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Things to do in Suffolk


The County of Suffolk is a combination of gently rolling woodland, river valleys and estuaries, home to busy market towns and pretty timber-framed villages.

The forty miles of coastline is largely unspoilt, with steep shingle terraces and low crumbling cliffs, a sign of constant battle with the sea.

Suffolk is famous for its vast skies, stunning coastline and delightful countryside.

Whatever your interests there is much to enjoy in Suffolk all year round

There are many attractive towns around the coastline, now designated a world heritage site of 'outstanding beauty'.

A distinctive feature of the Suffolk coast is its many shingle beaches, which are a haven for a fascinating mix of wildlife and plants.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.

Fishing boats can be seen resting on the raked banks of pebbles or out at sea trawling the waves and fresh fish can be purchased from the fishermen's huts on the beaches.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.The Edwardian resort of Felixstowe has retained much of its original charm, with beautiful south facing gardens, pier, theatre, four miles of beach, historic fort and nature reserve.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.The historic town of Aldeburgh situated on the site of a medieval fishing and shipbuilding centre is host to the International Aldeburgh Festival of music and the arts at Snape Maltings Concert Hall. The High Street has many attractive Georgian buildings. Historic buildings include the Moot Hall (c. 1520) and the 15th century church.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.Southwold lies in the centre of the Heritage Coast, the River Blyth to the south and the Buss Creek to the north form the town boundaries, virtually making Southwold an island, limiting development and helping to retain Southwold´s old world charm. The Suffolk Tourist Information Centre is in the High Street.

Lowestoft is Britain's most easterly town, famous for its maritime connections and award winning beaches. An important piece of Lowestoft's history has been recently revived in the shape of Lowestoft Porcelain. In production from 1757-1801, original examples are highly prized by collectors around the world. The new factory and gallery are open to the public.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.Ipswich is the County town and England's oldest continuously settled town since Anglo Saxon times, with medieval streets and architectural gems. The tourist information centre is in St. Stephens Church.

Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.The Heart of Suffolk is an ideal base for exploring the peaceful countryside and historic towns like Stowmarket in the Gipping valley, home to the Museum of East Anglian Life.

Bury St.Edmunds grew up around the powerful Abbey of St Edmund in medieval times. For five centuries it was visited by pilgrims who worshiped at the shrine of St Edmund, the martyred King of East Anglia.

Lavenham is one of several wool towns in Suffolk and is one of the best preserved medieval towns in the country, its appearance remains relatively untouched by time.

In the west of the County an area of rural hideaways include Thetford forest and countryside treats in peaceful surroundings. Newmarket, famous as the headquarters of British racing, is a thriving town with Picture courtesy of www.britainonview.com.excellent shopping facilities.

Sudbury, in the south of Suffolk, is the birthplace of the painter Thomas Gainsborough, and a fine collection of his works can be seen at Gainsborough's House.

Constable Country offers the chance to explore Dedham Vale and the Stour Valley where John Constable, one of England's most celebrated painters, found his inspiration. Walking in his footsteps offers visitors a chance to experience rural England at its most peaceful.

