Things To Do
Head down to Lyme’s shingle beach with a hammer and it’s highly likely that you’ll return with pockets full of fossils that could be around 100 million years old. Or walk 15 minutes to Monmouth, another popular fossil hunting beach, and you can witness gargantuan ammonites carved into limestone cliffs. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for book a guided fossil-hunting tour with Brandon Lennon, a local fossil collector with 30 years’ experience.
Walk along the town’s iconic seawall, The Cobb, and you’re stepping into the backdrop of both Jane Austen’s Persuasion and John Fowles’ The French Lieutenant’s Woman. Take care as you climb the precarious steps known as ‘Granny’s Teeth’, then make your way out to sea along the stone breakwater, looking back upon gob-smacking views of the beach and coastline.
Why not see if you can join the local fishermen and snag your own catch for dinner? Nick’s fishing trips are suitable for all ages and abilities – whether you want to sit back and enjoy the salty breeze or are serious about bringing back fresh mackerel for tea.
Budding sailors and salty sea dogs roll up to feel the wind in your sails and experience the beauty of the World Heritage coastline by boat. The ancient Cobb Harbour is the perfect place to launch a dinghy and learn the ropes under the tutelage of Lyme Regis Sea School.
Lyme Rib Rides
A family run business that provides both fast and leisurely boat trips for the whole family, run by our qualified and experienced skippers, so you are in safe hands…
Langmoor and Lister Gardens
Tumbling down to the waterfront behind the harbour, these stunning gardens are a haven for birds and wildlife. Wander along the boardwalk, hit the crazy golf or putting green, or simply soak up spectacular views to Portland and Golden Cap (the highest point on the south coast).
Lyme Regis Marine Aquarium
Come face-to-face with the underwater world without even dipping a toe in the water. At this interactive attraction you can get close up to local marine life from mullet to starfish, and delve into Lyme’s maritime history.
Lyme Regis Museum
Spare some time to dip into the Lyme Regis Museum and learn more about the area’s natural history – including the life of the town’s own prolific fossil hunter, Mary Anning, who became famous in 1811 with the discovery of an enormous Ichthyosaur skeleton.
Dinosaurland Fossil Museum
Delve into an exciting and extensive collection of fossils from microfossils to Ichthyosaurs, step back to the Jurassic era in the Time Gallery, and discover shells and skeletons in the Natural History Room
See the curtain go up on a classic show at the Marine Theatre. From jazz concerts and live music to cinema and comedy weekends, this historical little theatre by the sea boasts a diverse year-round calendar of entertainment and events.
Eat And Drink
Hix Oyster and Fish House
Hogging prime position overlooking Lyme Bay, this is one of the finest locations to tuck into Britain’s best seafood. From prawns and oysters to crab and cockles, almost everything served is plucked from the ocean in view. Celeb chef Mark Hix keeps his style simple and elegant, leaving the quality of the local ingredients to do the talking.
The Millside Restaurant
Situated just beside the River Lym and the historic Town Mill, this is an atmospheric setting away from the hustle and bustle of the seafront. Serving delectable dishes of local provenance, you can expect Lyme Bay fish, Somerset cheeses and organic produce that hasn’t travelled far to reach your plate.
The Lyme Bay Cafe & Bar
Has a superb panoramic view looking out over the bay, with views down to the Cobb Harbour and along the world famous Jurassic coastline. The Lyme Bay is the perfect setting to chill out, relax and to experience the simple yet innovative menus in the company of knowledgeable and friendly staff.
Bang on the beach overlooking the Cobb and Lyme Bay, here you’re so close to the sand that you can watch the kids build sandcastles while you sip local ales and fine wines.
Herbie’s Dino Bar
A bit of a local secret, this seafront kiosk dishes up the best fish and chips in town. It’s excellent value and serves interesting options such as whiting, ling and Pollock – all ready to be scoffed with a glorious view of the bay.
The Pilot Boat
Sat at the edge of the beach in the beautiful and historic coastal town of Lyme Regis, The Pilot Boat has just relaunched following a nine-month project by Palmers Brewery.
Lyme Regis’s little cafe bar by the sea. For some of the most dramatic views over the Jurassic Coast. food that delights, crafted cocktails and craftier beer.
The Bell Cliff Restaurant and Tea Rooms
For hearty breakfasts and cream tea’s you can’t beat this local gem on Broad Street, where freshly baked scones come piled high with homemade jam and West Country cream.
The River Cottage Canteen, Axminster
It’s only a 15-minute drive to the famous River Cottage Canteen run by local food hero Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. Here you can tuck into all manner of seasonal produce, from Lyme Bay plaice and Portland brown crab to rabbit ragu and Devon Rose veal burgers.
Undercliff’s National Nature Reserve
Head west out of Lyme Regis and you soon get to a stretch of path through the ‘Undercliffs’ – one of the geological wonders of the Jurassic Coast where a series of landslips has left a ragged coastline and an untamed wilderness abundant with ferns, fungi, orchids, wild clematis, birdlife, insects and pioneering species. Watch your step along seven miles of rough terrain that eventually brings you out onto the cliff-tops above Seaton.
