The Dolphin Inn


Seaside inn with friendly bar and airy restaurant for fresh seafood. Minmere bird sanctuary is close, the beach a short stroll


3 rooms


Rooms sleep 2


Thorpeness is a one-off, the perfect antidote to the 21st century. The village was brainchild of G S Ogilvie, who set out to create a holiday resort for children, free of piers and promenades, with safety assured. His master stroke is the Meare – a 64-acre lake, never more than three feet deep, which was inspired by his friend, J M Barrie, creator of Peter Pan. Children can row, canoe or sail up creeks and discover islands that may have a lurking (wooden) crocodile round the corner. The Dolphin – bang in the middle of the village – is a great little inn with three cute bedrooms that come in smart cottage style; expect old pine furniture, soft colours and spotless bathrooms. Downstairs, two lively bars come with open fires and wooden floors, while doors open onto a vast garden for barbecues, hog roasts and al fresco dinners (the pub heaves in summer). No-nonsense food hits the spot, perhaps grilled sardines with basil pesto, chargrilled steak with chunky chips, a plate of local cheeses. There’s a great golf course, an unspoilt beach, and the birdwatching centre at Minsmere is close.


  • Hot tub
  • WiFi
  • Swimming pool
  • Mobile reception
  • Spa
  • Breakfast included
  • Open fire / woodburner
  • Bar
  • Parking on premises
  • Licensed premises
  • Free parking nearby
  • Meals available
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Paid parking nearby
  • Accessible by public transport
  • Wheelchair access
  • Limited mobility
  • Air conditioning
  • Relaxation areas
  • Garden
  • Tennis court
  • Pets welcome

Family friendly

  • Baby monitor
  • Children welcome
  • Books and toys
  • Babies welcome
  • Stair gates
  • High chair


  • Pub/bar within 3 miles
  • Restaurant within 3 miles
  • Shop within 3 miles


  • Bikes available
  • Food courses
  • Kayaking
  • Other courses
  • Sailing
  • Surfing
  • Wild swimming

& pricing

Booking information

Owner has pets
Animals living on the property.
Lunch & dinner £5-£30.


Nightly price
from £75
Singles from £55.
3 Doubles
From £75


We had a great stay here with a comfortable roon and excellent food. The staff are outstanding, very welcoming, friendly and attentive without being intrusive.


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The neighbourhood

Local points of interest from David James

  • Thorpeness is situated on the coast inbetween Minsmere, the RSPB bird reserve, (great for walks and bird watching) and the popular town of Aldeburgh with its famous Food and Drink festival and Literary & Music festivals at the Snape Maltings concert hall.
  • The Meare boating lake, 64 acre and never more than three-feet deep, was inspired by the creator of Peter Pan. Children can row, canoe up creeks and discover islands.
  • Thorpeness golf club and country club boasts a superb golf course and tennis courts available for all to use.