The Suffolk Coast
  • River Deben at Ramsholt - (c) Gill Moon Photography

Suffolk Coast Winter Bucket List

A visit to The Suffolk Coast in winter is a truly unique experience; as the crowds seeking sunny days by the sea have headed home, it becomes a place to get away from it all, experience something new, and recharge the batteries.

Whether you travel from afar or are just a short drive away, make sure these things to do are on your bucket list!

1. Walk the historic scores in Lowestoft

A walk up and down the historic scores is the ideal way to discover Lowestoft's maritime history. A series of narrow lanes created over time by the fishermen and women bringing their catch up from the beach village to the High Street.

During the winter months, you can warm up with a hot chocolate in Martello's Cafe in Sparrow's Nest and if you're feeling particularly energetic, pop on your running shoes and follow the route of the annual Scores Race; the course takes you from the High Street, along the sea wall and back up and down the scores; including 401 steps!

2. See migrating birds over the Orwell Estuary

Experience one of East Anglia’s finest wildlife spectacles and see thousands of birds flying over the magnificent Orwell estuary, aboard the Thames Sailing Barge Victor. The half day excursion is hosted by an on-board expert who provides a continuous informative commentary to help you get the most out of the bird-watching and environment. 

For more information, visit www.sbvictor.co.uk/

TTDA - Sailing Barge Victor - Thumbnail

3. Go to a winter concert at Snape Maltings

The world-famous concert hall at Snape Maltings plays host to a range of concerts this winter; with everything from classical and choral to percussion and jazz. 

The Winter 2017/Spring 2018 programme includes leading artists and ensembles including Mitsuko Uchida, Angelika Kirchschlager, English Touring Opera, Ute Lemper, Håkan Hardenberger & Colin Currie, Tenebrae, Nicola Benedetti and Mark Padmore.

Make sure you have the Christmas Weekend from 15th - 17th December is in your diary! On Saturday 16th December, Father Christmas will be sailing into Snape by Thames Sailing Barge plus there's a range of family events including The Snowman and Paddington Bear’s First Concert with live orchestra, BBC Radio Suffolk’s Carol Concert (in aid of BBC Children in Need) and performances from Norwich Cathedral Choir, Aldeburgh Voices and The Suffolk Ensemble. There’ll also be fun family activities around the site including workshops, storytelling sessions and a trail.

The Christmas Farmers Market on 23rd December is also a must! Stock up on locally made meats, cheeses, breads, chutneys and all you need for Christmas dinner including sprouts, parsnips, Christmas pudding and chestnuts.

For more information, visit snapemaltings.co.uk

4. Eat steaming hot fish and chips on the beach at Aldeburgh

After a bracing walk along the beach, stopping en route to admire Maggi Hambling's sculpture The Scallop, head into the town to peruse the independent shops, boutiques and cafes before paying a visit to Aldeburgh Fish & Chip Shop.

Choose your steaming hot cod and chips to go, and walk through the historic buildings onto the beach, where you can find a spot to listen to the waves crash, watch the boats go by, and tuck in to the 'world's best fish and chips'. 

For more information, visit www.aldeburghfishandchips.co.uk

FD - Aldeburgh Fish and Chips - chips on beach

5. Amble up the Deben Estuary

One of the most picturesque walks on The Suffolk Coast, start in Woodbridge and follow the River Wall, past the boats and out along the banks of the estuary. Remember to pack the binoculars too and look out for Redshanks, Curlews and Oyster Catchers to name but a few.

Afterwards, head into the town and pay a visit to one of the many cafes and bakeries (our favourites are The Tea Hut, The Firestation Cafe and The Cake Shop Bakery), Or make a weekend of it, and book a stay at The Crown at Woodbridge; complete with dinner in the award-winning restaurant, followed by cocktails in the stylish bar. 

Download the route map here:


6. Stroll along Southwold Pier

Southwold's historic pier plays home to a cafe and restaurant plus Tim Hunkin's Under the Pier Show; collection of hand-built, utterly silly, totally potty machinery, the Wacky Walk of Mirrors, the Waterclock and The Quantum Tunnelling Telescope; demonstrating the latest advances in particle physics and quantum dynamics focusing on time and space to bring you everything that could possibly happen in the North Sea... including nuclear explosions and singing mermaids!

