In 2013, West Bay and West Bay Beach became a national sensation as its cliffs formed the backdrop of the cult series Broadcurch. Even though West Bay and West Bay Beach had always been a popular holiday destination, the series meant that West Bay is now one of the most popular seaside towns on the Jurassic Coast. To help you plan a great day (or holiday) out to West Bay and West Bay Beach, I have put together a guide of everything there is to do and see on West Bay Beach, where to eat, where to stay and even where to park your car! This is a complete guide to West Bay Beach.
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Where is West Bay Beach
West Bay is a small fishing village in the county of Dorset in the South West of England. The town lies on the English Channel coast, between Lyme Regis and Bridport. It has a population of around 1,000 inhabitants. The name West Bay was coined by property developers who wanted to attract tourists to the area – because, let’s be honest: West Bay does sound a lot better than Bridport Harbour.
The village of Bridport is only a few minutes by car, and Lyme Regis would be 20 minutes by car. West Bay is perfectly positioned to explore most of Dorset’s Jurassic Coast, East Cliff, Chesil Beach, and many beautiful, quintessentially British villages inland. West Bay Beach is one of the best beaches near Bridport. You should visit this Bridport Beach.
What to do in and around West Bay Beach
There are loads to do on and around West Bay Beach. To help you plan the perfect Bridport Beach holiday, here are the best things to do on and around West Bay Beach.
Take a walk over the West Bay Cliffs.
The West Bay Cliffs were featured in the famous British series Broadchurch ever since it has been a popular pastime of locals and tourists alike to walk up and through the cliffs of West Bay.
Many excellent paths and trails take you through and up the cliffs of West Bay and allow you panoramic views over this Bridport beach. From the top of the West Bay Cliffs, you will have a fantastic view of West Bay Beach and the town down below. The paths are dog-friendly, and on a clear day, you might even see Lyme Regis from the top of the West Bay Cliffs to East Cliff.
Don’t forget to bring good walking shoes as the paths can be steep or muddy (depending on the weather).
After you have walked up the hill and cliff, you might want to grab a cold pint in the village down below. The sun illuminates the golden cliffs and the picturesque harbour during sunset, making it one of the most popular times to go for a cliff walk on the West Bay Cliffs.
Play a round of golf in the Bridport & West Dorset Golf Club
You can also choose to play a game of golf in the Bridport and West Dorset Golf Club. This golf course is located on top of the West Bay Cliffs and provides you with a fantastic view of the cliffs and the sea. You can even drive unique water-soluble balls into the ocean! This is one of the reasons why there are so many golf balls on this Bridport Beach!
The Bridport & West Dorset Golf Club is located on Burton Road near the Marsh Barn. It is well-known to be one of the most beautiful golf clubs in the area, offering expansive views over the sandstone cliffs. So if you are a fan of playing golf and plan to stay in West Bay or near West Bay Beach, a Bridport & West Dorset Golf Club game needs to be on your schedule.
Head to West Bay Beach Dorset
Why not head to West Bay Beach and get yourself a tan? West Bay Beach is a large and beautiful shingle beach with quite large sandy parts. Please be advised that the beach can be a bit busy at times and that you will either need to go early or head to the cliffs where it is calmer but where you need to keep an eye on the tide when going to this part of the Bridport Beach. It truly is one of the most beautiful beaches near Bridport.
Don’t forget to bring windbreakers with you as there can be quite a bit of wind on the beach in the South of England. As there are quite a lot of large patches of sandy beach, your kids can even take their bucket and spade with them to make sandcastles!
There are many other Beaches near Bridport you might want to check out, such as Chesil beach. Dorset council makes sure there is a lifeguard service in summer to ensure West Bay Beach stays a family beach. So you can head out for a blustery walk beachcombing on West Bay Beach, Bridport Beach, or East Cliff Beach in winter.
Get your kids to play at the West Bay Play Area.
Just by the West Bay Road Carpark and the roundabout, there is a small but modern play area for your little rascals to play. They put sand from West Bay Beach on the play area so your kids won’t hurt themselves while playing. For many kids, this play area is a welcome change from Bridport Beach.
There are lots of climbing devices in the play area and a lot of swings, and of course, a place where the younger kids can play.
If your kids get tired of the West Bay Play Area, you can also head to one of the many Amusement arcades nearby Bridport Beach. There are also holiday parks you can pay to use the swimming pools and where they provide games for kids.
