12 amazing foodie breaks in the UK for a gourmet getaway

Edinburgh Food Market

The United Kingdom, with its rich culinary heritage and diverse regional cuisines, offers some of the most enticing foodie breaks. The UK’s best foodie destinations offer a diverse and rich culinary landscape, from the freshest seafood to the finest dining experiences. 

Each location, with its unique charm and specialties, provides a delightful exploration of British gastronomy. A huge foodie myself, I’m always on the lookout for beautiful and vibrant dishes to try. 

Whether you’re indulging in Scottish seafood, savouring Yorkshire’s artisanal produce, enjoying fresh oysters in Kent, or experiencing gourmet dining in Berkshire, here is my pick of the best foodie breaks in the UK.

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Author Bio: Jessie Moore

Jessie Moore is a luxury travel expert with years of experience travelling the world to find the best destinations, hotels and adventures.

1. Padstow, Cornwall

Best for: Seafood lovers

Where to stay: Padstow Townhouse

Pretty Harbour in Padstow

Hugging the coast of Cornwall, Padstow is a haven for seafood lovers and one of my personal favourite towns in Cornwall.

It’s a popular UK foodie destination that draws visitors from near and far just to sample the delights on offer. 

This charming fishing port is synonymous with celebrity chef Rick Stein, who has heavily influenced the local food scene with his assortment of restaurants and eateries, including: The Seafood Restaurant and Rick Stein’s Cafe

Visitors can indulge in fresh, locally-sourced seafood in a variety of establishments, from upscale Michelin-starred restaurants like Paul Ainsworth at No.6, to cosy beachside setups like Mussel Box

Culinary highlights include traditional Cornish pasties, oysters, and, of course, seaside fish and chips.

I find the annual Padstow Christmas Festival to be a particular treat, featuring local produce and cooking demonstrations.

2. New Forest

Best for: Fresh organic produce 

Where to stay: Chewton Glen

I adore the New Forest, with its wild landscapes and roaming livestock. Plus, it offers more than just scenic beauty and a wonderful getaway.

Lymington New Forest Town

It’s a hotspot for foraged and locally-produced foods, making it one of the best foodie breaks in the UK.

Here, you can sample artisanal cheeses, hand-reared meats, and organic vegetables straight from the ground.

The area is dotted with charming country pubs and restaurants that pride themselves on their farm-to-table ethos. 

Some of my favourite restaurants in New Forest are: The Terrace at the Montagu Arms for the impeccable presentation; The Pig for the local food; and Elderflower Restaurant for their tasting menu. 

I’d recommend keeping the New Forest Food Festival in mind, typically held in August, which celebrates the region’s culinary heritage.

3. Cartmel, Lake District

Best for: Michelin-starred establishments

Where to stay: The Cavendish Arms

Cartmel, one of the prettiest villages in the Lake District, is a true hidden gem for food enthusiasts. It’s renowned for the Cartmel Sticky Toffee Pudding, a must-try if you have a sweet tooth. 

The village is also home to several Michelin-starred restaurants, offering innovative dishes that blend traditional British cuisine with modern techniques. With the coveted three Michelin stars, I urge anyone serious about their food to visit L’Enclume

L'Enclume Gastronomy
Cristian Barnett Photography

In a charming cottage you’ll find Rogan & Co, a relaxed establishment serving up food worthy of a Michelin star.

The third and final Michelin-starred restaurant in Cartmel is Heft, which serves dishes inspired by the seasons, the Cumbrian countryside and chef Kevin’s foraging expeditions. 

The local farmers’ markets are a showcase of the region’s best produce, including Cumberland sausage and Damson gin.

Discover more of the best Michelin-star restaurants in the Lake District in my guide, or seek out the best spots for afternoon tea.

4. Bruton, Somerset

Best for: Locally-made cider

Where to stay: The Newt

Bruton in Somerset is making waves in the food world. This small town has attracted notable chefs and restaurateurs, turning it into an unlikely gourmet destination and one of my favourite foodie breaks in the UK.