Days out in Suffolk

  • Africa Alive!
    Africa Alive! is one of the UK's largest and most exciting wildlife attractions.
    Africa Alive!
  • Beccles & District Museum
    The Museum is housed in Leman House which was probably built around 1570 and was completely restored and modernised in the 1760s.
    Beccles & District Museum
  • Dunwich Heath Coastal Centre and Beach
    Dunwich Heath is one of Suffolk's most important conservation areas. There are many good walks and wonderful views of the Suffolk coastline.
    Dunwich Heath Coastal Centre and Beach
  • East Anglia Transport Museum
    At Carlton Colville you will find a unique transport museum, this is the only place in the British Isles where visitors can not only view, but also ride on all three principal forms of public transport.
    East Anglia Transport Museum
  • Easton Farm Park
    Easton Farm Park was set up in 1974 to offer family fun and education in the countryside. The founders wanted to give everybody the opportunity to learn about the countryside at first hand.
    Easton Farm Park
  • Framlingham Castle
    Framlingham is a delightful market town, near the beautiful Suffolk coast.
    Framlingham Castle
  • Gainsborough's House
    Gainsborough's House is the birthplace museum of Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788), one of England's most celebrated artists. More of his paintings, drawings and prints are on display here than anywhere else in the world.
    Gainsborough's House
  • Halesworth and District Museum
    The Museum was founded in 1984 and has always been in the care of volunteers. In 2000 it moved to the newly refurbished station building. Railway Heritage paid for the restoration of the station's unique movable platforms.
    Halesworth and District Museum
  • Ickworth House, Park & Garden
    Ickworth is one of the most unusual and most surprising of National Trust properties, an elegant Italianate house and gardens set within spectacular English parkland.
    Ickworth House, Park & Garden
  • Kentwell Hall and Gardens
    Kentwell Hall is a romantic, moated, mellow brick Tudor mansion in a tranquil parkland setting.
    Kentwell Hall and Gardens
  • Lavenham Guildhall
    This early 16th-century timber-framed building overlooks and dominates the town's market place. Inside are exhibitions on timber-framed buildings, local history, farming and industry, as well as the story of the medieval woollen cloth trade.
    Lavenham Guildhall
  • Little Hall
    Little Hall is a late 14th Century Hall House on the main square, it mirrors the history of Lavenham over the centuries. It was built in the 1390s as a family house and workplace.
    Little Hall
  • Long Shop Museum
    Discover Leiston's unique history - 200 years of local, social and industrial innovation- in the Home of the Garrett Collection.
    Long Shop Museum
  • Lowestoft & East Suffolk Maritime Museum
    The Museum specialises in the history of the Lowestoft fishing fleet, from early sail, to steam and through to modern diesel vessels. Methods of fishing are also recorded.
    Lowestoft & East Suffolk Maritime Museum
  • Mechanical Musical Museum & Bygones
    The Mechanical Music Museum and Bygones at Cotton is a veritable Aladdin's cave, full of musical treasures.
    Mechanical Musical Museum & Bygones
  • Melford Hall
    Melford Hall contains a wonderful family history and a treasury of fascinating memorabilia which makes this one of the finest stately homes in the East of England.
    Melford Hall
  • Melford Hall - A National Trust Property
    Melford Hall is a romantic turreted brick Tudor mansion near the green in the unspoilt village of Long Melford.
    Melford Hall - A National Trust Property
  • Mildenhall Museum
    Mildenhall Museum, housed in two nineteenth century cottages, tells the story of the local landscape, its flora, its fauna, its people and their history.
  • Museum of East Anglian Life
    Discover the history and natural world of East Anglia on our beautiful 75 acre site-explore nearly 3km of woodland and riverside nature trails. Learn about fascinating East Anglian crafts and traditional Gypsy culture
    Museum of East Anglian Life
  • National Horseracing Museum & Tours
    Man's Best Friend - Dogs and Hounds of Field and ShowThe Heath and the HorseMan's Best Friend - Dogs and Hounds of Field and Show.
    National Horseracing Museum & Tours
  • Newmarket Racecourses
    The spring and autumn months on The Rowley Mile mean world class racing on the 'Course of Champions'. The course can be identified by the magnificent Millennium Grandstand which boasts world class facilities.
    Newmarket Racecourses
  • Orford Ness National Nature Reserve
    Orford Ness is a wild and remote area and is the largest vegetated shingle spit in Europe. It contains a variety of habitats which are home to nationally rare birds, animals and plants.
    Orford Ness National Nature Reserve
  • Otley Hall
    Otley Hall is a stunningly beautiful 15th century medieval moated Hall. Still a family home, it is set in 10 acres of gardens in the tranquil Suffolk countryside.
    Otley Hall
  • Pakenham Watermill
    The parish of Pakenham is unique in Britain in having both a working water mill and a working windmill.
    Pakenham Watermill
  • Snape Maltings Concert Hall
    The Maltings at Snape, built in 19th century, was one of the largest barley maltings in East Anglia. It became uneconomic and malting stopped in 1965 and the owner leased some of the buildings to the Aldeburgh Festival.
    Snape Maltings Concert Hall
  • Somerleyton Hall & Gardens
    Somerleyton Hall is the family home of The Hon. Hugh and Lara Crossley.
    Somerleyton Hall & Gardens
  • St Edmundsbury Cathedral
    For nearly 1,000 years the site of Suffolk's Cathedral has been one of worship and pilgrimage.
    St Edmundsbury Cathedral
  • Sutton Hoo
    At Sutton Hoo you can get close to one of the most important archaeological finds in this country's history - a fascinating story of Anglo-Saxon pagan kings, ship burials, treasure and warriors.
    Sutton Hoo
  • Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
    Recently restored to its original Regency glory after a two-year re-development programme, the Theatre Royal offers a wide range of contemporary and period drama, as well as dance, music, comedy, family shows, guided tours and workshops.
    Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
  • West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village & Country Park
    Beyond the car park, play area, visitor centre, shop and café is a 125 acre Country Park bursting with life.
    West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village & Country Park

