The best seasideRESTAURANTS

From beach shacks to fine-dining waterside restaurants; It's time to take a festival evasion and invest in the good seaside tables



Sitting proudly over the gorgeous Roseland Peninsula’s Porthcurnick beach, the Hidden Hut serves up some of the best local produce in laid-back surroundings. Homemade cakes, crumbly pasties and local crab sandwiches are always on the menu but nabbing a ticket to their weekly summer feasts, where tickets sell out quicker than Glastonbury, is a must. You bring your own bottle, plates and cutlery and tuck into just-caught fish or barbecued ribs overlooking the Cornish sunset.


Colwell Bay, Isle of Wight

Colwell Bay’s The Hut on the Isle of Wight hits the mark. In the summer this place is as buzzy as a honeypot, with sun-kissed groups mooring up and jumping right into chilled rum punch and grilled lobster platters. Leave space for pudding - Alaska cones with vanilla ice-cream, raspberry coulis and Italian meringue are as naughty as they sound.



The best spot in St Mawes, perched right on the water with a breezily chic beach-style terrace lined with lavender and grey rattan furniture. Cocktails, like the blueberry martinis, are seasonal and little works of art, as is the head chef Guy Owen’s dishes; Porthilly oysters, curried Newyln hake and Cornish Baked Alaska with rhubarb gin. As the temperatures drop, wrap up in pink wool blankets, so you will happily stay for hours.


Saint Austell

Once a sail store for the tall Charlestown ships that would dock and depart from the Georgian harbour, The Longstore is a wonderfully rustic restaurant set on Charlestown harbour. It's a waterside haven with an interior to match; chandeliers made of oyster shells and a sea of wooden furnishings. Tuck into a hearty menu of steaks, seafoods and salads on offer – the mackerel and beetroot main is unmissable. There’s a special barbecue pop-up for summer, HarbourQ.



The National Trust’s South Milton Sands might be a wonderful family-friendly beach but the shack, just above it, is also a major lure for visitors. You can pick up a full English breakfast (local style) or the freshest seafood for a takeaway lunch - just be prepared to queue. They are open some evenings for supper and have just a scattering of tables, so a reservation is essential. The lobsters here are something else.



A seafood café that packs a punch and offers glorious views of dramatic Lyme Bay and the Jurassic coast on Hive Beach. The menu is all based on whatever is fresh in that day – but there’s always hot breakfasts, beach baps and creamy crab sandwiches, as well as the best fish and chips in the area. Kids will love the ice-cream parlour that pops up every summer too.



Slap bang on Folkestone harbour, Rocksalt has become a culinary gem of the Kentish coast, opened by Claridge’s former head chef, Mark Sargeant. There’s a bounty of local produce on offer, both from the ‘Garden of England’ and from the sea. Sit back on the sun-drenched terrace and order the baked mussels, smoked bacon and Kentish gala cider followed by the Kentish gypsy.

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