Exploring and Eating

The region that surrounds The Yurt Retreat is the excellent location of South Somerset and a stone throw from the Dorset and Devon Jurassic Coast.

What’s On Your Doorstep?

Crewkerne, which is a market town situated 2 miles to the east and offers a range of supermarkets including Waitrose, shops, cafes and an indoor pool and gym complex and the newly renovated Crooked Swan hotel and restaurant.

Hinton St George, a picturesque village situated 1 mile to the north, offers a well stocked community run Village shop and an award winning gastro pub ‘The Lord Poulett Arms’.

Places To Explore During Your Stay

Lyme Regis, a picturesque seaside town famous for the French Lieutenant’s Women and paleontologist, Mary Anning, is 30 minutes drive away. It is a very pretty town with independent boutiques, cafes, fossil shops, museums and beaches. A great place to paddle board!

We recommend having lunch at Swim, followed by a visit to the microbrewery and Art Gallery housed in an old water mill. Eat a locally made Baboo gelato  before dipping your toes into the sea and if your pocket stretches to it, you can enjoy dinner at Hix oyster and fish house while you watch the sun go down.

West Bay & Bridport, famous for being the gateway to the Jurassic Coast is only 30 minutes drive away. The market town of Bridport has a thriving artist community. There is still a busy market held on Wednesday and Saturday every week. We recommend attending the Saturday market for vintage bargains and local produce, arts and crafts. It was Bridport where Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall of River Cottage tried out his first produce, and his products are still sold at the monthly farmer’s market.

Bridport also has an independent cinema, The Electric Palace, which also doubles as an entertainment venue. You can also catch a show at the Bridport Art Centre, which is famous for the yearly Bridport writing prize and literary festival, and for the From Page to Screen film festival.

If vintage is your passion, Bridport has a fantastic selection of vintage furniture and clothing shops, which you will find near the St Michael Art studios   and the fantastic Red Brick Café to stop for a wholesome and delicious lunch, when you have finished shopping.

West Bay is a 5 minute drive from Bridport. It has a stunning beach with golden cliffs. You can often find fossils on the beach. A great place to stay to watch the sun go down and have a BBQ on the beach. (Bridport has Waitrose, The Co-op and Morrisons if you want to buy BBQ supplies!)

Burton Bradstock home of Billy Bragg, the Seaside boarding house and the award winning Hive Beach Café, only a 35 minute drive away. This is a great beach to start from if you fancy covering part of the coast path on foot. If you are feeling fit you can walk to West Bay from here. The beach is owned by the National Trust and is a great spot to fish for mackerel. We recommend getting up early and having breakfast here.

Weymouth is an hour away. It is a traditional seaside town with a stunning beach and Victorian promenade.

Weymouth hosted the Olympic sailing in 2012. This led to an improved marina and a new road into Weymouth. Weymouth is a good place for wind surfing, kite surfing and rock climbing.

For Foodies – Places To Eat And Drink

Lord Poulett Arms in Hinton St George is only a 5 minute drive away or can take a leisurely walk through the country lanes. The Lord Poulett Arms won national dinning pub of the year in 2009.

The Trading Post at Lopen Head just 10 mins away. This fantastic farm shop has a wonderfully quirky railway carriage restaurant serving generous, fresh and considered food.

The Crooked Swan in Crewkerne. Just two miles away this newly opened boutique hotel offers great food

Bar 5 in Crewkerne. A great little bar with locally brewed beers and ciders.

F.east in Ilminster, just 15 mins away. This wonderful vegetarian restaurant and café serves such great food it isn’t even advertised as vegetarian.

Provender deli and café. Also just 15 mins away in South Petherton. Award winning deli goodies to eat in or take away.

New Farm restaurant in Over Stratton. Taste of the West awarded restaurant just 10 minutes from the site.

Brassica restaurant in Beaminster. Award winning food with their own design led shop just over the road.

River Cottage Canteen in Axminster is only 30 minutes drive away. Try out their own produce in the restaurant and if you love the food, you can buy the ingredients in their shop to take home.

Hive Beach café at Burton Bradstock is 35 minutes drive away. Visit it for breakfast, lunch and dinner with sea views.

Rise in West Bay. A 30 min drive. Sister café to Swim in Lyme Regis serving great breakfasts, Lunch, dinners and cocktails right on the river side.

The Station Kitchen in West Bay. Eat some of Dorsets finest produce in an old railway carriage and station down by the beach.

Hix oyster and fish house in Lyme Regis is only 30 minutes drive away and is a great place to eat dinner and watch the sun go down

Swim in Lyme Regis. Right on the seafront with fantastic views they serve breakfasts right through to cocktails in an ibiza feel setting ( complete with DJ’s at the weekend playing mellow beats and easy tunes).

Dorshi in Bridport. Tucked down an alley next to the Bull hotel you could be forgiven for thinking you were in Soho. With its clever take on locally influenced Asian and fabulous cocktail bar its a must.

Soulshine cafe in Bridport is the kind of laid back design led place that you’d find in California we just happen to be lucky enough to have it in Bridport. A must when visiting the market.

Bearcat cafe in Bridport. For a hidden gem you couldn’t find anything better. Tiny but fantastically quirky and simply the best coffee in our neck of the woods.

Olive Tree Restaurant in Bridport, Warming Mediterranean food cooked in front of you in the open kitchen!

The Bull Hotel in Bridport. Just a 30 min drive. Serves high quality local produce in a boutique hotel environment. Somewhere to dress up for. Why not keep your glad rags on and treat yourself to one of Lloyds amazing cocktails upstairs in the bulls Veener Bar.

The Stable @ the Bull Hotel. Incredible Italian style pizza in a bustling communal environment.

The Ollerod in Beaminster. Owned by a decorated chef Chris Staines this is high end dining in a relaxed country style.

Dark Bear in Bridport. Lloyd is a shining star in the drinks world and his fabulous cocktail bar that comes to life as Aroma cafe closes offers one of the best palettes possible.

Seaside boarding house in Burton Bradstock. Its a beautifully renovated hotel and restaurant with astonishing views over the sea.

The Hive cafe on the beach at Burton Bradstock. Its award winning and THE place for the freshest fish and chips.

For History And Outdoor Lovers

Montacute House, which is a 20 minutes drive away, is a 16th century mansion built for Sir Edward Phelips. It has the longest Long Gallery in England and houses more than 60 of best Tudor and Elizabethan portraits from the National Portrait Gallery collection.

Forde Abbey, A stately home only 10 minutes away with more than 900 years of history and romance are encapsulated in this elegant former Cistercian monastery and its 30 acres of award winning gardens.

The South West Coast Path National Trail is 630 miles of superb coastal walking. From Minehead on the edge of the Exmoor National Park to the shores of Poole Harbour, in Dorset, it is the best way to enjoy the wonderful coastal scenery, wildlife and heritage.

Abbotsbury Swannery and the Subtropical Gardens, Only 40 minutes drive away the picturesque village of Abbotsbury with its ruined Abbey, Tithe barn and Swannery are bordered by the unique Subtropical Gardens. This is an amazing day out.