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Things to do in Scarborough, North Yorkshire


Scarborough, England’s oldest holiday resort is situated on the north East Coast in the county of Yorkshire. Scarborough offers visitors wonderful fresh bracing air from the North Sea, an interesting and busy harbour, two beautiful clean and safe sandy beaches, an historic castle, superb walks and cliff top scenery, as well as traditional sea side attractions for families.

The popularity of Scarborough as a Spa began in the early 1600s, when it is reputed a Mrs. Farrow discovered a stream of mineral water flowing from a cliff to the south of the town. News quickly spread about the benefits of drinking this water, the aristocracy and even Royalty came to Scarborough on annual visits to recuperate from their unhealthy lifestyle. The more adventurous visitors took to sea bathing, which became a fashionable pastime. Bathing machines were invented to protect the modesty of female bathers at a time before ‘mixed bathing’ was acceptable.

In the 18th century Scarborough prospered and expanded, many new hotels were built to accommodate the ever-increasing flow of visitors and the arrival of the railway in the 1850s made Scarborough more accessible. In 1867 the magnificent Grand Hotel was built, which at the time was the largest hotel in the world. Scarborough continued to be a favourite holiday destination, with visitors from inland industrial towns coming to enjoy the clean air and sweeping sandy beaches. Today’s visitors can still enjoy these same benefits together with many new attractions.

Visitors to Scarborough will want to visit the ruins of the Norman castle, which dominates the headland dividing the north and south bays. The castle is often the back ground to historical re-enactments which take place during the season.

Below the Castle is the Church of St Mary, dating from the 12th century. The grave yard is the final resting place of author Anne Bronte who died while visiting Scarborough in 1849.
The other Church worth visiting is St Martins, a Victorian Church on the south cliff, which contains fine pre-Raphaelite decoration by Burne-Jones and Rosetti.

North Bay is home to several family attractions - The water-park Atlantis with two of the longest slides in the country. - Sea Life Centre, with its underwater walk and seal sanctuary. Also at North Bay is a miniature railway, in and outdoor swimming pools and amusement parks.

South Bay is home to the elegant Spa complex, with exhibitions, theatres, cafes and a pub. The harbour is full of interest, with fishing vessels and Yachts. The bay is backed by the Valley gardens and South Cliff gardens and a fine esplanade.

Visitors can choose from a wide variety of evening entertainments - the Futurist Theatre on the seafront shows the latest cinema releases and top quality family entertainment. The Stephen Joseph Theatre offers cinema, music, and theatre, in particular the works of local author Sir Alan Ayckbourn. There are a wide variety of pubs, music clubs, sport and leisure centres to enjoy.

If you plan to eat out in Scarborough, you will be spoiled for choice, there is everything from fish and chip shops, cafes and pizzerias to top quality restaurants and hotels.

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