Explore the nearby villages
When staying near West Bay Beach Dorset, you can also opt to explore the nearby villages. For example, head to Bridport town and Lyme Regis, Charmouth, Burton Bradstock, or walk in the countryside near Whitchurch Canonicorum.
There is a lot to do near West Bay Beach, and most of the nearby towns and villages offer great restaurants, pubs and opportunities to walk and take pictures. Click here if you want to learn more about the best cameras to buy for your travels!
Go on a fishing trip.
Did you know you can also take a fishing trip from West Bay? West Bay is a very well-known fishing village, and its fishermen bring back scores of fish, lobster and crab. In addition, you will be able to see the beautiful coastline of Bridport Beach. If you would like to head out on a fishing trip, you can arrange a trip by the West Pier or ask your hotel to help you find the best West Bay Fishing Trip during the summer months.
Head out onto the West Bay Pier
Like so many other British coastal villages, West Bay has its pier. At the end of the pier, you will even find an 18th-century cannon! However, unlike other piers in the UK, there is no arcade perched at the end of this Jurassic Pier. However, the pier is great for walks or for your kids to ride their bikes or go rollerblading. The Jurassic Pier near West Bay Beach is located near the West Bay harbour but offers excellent views of Bridport Beach and West Bay Harbour. Keep in mind that it can be pretty windy and cold on the pier in the winter months.
Where to stay near West Bay Beach: Hotels
If you want to stay near West Bay Beach and stay in a hotel, here are the three best hotels in the area. You can also stay in one of the many holiday parks nearby, although these holiday parks can be bustling -especially in summer.
Bridport Arms Hotel
The Durbeyfield Guest House
The George is a West Bay Beach hotel offering large, bright and airy rooms beautifully decorated with antiques and luxury linens. Some rooms look out over the little West Bay harbour and the sea, while others have an inland view. All rooms in The George come with a small bathroom with a shower and complimentary toiletries. Staff will provide you with towels.
The George also offers great pub fare and has a beautiful beer garden where both accommodation residents and pub guests can enjoy a giant pint of beer. The friendly staff is happy to help you with any dietary requirements. The George is known for its carvery, so this is the place to be if you love a good roast!
The Bridport Arms Hotel is a large pub and hotel located on the beach of West Bay. This West Bay Beach hotel offers large rooms with a tea and coffee maker in every room, as well as free WiFi and, of course, complimentary toiletries in the ensuite bathrooms. Every morning the staff will put together an excellent breakfast for guests in the dining room. The breakfast consists of an English Breakfast and cereal. You can also head to the Bridport Arms Hotel at noon or in the evenings for a nice pint or some excellent pub fare.
Would you rather stay in a beautiful guest house overlooking Bridport Harbour? Then the Durbeyfield Guest House is the perfect fit for you. This great guesthouse offers large, bright and airy rooms with comfortable beds and ensuite bathrooms. In the rooms, you will find plenty of closet space and a TV and of course a chair and bedside tables.
The rooms also come with tea and coffee makers so you can make your cuppa in the morning while watching some TV from bed. The owners of the guesthouse also provide you with more than enough towels and complimentary toiletries, as well as an excellent breakfast in the morning.
Where to stay near West Bay Beach: Holiday Homes
When travelling with family or friends, it can be more fun and even cheaper to stay in a holiday home rather than a hotel. To help you choose the best West Bay Beach Holiday home, here are the best holiday homes near West Bay Beach.
Cosy character apartment
2 bedroom accommodation in West Bay
This cosy apartment is set in a listed building overlooking the West Bay harbour and the Jurassic Coast. You will stay close to shops, pubs and many great restaurants. This Cosy apartment has an entrance hall and a lounge, a kitchen diner and a double bedroom with an ensuite bathroom. This character West Bay Beach apartment is a perfect fit for guests looking for a romantic getaway.
The kitchen is fully equipped, and the hosts have left more than enough essentials for you to cook up a feast. The bedroom is bright and airy and overlooks the West Bay Beach Harbour. There are linens provided, and in the living room, you will find a cosy sofa and a flat-screen TV.
Another great apartment is this two-bedroom accommodation in West Bay near the beach. The modern apartment comes with a kitchen with diner and living room and two bedrooms and one bathroom. This apartment near West Bay Beach can sleep up to 4 people.
