Cleveland Way National Trail
The Cleveland Way National Trail is a 110-mile (177 Km) walking route from Helmsley to Filey. It is waymarked with the distinctive acorn symbol.
It opened in 1969 and was the was the second National Trail in England and Wales (the first was the Pennine Way, opened in 1965). It offers the best of both worlds: the North York Moors and stunning coastal scenery.
You don't have to complete this National Trail in one go to enjoy the best it has to offer. There are circular walks, including 1- and 2-day walks, and shorter easy access walks for everyone to enjoy. You can find books that include short walks on the Cleveland Way here
The Cleveland Way follows a horseshoe-shaped route around the beautiful North York Moors National Park. Starting from the attractive market town of Helmsley it heads across the heather moorland of the North York Moors before reaching the coast at Saltburn. From here it follows the dramatic North Yorkshire coastline to Filey, passing old fishing villages including Robin Hood's Bay, Staithes and Runswick Bay and the lively coastal towns of Whitby and Scarborough.
There is a wealth of history and heritage to enjoy including Helmsley Castle, Rievaulx Abbey, Mount Grace Priory, Guisborough Priory, Whitby Abbey and Scarborough Castle.
The official guidebook recommends a nine-day trip. However, you might want to take a little longer so you have time to see more of the sites along the way.
Anyone who is reasonably fit can walk the Cleveland Way.
The route is challenging in places, especially the coastal sections as it passes through Saltburn, Staithes, Robin Hoods Bay and Scarborough, but this adds to the overall experience. The last stile on the Cleveland Way was removed in 2021. Whilst the route is well signed throughout, an up-to-date map is essential.
Staying on the Cleveland Way
There is lots of accommodation close to the National Trail. However, the Cleveland Way is popular, and accommodation can book up quickly in places like Saltburn, Scarborough and Whitby in peak season. We recommend that you book well in advance. If you are planning on walking the whole of the National Trail, you might want to consider offsetting your days – so that you start on a Monday or Tuesday, for example, or walk the less common direction – from Filey to Helmsley.
Some of the Guidebooks offer suggestions for places to stay but not an extensive list.
This is the official guidebook to the Cleveland Way National Trail. This comprehensive, fully updated official guide is the only companion you need – whether you’re interested in the industrial history of ironstone mining, or a weekend stroller seeking a coastal walk out of the seaside resort of Scarborough.