It may feel like Autumn is closing in and the kids are soon to be going back to school, but its never too late to make the most of the last weeks of summer sun.
Enjoy quality family time together at one of these must-do days out on the Suffolk Coast...
Crabbing at Walberswick
The village of Walberswick is synonymous with seaside fun with its wonderful walks amongst the dunes, a sandy beach and plenty to see and explore. But a trip to Walberswick wouldn’t be complete without trying your hand at the traditional past time of crabbing.
It’s a fun and inexpensive way to pass the time with kids, who will be delighted and intrigued by the curious crustaceans. Just pick up a crabbing line from one of the local shops or vans (though a piece of string with a stone attached will do just as well), choose your bait and drop your line into the water. It is rumoured that crabs are partial to raw liver or a fish head but most people opt for a piece for streaky bacon. Just remember to be gentle with any crabs you catch and return them safely to the water at the end of day.
Messing about in boats at Southwold Boating Lake
The town of Southwold is home to many delights including arguably some of the best ice cream in Suffolk, and the quirky automatons on the pier. But tucked away in a haven of lakes, surrounded by reeds and marshland is the Southwold Boating Lake and Tearoom.
Adults can relax and enjoy tea and scones while the children paddle away on the little lake in miniature boats sized just for them. Nostalgic and quaint, this is a perfect photo opportunity and is sure to bring back your own childhood memories. There are also life jackets available for your piece of mind.
Get lost in the Maize Maze
Outdoor fun and adventure for all the family lies in wait at the Southwold Maize maze. Winner of the 2019 Norfolk and Suffolk tourism awards, this attraction offers two mazes to lose yourself in. The main maze has a nature theme, with things to find and letters to collect and the mini maze is shaped as a rainbow as a tribute to the NHS.
There’s play equipment for youngsters to enjoy as well as jumping pillows and go-karts. The Old Hall café is open, serving delicious food and drinks from the summer menu as well as picnic boxes, which should be ordered ahead of time.
Boating on the broads
Oulton Broads are the largest protected wetlands in Britain and a recognised National Park. Explore this stunning landscape by boat with the whole family, a nautical adventure for your young sailors.
Hire a self-drive boat by the hour or day from Oulton Broad Dayboats or Hippersons Boatyard in Beccles and spend time floating along the Broads’ southern gateway, where the river Waveney meets the sea. The boats are easy to drive and the price includes life jackets, fuel and insurance. Enjoy the sights and the wildlife, stop for a picnic, explore the market town of Beccles or hop across the border and stop at the Roman fort at Burgh Castle.
Cycle the UFO trail at Rendlesham Forest
Rendlesham Forest is a glorious area of woodland and the perfect place to slow down and get back in touch with nature. Youngsters can scramble, slide and swing away on the adventure playground, complete with zip-line, while adults relax and enjoy a picnic. But the highlight of the trip for youngsters has to be the UFO trail.
Known as Britain’s own ‘Roswell incident’ and with some surprising parallels, the ‘Rendlesham forest incident’ is a tantalising mystery for budding alien hunters. The story goes that in December 1980 locals were alarmed to see several unexplained lights in the sky descending into RAF Woodbridge and when they entered the area to investigate they were startled to see what they described as a glowing object, metallic in appearance, with coloured lights. After a few days the object had vanished, leaving only burn marks on the ground. But is the story true? Make up your own mind as you complete the trail, taking in the replica modelof the UFO alongside other evidence on display.
Step on board one of the foot ferries of The Suffolk Coast
A well known ‘life hack’ for walkers and cyclists on the Suffolk coast, the four foot ferries of The Suffolk Coast at Walberswick, Bawdsey, Butley and Harwich can save you over 75 miles of travel on inland roads, and are a handy way to take a short, convenient trip across the rivers Blyth, Deben and Orwell. It’s exciting too; little ones will discover their sense of adventure as they climb inside the different sized boats and whizz across the water. It’s a great way to explore further without having to get back in the car.
Paddle Boarding on the River Alde
Take the opportunity to learn a new skill and try out a stand up paddleboard or canoe on the stunning upper reaches of the river Alde, between Snape and Aldeburgh with Iken Canoe.
Once you have mastered the art of balancing and paddling you can explore the river at your leisure, discovering creeks and floodwaters and perhaps even spotting seals and a variety of different birds. Hire of equipment includes buoyancy aids, paddles and dry bags and even a map for navigating the perfect family outing.
Take a dip at Beccles Lido
The town of Beccles is home to the delightful lido, a glorious location to enjoy swimming outdoors with all the family. The heated open-air pool is located just next to the river Waveney and is surrounded by paved and grassy areas, complete with picnic benches and sun loungers; perfect for sunbathing.
There’s a separate toddler and paddling pool, ideal for little ones too, plus there's hot showers and beach hut changing rooms. (Booking is essential).