I travel as much as possible at home and abroad. I'm always ready for new experiences
Published September 2nd 2019
A cosy pub serving local ales by the seaside
Smugglers Pub is located in a small upper space above the Smugglers Bistro, Bar & Lodgings in the seaside village of Robin Hood's Bay. The Bay is a scenic inlet on the Heritage Coast of the North York Moors, only a short distance from Whitby. The village contains many excellent food options, especially for seafood, but Smugglers Pub, with its amiable atmosphere and local ales, is a great find. It was a favourite of our holiday, and we visited every night of our trip.
The official village website describes Robin Hood's Bay as the 'busiest smuggling community on the Yorkshire coast' during the eighteenth century. Many restaurants in the village pay tribute to this outlaw seafaring past, but none more than Smugglers Pub. The space is lit by candles and decorated with bookshelves (containing mostly naval-themed selections), a cosy wood-burning fireplace, barrel tables, and items from the seafaring past, including a pirate skeleton to greet visitors.
The pub is managed by a friendly landlady who remembered our preferred drinks from our first visit. Local ales from Whitby Brewery are this pub's specialty. Black Death was a special discovery. It is not available for individual sale in shops and is difficult to obtain even in pubs and restaurants in the area. The landlady informed us that this is due to the amount of production time required to make it. This dark beer with its dramatic and slightly mysterious name fits the ambience perfectly.
As a group travelling with a small dog, we were especially pleased to find such a dog-friendly atmosphere in the village. Well-behaved dogs of all variety are allowed inside most of the places in the village, including Smugglers. The pub was not that obvious to find on our visit. It is accessible via a side path next to the Smugglers Bistro. Currently, the pub has limited opening times. It is only open over the weekend from late afternoon around 4pm (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) to late evening around 11pm.