Double double toil and trouble: Spooktacular Halloween fun on 'THE OPTIMIST' 

Fancy (dress) some spooky half term fun this Halloween? Then look no further...

Enjoy an atmospheric steam hauled trip on the NYMR’s Optimist service, travelling direct from Pickering to Whitby, dressed in your best fancy dress.

'The Optimist' is a pre-booked, steam-hauled, with limited capacity service. The train will depart from Pickering and travels directly to Whitby where you will be able to disembark and enjoy 2.45 hours exploring the Yorkshire Seaside Town before returning back to Pickering. 

Train Times

Service 1: Departs Pickering at 09:20 and returns from Whitby at 14:00, allowing approx 3 hours in Whitby.

Service 2: Departs Pickering at 12:00 and returns from Whitby at 16:30, allow approx 2 hours 45 mins in Whitby. 

 Live up to 1 November Standard Tickets Member Tickets
Individual Ticket £35.00 £17.50
Duo Tickets
(2 Adults/1 Adult & 1 Child)
£70.00 £35.00
Family (2 Adults & 2 Children)  £72.00 £52.50 (Adult/Child Standard Pricing)
Table (4 Adults) £140.00 £70.00
Private Compartment (Max 6, Adult or Child) £150.00 £75.00
Dogs £3.00 Free

Book Now 

Click here to find out more details about 'The Optimist'  

Things to do in Whitby

Visit Whitby Abbey

Whilst in Whitby you may want to visit the Abbey for a few hours of Halloween fun, including a creepy trail and spooky stories, then jump back on the train to Pickering to round off the trip. Find out more about what's happening in Whitby Abbey this half term. 

Any guests that visit the Railway and the Abbey in fancy dress, share a #spookyselfie and tag in both attractions on social, could be in with the chance to win not one, but two family days out in 2021. The attractions will pick their favourite spooky selfie and the winner will receive a free family pass to revisit both destinations next year.

The competition runs from Saturday 24th October - Sunday 1st November.

Pre-book your tickets to English Heritage: Whitby Abbey 

So if you’ve got it, haunt it, by sharing your spooky fancy dress selfies on your day out in North York Moors this half term.


Covid-19 Control measures in place at the NYMR

  • Advanced booking required. To help us maintain capacity we are asking all guests to book online in advance.
  • Passengers will travel on the same train and have the same seats on both the outward and return journeys.  
  • Enhanced cleaning regimes. 
  • Hand Sanitiser Stations will be provided for you to use. 
  • Contactless payments for all refreshment and retail purchases. 
  • We will be asking our guests to maintain social distancing whilst using our facilities.
  • Unfortunately, you will not be able to visit the following areas at this time: All Facilities at Levisham, Goathland and Grosmont. 

Passenger responsibilities

We ask for your cooperation and that you always follow Government advice and local mitigations at all times including:

      • Wear a face covering/mask whilst moving around the railway and on the train. These may be removed whilst seated in a compartment.
      • Wash Your Hands often and use the hand wash stations provided.
      • Avoid touching your face.
      • Observe social distancing. 

If you are feeling unwell or experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 we would ask you and members of your party or family group to not attend the railway. Please visit our Terms & Conditions

We will continue to monitor the situation and keep you up to date with any changes, either from the Government or from our own plans. We can't wait to get back to doing what we do best – operating Britain’s busiest heritage railway.

Please note: 

'The Optimist' does not stop at any intermediate stations - Levisham, Goathland & Grosmont. Currently we are unable to offer any other journeys. Passengers can book either a private compartment (max 6) or travel in a standard TSO Carriage (min 1/max 4) with social distancing measures in place. Passengers include children from 1 years old. Entry to Whitby Abbey not included in the price of the train travel.