Southend has everything, from chips to curry to high-end glam. Although the best is not always the most expensive, you’ve got everything you could possibly want, wrapped up in one town. Hungry yet? You absolutely will be after you’ve read our selection of the best restaurants in and around Southend… Plus for fair weather diners, we’ve put together a list of some of the best al fresco eating spots in the area.

If you’re coming from London, you can get to Southend easily by jumping on a Shoeburyness-bound train from Fenchurch Street – you’ll be there in under an hour and if you buy online 3+ days in advance you can get a return from £12.10. Plus kids go for £2 on weekends and during school holidays. Check out our app and Smartcard for the quickest way to buy your tickets in advance and avoid ticket office queues.

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pipe of port

Away from the beach front and back into town the Pipe of Port is a wine bar come gastrobar, with good old fashioned food and perfect pairing know-how. The bar is quirky, but the food is not. Great value, great venue.

High Street, Southend Central

Ocean Beach

ocean beach

Part trendy wine bar, part bistro and fancy beach cafe is how we’d define Ocean Beach. It’s right on the pebble beach of the Eastern Esplanade and boasts gorgeous views over the sea and estuary. There’s a huge glass terrace, with sliding roof. It’s perfect for family brunch, or a stop-off on your day out. We’re fans.

Eastern Esplanade, Southend East

Baboush Leigh


Middle Eastern flavours, Southend sparkle at Leigh-on-Sea’s most glam venue. As well as the restaurant, there’s a cocktail lounge, complete with lavish decor. We love Bring Your Own Bubbles on Wednesdays and Oysters and Champagne at lunchtimes. A huge hit with locals, you can even join the Gold Club. Towie us up!

The Ridgeway, Chalkwell

Roslin Beach Hotel


Roslin Beach Hotel is a 4-star boutique hotel situated in the heart of Thorpe Bay. You don’t have to stay there to enjoy the food in their restaurant, or their lovely afternoon tea. With amazing views across the Thames Estuary and delicious cocktails.

10-14 Thorpe Esplanade, Thorpe Bay

Park Inn by Radisson


The Park Inn by Radisson Palace sits proudly in the heart of the Southend seafront. The classic seaside hotel is now part of the Radisson group and the RBG Bar & Grill serves typical hotel bistro style food.

Church Rd, Southend Central

Outdoor dining in South Essex

If you’re looking for somewhere to enjoy a tasty morsel while basking in the British sunshine, look no further than our selection of some of the best outdoor dining spots in the Southend area.

The Boatyard

The Boatyard is a classic fish and seafood restaurant, serving up delightful fresh starters, main and sharing platters on its atmospheric deck overlooking the sea. Don’t worry if you’re not a fish lover – the Boathouse has other options, from steak to vegan tarts. There’s also a strong cocktail menu or a wine list to put the finishing touch on your meal.

High Street, Leigh-on-Sea

Billy Hundreds Fish n Tapas

Fish tapas restaurant

Billy Hundreds is a real local favourite, and for good reason. Right on the seafront in Thorpe Bay, this family-run restaurant has a charming partly-covered outdoor eating area. There’s an excellent, reasonably-priced tapas menu on offer. The focus is on fish, but there are plenty of other options available. You can also come down for breakfast, when you can choose from a selection of cooked options.

Eastern Esplanade, Southend East

Sara’s Tea Garden

Delicious Scones, Cream And Jam On A Wooden Table

Sara’s is a quirky, family-run cafe with a lovely garden space. Come here for hot drinks, homemade cakes, afternoon tea and classic cafe lunch dishes such as jacket potatoes and paninis. The afternoon tea in particular is a real hit, great value and plenty of variety. There’s even a dog menu if you’re planning on bringing your furry friend along!

High Street, Leigh-on-Sea

Oyster Creek

Oyster On Plate With Lemon.

Oyster Creek Kitchen has a garden space perfect for alfresco dining, with the sea in sight. This is another fish-focused restaurant, serving oysters in 4 ways to kick your meal off, followed by a selection of starters, platters, pasta, burgers and other mains. There are also meat and vegetarian options if you’re not a fish eater. Choose from a wide selection of drinks to accompany your meal, including cocktails, wine, beer or soft drinks.

Western Esplanade, Westcliff

Corner Club

Corner Club is a wonderful local bar and restaurant with a covered terrace. It doesn’t take bookings so may be a good bet for last-minute plans, but expect it to fill up quickly in the evening and at weekends. You’ll find delicious coffee, pastries and cakes here, as well as cocktails and an ever-changing hot food menu for a little later in the day.

Broadway, Chalkwell

Saltwater Beach Cafe

Bagel on a board

This is another beachside venue with a small number of tables available for outdoor dining with exceptionally friendly service. The cafe offers hot and cold breakfast options, lunch ranging from soup to bagels, as well as weekly specials. There are vegan and gluten free options, and the cafe has a strong focus on sustainability and helping the environment – they even host regular beach cleans! You can even make more of your trip to this seaside café by booking a lesson in stand-up paddle boarding with their qualified instructors.

Chalkwell Esplanade, Chalkwell

Stop the World Cafe

Stop the World Cafe has a small, covered outdoor seating area on thriving Leigh-on-Sea Broadway. This relaxed venue has some delightful breakfast and lunch options, using fresh, high-quality ingredients. There’s also afternoon tea on offer, including sandwiches, sweet and savoury scones and homemade cakes. The friendly team here will always give you service with a smile!

Broadway, Leigh-on-Sea

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