After a stroll along the pier and out to sea, enjoy locally caught fish and chips or a heart roast dinner in The Boardwalk Restaurant, pastries, cakes and coffee in The Clockhouse Cafe or a full english breakfast in the Beach Cafe. 

For more information, visit www.southwoldpier.co.uk

TTDA - Southwold Pier - Water Clock

7. Get muddy in Rendlesham Forest

Young explorers will love hunting for UFOs in Rendlesham Forest; the setting for the well-known UFO incident which occurred on 26th December 1980. It's reported that Servicemen who were stationed at RAF Woodbridge saw lights in the trees and discovered a conical object the size of a car, floating in a forest clearing. 

After completing the UFO trail, head to the giant play area; complete with tube slide, obstacle course, zip line and swings. The forest is a favourite of dogs too, with miles of woodland pathway to sniff and run along.

If you prefer to travel at a faster pace, then hop on your bike and whip along the Rendlesham to Shingle Street Explorer cycle route.

8. Watch the Old Glory Molly Men

Molly dancing traditionally only appeared during the depths of winter as a means of earning some money when the land was frozen or waterlogged and could not be worked. East Anglia's 'Morris Dancers', the Molly dancers of Old Glory are all men, whilst the musicians are all women playing a variety of instruments, which may include at least one four-stop melodeon in the "Suffolk key" of C, concertina, recorder, drums, trombone, “tea-chest” bass and rommelpot.

Throughout December you can catch them stomping their feet and waving their firey staffs at locations including Bungay Christmas Market on Sunday 3rd December at 1.30pm, The Three Horseshoes in North Cove, Beccles on Saturday 16th December at 8pm, The Locks Inn at Geldeston, Beccles on the Winter Solstice, Thursday 21st December at 8pm, and Christmas Eve at various venues in Southwold at approximately 7.45pm and The Bell Inn at Walberswick at 9.30pm.

After Christmas they will be back, celebrating Plough Monday at the Rumburgh Buck on Monday 8th January at 8.30pm followed by a Village Wassail at The White Horse in Sweffling on Saturday 20th January at 7.30pm. 


Things to see and do


Leiston Football Club

Leiston Football Club

Hidden away in the industrial town of Leiston is one of the jewels in the sporting crown of Suffolk. Leiston FC has been in existence since 1880 but it is its recent history that has made it the go to venue for football fans in the area.


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Free wifi Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


The Cut - Halesworth

The Cut - Halesworth

Halesworth

The Cut Arts Centre offers Halesworth and the surrounding countryside an extensive range of arts, music, theatre, dance, comedy, cinema, workshops and art exhibitions. 

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National Trust Sutton Hoo

National Trust Sutton Hoo

Woodbridge

Discover the story of the Anglo-Saxons at the burial ground of kings

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Suffolk Wildlife Trust

Suffolk Wildlife Trust

Felixstowe

From tiny meadows to rolling heaths, the nature reserves extend all the way along the Suffolk Coast from Trimley Marshes at Felixstowe to Lound Lakes north of Lowestoft and are some of Suffolk's most inspiring wild places. 

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Collen & Clare

Collen & Clare

The beautiful multi-brand stores in Southwold and Burnham Market offer Womenswear, Menswear, Beauty, Lingerie and Accessories and there is also a contemporary Womenswear and Accessories store in Aldeburgh.

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Free wifi Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Southwold Arts Centre

Southwold Arts Centre

The première entertainment venue in the popular Suffolk coastal town of Southwold; presenting a year-round programme of events including music, theatre, film, comedy, craft and antique fairs, art exhibitions, workshops, community events and outdoor events. Southwold Arts Centre also offers a number of spaces for hire; suitable for live events, meetings, family celebrations and exhibition space.

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Free wifi Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Kirkley

Kirkley

Home to an award-winning, blue-flag beach and independent shops cafes and restaurants, the village of Kirkley sits just south of Lowestoft and is the ideal place to enjoy a family day out.

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Southwold Pier

Southwold Pier

Southwold

Southwold is a popular destination for the many visitors to the East Coast and its most prominent attraction, the pier, hosts a wide range of things to see and do.

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Deben Boat Trips

Deben Boat Trips

Join the 'Oystercatcher' for a 30 minute river trip. Departing from The Quay, Waldringfield.

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The Lettering Arts Centre

The Lettering Arts Centre

The Lettering Arts Centre is the home of the Lettering Arts Trust, an independent charity which champions Britain's rich heritage in the lettering arts. 

