Dubbed ‘the Pearl of Dorset’, Lyme Regis is a hotbed of history and exciting fossil finds. The astonishingly beautiful beaches here and dramatic cliffs form part of the world-renowned Jurassic Coast, an area where fossil hunters have flocked to for decades in the hope of making the next big dinosaur discovery.
Of course if you’re out dino hunting, or enjoying the hiking routes in the area and many attractions, then you’re going to work up an appetite! Thankfully the restaurants in Lyme Regis have built up a reputation of their own for crafting delicious dishes from the fresh local produce Dorset is famous for.
As we know this town so well, we had to share with you our ten favourite Lyme Regis restaurants. Whether you’re looking for a classic British lunch, some craft ale, or a rare dining experience with a celebrity chef (more on that later), we’ve got you covered. Bon appetit!
The Ten Best Restaurants in Lyme Regis for Exceptional Food and Experiences
1. The Royal Lion Hotel
Looking for a dining experience with a difference? How about a meal in a potentially haunted hotel…..
Situated in the centre of Lyme Regis, the historic Royal Lion Hotel was built in 1601 and is known locally for the ‘spooky’ incidents that have been recorded here in the past. But dining here is in no way a terrifying experience. In fact the oak beams, wooden panelling, candles, and open fireplaces will have you feeling extra cosy.
The upscale Oak Room Restaurant at the hotel serves a variety of classic British dishes in an elegant and photo-worthy setting. The Roast Lamb with minted creamed potato and redcurrant jus, and the Pan Fried 8oz Dartmoor Ribeye Steak with chunky chips are two of our personal favourites.
If you fancy something a little less formal, you can pop through to ‘The Inn’, which is the hotel’s more traditional pub area. There you can eat gastropub favourites in a laid-back setting, or meet up for friends for a coffee next to the fireplace. On Sundays look out for their popular traditional Sunday lunch.
Address: 60 Broad St, Lyme Regis DT7 3QF
2. Poco Pizza
Informal, friendly and pizza more your thing? If so you’re in for a treat at Poco Pizza.
Boasting lovely sea views from the balcony which is perfect in the summer, and a cosy atmosphere inside for those colder days, this beachside Lyme Regis restaurant is the perfect place to enjoy delicious wood fired pizzas all-year round. They also have a large outdoor terrace!
Start off with garlic bread (yes cheesy is an option) or a sharing platter filled with Italian meats, olives and sun blushed tomatoes. If you’re Italian cuisine lovers like us your mouth will be watering already! So what about the star of the show, the pizzas? Each pizza is made with homemade dough and a signature sauce. It’s homemade Italian comfort food at its best.
Want something with a kick? Well we recommend their spicy pizza topped with salami, N’Duja spicy sausage paste and chargrilled spicy peppers. See something on the menu but feel it could do with more? Additional toppings are no problem here.
Gluten free is an option too, but it’s best to call ahead to make sure they’ve got gluten free dough on the day just to make sure. In our opinion this is one of the best Lyme Regis restaurants for food and views.
Address: 18 Marine Parade, Lyme Regis DT7 3JF
There’s nothing better than breakfast with beautiful views and that’s what you’ll get at SWIM, where the huge windows make you feel as though you’re dining outside. This is one of our favourite Lyme Regis restaurants for breakfast, brunch and lunch, thanks to the good food and lovely beachside terrace.
Grab their full breakfast while sitting in the sun and enjoy sausage, smoked streaky bacon, roasted mushroom, slow roasted tomato, beans, fried egg and toast. Yum! You can also get vegetarian and vegan breakfasts too, with the likes of roasted mushroom, slow roasted tomato, smashed avocado, sauté potatoes, hcuse beans, scrambled tofu and toast.
If you happen to visit this minimalist cafe from midday till late, there’s far more options as well: sticky Korean wings, Salt & pepper calamari, Nachos, bangers and mash, mac n cheese, fish and chips and vegetable curry to name a few! You’ll find British cuisine with a mix of international dishes on the menu.
