Lyme Regis is a small town in West Dorset. It is part of a World Heritage Site, as it sits on the Jurassic Coast, and is a popular tourist spot. The history of the town can be traced back to Saxon times.
As well as being surrounded by the natural beauty of Dorset coastlines, Lyme Regis is steeped in history dating back to the 8th century AD. The harbour wall, named The Cobb, began as a wooden wall in the 14th century. It was built to protect the town from the sea, and created an artificial harbour which made the local port and shipbuilding industry boom. This industry began to die down when ships became too large for the small harbour to accommodate. The sea wall, and Lyme Regis itself, is mentioned in several literary works including novels by Jane Austen and John Fowles.
Lyme Regis is also a significant archaeological site. In the 19th century, Mary Anning found and identified several dinosaur fossils in the cliffs to the east of the town. This history proves a draw for visitors, with the Fossil Museum and Dinosaurland being popular attractions. Lyme Regis also holds annual events like the Fossil Festival, Carnival, and Regatta.
The town is supposedly the origin of the ‘Lassie’ legend, after a Dorset dog rescued a seaman left for dead after a German U-boat attack in the First World War. The locals claim the legendary dog with pride. The Town Mill water mill, established in 1340, has been restored and now produces flour. Lyme Regis Marine Aquarium includes the town’s maritime history, as well as local sea life, all housed in an 18th century building on the harbour.
In 2019 the population of Lyme Regis was estimated to be around 4805, making it a very small town. Despite the low permanent population, hundreds of thousands of people visit every year, which can make parking in and around the area quite difficult – not to mention expensive. On this page we’ve collected the best options for free parking in the town, as well as the cheapest paid parking.
Free Parking in Lyme Regis
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On-Street Parking in Lyme Regis
One of the most convenient parking options is to park in one of the dedicated spaces on-street in Lyme Regis’ central main roads. This is perfect for a quick trip to the town, as they are almost all time-restricted. Please note that all of these streets are on slopes, with Pound Street being the steepest one to climb. These spaces can be found on:
• Broad Street DT7 3QE – up to 1 hour
• Silver Street DT7 3HU – unrestricted in north end, 10 parking spaces outside of the library, and up to 2 hours free at the south end
• Pound Street DT7 3HX – up to 2 hours
Be sure to look for any nearby signage explaining time restrictions before you leave your car, and remember that on-street parking is done at your own risk. While these are convenient and free (for a short time), on-street parking gets filled very quickly and there is no guarantee you will be able to use one. There are still a few other options for parking in Lyme Regis, however.
Free Overnight Parking in Lyme Regis
Some of the paid-for car parks are only restricted during the day time, and become free to park in after hours. These spaces are ideal for staying in Lyme Regis overnight, or until later in the evening – though there will be an early start to move the car before charges return! The times in which the car parks are unrestricted are:
• Holmbush Car Park DT7 3HX – 6pm-7am
• Woodmead Car Park DT7 3PG – Summer: 9pm-7am, Winter: 6pm-7am
• Broad Street Car Park DT7 3RQ – 6pm-7am
• Cobb Gate Car Park – 6pm-7am
• Monmouth Beach Car Park – Summer: 9pm-7am Winter: 6pm-7am
Park & Ride Service in Lyme Regis
Another option to consider is the Lyme Regis Park & Ride, just to the northeast of the town. Parking in the car park is completely free, with only a bus fare to pay to bring your right into the centre. This can be a good way to avoid searching for a suitable parking space, and not having to worry about time restrictions that are often found in the town. The Park & Ride is at Chalmouth Road DT7 3FG, around 1.5 miles from the Lyme Regis beach – you could even walk if you’re feeling ambitious!
Bus fares are as follows:
• Adult Single: £2.00
• Child Single: £1.50
• Adult Return: £3.50
• Child Return: £2.50
• Group Ticket (up to 5 people): £8.00
• Concessionary passes are accepted
One downside to the Park & Ride is that it’s only in service at particular times of the year. In 2022, those dates are currently:
• Sunday 10th April-Saturday 23rd April
• Monday 2nd May
• Sunday 29th May-Saturday 4th June
• Sunday 24th July-Wednesday 31st August
Cheapest Paid Parking Options in Lyme Regis
Of course, the option to pay for parking is always there, if you prefer the security and convenience of an official car park. These are the cheapest options that we could find in Lyme Regis:
• Cobb Gate DT7 3QD – £3.00 for 2 hours
• Broad Street DT7 3QR – £3.00 for 2 hours
• Woodmead DT7 3PG – £2.20 for 2 hours
• Holmbush DT7 3HX – £2.20 for 2 hours
• Charmouth Road DT7 3DR – £3.00 for 2 hours
• Monmouth Beach DT7 3LE – £3.00 for 2 hours
Lyme Regis is a beautiful, historical town on the dramatic Jurassic coast. It would be a shame to have a headache with trying to find parking, whether for free or for less money. We hope the information on this page will help you with that, so you can enjoy your time in this jewel of West Dorset.