Things to do in Bridlington
A short drive from Haven’s Yorkshire holiday parks, Bridlington is a classic English seaside town with a historic harbour and two beaches, the more southern of which extends at low tide for over eight miles.
There are plenty of things to do in Bridlington, which combines picturesque charm with plenty of local attractions, lots of places to walk your dog, and many child-friendly activities. Let’s delve a little deeper.
Bridlington Harbour has been in operation as a fishing port for over 300 years and is still home to over 100 small businesses today. Shellfish is the local speciality, especially lobster and crab. You can sample local fare in the Harbour Fisheries, Southside Restaurant and Bar, The Trawl, and several other venues, all within a short stroll from the harbour.
Walk along Harbour Road to the east and you’ll come to Garrison Square, a recently modernised pedestrian piazza, where you may find buskers, food stalls, and occasional events. Colourful amusement arcades and fairground rides are often found on this stretch, which is perfect for an afternoon stroll up to North Beach.
Those looking for maritime drama should take a trip on the Bridlington Pirate Ship, the creation of a local boatbuilder in 1979. Originally intended as a fishing vessel, this two-masted, engine-powered vessel gives short, affordable pleasure cruises around the harbour and surrounding seas.
It’s suitable for kids, who’ll be presented with a skull and crossbones flag as a souvenir of their mini adventure.
Bridlington and Fraisthorpe beaches
There are excellent beaches on either side of the harbour at Bridlington. There’s North Beach, with its plentiful seafront attractions, food stalls, and wide, smart promenade. South of the harbour, you’ll find an even longer continuous stretch of sand and shingle, which offers a quieter, more scenic escape from the summer crowds.
Watch the RNLI ship emerging from the lifeboat station or walk along the grassy path above the beach if the tide’s in. It’s a lovely spot to let your dog roam free and watch the sunset.
By the lifeboat station, there’s a platform from which to catch the Bridlington Land Train, a fleet of colourful vehicles that will carry you from Bridlington Park to the town spa and back, or north from East Riding Leisure Centre to South Cliff. For visitors with mobility issues, you can also hire a beach wheelchair, which comes with large inflatable wheels for easier access.
Walk far enough and South Beach blends into Fraisthorpe Beach and Barmston Beach. The scenery becomes more remote and scenic, with rocky cliffs and sand dunes, old wartime defences, and the occasional basking seal.
Bayle Gate and Museum
Situated within the dramatically arched, 14th-century gatehouse of a former monastery, this quaint museum features vintage dolls and artefacts related to the town’s history.
There’s also a curated series of exhibits chosen by the Lords Feoffes, an ancient order of freeholders acting as a charitable trust for the nearby manor and monastery, dissolved by Henry VIII in 1537.
Bridlington Priory Church
The town has an exceptional, Grade-I-listed Priory Church, founded in 1113. It was later expanded to include a monastery and adjacent convent, built on the site of an even earlier Saxon church and nunnery.
The church was restored in the 19th century and is now open daily. There are occasional choral concerts and organ recitals, featuring the grand 1889 instrument, which was enlarged in 2004-06.
The Bayle Museum of local history is located in the priory’s only surviving gatehouse.
Bridlington Animal Park
An award-winning local zoo, the Bridlington Animal Park is the place to visit for meerkats, flamingos, zebras, camels, porcupines and more. With over 21 acres of land, you can see dozens of mammals, reptiles and birds including 11 different types of tortoises, Amazon parrots and cockatoos, hawks, falcon, and Emus.
Numerous endangered species are conserved at the zoo. Enjoy bookable in-depth experiences with meerkats or owls, including briefings by zookeepers, and a chance to get up close and personal with some inquisitive and intelligent creatures. It’s a great day out and there’s a cafe for refreshments and an excellent gift shop.
Woldgate Trekking Centre
For a more active animal experience, drive a mile along the Roman Road to the Woldgate Trekking Centre, where you can learn to ride ponies or horses and take a series of treks through woodland or across fields bright with crimson poppies.
1–2-hour treks are available, and the centre is open six days a week, all-year round. A range of different-sized horses and ponies are available for riders of all ages and experience levels.
Skydive GB Yorkshire
For holidaymakers feeling really adventurous, there’s a popular skydiving club based in Bridlington, Skydive GB’s Yorkshire division.
Tandem jumps take place from 10,000 feet over the beautiful East Riding scenery, but book well in advance and plan ahead. You’ll need to complete a medical statement and obtain a doctor’s declaration before you’ll be accepted to jump. Both forms are available on Skydive GB’s website.
Bridlington Airfield is situated a mile or so off the A165 and Grindale Lane, north of the town, among rolling fields. Flights take off every 30 minutes from 8am until 8pm between February and November. A sunset jump from 10,000 feet (attached to an experienced professional skydiver) could just prove the holiday experience you’ll never forget!