Expect good food, friendly service, a great beachside location, and staff that are happy to attend to all dietary requirements. That includes using a separate frier for anyone who has coeliac disease.
Address: Marine Parade, Lyme Regis DT7 3JH
4. The Galley Cafe
You’ve been out fossil hunting and now need somewhere quiet to grab some food and study your finds! Well the Galley Café may be the perfect option! There’s tasty food, large portions, and incredibly friendly staff here, and all at a location just a couple of minutes walk from the beach.
Established by Keian Gillet in 2014, this laid-back café is where we’ve had some of the best all-day breakfasts in town. That breakfast, named the ‘Full Montgomery’, uses locally sourced bacon and eggs which taste spectacular. Vegetarian and vegan breakfasts are of course available too.
This cafe has a lovely selection of delicious sandwiches, a full cafe lunch menu, and hot snacks like sausage rolls and jacket potatoes. There’s a very good children’s menu as well.
And if you’re like us and need your coffee fix during the day, then each coffee here is made from blends provided from a nearby artisan coffee roaster. There’s speciality teas and hot chocolates as well, which go perfectly with one of the many homemade cakes available.
Even better, they often have events like live music and poetry nights. So if you’re lucky your visit could coincide with something happening!
Address: 14 Broad Street, Lyme Regis, DT7 3QD
5. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage
A ten-minute journey out of Lyme Regis and you’ll find River Cottage. You’ll need to book weeks ahead to join in on the regular Friday or Saturday feasts here, or the four times a year Sunday dinner. Why? Well this restaurant is owned by celebrity chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall!
River Cottage HQ is set in a 17th century barn and is a dining experience with a difference. Expect a potential tractor journey, canopies in a yurt and the head chef telling you the story of each course. The menu is always subject to change as it depends on what’s been grown, foraged or caught on the farm (or neighbouring farms). Long communal tables create a friendly atmosphere for everyone to enjoy the freshest local produce around, all while chatting food and life with the guests around you.
As part of the Sunday dinner, which runs exclusively just four times a year from 1830 to 2300, you’ll get to meet Hugh himself who will be happy to answer questions, sign books and pictures.
The more regular Saturday evening dinners are a 7-course feast where you’ll be met at the top of a scenic track and guided down to the heart of the farm. Before dinner you’ll be offered a local tipple or cocktail and invited to explore the garden. Inspired by the SLOW ethos, the menu will be Seasonal, Local, Organic and Wild. After 7 courses (and some drinks!) you might not enjoy the walk back up the track, so you’ll be offered a ride in one of the land rovers!
This is one of the most spectacular dining experiences you can get, but it won’t come cheap. Remember to book up weeks, or even months in advance. And remember there’s very limited dates.
Address: River Cottage HQ, Trinity Hill Road, Axminster, EX13 8TB
6. The Oyster and Fish House
With panoramic views of the Jurassic Coast and a focus on sustainably sourced fish and seafood caught by Lyme Bay fishermen, this stylish modern restaurant has a lot to boast about. So if you’re looking for restaurants in Lyme Regis with great seafood and great sea views, then the Oyster and Fish House could be perfect.
The menus here are built around the personal relationships that owner Mark has with his suppliers, so you know you’re going to get responsibly produced and carefully sourced ingredients.
Anything seafood here will taste great, but if you can then try the River Fowey mussels with Burrow Hill Cider and chervil, or the Grilled thornback ray wing with black butter, capers and celeriac remoulade.
Theres an extensive wine menu to pair your food with and the kids haven’t been forgotten about either. They can choose from kid-friendly dishes like fish fingers with chips and mushy peas, steak and chips, and even fish pie or prawns with mayonnaise.
Definitely one of our favourite Lyme Regis restaurants for relaxing and enjoying good food, wine, and harbour views.
Address: Cobb Rd, Lyme Regis DT7 3JP
Of course, no Lyme Regis restaurants list would be complete without fish and chips! Arguably the UK’s most traditional and famous dish can be found at Herbies, where you’ll find haddock or cod coated in homemade beer batter.
