Runswick Bay is located 5 miles north of Whitby, and close to the villages of Ellerby and Hinderwell, Yorkshire.
The original fishing village was almost completely destroyed by a landslide in 1682. There were no fatalities, as the village was alerted by two mourners at a wake. The village was rebuilt, slightly further to the south, perched on the side of cliffs.
The village ran its own lifeboat from 1866, until it was moved to the RNLI station at Staithes in 1978. The boathouse still remains, and has run its own volunteer rescue boat service since 1982.
On the north side of the bay is Cauldron Cliff, and the headland on the south side is known as Kettleness, a site of alum mining from 1727 until the late 1800s. Around the edge of the bay is a white sand beach called Runswick Sands, and a series of caves. The largest cave on the bay, Hob Hole, as it was believed to be the home of a 'Hob' in local folklore. A seawall, made of large boulders, wasbuilt in 1970, as the area suffers from a high degree of coastal erosion which has made it a popular location for fossil hunting.
The Cleveland Way, passes through the bay and the village of Runswick.