The Newt Bruton

Here, you can experience everything from fine dining to rustic farm shops. Michelin-starred Osip offers a harmonious, yet surprising, dining experience.

Asking visitors to put their faith in Osip’s brilliant chefs, there is a constant ‘surprise menu’ – which I think is a truly unique offering! 

The area is also known for its cider, with several local producers offering tours and tastings. I’d also highly recommend stopping by The Newt while you’re in the area, even if you don’t stay overnight.

5. London

Best for: Diverse cuisines

Where to stay: The Langham

Muse Belgravia

In my opinion, no foodie tour of the UK is complete without a stop in London. The capital city is a melting pot of global cuisines, offering everything from Michelin-starred dining to vibrant street food markets. 

Borough Market is one of my personal favourites and a must-visit for any food lover. It boasts a range of international and British fare.

In the same location since 1756 Borough Market not only presents flavoursome food, but also a real sense of community.  

Boasting five restaurants with the highest Michelin accolade, three stars, London is a hub for the biggest of foodies.

Hélène Darroze at The Connaught uses international flavours to perfection; Core by Clare Smyth adds flair to contemporary dishes; and among others, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester offers bold and innovative combinations. 

For a unique experience, I recommend taking the time to individually explore each of the city’s diverse neighbourhoods. 

Each offers its own culinary delights, from the curry houses of Brick Lane to the upscale restaurants in Mayfair.

Discover more of my favourite cities to visit in the UK.

6. North Berwick, Scotland

Best for: Catch-to-plate seafood

Where to stay: Marine North Berwick

Perched on the east coast of Scotland, North Berwick is a delightful blend of seaside charm and culinary excellence.

North Berwick

Famous for its fresh lobsters, crab, and line-caught mackerel, this town is a seafood enthusiast’s dream. 

Local restaurants and bistros take pride in serving seafood caught just hours before it reaches your plate.

Don’t miss the Lobster Shack at the harbour, offering a quintessential Scottish seafood experience. 

The annual Berwick Food and Beer Festival celebrates the town’s rich culinary culture, showcasing local produce and seafood specialties, while bringing the whole community together.

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7. Malton, Yorkshire

Best for: Artisanal goods

Where to stay: The Talbot

Hailed by many as Yorkshire’s Food Capital, Malton is a must-visit for anyone with a real passion for traditional British cooking. 

I love that here, you’re never far from artisanal producers, quaint cafés, and bustling food markets – a true foodie’s paradise.

Malton Yorkshire

The monthly food market here is renowned as the place to go for an array of local cheeses, meats, and baked goods. 

The town also hosts the annual Malton Food Lovers Festival, a weekend-long celebration that I whole-heartedly recommend for anyone looking for cooking demonstrations, food stalls, and street food vendors. 

A walk through Malton reveals a vibrant food scene, with highlights including handcrafted chocolates at boutique boltholes and locally brewed ales.

8. Whitstable, Kent

Best for: Oysters galore

Where to stay: Duke of Cumberland

Whitstable, located on the north coast of Kent, is synonymous with its scrumptious oysters. As someone who lives in Kent myself, I’m lucky to have this gem not far from me.

Solidifying this image, the quaint seaside town is renowned for the popular Whitstable Oyster Festival, celebrating the region’s rich oyster-catching heritage. 

Whitstable Oysters

Beyond oysters, Whitstable offers a variety of seafood delicacies, with fishmongers and seafood stalls dotted along the harbour.

The town’s high street is bursting with culinary delights, featuring independent bakeries, butchers, and greengrocers. 

I’d describe the delightful culinary scene in Whitstable as a charming mix of traditional British seafood and contemporary dining.

Discover more of the best coastal towns in Kent.

9. Bray, Berkshire

Best for: Fine dining

Where to stay: Monkey Island Estate – Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Bray, a picturesque village in Berkshire, is perhaps an unexpected culinary powerhouse. 