This two-bedroom apartment comes with large floor to ceiling windows in the living room and a fully equipped kitchen/dining room. The kitchen comes with a hob with an oven, a kettle and of course a toaster.
The bright and airy bedrooms let in lots of natural light. One of the bedrooms comes with a double bed while the other comes with two singles. The singles can indeed be put together to make a double.
Craving a bit of luxury during your stay near West Bay Beach? Why not rent this spectacular apartment with frontal sea and harbour views? You will be able to watch the sun go down over the water and keep an eye out for family members on the beach while sipping a cup of tea on the balcony!
This stunning apartment is located in the centre of West Bay. It overlooks both the harbour and the beach. The apartment has two bedrooms and can sleep up to 4 guests. One of the bedrooms contains a double bed while the other bedroom contains two singles that can be made into one.
In the living room, you will find a large L-shaped sofa and a flat-screen TV. You will also have access to the balcony from the living room, which offers stunning ocean views.
The kitchen is fully equipped, and guests can use the hob, oven, kettle and of course, a toaster. The hosts will have left enough glasses, plates, pots and pans to make your stay in this fantastic apartment as comfortable as possible!
Where to eat near West Bay Beach
Want to grab a bite while having a cosy day on West Bay Beach or when staying nearby? Here are the best restaurants near West Bay Beach!
I have also made a list of the 10 absolute best restaurants in West Bay. Click here to read.
Seagulls Restaurant West Bay Beach
Seagulls restaurant is a highly rated British restaurant on Station Road near West Bay. This great little restaurant offers anything from a Dorset Crab soup with Cognac and cream or an incredible Eton mess. This fantastic West Bay Beach restaurant offers a laid back style, but you can expect them to provide you with dishes prepared with the best and freshest local ingredients.
Seagulls restaurant near West Bay Beach Dorset and West Bay Harbour is a favourite with the locals, and it would be a shame for you not to book a spot in this establishment!
Rachel’s near Bridport Harbour
Rachel’s near Bridport Harbour is only a short walk away from West Bay Beach Dorset. This little gem is located near The Mound Car Par, not too far from the harbour master’s quarters. Rachel’s is well-known and liked in the area for its fantastic seafood. Here you can buy unique dishes made with daily fresh catch. Be sure to come back regularly as both prices and dishes change depending on what the fishermen of West Bay brought in the night before.
Head to Rachel’s for amazing crab and shrimp as well as superb fish soups and even lobster. It is good to book a table beforehand as Rachel’s can be pretty busy as it is very popular.
Windy Corner Cafe
Last but not least, I also wanted to include the Windy Corner Cafe. There is something inherently British about visiting a cafe for a cream tea or a full English when staying near or on the beach. Windy Corner Cafe is a typical beach café offering guests great food at reasonable prices. Come here for a ham sandwich with crisps, a massive full English or even a fully loaded hot chocolate with marshmallows. Windy Corner Cafe also offers a good cream tea and, of course, freshly baked cakes and ice cream.
Where are public toilets near West Bay Beach Dorset
The public toilets near West Bay Beach are located near the West Bay Play Area and the West Bay Road Car Park. Toilets are accessible.
Where to park near West Bay Beach
When heading down to West Bay Beach by car, you will want to know where the best places to park are. Here are the three best car parks near West Bay Beach.
East Beach Car Park
The first car park to keep in mind is the East Beach Car Park. This car park is by far the most popular car park as it is so close to the beach. Located on Station Road, you should head to East Beach Car Park quite early – especially in spring and summer, as this car park will fill up quite quickly.
Bridport Station Yard Car Park
Bridport Station Yard Car Park is another fantastic car park close to the beach. Also located on Station road, you can quickly drive up to the Bridport Station Yard Car Park if the East Beach Car Park is complete.
West Bay Road Car Park
You can also head to the West Bay Road Car Park if the other two are full. This car park is considerably bigger than the other two and is located near the roundabout, next to the West Bay play area. The Dorset council maintains this car park, and there are accessible toilets nearby.
Lieze Neven is a globetrotting travel writer and expat currently based in Nepal. With a passion for exploration, she has lived in Dubai, the UK, and Belgium, alongside her international teacher husband. Her parents live in France and she tries to visit Paris at least once a year. Together, they travel the world looking for the best hotels, experiences and food locations have to offer!