Church of Saint Mary, Whitby, Whitby

4.7
#2 of 6 in Historic Sites in Whitby
The spooky, cliffside graveyard with its rows of crooked grey tombstones brought Church of Saint Mary, Whitby fame as the setting in Bram Stoker's Dracula novel. This Anglican parish church looms hilltop over the river and town below, a staggering 199 steep steps up from the town. The church was first founded in 1110 of Norman architecture with a fortress-like exterior, but the interior dates to the 18th and 19th centuries, with a three-story pulpit and box-style pews, some inscribed with "For Stranger Only." The interior features a variety of styles and decor, including one of the most complete sets of pre-Victorian furnishings in England. Plan a trip to Whitby easily and quickly by telling Inspirock to suggest an itinerary.
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Church of Saint Mary, Whitby Reviews
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  • This church which stands high above Whitby is worth a visit. The interior has old fashioned box pews, seating approx. 8 people. To reach the church, you have to climb 199 steps, starting from a small ...  more »
  • At Mary's Church is a quaint place to visit with its box pews. Architecturally, it's just an average church, especially with the Abbey ruins next door and York Cathedral just an hour down the road. St...  more »
  • A very interesting church with old fashioned box pews and a pulpit with ear trumpets. The Huntrodds grave is outside at the back of the church and is worth seeing. There is a little gift shop as you e...  more »
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  • Once you've climbed the famous "199 Steps" you will be greeted with the combined spectacular views of St. Mary's Church (with its vast adjacent cemetery) and the ruin of Whitby Abbey, which reportedly inspired Bram Stoker to write Dracula. Also, you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Whitby and the open sea. Very much worth your while, I can tell ya*. When I visited the weather was less than spectacular, with grey skies, occasional showers and a bit of fog - all of which only added to the majesty and gloomy atmosphere of the place. St. Mary's Church is fascinating because of the unusual structure inside. The church hall is separated into this huge number of differently sized "boxes" where I suppose the servants were sitting while their masters took their seat on the balconies above. I have visited very many churches and cathedrals in England, and never have I seen such an unusually structured church. It's always interesting to inspect the writing on the various gravestones, a glimpse at least into the lives of those who lie there. And with this vast cemetery you will find gravestones in varying styles and shapes, which I also found intriguing. If you're tired from the 199 Steps you might also drop in at the brewery tap of Whitby Brewery, which is behind the church, opposite of the abbey grounds.
  • The church itself is a stunning building only made better by the surroundings. It has to be home to the most beautiful, old graveyards in the country.. including pirate graves!!
  • It's traditional to walk up the 199 steps to St Mary's Church & Whitby Abbey whenever you visit. The grounds of the church are filled with decades and centuries-old headstones, most are weathered. On a sunny day it's nice to walk around the grounds and see Whitby, the North Sea and North Yorkshire from a variety of angles.
  • Beautiful church located in one of the most beautiful spots in Yorkshire.
  • Photos speak for themselves, but in general, it's a bustling church with little spiritual presence and more historical presence is felt.
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