The UK has many picture-perfect seaside towns. Many people don’t see the UK as a beach holiday destination, and quite frankly, they’d be right in thinking that. The UK’s seaside villages are more about quaint cobblestone streets, delicious local seafood, picturesque ports and charming family-run little shops of many different kinds. The truth is, these gorgeous little villages aren’t ideal for sunbathing or spending hours on end frolicking in the water. But, what they are good for is relaxation and taking valuable time out from the hustle and bustle. They’re also incredible for fishing.
Most of these village’s bays are lined with quayside restaurants that serve unbelievably fresh seafood caught by their local fisherman daily, or other villages nearby. Fishing forms a great part of their local economy. Although in recent times, due to tourism, fish has been sourced elsewhere, resulting in fishermen either plying their trade elsewhere or selling straight to local markets.
Thankfully, organisations like Fishermen’s Protection Society, Last Fisherman Standing and Catchbox are helping fishers get back to selling their product to local restaurants. There are many articles out there about the UK’s postcard-perfect fishing villages. However, we’re going to go with the slightly more unconventional hidden gems, all based in idyllic settings. Here are our favourite sea fishing holidays in the UK.
Brancaster Staithe, Norfolk
Brancaster Staithe is a small fishing village on the north coast of Norfolk. It includes a lovely little harbour that also has a sailing club. The merged villages of Brancaster Staithe and Burnham Deepdale form one awesome village for a tranquil holiday.
Experience activities like birdwatching, sailing and of course eating fresh locally caught fish. You can either buy your own from wooden huts found throughout the village and harbour or sit down for a fantastic meal at The Jolly Sailors pub, the Whitehorse Inn, or the Deepdale Café at the Dalegate market.
Where To Stay
Island House really does have the most spectacular place on the marsh at Brancaster Staithe. In addition, Island House has astonishing views across the staithe, marshes, and sea beyond from nearly every window. This house is the ideal retreat if you are looking for a peaceful and relaxing holiday on the beautiful North Norfolk Coast.
Port Isaac, Cornwall (North Coast)
Port Isaac truly is a little gem. It has these gorgeous, very narrow streets, fringed with traditional granite and slate-fronted Cornish homes. This is a historic village which has been an active port since the 1400’s. During the summer, sea fishing holidays in the UK is hugely popular and the local seafood caught here is prepared at restaurants such as Nathan Outlaw which offers a highly regarded 4-course dining experience. For something a little more laid back though, try Fresh from The Sea – a traditional fish shack.
Where To Stay
This quaint holiday lodge has excellent facilities and is just outside the lovely village of St Teath and close to the north coast of Cornwall. A short walk will take you to the village which also has a pub and local shop. This fine self-catering cottage is just a 15-minute drive to Port Isaac.
St Mawes, Cornwall (South Coast)
Another beautiful Cornish village, St Mawes really provides one of the finest sea fishing holidays in the UK. Located at the end of the Roseland peninsula, St Mawes has two traditional Cornish pubs which both serve delectable, locally caught seafood, the Victory & the Rising Sun. The Rising Sun is spacious and has an outside seating area of greater capacity which is right near the beach and village quay.
Fishing is the primary activity here so take to the sea with St Mawes’ local skipper James Brown. If you catch it, you cook and eat it. This guy has over 20 years’ experience and his 2-hour mackerel fishing trip is a real treat!
Where To Stay
Pelyn is a modern self-contained apartment that overlooks the Percuil River at Freshwater Boatyard in St Mawes. An authentic experience as this is a working boatyard and from October to May, your views may be restricted by boats being stored on the quay.
However, from May through to October, depending on the weather, the boats disappear into the water and the view out onto the river transforms into something rather majestic.
A magnificent harbour village snuggled Wales in the Pembrokeshire National Park. This place is the archetypical fishing holiday experience. It has a lovely quay that has a host of charming café’s and bars and a high street that boasts galleries and craft shops. Activities include sailing, shopping, gardening and, of course, eating locally sourced seafood which is some of the best in the region.
Where To Stay
A stunning and cosy cottage with views that will take your breath away. Swallows Cottage is in an area of outstanding and unspoilt natural beauty. Situated between Solva and Saint David’s’, the coast is just a few hundred yards from the front door. Furthermore, this dog-friendly cottage is the ideal place for sea fishing holidays in the UK. Explore the footpaths, water sports, or the small and exclusive shops, galleries, museums and cafes of the area. Treat yourself with astounding views from the romantic Swallows Cottage.
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