Home to several Michelin-starred restaurants, including two triple-starred establishments, I’d recommend Bray as a destination for those seeking a fine dining experience.

Waterside Inn Bray

For classic French cuisine, visit the Waterside Inn and for a touch of theatrical creativity, book into The Fat Duck.

The village’s culinary reputation extends beyond its Michelin accolades, with traditional pubs and eateries offering classic British dishes. 

The annual Bray Beach BBQ Festival is a celebration of both local and international cuisines, with mouth-watering barbecue food and superb food trucks!

10. Aberystwyth, Ceredigion

Best for: Fish and chips

Where to stay: Townhouse No.1

A historic seaside town in West Wales, Aberystwyth presents a charming blend of Welsh culinary traditions and modern cuisine. 

Known for its local seafood, including Cardigan Bay crab and mackerel, the town boasts numerous restaurants and cafés that showcase the best of Welsh produce. 


Aberystwyth’s promenade is the perfect place to enjoy traditional fish and chips while taking in the stunning views of Cardigan Bay.

The town also hosts various food festivals throughout the year, celebrating everything from local ales to artisan cheeses. 

I truly believe that a trip to Aberystwyth isn’t complete without sampling a delightful Welsh cake or bara brith from one of the local bakeries.

11. Edinburgh, Scotland

Best for: Traditional Scottish dishes

Where to stay: Gleneagles Townhouse

Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh, is a culinary hotspot that blends historical charm with an enticingly vibrant foodie scene. It also happens to be one of my favourite cities in the world!

Edinburgh is renowned for its traditional Scottish cuisine, offering everything from haggis and neeps to fresh seafood from the nearby Firth of Forth. 

The city’s food scene is diverse, with Michelin-starred restaurants, traditional pubs, and an emerging street food culture.

Edinburgh Food Market

If you’re seeking culinary excellence in Edinburgh, I recommend visiting Condita for an intimate dining experience or Timberyard for a family-run affair. 

The city’s annual Food Festival is a gastronomic highlight, featuring delicious local produce, top chefs and live music.

For more foodie inspiration from this city, have a read of my Edinburgh food guides:

12. Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

Best for: A regency backdrop

Where to stay: No. 131

Cheltenham, a spa town in the heart of the Cotswolds, is quickly becoming a destination for food lovers.

The town’s culinary scene is a blend of traditional British fare and international cuisines, reflecting its cosmopolitan character. 

Cheltenham is famous for its Regency architecture, which provides a picturesque backdrop to its many cafés, bistros, and fine dining restaurants. 

For special occasions, I recommend booking in at the Michelin-starred Le Champignon Sauvage, renowned for its high quality cooking and modern techniques.

For a warm welcome and harmonious flavours, visit Lumière which also boasts a Michelin star. 

The town’s proximity to the Cotswolds means access to fresh, local produce, including Gloucestershire Old Spot pork and locally-made cheeses. 

Cheltenham’s annual Food and Drink Festival is a showcase of local and regional foods, featuring chef masterclasses, food tastings, and BBQ, cheese and wine specialties. 

Get access to my Cotswolds travel guide

I have curated all of my Cotswolds knowledge and recommendations into one comprehensive guide, complete with an interactive map, filtering options and itineraries. 

It’s available to buy through Rexby and you can preview parts of it for free. Get in touch if you have any questions about my Cotswolds guide!

Let me know any of your own favourite UK foodies breaks in the comments below – I always love hearing from you! 

For more UK travel inspiration, you may also like:

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Jessie Moore
Jessie Moore

Jessie is a luxury travel expert with years of experience travelling the world to find the best destinations, hotels and adventures.

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Want up to 25% off hotels?

Subscribe to my newsletter and get immediate access to my guide on how to save money on flights and hotels. Our weekly emails are filled with adventure inspiration, insider travel tips and exclusive discounts.