Camping in North York Moors – Wild Camping Tips & Campsites

Do you love camping in the UK and now looking for the next destination? Look no further, because we have a place for you. Camping in North York Moors can be an awesome experience, both for experienced and beginner campers.

North York Moors is a National Park reaching all the way to the North Sea. It is a place of rich history accompanied by a couple of different museums, castles, towns, and also a wide variety of wildlife.

Is it legal to camp in the North York Moors?

Legally, you are not allowed to camp in the wild. You would need permission from the landowner or you should stay only in the official campsites. However, people are still camping in the wild and we’ll give you a couple of tips if you plan on doing it anyway.

  1. Don’t pitch your tent before dusk. Wait until the sun has started to go down as that decreases the chances of being seen.
  2. Stay out of crowded areas. Don’t camp near the roads or towns, keep a low profile, and also avoid camping near the places where people gather.
  3. Don’t camp near fences. Chances are, fences are on someone’s private land and they can report you, therefore, aim for the woods or land outside of the roads.
  4. Don’t start a campfire. Always avoid starting a fire as that can cause a disaster and you can even be fined. You can use a portable cooker instead.
  5. Avoid staying at one spot. Stay on the move, that decreases the chances of being caught.

Most likely, you won’t have any troubles if you don’t cause them yourself. Respect the authorities and if you come across a landowner that’s asking you to leave, excuse yourself and find another spot to camp.

North York Moors landscape
North York Moors landscape on Unsplash

What’s the weather like in North York Moors?

The weather in North York Moors is generally warm through the summer and mild through the winter. Even though there is more snow on average in this area when compared to the rest of the UK, it’s not as common as you’d think.

On average, there are approximately 100 rainy days, 215 dry days, and 50 days when it snows. That being said, as in the rest of the UK, the weather can change on daily basis. It’s not rare to experience sea frets or mist during the spring or even early summer days.

If you’d like to see how a camping trip in North York Moors during springtime looks like, take a look at this video:

Generally speaking, the weather in the North York Moors is not harsh. Still, you should bring adequate equipment such as:

  • Raincoats (Yes, even during summer)
  • Rainproof tents
  • Sleeping bag or sleeping pad
  • Warm jacket
  • Warm hat (Summer nights can get cold as well)
  • Walking boots
  • Bottle of water

Don’t forget to bring something to eat. You might try your luck with fishing, but that requires a special license.

Official campsites in the North York Moors

If you prefer staying at an official campsite, we have prepared a list of the 5 best official campsites in the North York Moors for you. We’ve decided to choose official campsites from all over the place, so you can decide which one fits your needs the best.

1) Bank Top Camping

Located in the south part of the North York Moors, it’s an ideal place for those of you with tents, motorhomes, or caravans. There are plenty of cycling routes, footpaths, and mountain bike trails near the campsite, so you’ll always have something to do.

Just 40 minutes of driving from the coastal town Whitby and plenty of other points of interest within 30 minutes ride. Feel free to bring your pet buddy as they are pet-friendly. The facilities at the campsite include:

  • 30 Grass pitches
  • Electrical hook-ups
  • Drinkable water taps
  • Toilet & Shower block with a special facility for disabled people
  • Hot water
  • Baby changing facilities
  • Laundry room & Outdoor washing-up area

Check out the prices here.

2) Abbots House farm

Located near the heart of North York Moors, this campsite has beautiful green nature surrounding it. You may find a whole variety of different trees and plants near the campsite. Also, don’t be surprised if you see some sheep as well, since this campsite is near a sheep farm.

There are 30 main spots where you can pitch your tent, but they have additional 60 spots when it’s a busy season. It’s also pet-friendly, but make sure you keep your dogs on a leash.

Facilities included at this campsite are:

  • Showers
  • Toilets
  • Wash-up sink
  • Special shower room for the disabled
  • Hot & Cold water tap
  • Drinkable water taps

Note: Most of the campsite land is unlit, so make sure you bring a headlamp or a torch with you. Check the prices here.

3) Lawnsgate Farm

Right in the heart of New York Moors, you may find this caravan and camping club site. If you take a walk, you’ll quickly find yourself in Lealholm, an old picturesque village. This campsite is ideal if you are looking for a quiet place with beautiful nature.

Just as the previous two campsites, you can bring your dog with you, but make sure he is well behaved as there are many farm animals around the camp. Different facilities available such as:

  • Showers
  • Outdoor sink for washing up
  • Locally produced food
  • Toilets
  • Drying area

You can also book a yurt with a hot tub if you are looking for a different camping experience. Check the price here.

4) Stoneclose Campsite

One more sweet camping site that you can go to if you plan on camping in North York Moors. You can also camp here with your motorhome or caravan as Stoneclose Campsite is fully licensed for six van sites. No need to be a part of any club to camp there.

There are approximately 10 spots where you can pitch your tent. You can buy locally produced ice cream from the hosts, so if you are camping with your children, this campsite has bonus points in advance.

Facilities on the site include:

  • Pot washing room
  • Three shower blocks
  • Separate toilets
  • Drying room
  • Bike washing area
  • Freezer
  • BBQ Stands

Check the prices here.

5) Lythe Caravan and Camping

Campsites near the sea are rare, however, this one has a sea view. Located near the coastal city Sandsend, this campsite has beautiful nature surrounding it with plenty of facilities available. It’s hard to book a spot during July and August, so make sure you reserve on time.

The prices are a bit higher when compared to the other official campsites in North York Moors on this list, but considering the location of it, it’s not a surprise. This campsite is ideal for summer camping trips.

Facilities include:

  • Shower blocks
  • Toilets
  • Laundry room
  • Washing room
  • Electric hook-up points
  • Shower room for disabled people

Check the prices here.


Hope you’ve enjoyed our North York Moors camping guide! In case you’re looking for more camping adventures, we’ve covered campsites in the Dolomites, Pyrenees, Sardinia, Andorra, South Downs, Andalucia, and Algarve.

About Krešimir

Hello! I’m Krešimir, an IT student that’s trying to become an expert Android programmer. During my studying days, I’ve discovered a secret passion which is content writing. My first camping trips were when I was a young boy. Dad and I would mostly go fishing and stay a couple of days, but I didn't fell in love with camping right away. When I went to study in another city I could feel that something is missing, and those were the camping trips and the whole feeling of being in nature.