Britain is made for winter. From the cool, crisp air to the firm, crunch of the frozen ground beneath your welly boots, the coldest season is our favourite time to explore the great outdoors. But of course, one of the best feelings about heading outside is when you finally get to go back in. To help you make the most of your winter adventures, we’ve found the 20 cosiest pubs in Britain, so you have the perfect place to warm up in, once you’re done.
Location: Penzance, TR18 4AF
Best for: Immersing in smuggling history
Comfortable, quirky and steeped in maritime history, the Admiral Bendow is decked with dozens of incredible nautical artefacts, rescued from over 400 years worth of shipwrecked vessels. One of the oldest, and most iconic pubs in Cornwall, it’s worth going just to say you have. Cosy corners and a welcoming open fire provide the perfect place to settle down with a local beer or a plate of sumptuous seasonal pub food.
The Victoria Inn
Location: Gwynedd, LL45 2LD
Best for: Cracking comfort food
Nestled at the foot of the Rhinog Mountain range, the quaint family-run Victoria Inn in Gwynedd is all about doing the simple things in life, really well. The menu is a selection of handmade, homegrown comfort foods. As for washing your nosh down, you’ll find a vibrant variety of local and international ales, as well as an extensive wine list, with something for all palates.
Location: Chichester, Sussex, PO20 7PR
Best for: Dining al fresco
While sitting outside isn’t everyone’s first choice in winter, you have to admit that when England is cold, a crisp sort of magic enters the air. For those brave enough to dine outdoors, the award-winning Blacksmiths in Sussex is the perfect place. Its beautiful beer garden lets you make the most of the Chichester countryside, at any time of year.
The Globe Inn Marsh
Location: Rye, TN31 7NX
Best for: Drinking amongst friends
A fantastic mish-mash of welcoming fireplaces, unusual objects and stylish furnishings, makes having a drink at The Globe Marsh Inn feel like popping round to your friend’s house for a cosy pint (with much better food of course). A great place to refuel after a long day wandering Rye, they specialise in hearty stews, warming soups and artisan breads for dipping.
The Old Neptune
Location: Whitstable, CT5 1EJ
Best for: A view of the ocean
Known to the locals as ‘Neppy’, this cosy, seaside boozer is a favourite photo opportunity for tourists visiting Whistable. One of the few pubs in Britain to be sat right on the seafront, if you’re looking to pair your pint with an idyllic view of the ocean, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better place. At The Old Neptune’s bar, local ales and imported lagers cater to just about every kind drinker, while the kitchen specialises in wholesome, heart-warming pub grub.
The Cott Inn
Location: Totnes, TQ9 6HE
Best for: An unbeatable beer garden
Born way back in 1320, this historic South Hams spot happens to be the second oldest inn in Britain. As if that wasn’t enough of a claim to fame, the quaint country Cott Inn also boasts the longest thatched roof in the country. But, history aside, this stunning spot in Totnes has much more to offer than a fancy ceiling. Beneath its large thatched roof, its cosy striped stone walls play host to local live music festivals. As well as an extensive selection of local ales and some top quality pub grub.
Location: Folkestone, CT20 1SE
Best for: A gourmet taste of the countryside
The Pullman is one of those places that manages to be large, spacious and airy, but still have a cosy and intimate feel. Priding itself on serving the best food from local ‘farm, field and sea’, this is the place to head for a gourmet taste in Kent’s countryside. Expect Kentish beef steaks, slow roast pork belly ribs and crispy fillet of bream with steamed clams. Just saying it makes our mouths water.
Location: St Ives, TR26 3NA
Best for: Eco-conscious cuisine
While only a short drive from St Ives and the nearby city centre, Halsetown Inn still manages to feel like it’s far off the beaten track. Dating back to 1832, this hidden gem blends homely decor with comforting food and a passionate eco-ethos, making it the place to enjoy real ales and local food that don’t just taste good but do good too.
The Golden Lion
Location: Port Isaac, PL29 3RB
Best for: Fantastic fish and chips
Cask ale and craft beer served alongside award-winning fish and chips; do we really need to say more? Overlooking Port Isaac, the 18th century Golden Lion is brimming with charm and history, not to mention a fresh, salty smell from the nearby sea. When you’ve finished your food, take a look at the infamous ‘bloody bones bar’ that sports a secret tunnel for sneaking booty in and out.
The Ferry Inn
Location: Salcombe, TQ8 8ET
Best for: An afternoon of pig racing
Every community has a backbone, and for Salcombe, it’s The Ferry Inn. This vibrant village pub has been a favourite for locals since 1739 and it’s easy to see why. The large bar, cosy wood-burner and rustic seating area is the ideal setting for a traditional Sunday roast. Best of all, however, this welcoming watering hole also hosts regular pig racing. So pick a mechanical pig, place your bets and let the fun begin.
