Best Seaside Restaurants in the UK
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Best Seaside Restaurants in the UK

Who needs the Med?

A crisp glass of rosé, the waft of salty sea air, a mesmerising sunset, fresh fish sizzling on a barbecue – there’s nothing quite like dining on the beach. Sure, our European neighbours have the weather on side, but the UK’s waterfront eateries offer their own kind of holiday magic. Read on for the British seaside restaurants to visit during the September heatwave, from beach shacks to island hideaways accessed only by boat.

Best Seaside Restaurants in the UK For Summer 2023

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Harbour House Flushing

Harbour House, Flushing, Cornwall

Recently opened in the historic village of Flushing is Harbour House, headed up by Jeffrey Robinson – one of the first chefs in the UK to have attained a green Michelin star. Set on the Penryn River, just across the water from Falmouth, the pub features an open kitchen complete with a charcoal grill, where chefs cook over coals. Robinson brings with him a wealth of experience on eco-dining: produce is locally sourced, and the menu changes by the hour based on what ingredients are available. Alongside this, there’s a wine list focusing on biodynamic and organic bottles. ‘“Sustainable” is an umbrella term that perhaps isn’t policed as much as it should be,’ he says. ‘But we’re committed to “resetting the compass” in the pubs with food trade, bringing the same high green Michelin-style standards to this new location, sharing what we know and develop with the industry for years to come.’

3 Trefusis Rd, Flushing, Falmouth TR11 5TY,

The Hut

The Hut, Colwell Bay, Isle of Wight

Perched on the white sands of Colwell Bay, The Hut is the closest you’ll get to an exotic beach club on UK shores. It’s a favourite with the island’s yachties – but a personal rib service from Lymington and Southampton ensures the rest of us can enjoy the fun of arriving by boat too. Pitch up in one of the candy-coloured cabins and settle in for an afternoon of rosé by the bucketload and fresh seafood – think lobster platters, monkfish laksa and buttery lemon sole, topped off with citrus tiramisu and coconut sorbet.

Colwell Chine Rd, Colwell Bay, Freshwater PO40 9NP,

Read our full review here

Porthmeor Beach Cafe St Ives

Porthmeor Beach Café, St Ives, Cornwall

Yes, St Ives is a honeypot for tourists, but it won’t matter so much when you’re sat in Porthmeor Beach Café, looking out to sea with an Aperol Spritz in hand. The idyllic spot sits just below the Tate, with a mix of beach chalets, indoor and outdoor tables, plus a downstairs area where you can order takeaways. Order a selection of tapas – there’s tandoori halloumi and crab arancini, for instance – or grab a pizza to enjoy on the beach, washed down with a fruity glass of Pimm’s. Come evening time, you’ll be treated to a glorious sunset.

Porthmeor Beach, St Ives, Cornwall TR26 1JZ,

The Beachhouse, Devon

The Beachhouse, Devon

After a morning spent paddling on the seas of South Milton Sands beach, head to The Beachhouse for a lazy lunch with your toes in the sand. The shabby-chic beach shack offers both al fresco and indoor seating, with a focus on freshly caught fish and seafood – highlights include bang bang prawns, Devon squid and whole crab.

Kingsbridge TQ7 3JY,

Image from Instagram

The Watch House Cafe

Watch House Café, Bridport, Dorset

Swerve the crowds at Hive Beach Café and book a table at its cool younger sibling on Bridport’s West Bay. You can expect the same laid-back beachfront vibes as Hive, but this time with a focus on Italian cuisine – woodfired pizzas, pasta and cocktails, with takeaway available. Nab a table on the top deck for the best view of the sun going down.

West Bay, Bridport DT6 4EN,

Image from Instagram

The Hidden Hut

The Hidden Hut, Cornwall

This wooden beach hut came into the spotlight in 2021 when its head chef, Simon Stallart, was enlisted to cook for Boris Johnson and Joe Biden during the G7 summit. Yet this unassuming Cornish gem has been a local favourite for years. It’s called The Hidden Hut for a reason: getting there is a small adventure, accessed via a fairly rugged path on the Roseland Peninsula – but once there you’ll be rewarded with freshly baked cakes, pasties, salads and grilled fish, as well as gorgeous sea views.

Portscatho, Truro TR2 5EW,

Image from Instagram

Cafe Canna

Café Canna, Inner Hebrides, Scotland

Owned by the National Trust for Scotland, Canna island has just 18 full-time residents – plus 20,000 breeding seabirds. It’s well worth a visit: not only for its wildlife, but for a trip to Café Canna, a small waterside restaurant which champions local ingredients. At the moment, that’s things like Canna Beltie beef, foraged wild garlic, fresh lobster and mackerel. To get there, hop aboard a ferry from Mallaig or sail there yourself – there are 10 visitor moorings available.

West Bothy, Isle of Canna PH44 4RS, café

Image from Instagram

The Boathouse, Devon

The Boathouse, Instow, Devon

The views are quite something from the top deck of The Boathouse, a seaside restaurant and beach bar overlooking the Torridge Estuary. Celebrating the best North Devon ingredients around, The Boathouse offers sustainably sourced fish straight off the boat alongside locally reared Exmoor ribeye, plus plant-based dishes like pea and broad bean risotto. Alongside this diners have a choice of over 40 wines by the glass, local ciders and craft brews.

Marine Parade, Instow, Bideford EX39 4JJ,

Image from Instagram

Mickeys Beach Bar and Restaurant

Mickeys Beach Bar and Restaurant, Exmouth, Devon

A newcomer to the UK’s seaside dining canon is Michael Caines’ latest venture, which sits on Exmouth beach. Seasonally changing menus offer dishes like lobster thermidor, Goan seafood curry and the traditional haddock and chips, made with local ale batter. If you’re after a more casual affair, the ground floor serves hot dogs, pizza and burgers alongside local Devon beers and ciders, available to take away and enjoy on the beach.

Unit 1, Sideshore, Queen’s Dr, Exmouth EX8 2GD,