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Claremont Pier Leisure and Family Entertainment Centre

Claremont Pier Leisure and Family Entertainment Centre

Claremont Pier Leisure and Family Entertainment Centre is situated in between Lowestoft's Award winning beaches in South Lowestoft. 

It's a hive of activity and entertainment, from traditional fruit machines and video games, to roller skating, fantastic live music, perfect party venue, great fish and chips and fabulous brasserie dining with the best sea views in town!

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Thorpeness Golf Club

Thorpeness Golf Club

Thorpeness

Thorpeness Golf Club is a coastal heathland course designed by famous Scottish architect James Braid and opened in 1922. It winds its way through silver birch, pine trees, gorse and purple heather. The course is 6,421 yards long and plays to a par of 70.

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Free wifi Dog friendly


Outdoor Play Areas On The Suffolk Coast

Outdoor Play Areas On The Suffolk Coast

Whether it's a traditional Victorian park, a fort in the middle of a forest, or a zip wire along the river, the outdoor play areas on The Suffolk Coast are the perfect place for kids to let off steam and enjoy the great outdoors.

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Lady Florence River Cruise Restaurant

Lady Florence River Cruise Restaurant

Lady Florence River Cruise and  Restaurant provides a unique and exciting dining experience offering brunch and a la carte lunch or dinner cruises from Orford Quay, Orford, Suffolk. 


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Fiona's Fabrics

Fiona's Fabrics

Woodbridge

Fabulous selection of fabrics, yarns and haberdashery - based in the market town of Woodbridge

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Sailing Barge Cruises

Sailing Barge Cruises

Ipswich

Relaxing Orwell River Cruises on board the vintage sailing barges, Thistle, Hydrogen and Kitty.

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The Amber Museum

The Amber Museum

Southwold

A small museum in the seaside town of Southwold purpose built to explain the origin of amber, its history and its uses throughout the years.

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


RSPB Minsmere Nature Reserve

RSPB Minsmere Nature Reserve

Westleton

Discover nature together on the beautiful Suffolk coast. Wander among the wetlands and woods, potter along the beach, and pause to watch some amazing wildlife. Explore the Wild Zone with the family, then sample some delicious home-cooked, locally-sourced food in the cafe.

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The Red House

The Red House

Aldeburgh

The music of Benjamin Britten is the soundtrack of the Suffolk coast. At The Red House in Aldeburgh you can explore the life and work of this world-famous composer in the place where he lived and worked.

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Free wifi Wheelchair Accessible


Suffolk Libraries

Suffolk Libraries

All of the county's 44 libraries provide a wide range of services including traditional library loans (books, DVDs etc) access to the internet and a range of information materials, free Wi-Fi and activities for people of all ages throughout the year.


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Free wifi


Felixstowe Spa Pavilion Theatre

Felixstowe Spa Pavilion Theatre

A glorious seafront theatre and restaurant complex, with stunning views, an art deco auditorium for up to 900 people and a fabulous Mediterranean-style pizza, pasta & grill menu. Food served all day includes home-made cakes and pastries, lunch and dinner menus, with tapas, sandwiches and takeaway also available. 


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Free wifi Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Pakefield Riding School

Pakefield Riding School

One of the oldest and best-known horse riding centres and stables in East Anglia.

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Free wifi Wheelchair Accessible


Felixstowe Seafront Gardens

Felixstowe Seafront Gardens

The newly restored Felixstowe Seafront Gardens sit on cliffs between the town centre and beach.

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Suffolk Museums

Suffolk Museums

There are more than 50 museums in Suffolk. Each one is unique, and they are all packed with fascinating stories and objects. 

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Angels & Pinnacles (Suffolk churches)

Angels & Pinnacles (Suffolk churches)

Angels and Pinnacles helps you discover Suffolk’s magnificent medieval churches, among the finest in Europe.

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Aldeburgh Beach Lookout and Art House

Aldeburgh Beach Lookout and Art House

Aldeburgh

Isolated yet at the heart of cultural innovation, it is a magical and stimulating setting for artists to respond each in their own fascinating way.

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Suffolk Food Hall and Cookhouse Restaurant

Suffolk Food Hall and Cookhouse Restaurant

Ipswich

Suffolk Food Hall has everything you’d expect from a large farm shop and more. It is the 10 year Champion of Champions for Local Food (Countryside Alliance rural oscars) and it’s also an ideal location to the Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There is a restaurant (booking advisable) which has been judged to be the Best On Farm Restaurant in Britain and separate café with a children’s playarea.


