The Simple Things - - MARCH THINGS -

Cas­tle House, Runswick Bay, North York­shire

The al­most im­pos­si­bly pretty cot­tages of Runswick Bay, on the North York­shire coast be­tween Staithes and Whitby, over­look a curl of beach and the wide-open ocean be­yond. They hud­dle to­gether, linked by al­leys and walk­ways rather than streets (no cars are al­lowed). Once the homes of her­ring fish­er­men and their fam­i­lies, many are now hol­i­day ac­com­mo­da­tion – Cas­tle House, which sleeps 2–6, is one of th­ese. Perched at the top of the vil­lage, it has the best view of the bay and of­fers the rare plea­sure of wak­ing up and watch­ing the sun rise from the deep com­fort of your bed.

With its wood-burn­ing stove, heaps of throws and gen­er­ously ap­pointed kitchen and bath­rooms, Cas­tle House is a de­light­ful spot to hole up in the chill­ier months. The win­dow seat is the place to perch and watch the wind whip up the waves and seabirds wheel over the head­land. When the sun comes out, the cot­tage also makes an ideal base to walk the Cleve­land Way: a morn­ing’s pur­pose­ful stride will take you around the head­land to Robin Hood’s Bay. There is lit­tle in Runswick Bay, apart from a pub, the Royal Ho­tel (re­cently smartened up, serves sim­ple, tasty food), and the sandy beach, but some­times that, teamed with a com­fort­able place to stay, is all you ac­tu­ally need. ro­man­tic­cot­tage­hol­i­

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