Lyme Regis to Uplyme
Head inland and follow the River Lym from Dorset to Devon on this easy-going 1.5-mile route to Uplyme. A good year-round walk; follow the foxglove logo of the East Devon Way as you meander past the Town Mill and alongside the river to the hamlet of Uplyme, where you can stop for a pint at The Talbot Arms before heading onto the Cannington Viaduct or back to Lyme Regis.
Golden Cap, between Bridport and Charmouth
Just seven miles out of Lyme Regis awaits one of the most challenging walks on the Dorset coast – a hike over Golden Cap, which at 191 metres is the highest point on England’s south coast. Summit this and you’ll be rewarded with spectacular views across Dartmoor and Lyme Bay, but if you can’t hack the calf-busting climb there’s 25 miles of easier footpaths circulating the estate.
Events & Festivals
The Lyme Lunge and the Grand Duck Race– 1st January 2019
The year kicks off with the famous duck race on the River Lym and an invigorating saltwater dip at Cobb Beach. If you don’t brave the swim just turn up to watch outrageously dressed participants take the plunge.
The Lyme Bay Beer Festival
Sample beers and ciders from the region’s microbreweries, feast on local food, take in the sea views and spin into spring on the dance floor at the Marine Theatre.
Easter Bonnet Parade– 21st April 2019
Create your own bonnet or simply watch Easter Sunday’s colourful bonnet parade from the seafront pavilion. Easter Bonnets gather at 2.00 pm at the Baptist Church.
Lyme Regis Fossil festival –4th & 5th May 2019
During this weekend of festivities celebrating the area’s prehistoric bounty, the whole family can enjoy fascinating talks and explore the past with a huge range of hands-on activities along the seafront.
Lyme Regis Jazz Jurassica – 24th to 27th May 2019
It doesn’t matter whether or not the sun shines on the May Bank Holiday weekend – this toe-tapping jazz festival marks one of the busiest weekends of the year in Lyme Regis.
Guitars on the Beach – 15th June 2019
Guitars On The Beach is the UK’s largest guitar festival at which hundreds of guitarists of all ages and abilities come together to simultaneously play together a selection of well-known songs and form Britain’s biggest band, performing on the beach in Lyme Regis in Dorset.
Summer Show and Country Fayre 13th July 2019
Step straight into a scene from The Good Life at this traditional country fayre held on Uplyme playing field. Organised by the local horticultural society, there are plenty of events from cake competitions and dog shows to live music and steam train rides.
Lyme Regis Lifeboat Week– 27th July to 2nd August 2019
Brace yourself for a week packed with events, activities and entertainment – from the bath-tub race, tug-of-war and crab-fishing competition, to swimming challenges, Morris dancers, fireworks and live bands.
Lyme Regis Carnival– 3rd to 11th August 2019
Join in the revelry of the town’s huge Regatta and Carnival week, which boasts an array of family entertainment including a torchlight procession, fireworks, live music by the sea, gig rowing, theatre performances and the grand carnival procession.
Food Rocks – 7th & 8th September 2019
The festival started as a vision of Mark Hix with the aim of promoting the produce of his hometown of Lyme Regis and the surrounding areas, by presenting some of the best food, producers and suppliers that Dorset and the South West has to offer. The festival brings together top chefs, exhibitors, locals and those who are visiting Lyme Regis. The main stage will showcase a diverse mix of interactive cookery demonstrations, talks and tastings across the weekend
Bonfire Night– 2nd November 2019
Keep warm beside a blazing bonfire on the beach and watch a magical fireworks display over the harbour.
The Great Lyme Regis Pudding Race
The people of Lyme Regis kick off the festive season and work up an appetite for Christmas by dressing up as Christmas puddings and racing along the promenade.
Carols Around the Tree
Sing along with the Lyme Regis Town Band at the annual carol concert around the tree.
Christmas Day Fancy Dress Swim– 25th December 2019
Put on your festive fancy dress and head to nearby Charmouth beach for a festive dip. Don’t be late – the plunge takes place at 11am and most of the swimmers are out by a minute past.
Shop Til You Drop
The Town Mill
Weave your way through the narrow streets of Lyme Regis to the Town Mill – a 700-year-old working water mill that now showcases the wares of local craftspeople from artists to jewellers. Pause for a bite to eat at one of the cafés or a tipple from the resident microbrewery.
The Old Forge Fossil Shop
Collecting your own fossils is the hard-earned way to take home a piece of history, but you can get your hands on all sorts of fossil-themed mementos at this Aladdin’s Cave of Jurassic souvenirs. As well as a world-famous collection of fascinating fossils, there’s jewellery, crystals, books, maps and even dinosaur teeth.
This West Country clothing brand creates functional, fashionable clothing that goes hand-in-hand with the coastal lifestyle. Think dresses made for days on the beach, iconic rainwear, Cornish art and print stationary.