to study... and I HATED it here! Everything I did was in an attempt to get away from my home town, from studying hard to get to uni (and working countless jobs to pay for it), to passing my driving test.
So why is it that I moved back? That is the big question about Scarborough and yet no-one seems to be able to answer it. Scarborough kids - at least the ones I grew up with - tend to be desperate to get away... but many of us seem to have come back, as if we were on a piece of elastic, and most of us stay the second time round.
As an adult, I have fallen in love with my home town in a way I couldn't as a child - many of the reasons for Scarborough's attraction to me now are the reasons I hated it when I was young:
*It's so remote (40 miles from the nearest city, and no motorways)! It was a problem as a kid, but now I can drive, and public transport is far better than it used to be.
*There's nothing surrounding the town but trees and fields! The moors are beautiful if you are used to the urban jungle, but as a kid I lived in the countryside and there was nothing to do. Now, there is more to do and part of the attraction is the remote greenness of the area
*The weather's weird! Scarborough has a weird micro-climate which makes it hard to predict what to wear each day, even if you watch the TV weather report, but as a local you kind of get used to it and can tell what it will be like each day by instinct (or is it luck?)
So maybe in some ways Scarborough has stayed the same and I have changed? Perhaps! But the town is changing too. The seafront has undergone a regeneration programme, starting with the harbour and the South Bay, and it's going well. Shopping has improved, so there isn't as much of a need to drive to Hull or York (or even further), although it's still nice to go from time to time. There is more investment in jobs and infrastructure, and the future of the town looks good. But while we are looking to the future, Scarborough has remained a traditional seaside resort, with donkey rides, candy floss, fish & chips and fry-ups, and I think that is the biggest part of its charm.
Scarborough's harbour area was one of the first to undergo restoration as part of the Yorkshire Forward programme of repairs - the Scarborough bit is called 'waking sleeping beauty', which sounds a bit stupid to me, but there you go. The upshot of it is that a lot of money is being invested around this part of the town, and I think it's looking quite nice.
"Peace and Quiet"
One of the nice things about Scarborough is that it can be really busy - if that's what you like there are lots of amusements etc and more than the town's fair share of pubs - but it's sprawling enough (and not over-developed) to allow for lots of open spaces. When I went out to take these photos yesterday I only saw 2 other people in around an hour and a half. The bit of the South Bay on this picture is near the spot where a hotel fell into the sea in 1993 - the soft cliffs stop people building but they weren't too good for the hotel owners that day! If you Google 'Holbeck Hall' there are lots of pictures of it. It is a bit bleak out there in winter but lovely for some peace and quiet. See my tips pages for other things to do out here!