Places to Visit in Suffolk

  • Aldeburgh
    Aldbeburgh was made famous in recent times by the refurbishment of the Snape Maltings on the site of a former brewery. The magnificent concert hall is the setting for music and literary festivals.
  • Bardwell
    Bardwell is a pretty, well-kept village with a Georgian windmill and 15th century church. Built around 1825, Bardwell Mill was completely restored in the 1980's and was fully operational until the sails were torn off in the gales of 1987.
  • Benacre
    The village of Benacre lies on the main A12 trunk road between the villages of Wrentham and Kessingland and naturally a part of the vast Benacre Estate.
  • Blythburgh
    The historical village of Blythburgh has been bisected by the busy A12 road which carries a short bridge over the River Blyth from where a panoramic view can be seen towards Southwold and Walberswick.
  • Bungay
    Bungay is a town situated on the Norfolk/Suffolk border. It hosts a thriving market each Thursday, is held around the ancient Buttercross. For the tourist their are numerous specialist shops to browse.
  • Bury St. Edmunds
    Few areas in England can match the beauty and history of Bury St, Edmunds and the surrounding towns, villages and countryside. Legends and folklore add to the rich web of history, which is woven into every street and village.
    Bury St. Edmunds
  • Carlton Colville
    Carlton Colville is a village situated three and a half miles S.W. of Lowestoft on the south side of the River Waveney.The village has grown extensively during recent years with many new properties being built.
    Carlton Colville
  • Cavendish
    Cavendish is the perfect 'picture postcard' English village with a 14th-15th century church, vineyard and the Sue Ryder Foundation Museum, which tells the life story of Sue Ryder and the history of the Foundation.
  • Clare
    Clare is a small market town; important in earlier times because of its position at the head of the River Stour, then gateway to East Anglia - and its 'clear' water, hence its name, Clare.
  • Corton
    Corton lies on the northern outskirts of Lowestoft, close to the villages of Gunton and Hopton-on-'ea.
  • Covehithe
    The village of Covehithe was previously known as North Hales, in which time it was much larger than it is today due to the sea encroaching more and more each year, the extent of this can be seen with ordinance survey maps.
  • Dunwich
    Dunwich, which lies south of Southwold and Walberswick is a very interesting place for both bird watchers on the heath, and people who are interested in history.
  • East Bergholt
    East Bergholt is situated close to the Essex border in south Suffolk, just off the A12 which runs between Colchester and Ipswich.
    East Bergholt
  • Elveden
    The small village of Elveden lies in the Forest Heath district of Suffolk. At the last count in 2005 it had a population of 270 residents. It is located on the busy A11 between Norwich and Cambridge.
  • Eriswell
    Eriswell, Suffolk is a very historic village located between Mildenhall and Lakenheath. The focal point of the community is the church of St. Lawrence and Peter...
  • Euston
    Euston is situated on the Suffolk/Norfolk border and is well known for Euston Hall, the Duke of Grafton's home. Built in the 1660's for Lord Arlington, the hall houses a fine collection of paintings of Charles II, his family and court.
  • Felixstowe
    Situated on the coast of Suffolk, Felixstowe is a large town best known for its container port.
  • Gunton
    The village of Gunton is actually a northern suburb of Lowestoft, it is a vastly populated village situated on both sides of the A12 trunk road.
  • Halesworth
    Halesworth is a very interesting market town with ancient and modern buildings.
  • Haverhill
    Fire destroyed most of Haverhill's older buildings in 1665, although Anne of Cleves' House, which once formed part of the dower of the Queen's Consort of England has been completely renovated.
  • Ipswich
    Ipswich is on the estuary of the River Orwell, in Suffolk. 43 miles south of Norwich. With a population of over 122,000 it is the third largest settlement in East England.
  • Ixworth
    Ixworth boasts many buildings of historical importance, including several in the High Street. One is timber framed with two gables and pargetting.
