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North Yorkshire Moors Railway Questions

Hello...my husband and I are looking into taking the NYMR tour from Pickering to Whitby (we will be staying in York in Sep of 2023). Has anyone taken any of the tours and how much of the countryside do you get to see from the train? Are you able to get off the train at any of the stops, take a look around and then resume the trip? And once we get to Whitby what is the best way to return to York? by bus? Can we take the train back to Pickering? We are relying on public transportation and as I understand it there is a bus you can take from York to Pickering. Does anyone have any experience doing this and can you give us two travelers some advice and/or information? I have looked at their website and still have questions, lol. Thanks again!

Posted by
233 posts

One sees a lot of views the trains do not travel that fast, heritage railways are generally resticted to 40km/h - assuming the weather is decent. Yes, its possible to get off at any of the timetabled stops and one can return from Whitby assuming there is a return train.

Posted by
2001 posts

The bus you want is Coastliner 840 which goes from York to Pickering and then on to Whitby. This is the current timetable. It will be a long day, and depending on train times, you may not have a lot of time to get off at intermediate stops. The one most people get off at is Goathland. You can walk up into the village which was made famous by a 1980s TV series called 'Heartbeat'. It still trades on this . The station was also used in the Harry Potter films. The train is a lovely journey with some super views.

I've sent you a personal message with links to lots of photographs.

Posted by
33147 posts

WG, have you found the Frequently Asked Questions on the NYMR webpage? https://www.nymr.co.uk/Pages/FAQs/Category/frequently-asked-questions

Some of the information, like the timetables, is missing at the moment because they don't open until Spring (they do run a Christmas schedule), and they rely on volunteers.

There is a very helpful pull-down they call hop on hop off that gives times and suggestions.

If you have a freedom of the line ticket, yes, as long as there is a following train, leave and rejoin. As long as you are in time for the last train back from Whitby, you can for sure come back on the train.

Posted by
33147 posts

I don't find it at all spammy or scary

Posted by
7845 posts

We decided not to do the old historical train over the Yorkshire Moors and drive our rental car instead. Also, we did stop at the train station just to see the train. Glad we did that. One reason we didn't do the train is that it was one way and we didn't want to backtrack to pickup our rental car.

Posted by
2001 posts

Thanks Nigel. Laughing Spam Fritter you must have a dirty mind...

Posted by
29 posts

Yes Nigel I did manage to miss seeing the FAQs on the website. Thank you for the link.
Wasleys thank you for the links you provided as well. Not spammy or creepy whatsoever.
Grateful to you folks who spend the time to help a fellow traveler out on her research. Much obliged.
Wendy

Posted by
1004 posts

The train ride from Pickering to Whitby is indeed very lovely and nostalgic but if you take the ride back, it does make for quite a long day. You will have to check the times for when the steam engine is in service. We had planned to take the steam train, but it was switched at the last minute to a diesel engine. The steam engines are all very old and this happens quite often. We actually saw the steam train at Goathland station - it was at a standstill but in full steam. (We have some great photos). As for Whitby, it is a great place to grab fish and chips and walk around the harbor. (although watch the oversized seagulls they can be very aggressive). You can take the 199 steps up to the gothic ruins of Whitby Abbey. We did not as we had little time and it was over 90-degree weather. Enjoy North Yorkshire, it is one of my favorite areas of the UK.

Posted by
2001 posts

If you visited in the middle of summer, steam train services can be suspended after a long dry spell. The moors get tinder dry and any spark from a steam loco can set off a disasterous fire if not spotted quickly - hence the need to replace steam by diesel.

Posted by
29 posts

mpaulynsettle, would you recommend taking the bus from Whitby back to York? Would that shorten the day by an appreciable amount?

Posted by
2001 posts

I'd thought about that. It would give you longer to make breaks during the rail journey or longer in Whitby. On the bus current timetable, the last bus from Whitby is at 5pm, getting back into York 7.20pm.

The NYMR timetables for 2023 aren't be available yet. Have a look nearer the time and check out train and bus times and then decide which works best for you.

Posted by
1004 posts

Taking a bus or train from Whitby to York is still going to take a couple of hours. I think we found the NYMR train more uncomfortable on the way back because it was so darn hot that day. It will depend on how long you want to be in Whitby as I think, if I recall correctly, the last NYMR train to Pickering from Whitby left around 5:00 p.m. If you are visiting this summer daylight hours will be quite long, so you could venture down to Robin Hood's Bay which is a very popular and picturesque little seaside village. It is about 20 mins from Whitby by bus and 10 min by Taxi. I think you can get back to York via Scarborough - not sure, maybe the locals on the forum can help you out here. Just some ideas - now I am wishing I was planning a trip back to Yorkshire!