If you're looking for a great drinking experience on the Suffolk coast, then you're in luck! Suffolk is home to some of the most beautiful pubs and bars by the sea. Whether you're looking for a traditional pub experience with real ales and hearty food, or something more modern with craft beer and cocktails, you're sure to find what you're looking for in a Suffolk pub by the sea.
The Cross Keys - Aldeburgh
Nestled on the aptly named Crabbe Street and set back from the charming Aldeburgh High Street, The Cross Keys
offers a relaxed approach, a lively atmosphere and great food and drink, all just paces away from Aldeburgh’s characterful sand and shingle beach.
Just off the Crag path, the pub boasts a secluded courtyard with sublime sea views as well as cosy nooks inside for the more blustery days. The Cross Keys invites visitors to enjoy their seasonal menu which showcases the best local flavours from coast and country and there are even three comfortable bedrooms available if you fancy a coastal stay.
The Ship at Dunwich
The Ship at Dunwich
is the epitome of traditional coastal pub, sheltered and cosy in the winter, bright and airy in the summer months and with an intriguing history to boot. Once the haunt of bands of smugglers, today The Ship welcomes weary beachcombers to take a seat in the bar or the beautiful garden and sun terrace to enjoy local Adnams Ale or something hearty from the carefully curated menu.
Dogs are also very welcome and have their own menu to choose from. Why not make a weekend of it and stay in one of the fresh and contemporary rooms; a relaxed retreat for anyone who enjoys the fresh sea air.
East Point Pavilion
The quirky East Point Pavillion, though not strictly a pub, is home to Sir Toby's Beers and deserves a shout out for its contemporary and unusual setting for a seaside tipple! Stroll along the sunny promenade, enjoy the amusements at the pier, have a paddle and then take a seat in the gorgeous Victorian-style glass building.
Light and airy with a perfect view of the sea, you can while away the time with a drink from the bar, a snack from one of the many food vendors or you may even find some entertainment on offer- the Pavilion hosts a range of events from yoga to live music and even craft fayres.
The Sole Bay Inn
Have you ever enjoyed an ale whilst sat at the foot of a lighthouse? Well, head to Southwold’s Sole Bay
pub and you can. This charming pub is a stone’s throw from Southwold’s gorgeous beach and is tucked away beneath the working lighthouse which measures thirty-one metres in height and was built in 1887 - you can even climb to the top!
There are tables inside and out where you can sit and sample an array of cask beers, as well as kegged and bottled ones. Take your pick from the seaside inspired menu with lots of local seafood, pub classics and sandwiches. Canine companions are very welcome too so it’s the perfect place to retreat after a blustery dog walk.
The Harbour Inn
Southwold’s Harbour Inn,
as the name suggests, overlooks the Southwold Blackshore; a working harbour with original fishing huts.This is a proper old fisherman’s pub welcoming, down to earth and full of nautical charm. Enjoy the freshest seafood, served from the harbour-side kitchen as you watch the fishing boats bob by.
The chefs at the Harbour Inn take great pride in sourcing the very best of the catch of the day; with much of the fish on offer having been caught by local fishermen from the Lowestoft fishing boats. Wash it down with one of the Adnams beers, wines or spirits, brewed just up the road.
The Lord Nelson
The Lord Nelson
pub (affectionately known to the locals as Nellie) is widely considered a social hub by Southwold residents. Situated on East Street, with far reaching views over the waves, this pub promises the perfect pint as well as good conversation and a buzzing atmosphere.
Everyone is welcome, including dogs, and on Fridays and Saturdays the pub serves pizza from Black Dog Deli. This pub is always busy, so you’ll find yourself shoulder to shoulder with some local characters, and on sunny days you can head out to the courtyard garden or grab one of the benches out the front - the best seat in town!
The Sail Loft
This stylish cafe-bar and restaurant is in prime position, next to the beach on one side and overlooking the dunes on the other, just along from Gun Hill towards the harbour. With plentiful parking The Sail Loft
welcomes families, children, groups of friends and couples for relaxed informal dining; from a hearty morning brunch to afternoon refreshments and dinner.
Choose from tantalising nibbles, including padron peppers, crispy breaded brie and salami bites, followed by a sharing fish platter crammed with locally caught seafood, as well as locally reared steaks and a plethora of tempting desserts. Upstairs there are five comfortable and stylish bedrooms with great views of the tranquil landscape.
The Dolphin Inn
Situated in the unique seaside village of Thorpeness, The Dolphin Inn
is a great place to gather with friends and enjoy some delicious fayre in a cosy setting. Choose to dine in the garden room with its panoramic views, the main restaurant displaying local artwork, or the dog friendly snug bar. The chefs at the Dolphin use produce from the pub’s own allotment - you can’t get more local than that!
They often have different meal deals such as: the popular steak deal, vegan Thursday and 'roast and crumble' for Sunday lunch. If you fancy a break away to the unspoilt Suffolk coast then opt to stay in one of the Dolphin’s lovely, comfy rooms, with breakfast in the garden room included.
The Bell Inn
After a long day crabbing in Walberswick take a stroll through the rolling sand dunes and finish your day at The Bell Inn
. This historical six hundred year old pub is elegant and charming with a rustic air evoking the memories of visitors past.
Take your seat in one of the hidden alcoves or quirky snugs inside, or otherwise find a spot in the large pub garden. The menu is constantly changing with the best of the local Suffolk produce and features a range of classic dishes as well as a special focus on locally caught seafood.
Take a look below for more places to dine near the sea!