The Three Horseshoes
Location: Burton Bradstock, DT6 4QZ
Best for: Three hundred years of history
While not quite as historic as the 185 million-year-old Jurassic Coast on which it sits, this gorgeous, thatched stone pub dates back over three centuries and is a hub for local legends. Home to log fires, comfy sofas, and friendly staff, the Three Horseshoes in Burton Bradstock tries to be as welcoming as possible. It’s a refuge for weary walkers of the coastal path in need of a beer and a smile. Photo by Louise and Colin on Flickr
The Brisley Bell Inn
Location: Norfolk, NR20 5DW
Best for: Snuggling up by the fire
The Brisley Bell Inn describes itself as a ‘proper pub with good food’, and to be honest, we couldn’t put it better ourselves. Offering exceptional views of the Norfolk countryside, we suggest snuggling up by the open fire and gazing out across the misty rolling hills. When the sun sets, grab a book from the cosy snug in the back room or challenge a local to a board game.
The White Hart Inn
Location: Hawes, DL8 3QL
Best for: An Elizabethan atmosphere
A 16th-century coaching inn set on the cobbled streets of Hawes, a trip to White Hart Inn is a trip back in time. The restaurant, bar and dining room have all been expertly renovated, to preserve the pubs authentic Elizabethan aesthetic but with a contemporary twist. As soon as you step inside, several log fires and wood burners make the winter cold melt away and comfort you in a way that only a village pub can.
The New Inn
Location: Clapham, LA2 8HH
Best for: A candlelit dinner for two
Set in the picturesque village of Clapham, pubs don’t get more perfect than this. Quaint, quiet and incredibly cosy, New Inn is a grade II listed, 18th-century coaching inn offering classic country style, with a luxurious twist. The inn exudes elegance, with its soft grey colours, flagstone floors and decadent velvet and leather seating, while roaring fires and candlelight make it ideal for date-night.
The White Lion
Location: Hebden Bridge, HX7 8EX
Best for: Relaxing with a glass of whisky
Nestled on the banks of Hebden Bridge, White Lion is a beautifully restored inn, where classic charm meets contemporary comfort. Polished floors sit beneath wood-beamed ceilings, and an airy, open plan dining area lets you feel cosy yet comfortable. Outside, the cobbled courtyard overlooks the River Hebden. On a crisp winter’s eve, it’s the perfect place to kick back with a warming glass of whisky.
The Hollist Arms
Location: Chichester, GU28 9BZ
Best for: A traditional country pub feel
Many pubs claim to be ‘heart of the local community’, but nowhere says it more honestly than The Hollist Arms. Sat right in the centre of the village green, this warm and welcoming watering hole is the definition of a ‘country pub’. Picture wood-beamed ceilings, roaring fires and exposed stone walls. Alongside an extensive beer and wine list, the pub does simple pub grub incredibly well, meaning simple dishes get an incredible gourmet makeover.
The Felin Fach Griffin
Location: Brecon Beacons, LD3 0UB
Best for: Enjoying life at a slower pace
Nestled in the beautiful Brecon Beacons, The Felin Fach Griffin inn is all about living life in a lower gear. Just looking at its warm welcoming exterior will cause you to unclench. Inside, you’ll snuggle down on a soft sofa and enjoy a perfect pint of local ale or a simple serving of delicious comfort food. The only danger here is that after a couple of incredible hours in front of its roaring log fire, it can be hard to find the motivation to tear yourself away.
The Sidmouth Arms
Location: Upottery, EX14 9PN
Best for: Feeling like a local
When we think of a trip to one of Devon’s charming country pubs, we picture well-worn wooden furnishings, beautiful low-beamed ceilings and comfortable cushioned furniture in front of a roaring log fire. If you’re like us, then this stunning stone walled spot will tick all of your boxes. Nestled in the picturesque village of Upottery, amongst the rich, wild East Devon countryside, The Sidmouth Arms is everything you could ask for from a country pub.
Location: Shanklin, PO37 6BN
Best for: Utterly English romance
Nestled on the water’s edge, beside a silent, boat-lined beach and beneath the wooded coastal ravine of Shanklin, this enchanting pub looks like it was plucked from a fairytale. Inside, the cosy low-beamed dining area serves locally sourced seafood and a selection of real ales. The added romance of Fisherman’s Cottage is that, on stormy days, when the tide is high, it is forced to shut early as the waves can crash against the pub itself.
Location: Kirkby Lonsdale, LA6 2RJ
Best for: Incredible local cuisine
Sat in the unspoilt market town of Kirky Longside, on the borders of Lancashire, Yorkshire and Cumbria, this sleek, homely, dog-friendly pub looks like the grandest and friendliest living room you’ve ever seen. While you may come for the cosy decor, however, you’ll stay for the food. Renowned world-wide for its culinary excellence, The Highwayman showcases the three counties ‘food heroes’ by incorporating the very best local suppliers’ ingredients into award-winning masterpieces.