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Free wifi Dog friendly


The Riverside

The Riverside

The Riverside Cinema may be over 100 years old but the films and live broadcast events that are on screen are totally up to date. 

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Free wifi Wheelchair Accessible


The Gift Shop

The Gift Shop

The Gift Shop is an independent retailer providing a diverse selection of quality gifts, jewellery, collectables, fine figurines and home fragrancing. 

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Ferini Art Gallery

Ferini Art Gallery

The Ferini Art Gallery is set before the beautiful and ever-changing skies an seascapes of Pakefield. It's art mirrors the light and vibrance of the coastline, fishing beach and sandy cliffs.

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Suffolk Craft Society

Suffolk Craft Society

The Suffolk Craft Society was formed in 1970 to promote the value and importance of contemporary crafts and currently supports around 110 individual craftspeople in the creation of their work across a wide range of craft skills. 

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Coastal Voyager

Coastal Voyager

Coastal Voyager is the perfect activity for all ages ranging from families with children to work groups.


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Dog friendly


International Boatbuilding Training College (IBTC)

International Boatbuilding Training College (IBTC)

IBTC in Lowestoft offers a variety of boatbuilding/maintenance and woodworking courses suitable for those looking for a career in the maritime industry as well as individuals wanting to develop existing or new interests and skills.

With courses from 1 day to almost a year there is something to offer everyone; from owners and enthusiasts to prospective tradespersons.


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Dog friendly


Lowestoft Tourism

Lowestoft Tourism

Come to Lowestoft for a great day out, short break or family holiday. 

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Halesworth and the Blyth Valley

Halesworth and the Blyth Valley

The Blyth Valley runs 17 miles inland from the coast at Southwold to Laxfield via Halesworth and Huntingfield and is a superb destination for walking, cycling & wildlife-watching as well as being known for its welcoming pubs and local produce!

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Allen Gardiner River Cruise Restaurant

Allen Gardiner River Cruise Restaurant

Ipswich

Allen Gardiner River Cruise Restaurant provides a unique and exciting dining experience offering 2 hour Brunch and 3 hour A la Carte Lunch, Sunset Supper or Candlelit Dinner Cruises. Serving freshly prepared on board wholesome food and drinks.

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Aldeburgh Cinema

Aldeburgh Cinema

Aldeburgh

Aldeburgh Cinema: the very best of world cinema at the heart of the local community since 1919. Providing a programme of film screenings, live shows and special event;  independent, inspirational, meaningful, fun.

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Free wifi


Electric Picture Palace

Electric Picture Palace

The Electric Picture Palace is a small but perfectly formed, 70 seat cinema in Southwold on The Suffolk coast.

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Wheelchair Accessible


Snape Maltings

Snape Maltings

Snape

Snape Maltings is a place of energy and inspiration – a visitor destination of outstanding natural beauty and one of the world’s leading centres of music, founded by Suffolk-born composer Benjamin Britten. 

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Free wifi Dog friendly


Inspirations

Inspirations

Located in the heart of Wickham Market on the charming village square lies 'Inspirations' - a brand new shop providing a wide selection of inspiring gift ideas for the family and home

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Easton Farm Park

Easton Farm Park

Woodbridge

Home to plenty of animals, including a new contingent of ducklings, lambs, foals, chicks, piglets and calves every spring, Easton Farm Park never ceases to be a popular day out for families and school trips.

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Dog friendly


Woodbridge Golf Club

Woodbridge Golf Club

Woodbridge

Two beautiful heathland golf courses in an Area of Outsanding Natural Beauty.

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Moth Crafts

Moth Crafts

Bungay

Moth is a charming shop full to the brim of handmade articles from makers across Suffolk and Norfolk.

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Mannings Amusements

Mannings Amusements

Mannings Amusements have been providing traditional family fun on Felixstowe Seafront since 1946!

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Adnams Shops

Adnams Shops

Adnams shops are a top class tasting experience and a showcase of their innovative range of  quality beer, wonderful wines, handcrafted spirits and gifty bits.