  • Kessingland
    Kessingland Village lies between the towns of Southwold and Lowestoft, and is by-passed by the A12 trunk road. It used to be two seperate villages namely, Kessingland and Kessingland Beach
  • Lavenham
    Lavenham is a beautiful Suffolk town retaining an old-world feel which makes it a favourite with film and TV companies.
  • Lowestoft
    The town of Lowestoft is the most easterly place in Great Britain and the first place to see the sun-rise.
  • Newmarket
    Newmarket in Suffolk is well-known as a horseracing centre, located 65 miles north of London It is the largest racehorse training centre in Britain.
  • Offton
    Offton is a small rural village that is about 5 miles from Needham market and about 8 miles from Ipswich town. This is an ordinary little village with a village hall and an old post office.
  • Oulton
    The village of Oulton, although being adjacent to Oulton Broad has it's own Church, Doctors Surgery, Village Hall, Playing Field, a Public House, convenient shops and a frequent bus service.
  • Pakefield
    The seaside village of Pakefield lies on the southern outskirts of the town of Lowestoft with the village of Kirkley in between.
  • Pakenham
    Pakenham is the last British village with both a working watermill and windmill, on a site where corn has been ground for 900 years.
  • Peasenhall
    Peasenhall lies along a valley running east to west and Peasenhalls main street (the A1120) runs alongside the Causeway - a brook, which is now a culvert with bridges across it.
  • Reydon
    The village of Reydon is on the outskirts of the town of Southwold.Three roads lead to Reydon Corner, from Wangford, Wrentham and Halesworth via Blythburgh, then converging into one road which leads into Southwold.
  • Somerleyton
    The magnificent Hall at Somerleyton should not be missed when visiting this pretty village. The extensive grounds, gardens, and the Hall are all open to the general public on certain days.
  • South Cove
    South Cove is a small village on the B1127 road between the villages of Wrentham and Reydon and close to the town of Southwold.
    South Cove
  • Southwold
    Southwold is a coastal Suffolk town which looks out over Sole Bay. Boasting award winning beaches and a range of interesting features it's a great place to visit.
  • Stanton
    Wyken Hall is a romantic Elizabethan Manor House on a farming estate surrounded by four acres of gardens. The vineyard produces grapes for some of the finest East Anglian wines.
  • Troston
    In 2008, Troston is a lovely quiet village. It has a wonderful old church and a big gorgeous green.
  • Ufford
    Ufford has been by-passed by the A12 trunk road and lies approximately 12 to 13 miles from the town of Ipswich. The western part of the village is on the B1438 which was previously the main road before the construction of the A12.
  • Walberswick
    The little village of Walberswick stands on the bank of the River Blyth at the harbour mouth which can be crossed to the popular, unspoilt town of Southwold, either by walking over the Bailey Bridge or, in season, using the Foot Ferry.
  • Wangford
    Wangford is a little island of tranquillity in a mad world. The great sentinel of St. Peter and St. Paul Church stands on the site of an 1160 Cluniac priory. The village is full of 17th and 18th century listed buildings.
  • West Row
    West Row although in Suffolk, is very close to the borders of Cambridgeshire and Norfolk.
    West Row
  • West Stow
    West Stow Country Park consists of 125 acres of heathland; nature reserve with river, lake and woodland, all linked by a nature trail.
    West Stow
  • Woolverstone
    Woolverstone is a small village on the River Orwell, approximately five miles outside Ipswich.
  • Worlingworth
    Worllingworth is a quiet rural village situated approximately 6 miles north west of Framlingham, with its well preserved castle and 6 miles north east of Debenham, a 15th Century wool town.
  • Wrentham
    The village of Wrentham is situated on the A12 trunk road between Wangford and Kessingland with three minor roads leading off to Southwold, Covehithe and Beccles, making it a five cross road junction.

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