DIVE into seafood suppers, crisp coastal walks and wildlife spotting in Dorset.
Writer Helen Ochyra reveals the top spots you have to visit on your trip to Lyme Regis.
Hike the Jurassic coast
Lyme Regis is slap-bang in the middle of a fossil-scattered UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a three-hour beach walk with fossil hunter Paddy Howe to learn about its history and how to spot treasures among the pebbles.
Walks are currently exclusive to groups of up to five family or friends and cost £125, which includes entry to Lyme Regis Museum (Lymeregismuseum.co.uk).
Or pull on your hiking boots for the circular three-mile walk from Langdon Hill car park to Golden Cap, the highest point on the south coast.
Hold a starfish
Spot dolphins and seabirds or just enjoy a fast-paced adventure, on a private speed boat trips with Lyme Rib Rides, from £12 per person for 30 minutes (Lymeribrides.com).
Meanwhile, spy sea scorpions, crabs and lobsters, plus hold a starfish at Marine Aquarium. Entry costs £6 per adult, £4.50 a child (Lymeregismarineaquarium.co.uk).
A few miles out of town, stroll down the two short trails at Abbotsbury Swannery, a sanctuary where hundreds of swans fly and nest freely. Entry costs £10 per adult, £5 a child (Abbotsbury-tourism.co.uk).
Dive into scallops
Sunny day? Hit the terrace at Swim for a Dorset longhorn burger, £16, overlooking Lyme’s sandy beach and its postcard-perfect beach huts (Weswim.co.uk).
On cooler days, cosy up at The Millside for hand-dived scallops from Lyme Bay, £9.25, and steaming bowls of monkfish noodle soup, £19.75 (Themillside.co.uk).
Come dinner, you can’t beat local chef Mark Hix’s Oyster & Fish House for superb seafood dishes and sunset views of the bay. Make sure you order Mark’s home-smoked salmon, £14.50 (Theoysterandfishhouse.co.uk).
Head to car-free Town Mill and local jeweller Lucy Campbell’s studio for contemporary
sea-inspired jewellery from £30, including ammonite stud earrings (Lucycampbell.net).
Then pop into Sew La Di Da Vintage, where Caroline’s creative HQ sells retro fabrics and vintage dress patterns for modern figures, from £15 (Sewladidavintage.com).
At Town Mill Pottery, Harry makes hand-thrown pottery, from £8, each day – if he has the kiln fired up, he’s happy to show lucky visitors his work (Townmill.org.uk/pottery).
Get a foodie lesson
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage is set in the hinterland nearby. You can learn how to make “proper pastry and pies”, pick up curing and smoking skills or enjoy a day’s mushroom foraging, from £155 per person (Rivercottage.net).
Later, hit the Tap Room at Lyme Regis Brewery and quiz staff on how their beer is brewed and the difference between an IPA and a best bitter, around £4 a pint (Lymeregisbrewery.com).
Sleep with a Seaview
Cosy and cool B&B Dorset House has five individually designed bedrooms and a near-evangelical zeal for encouraging a good night’s sleep.
Think Egyptian cotton sheets, Hungarian goose down duvets and a choice of pillows – and all except Porthole have a sea view.
Breakfast ingredients are locally sourced with home-made bread and cakes, plus bacon and sausages from nearby Down HouseFarm and own-blend coffee. Double rooms cost from £110 B&B (Dorsethouselyme.com).
The swans at Abbotsbury Swannery are technically the only ones in England not owned by the Queen.
Plan your trip at Visit-dorset.com.
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