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Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Marina Theatre

Marina Theatre

It plays host to major West End productions, top comedy, orchestral concerts, touring drama and musical productions, opera, ballet, music, dance and celebrity concerts as well as operating a successful cinema operation - boasting the largest screen and cinema auditoria in the town. 

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Wheelchair Accessible


Adnams Brewery and Distillery Tours

Adnams Brewery and Distillery Tours

Fancy doing something a little bit different? Situated in the heart of Southwold is the Adnams Sole Bay Brewery and Copper House Distillery, where Adnams have been brewing since 1872.  

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Wheelchair Accessible


Visit Felixstowe

Visit Felixstowe

Everybody loves a great day by the sea, and Felixstowe has great days for everyone.

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Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

The Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is a stunning landscape packed full with wildlife and exciting places to explore and discover. There's something for everyone with 155 square miles of tranquil and unspoilt landscape including wildlife-rich estuaries, ancient heaths, windswept shingle beaches and historic towns and villages.

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Sailing Barge Victor

Sailing Barge Victor

Sailing Barge Victor is a perfect marriage of a majestic and traditionally rigged 19th century sailing vessel with comfortable, modern facilities for guests.

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Beaches

Beaches

Whether you’re in search of a great family day out, a birdwatching haven, or trip back in time, the beaches along the Suffolk Coast will provide you with a memorable day out whatever the time of year.

In the winter, Suffolk's beaches take on a whole new persona; with windswept dunes, crashing waves, and bracing winds, they are the perfect place to blow away the cobwebs, stroll hand in hand with your loved one, or enjoy a solitary dog walk.


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Orwell Lady River Cruises

Orwell Lady River Cruises

Ipswich

From April to October each year, Orwell Lady cruises up and down the beautiful and historic River Orwell, offering passengers a choice of trips and experiences whilst taking in the beautiful wooded stretches of the river, local wildlife and points of local and historical interest.

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Gill Moon Photography

Gill Moon Photography

Gill is a professional freelance photographer specialising in local landscapes, waterscapes and sailing photography.

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Ufford Park Golf Club

Ufford Park Golf Club

An award-winning 18 hole, par 71 golf course - perfect for all intermediate and experienced players.

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Discover Landguard

Discover Landguard

The Landguard Peninsula is located at the southerly most point of the town of Felixstowe. 

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Open Top Touring Ltd

Open Top Touring Ltd

Woodbridge

As well as providing driving routes through the un-spoilt Suffolk Coast, past Suffolk’s historic wool towns and the county’s most beautiful sights, they can arrange luxury accommodation in some of Suffolk best hotels and B&Bs.

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O&C Butcher

O&C Butcher

Aldeburgh

Aldeburgh has changed in many ways over the last hundred years, but one business has been an ever present in the town.

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Ipswich Town and Waterfront

Ipswich Town and Waterfront

Championing Ipswich as a great place to visit and stay. Promoting local events, places of interests, arts, theatre and culture of the historic town.

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WHERE TO EAT


The Crown at Woodbridge

The Crown at Woodbridge

Woodbridge

Situated at the top of the bustling Thoroughfare, in Woodbridge, Suffolk.

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Free wifi


The Bell Inn

The Bell Inn

The Bell offers no shortage of Suffolk character with beamed ceilings, open fires, quirky snugs, hidden alcoves and worn flagstones floors. Well known for its friendly and relaxed atmosphere, The Bell is a perfect all year round destination. 

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The Cake Shop Bakery

The Cake Shop Bakery

Woodbridge

Award-winning family run bakery set in the historical town of Woodbridge baking fresh bread and creating beautiful cakes using the best ingredients available and designing cakes that are visually stunning and taste delicious.

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The Firestation Cafe, Bar & Coffee Roasters

The Firestation Cafe, Bar & Coffee Roasters

Woodbridge

A small cafe and bar serving delicious coffee, cocktails, snacks and rather impressively roasting their own coffee!

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Free wifi Dog friendly


The Tea Hut

The Tea Hut

The Tea Hut cafe/restaurant sits on the banks of the beautiful River Deben in Woodbridge. 

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Free wifi Dog friendly Wheelchair Accessible


Southwold Pier - The Boardwalk, Beach Cafe and Clockhouse

Southwold Pier - The Boardwalk, Beach Cafe and Clockhouse

Southwold

Southwold Pier has a fabulous choice of restaurants and cafes to fill the gap from breakfast, through to morning coffee and pastries, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner!

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Free wifi Dog friendly