Local Area Bridport

If you're a Foodie, Bridport will hopefully ring a bell… it is home to the original River Cottage where Hugh started his quest of local, home grown and foraged stuff. The area always had plenty to offer and things have only improved in the last few years. Love food, love West Dorset! You'll find fantastic produce grown in the area and that chefs did not wait for celebrities to tell them to cook local. Take the Riverside (www.thefishrestaurant-westbay.co.uk ; two-course meal from £16.50) in West Bay, Bridport's harbour. Bang in the middle of this unpretentious fishing harbour, it looks like a large wooden hut sitting on the river Brit. Fish is the speciality, of course, straight from Lyme Bay. Also the West Bay Pub for great food and run by our neighbour Paul. Another good place to enjoy fresh seafood is the Hive Beach Café in Burton Bradstock. Not much to look at from the outside but the beach - with its red cliffs, views towards the Portland peninsula to the east and Lyme Regis to the west - is fantastic. These guys are committed to local.There's something tasty for all purses. In Beaminster you can vist Matt Follas restaurant Wild Garlic which is an exceptional place for locals to enjoy Dorset and UK specialties eg Cornish sparkling wines.

Bridport town itself is an interesting mix. Take the St Michael's trading estate with its community of artists; mix it with the town's history of rope making and add a weekly market and a high street filled with shops and eateries. Well, you end up with a town where people like spending time. For a coffee, food or some music head for the Beach and Barnicott, For a morning coffee. For a cheap and cheerful, long tables and friendly faces try the Stables Bar behind the Bull Hotel. Bridport's large street market has a good selection of stalls selling all sorts of foodstuffs...and much more. Many of the traders are long established and use the distinctive Bridport Market bags when selling their goods.The Saturday market is particularly popular, a special attraction is the large number of antique and Bric-a-Brac stalls located in lower South Street. Wednesday and Saturday Markets take place in Bridport's three main streets throughout the year, from 8am until mid afternoon.

Walking on the hills and beaches around us is a joy that draws ramblers and strollers to the area all year round. From the well known South West Coastal Path to villages like Symondsbury at the foot of the much photographed tree-topped Colmers Hill, there's plenty to choose from. For sweeping views over the area head for Golden Cap, highest point on the Dorset Coast with brilliant views towards the unique sandy strip of Chesil Beach and the heritage coast. The eco-warrior can forget the car as there is also a Coast link bus so you can admire the views rather than concentrate on the road.
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