Your surfing in Yorkshire hotspot guide

Imagine a place where you can catch uncrowded waves, enjoy a warm welcome, and indulge in delicious food and drink after a surf session – not a secret tropical island, but surfing in Yorkshire?! Yes, that’s right!


Surfing along the North Yorkshire coast was once a well-guarded secret until word spread about the waves, drawing surfers from across the UK to come and try them out at places like Cayton Bay and Whitby. Whether you're a beginner seeking a surf school in Yorkshire or an experienced surfer eager to tackle the most challenging breaks, a surfing holiday in Yorkshire offers plenty of options. So, grab your thickest wetsuit, wax up your board (or even buy one out here), and prepare for a holiday of fun! And if you're looking for the best holiday parks to warm up in after your surf sessions, there are so many options that are close to the biggest waves in Yorkshire…

Top 7 surfing in Yorkshire experiences

First up are some of the top places for surfing in Yorkshire, so you can plan out exactly where you’re going to ride some gnarly waves…

Whitby image


Surfing forecast

Starting strong with Whitby, one of the best surfing in Yorkshire hotspots, there are a range of enjoyable waves here that are perfect for learning. The swell at Whitby rarely exceeds six feet, making it an excellent spot for beginners.

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Due to the mellow nature of the waves and the proximity to the town centre amenities, you'll often find surfers of all ages, from youngsters to seasoned veterans, honing their skills here before progressing to the larger waves further down the coast.

The perfect starting point!

Postcode: YO21 3PT

Staithes image


When conditions are at their prime, the wave quality at this break is so remarkable that you might mistake it for a renowned surfing destination elsewhere in the world! Yes, that’s right – you’re not dreaming! We’re talking about Staithes, Yorkshire in the UK!

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Surfing forecast

This wave, located at the former stomping grounds of Captain Cook, breaks over a reef and can be inconsistent. However, given the right combination of a northerly swell and a south-westerly wind during the winter months, it can produce powerful, barrelling left-handers that offer some of the best rides in the entire country.

Due to the rocky bottom and the speed of the waves, this surfing in Yorkshire spot is unsuitable for beginners.

Postcode: TS13 5DH

Cayton Bay image

Cayton Bay

Surfing forecast

Nestled between Scarborough and Filey lies Cayton Bay, a destination that deserves a visit as it ranks among the premier surfing locations in Yorkshire.

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This bay offers three distinct breaks - Pumphouse, Bunkers, and The Point, catering to various skill levels. The Point is for experienced surfers, while beginners and longboarders use Pumphouse, which has gentle waves suitable for all tide levels. Whichever of the three breaks you choose, save some energy for the uphill trek back from the beach. Plus, it’s only around a 10-minute drive from The Bay Filey Holiday Resort, so it's amazing for a place to rest after riding those waves!

Walking and surfing – a true active break!

Postcode: YO11 3NR

Scarborough image


Surfing forecast

Scarborough stands as the surfing capital of Yorkshire, boasting two beach options - North and South.

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Scarborough North offers superior surf conditions, featuring a dominant peak that can become quite powerful and turbulent. Scarborough South, located on the opposite side of the castle headland, has more beginner-friendly waves.


Scarborough is also a haven for those seeking surfing lessons in Yorkshire, with a handful of surf schools available, like Fluid Concept Surf School, making it an ideal destination for those new to wave riding. Become a pro surfer on your next Yorkshire holiday!


Postcode: North (YO12 7TP), South (YO11 1NT)


Saltburn-by-the-Sea image


Surfing forecast

Although not as renowned as some other surfing destinations in Yorkshire, Saltburn holds a special place as one of the pioneering towns on the North Sea surf scene, offering a more relaxed vibe.

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Gentle waves break on either side of the pier, and on a sunny day, you’ll forget you’re in the UK, especially as it’s under an hour’s drive from Woodland Lakes Lodges

Saltburn provides the perfect setting for surfers of all skill levels to hone their abilities. Most surfers from the northeast region may have even caught their first wave here, so will it be your first too?

Postcode: TS12 1HQ

Sandsend image


Surfing forecast

North of Whitby is Sandsend, a fantastic beach break with reliable waves throughout the year.

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 This spot offers the opportunity to surf at any stage of the tide, with both left and right-hand waves available. 

However, the diverse wave conditions can lead to crowding during the warmer months. For a better experience, it's advisable to plan your visit during the off-season when you'll not only enjoy superior waves but also have fewer fellow surfers to contend with. The waves will be all yours!

Postcode: YO21 3SU

Filey Bay image

Filey Bay

Filey is another amazing surfing in Yorkshire spot, also known as the charming and gentler little brother to Scarborough. This stunning beach stretches for miles and is a true gem, plus it’s a short distance away from The Bay Filey Holiday Resort.

