Camping in North Yorkshire – Scarborough Has it All For Fabulous Camping Holidays

Going camping in North Yorkshire is a family experience I can highly recommend. While the reluctant teen was desperate to check out the remotest of wild camping spots in North Yorkshire, I decided we (OK I) were not quite ready to step that far away from civilisation. So we compromised…

Camping In North Yorkshire – Our Summer Holiday

We were spoiled for choice of camping locations, all of which seemed to offer excellent and incredibly good value facilities. So, after a short hunt round Google (patience is not my thing) I took the plunge and booked a week’s break at the Crow’s Nest Caravan Park. Perched right at the edge of towering cliffs overlooking Scarborough, it looked like a dream location.

camping in north yorkshire

But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself!

So, we knew where we were going and we knew when (the next day) but we no longer had a tent or any camping kit. As it was too late to order everything we needed online for next day delivery, a swift shopping trip was called for. Three hours later, credit card severely dented, the (very, very small) car was chock-full of camping ‘stuff’ and the teen was ecstatic. 

BUT we had no time for a practice run with the tent. Oops. And we didn’t check the weather forecast either as we were busy packing. Double oops! No doubt any camping veterans out there are snorting into their beer at this stage …after all, what could possible go wrong on an August Bank Holiday weekend?

The calm before the storm

After a busy evening of packing, cleaning and organising a pet-sitter, I was up bright and early the next morning but the usual crowbar was required to prise the teen from his bed. Car packed (for which read totally stuffed to the rafters) it was time to head off. The sun was shining and it was a lovely day for our drive to the coast.

We love Scarborough! It’s the quintessential British seaside town, packed with fun things to do and good things to eat. I’d happily argue that is has the best fish and chips ever! So we were really looking forward to our holiday.

camping in scarborough

As we drove, the sky became leaden and the gentle summer breeze we’d left behind picked up. A lot! After switching on the car radio, I discovered that gale-force winds and torrential rain were forecast. Typical bank holiday weather – just bloody perfect!! So I put my foot down and urged the little car onwards, hoping to arrive and get our tent pitched before ‘the weather’ arrived.

Needless to say, it was blowing a hoolie by the time we got there. Our pitch was right at the far end of the site, perched at the edge of the cliff and more than a tad windswept. It didn’t take a genius to work out that pitching the tent was going to be an adventure.

caming in north yorkshire

As the teen unpacked the tent, a strong gust of wind immediately whipped the ground-sheet away and almost over the cliff. With much muttered cursing, 45 minutes later we were soaked to the skin but the tent was up. We were exhausted and I didn’t want to risk firing up the gas stove in the wind, so we took advantage of the excellent site facilities for dinner.

The wind had snapped one of the tent poles!

tent pole disaster while camping in north yorkshire

The tent strained desperately against the poles in the merciless wind and I was so worried we’d be blown away in the night I slept in my clothes! Well, slept is an exaggeration. I lay down and worried for 7 hours, cursing myself for even thinking camping in North Yorkshire was a good idea!

When the wind finally died down at 6am, the site came to life with hoardes of small children waking and shouting, so there was fat chance of a lie in. Still, it’s impossible (ish) to be grumpy when you open the tent to a view like this and wonderful fresh sea air.

view from our north yorkshire campsite

And the teen insisted on being breakfast chef. I couldn’t complain.

al fresco breakfast at our north yorkshire campsite

One of the best things about going camping in North Yorkshire is the all beautiful beaches on your doorstep.

We love Scarborough’s North Bay and Filey is very special. If you’re up for a long, steep walk to the beach, the sweeping sands of Cayton Bay are wonderful too. Just don’t expect the sea to be warm!!

camping in north yorkshire

But who needs the sea? He might be a teenager, but give the boy a spade, a beach, bracing fresh air and water and he is perfectly happy to play all day. In no time at all he’d made new friends and was ‘managing’ construction of a water channel. Add in the occasional injection of ice cream and he was completely content. Me? I was able to sink into a trashy novel and enjoy the sun soaking into my bones. Heaven.

Fabulous Filey on the North Yorkshire coast
Water Channel construction at Filey Bay

After a hard day on the beach, building sand-castles and moats, there’s really only one place to go. Winking Willy’s on Scarborough’s bustling South Bay does the best Fish and Chips!

winking willy's fish and chips in Scarborough

There’s simply nothing nicer than sitting outside your tent after dinner, watching such a fabulous sunset while sipping (OK guzzling) a cheeky glass bottle of Sancerre. Once the wind died down, the site was fantastic and we had a really wonderful, relaxing holiday.

camping in north yorkshire

Have I inspired you to try camping in North Yorkshire for your own adventure? I hope so! I highly recommend the Crow’s Nest site. As Arnie says “we’ll be back”…

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