The portions are very generous, and whilst cooking may take a few minutes as they cook to order it’s well worth the wait. Herbies do take away only, but as they are right beside the sea you can take your food down to the beach or the Cobb. Fish and chips with sea views and your feet in the sand. Sign us up!
As for the food, expect it to be cooked to perfection. This will be one of the best fish and chips you will ever taste with the ultimate crisp on the outside and perfect flaky fish in the middle.
And don’t be surprised if you see hand dived scallops on the menu along with pollock if there’s been a good day’s fishing. Being a harbour town there’s no shortage of fresh seafood to grace the menu.
Of course, not everyone’s a fan of fish, so you can try one of their delicious burgers or all-day breakfast rolls. Other traditional chip shop options include the chicken nuggets or jumbo sausage with chips. There’s even a gluten free grilled lemon sole and chips, and a vegetarian burger available too!
Address: Marine Parade, Lyme Regis DT7 3JF
8. Lyme Regis Brewery
If you’ve been on our website before, you might already know of our love for breweries. So we were never going to keep Lyme Regis Brewery off this list!
OK, we admit it. This isn’t a restaurant. But have you ever heard of a liquid lunch? You’ll find some fantastic locally brewed craft beer at this dog friendly brewery, with Golden Ales, IPAs, Bitters and Craft lager all available in their tap room, as well as their own spiced rum and gin.
They have a lovely courtyard too where they host live music in the summer. Our recommendation? Come here in the afternoon, enjoy a pint in the sun, then head off to dinner at one of our favourite Lyme Regis restaurants!
Address: Mill Ln, Lyme Regis DT7 3PU
9. The Town Mill Bakery
Serving breakfast and lunch, this artisan bakery has delicious freshly baked sourdough bread, savouries, sandwiches, pastries and more. Their breakfasts are exceptional (maybe the best in Lyme Regis), and come in generous portions. They also have a large lovely outside courtyard which is perfect for enjoying the good weather.
There’s an impressive array of options on The Town Mill’s menu considering this is a bakery/cafe, and some very good vegetarian dishes and breakfasts too.
As for what we recommend? Well starting your day with their smoked salmon and scrambled eggs with spinach and beetroot on sourdough toast is always going to be a good idea. Or go for the full cooked breakfast which is one of the best we’ve ever tasted.
For lunch, the slow roasted beef brisket in a sourdough sandwich is an instant winner. And for children there’s fun kid-friendly options like creamy bacon and mushroom pasta, cheesy toast, cheese and ham sandwich, and sourdough pancakes topped with Canadian maple syrup.
Address: Units 2 & 3, Riverside Workshops, Coombe St, Lyme Regis DT7 3PY
10. The Whole Hog
If you’re looking for another laid back choice when it comes to Lyme Regis restaurants, then why not try one of the best takeaways on the South Coast!
The Whole Hogg offers filled rolls with tender pulled pork or chicken served with fresh house slaw and BBQ Jerk sauce. There’s vegetarian options too, like pulled jack fruit with that fresh house slaw and BBQ Jerk sauce which is exceptionally delicious too. Honestly, one of the best sandwiches we’ve ever had, and for very reasonable prices.
This tiny hole-in-the-wall takeaway is just a few minutes from the beach, so if you’re looking for an inexpensive breakfast, brunch or lunch, then grab one of their tasty filled rolls and go picnic at the beach!
We’ll let you into a local secret too. The doughnuts they make here are known as being some of the best – if not the best – in the region. There’s a variety of flavours to choose from (salted caramel; Terry’s Chocolate Orange; Blueberry to name just a few!) but you have to get here quick. They tend to sell out very early.
They also serve Monmoth Coffee from 06:45 so if you’re out and about early you can get your day off to the right start by picking up your coffee fix.
We’re going to put ourselves out on a limb here, and state that this is probably the best place for doughnuts and sandwiches on the South Coast!
Address: 6a Broad St, Lyme Regis DT7 3QD