One of Suffolk's most popular seaside towns, as the crowds leave at the end of the summer, Southwold becomes the ideal retreat for a relaxing autumn/winter getaway.
With its award-winning blue-flag beach, beach-hut lined promenade, Victorian Pier and bustling town centre there's plenty to see and do. And at the end of a day exploring, head to a cosy cottage, an Edwardian House, a luxury apartment or a boutique hotel to recharge your batteries...
Where to Stay
You're spoilt for choice when it comes to places to stay in Southwold!
With a wide selection of apartments, cottages, hotels and B&Bs within walking distance of Southwold's Victorian promenade and Pier and the bustling town centre where you can enjoy a meal in one of the restaurants and a steaming cup of coffee and slice of cake in a cosy cafe; the perfect way to warm up after a walk along the sea shore.
If you want to put your feet up and relax in luxurious surroundings, then The Swan Hotel is for you. Welcoming guests to the town for over 350 years, the hotel is re-opening in October 2017 after an exciting transformation. This fresh look and colour palate creates a relaxed and cosy atmosphere, which is combined with intimate service, top-class food and drink and the best local lifestyle experiences.
Situated on the High Street, The Crown Hotel is a small but bustling hotel, just a short stroll from the town's cafes, restaurants, shops and delis and the award-winning beach. The rooms are full of character and you can enjoy Lowestoft Kippers or a Full English made with locally produced meats, eggs and bread.
If you would prefer a little piece of Southwold to call your own for a week, you might like to choose from one of the many self-catering cottages, houses and apartments throughout the town and surrounding villages. There's also a wide variety of accommodation agencies with a place to stay to suit all size groups and budgets; weekend breaks and week-long holidays.
Things to Do
Whether it's food and drink, homewares, designer bags and shoes or clothes you desire, Southwold offers it all. Home to luxury boutiques such as Collen & Clare, and top brands including Joules, Fat Face, Crew Clothing and Jack Wills, you can treat yourself to new wardrobe in Southwold this autumn.
Or for a special gift or souvenir, pop into The Amber Shop and Museum where you can also discover the origins of amber; it's history and uses through the years.
Food and Drink
Famous for being the home of the Adnams Brewery (for a fun afternoon why not book on to one of their brewery and distillery tours!)their flagship store is situated just off the main high street and also houses a cafe, serving delicious lunches, teas, coffees, cakes and pastries. In the shop, you can stock up on their famous ales and spirits plus kitchenware and deli items.
You won't go hungry in Southwold that's for sure, pop in to Two Magpies Bakery and buy a honey cottage loaf, fresh pizza slices, giant meringues and mouth-watering cakes and tarts, and after a walk along the beach, stop in the famous The Boardwalk Restaurant on the Pier and warm up with a locally caught fish and chips and a mug of hot chocolate.
Walking and Cycling
Southwold is ideally situated for exploring The Suffolk Coast both on foot and on two wheels. Hire bicycles from Southwold Cycle Hire and visit the nearby coastal village of Walberswick, where you can enjoy a hearty meal at The Anchor before travelling on to Dunwich for a pint in The Ship.
There are plenty of walks on offer in and around Southwold. Set off from the town centre, down the High Street and across the common to the Harbour, stopping for a hot chocolate or pint of Adnams Ghost Ship at The Harbour Inn. From there you can follow the river and head back along the beach, or take the ferry across to Walberswick.
If a bit of rain doesn't bother you, or you are treated to a crisp winter's day, pop on your walking boots and head off on foot for a walk around National Trust Dunwich Heath, or join one of the guided walks at RSPB Minsmere, both of which are just a short drive away from Southwold.
For downloadable walks and maps, check out The Suffolk Coast's Walking Guide.
Southwold is the perfect base from which to explore The Suffolk Coast; just a short drive away you will find the coastal of Kessingland; a quiet beach which if you walk southwards, leads on to Benacre National Nature Reserve; home to some of the UKs rarest birds.
A few miles north of Southwold you will find the seaside town of Lowestoft; with an award-winning sandy beach, it's perfect for letting the little ones run around, and, from October to April, the dog too!
Head inland and you will find the historic market towns of Beccles, Bungay and Halesworth. Situated in the Waveney Valley, the towns all host a range of independent shops, cafes, galleries, boutiques and restaurants; the perfect places to explore when the weather is less than desirable.
Click here for more 'Things to Do' in and around Southwold inspiration.
As autumn gets into full swing and winter approaches, there's a wide range of events, indoor and out, to entertain the whole family.
Book tickets for a musical at The Marina Theatre in Lowestoft, watch a play at The Cut in Halesworth, catch a gig at The Aquarium, or stock up on Suffolk's fine fayre at one of the many farmers markets.
Check out our 'What's On' section for full event listings near Southwold and across The Suffolk Coast.