WITH the temperatures getting warmer, what better place is there than having a meal and a drink in a beer garden with family and friends?

Current restrictions mean pubs can serve food and drink outdoors for customers with the ‘Rule of Six’ in force.  

We’ve compiled a list of the best beer gardens in Dorset:

The Anchor Inn, Seatown

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: The Anchor Inn, Seatown. Picture: STEVE BELASCO/jurassicphotographic.comThe Anchor Inn, Seatown. Picture: STEVE BELASCO/jurassicphotographic.com

This beach side pub is in a magical spot overlooking the Jurassic coastline and serve award-winning local real ales that will refresh you on a warm day.

For all the designated drivers and little ones, they have plenty of soft drinks to clench your thirst.

It’s also near a four-mile trek which takes you through farmland, woodland and hilly terrain and the beautiful Golden Cap, from which point walkers can enjoy breath-taking views of Chesil Beach, West Bay and Lyme.

The Spyway Inn, Askerswell

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Spyway InnSpyway Inn

With awe-inspiring views of Dorset, why won’t you want to have a drink or a meal here?

The garden consists of an open-plan area with hedges removed to give a view of cattle or sheep grazing in the opposite field with hillside views bordered by a small stream.

Now the beer garden now have ‘Spypods’, which aim to provide customers with weatherproof seating areas whilst also giving them garden views in all weathers through the pod’s windowed exterior.

The Greyhound Inn, Corfe Castle

Take in spectacular views of Corfe Castle while you enjoy your pint at The Greyhound Inn.

Punters will be able to dine alfresco from the pub’s new spring menu against the stunning backdrop of one of Dorset’s most famous landmarks.

Finishing touches are being made to the outdoor area for what promises to be “the best dining experience in Dorset. To book a table, visit https://greyhoundcorfe.co.uk/book/

Belvedere, Weymouth

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Belvedere, WeymouthBelvedere, Weymouth

This pub's popular south-facing beer garden known as the 'narden' is seven days a week from 12pm to 6pm serving a limited menu.

During the recent lockdown, the beer garden has been refurbished and now features picnic-bench style tables, comfortable armchairs and a gazebo.

The garden has been in high demand and it is advised that you contact the pub to book a table.

The Springhead, Sutton Poyntz

This classic country pub is a great location to stop for a light bite and a good pint. The setting is second to none as visitors find themselves surrounded by rolling countryside hills and the Osmington White Horse landmark.

It also boasts a beautiful duck pond right on the doorstep – a perfect place to take little ones who can feed the ducks.

Dogs are also welcome.

Smuggler’s Inn, Osmington Mills

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Nestled in a small cove on the edge of the Jurassic Coast, who hasn’t had a pint here?

The Hall and Woodhouse owned Smugglers Inn was recently ranked the fourth most popular in the country in a list by Holidaycottages.co.uk.

Visitors can sit under an open-sided marquee in the garden and can book an outdoor table for up to six people in advance on the pub’s website.

The Bankes Arms, Studland Bay

A traditional country pub by the sea, the Bankes Arms has always been a popular choice.

With an extensive outdoor seating area overlooking Studland Bay it’s not hard to see why.

There’s no need to book a table as the venue will be operating on a first-come-first served basis using its online ordering app from 12noon each day.

Closing times may vary due to the weather. The hotel will reopen from May 17.

The Greyhound, Winterborne Kingston

This traditional country pub, based in the picturesque village of Winterborne Kingston, has a covered outside seating area. 

Hours will be reviewed on a weekly basis up until the venue is able to reopen fully from May 17. To book a table, call 01929 471332. 

Square and Compass, Worth Matravers

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Dating from the mid-18th century and with 19th-century extensions, the Purbeck pub's listing is one of only eight pubs in the UK to have no bar counter.

It also has a quirky beer garden, which is good for a well-deserved drink and homemade pasty after a walk along dancing ledge.

Fox & Hounds, Wimborne

With its thatched roof and pretty hanging baskets, The Fox and Hounds is a beautiful, Grade II listed country inn.

On long summer days the spacious beer garden buzzes with people enjoying a refreshing pint of cask ale after a delightful riverside stroll, taking in the scent of sun-baked barley fields that fills the air.

Standing peacefully on an old country lane it is surrounded by open fields and the River Stour.

The Castle Inn, Lulworth

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: The Castle Inn in LulworthThe Castle Inn in Lulworth

Described as a 'beautiful thatched pub', the venue offers heaps of outdoor seating, with a roadside terrace and a 'magical rear beer garden' perfect for al fresco drinking and dining.

The pub, which has received a 'significant investment' by Butcombe Brewery Co, has social distance measures in place. Tables must be booked in advance and orders and payment can be made via the Butcombe app.