Lyme Regis, Dorset

We love Lyme Regis. This small town on the Dorset border draws quite a throng in the summer months but it’s just as good to visit out of season; think winter strolls along the beach, finding a cosy corner in a pub for fish and chips, browsing away an hour in a book shop, or in the fascinating Town Museum. All good things to do on those chilly days, when the light at the coast is different and the sea is stormy, crashing waves on to the shore; be a part of it.

Lyme Regis starts to get busy round about Easter; then the car parks start to fill up quickly, although if you don’t mind a short walk there’s plenty of parking around. Most people head to the main beach because it’s sandy and backed with convenient pubs, cafes and food kiosks. Monmouth Beach, right next to the harbour tends to be much quieter and is pebbly; you’ll see folk here walking their dogs and relaxing outside their beach huts, having barbecues by the shore in the evenings, or fishing for mackerel. At the other end of town are two more beaches, smaller, with a mix of sand and pebbles, and at low tide, brilliant rockpools where you can look for shrimp and tiny crabs.

It’s always nice to stroll along the promenade, to browse the antiques centre and use up all your change in the amusement arcade; sit outside one of the bars with a drink and watch the world go by, treat yourself to an ice-cream from the shop at the town end. Wander up through Langmoor and Lister Gardens, admire the sea views, play crazy golf, then head back down through the town, taking a diversion through Town Mill to see the latest art exhibition. Take the kids to Dinosaurland Fossil Museum or to the Marine Aquarium at the end of The Cobb, then catch a rib ride or a mackerel fishing trip and take to the waters big time.

If you’ve got sensible footwear head up to the clifftops for a walk along the South West Coast Path or explore the beautiful Undercliff Nature Reserve, formed from historic landslips. If all that fresh air makes you hungry try The Harbour Inn, The Millside, or for amazing seafood food, The Oyster & Fish House by Mark Hix.

All information correct at the time of writing

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