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To the north, the massive protective arm of Filey Brigg shields the area from much of the incoming swell, meaning a substantial swell is required for the waves to truly come alive. However, when conditions align, Filey can deliver incredibly clean, long left and right-hand waves perfect for stand-up paddleboard surfing. 

What's more, it enjoys far fewer crowds compared to the busier spots like Scarborough and Whitby, rounding the list off nicely…

Postcode: YO14 9JQ


Need some help first? Learn to surf in Yorkshire

Now that you’re equipped with some of the best surfing in Yorkshire spots, you must be equipped with the skills to ride the waves. So, here are some of the best places to learn and buy some top-quality equipment:

Whitby Surf School image

Whitby Surf School

With its golden sands and rolling waves, the beach at Whitby provides a picturesque setting for Whitby Surf School, an ideal place to learn surfing in Yorkshire.

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This award-winning, Blue Flag beach offers perfect conditions to dive headfirst into the thrilling and adrenaline-pumping experience of riding the North Sea waves, and this school is the best place to start!

Whether you're a first-time surfer in Whitby or are seeking additional instruction before venturing out on your own, fully qualified instructors are passionate about making each session as fun as possible. Plus, they provide a wide range of high-quality surf and beach equipment for hire, allowing you to make the most of the North Sea and all that this beautiful beach offers.

Location: Lower Cliff lift, West Cliff Beach, Whitby YO21 3EN

Flow Surf School image

Flow Surf School

Renowned as one of the best surf schools in the UK, Flow Surf School offers exceptional surfing lessons and stand-up paddleboard (SUP) hire from their beautiful location in Saltburn, on the North Yorkshire coast.

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Their goal is to provide an unforgettable ocean experience in a fun, friendly, and safe environment, catering to both individuals and groups. Lessons are tailored to you, lasting two hours, with beach instruction included, and all necessary equipment is provided. 

Suitable for ages eight and up, with no upper age limit, participants must be able to swim 50 metres. Flow Surf School welcomes all, from schools and scouts to hen/stag parties and special needs groups, so is it time to learn something new on holiday?

Location: Mill Farm, Saltburn-by-the-Sea TS12 1HF

Scarborough Surf School image

Scarborough Surf School

At this stunning beachfront location at Cayton Bay, you’ll find professional, highly experienced, and fully qualified instructors who will safely teach the fundamentals, catering to various activities and skill levels.

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Acclaimed as Scarborough's top-rated Surf School and Shop, they have introduced more people to surfing than any other establishment on the East Coast, so if you want to learn surfing in Scarborough, you've come to the right place! 

And they operate year-round, seven days a week, so there’s no excuse not to conquer a new challenge…

Location: Killerby Cliff, Cayton Bay, Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 3NR


Saltburn Surf School image

Saltburn Surf School

Saltburn Surf School has offered professional coaching for surfers of all levels, from beginner to advanced, since 1983.


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Fully accredited by Surfing England and the International Surfing Association, this reputable school is conveniently located on the lower Prom

They provide lessons tailored to various skill levels, offer a wide range of equipment for hire, and sell new and second-hand surf gear, catering to the needs of every surfer. 

What more could you possibly need? (Except for some gnarly waves)!

Location: Lower Prom, Saltburn-by-the-Sea TS12 1HQ

Dexters Surf Shop, School & Hire Centre image

Dexters Surf Shop, School & Hire Centre

Dexters Surf Shop is a family-run business located right by the golden sands of the scenic North East Coast, close to the best swells in the north.

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Their Surfing England-accredited school offers lessons in surfing, paddleboarding, kayaking, and bodyboarding for all ages and abilities, as well as year-round equipment rental. Daily water sports clubs and must-try coastline SUP & kayak tours are also available. 

With accredited, certified, and DBS-checked instructors, Dexters provides a top-notch experience. Plus, the shop offers new and used surfboards, clothing, and accessories from leading brands. 

Prepare to expand your boundaries and learn something new and, as they say on their website, “stay stoked and see you out there”!

Location: Unit 5, Kepwick House, Peasholm Gap, N Bay Promenade, Scarborough YO12 7TN

 Where is the best place to surf in Yorkshire?

Ready to pick your surfing in Yorkshire top spot? Well, you’re lucky that there are so many places to ride the waves. Add some of these to your itinerary as the best places to surf in Yorkshire:

  • Scarborough 

  • Staithes

  • Cayton Bay

  • Sandsend

  • Whitby

  • Robin Hood’s Bay

  • Runswick Bay

Of course, there are many more, but get your Yorkshire holiday started right with these options. 

Now you’re ready to get packing, clean that board (or buy one in Yorkshire) and make some of the best memories surfing in Yorkshire! Book your next surfing holiday today!

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