Visitors to The Suffolk Coast are spoilt for choice when it comes to a little indulgence and that very English pastime of taking afternoon tea.
The open skies and vast panoramas of The Suffolk Coast provide the perfect backdrop for so many hidden gems of cafés, tea rooms and restaurants - many nestling in close proximity to the sea.
Once the preserve of the rich and landed gentry, afternoon tea is still a bit of a luxury but its popularity is such that it can be found in all sorts of venues and needn't break the bank! Forget those little squares of cucumber sandwiches, afternoon tea is so much more than that - take a look at these purveyors of afternoon tea and book your table!
Cafe at Urban Jungle
Sit amongst the vines and palms and be transported to exotic climes at the Urban Jungle Cafe near Beccles. The afternoon tea is a little different to the usual with hearty sausage rolls and fillings but still includes some of the staples including finger sandwiches, scones with cream and jam, cakes and unlimited pots of tea or coffee.
Available daily from 2.30pm (booking ahead is required with 24 hours notice) and costs £20 per person.
Cookhouse Restaurant at Suffolk Food Hall
With spectacular views of the Orwell Bridge, the Cookhouse Restaurant at Suffolk Food Hall caters for all diets with vegan, vegetarian, gluten free and dairy free afternoon tea menus also available.
The traditional menu costs £14.95 per person and includes a selection of sandwiches filled with smoked salmon and cream cheese, glazed ham and honey mustard mayo, Gate Farm egg mayonnaise; savoury pastries including mini smoked bacon and Gruyere cheese quiche and pork & red onion sausage roll; cakes including coffee & walnut sponge, lemon & almond cake, sweet fruit flavoured marshmallow, marble all butter shortbread, Cookhouse cake of the day; scone with Tiptree jam and clotted cream and unlimited tea or coffee.
The Granary Tea Shop at Snape Maltings
Offering both a savoury and sweet cream tea, the Granary Tea Shop at Snape Maltings serves a selection of cakes baked by Dawn in the Tea Shop team, with scones and bread are delivered each morning from a local bakery to ensure quality and freshness.
The sweet cream tea includes fruit scone with butter, Tiptree jam, clotted cream and a pot of tea whilst the savoury tea includes cheese scone with butter, Stokes pickle, a slice of cheese and pot of tea.
With panoramic views of the beach and sea, The Hatfield Hotel has a delicious afternoon tea menu available which includes your choice of loose leaf tea or freshly ground coffee, a selection of finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones with cream and preserve, followed by delicate cakes and pastries.
For a special occasion or treat, make it a sparkling afternoon tea by the sea with a glass of Prosecco!
Afternoon tea is served from 12pm and costs £12.95 or £15.95 with Prosecco.
Relax in the stylish waterfront eaterie at Salthouse Harbour Hotel's Salthouse Eaterie. There are 4 afternoon tea packages to suit all tastes and appetites, plus a children's afternoon tea menu for young diners.
The afternoon tea menu includes teas from around the world, a selection of savoury delights, fruit scones with jam and Jersey cream and homemade cakes. For a special treat why not opt for the luxury afternoon tea which also includes a glass of Champagne.
Children will love their dedicated menu which includes a selection of finger sandwiches, a creamy cupcake and a scone with a selection of drinks.
Available daily between 1pm and 5pm and costs £19.50 for the standard menu, £28.50 for the luxury tea and £10 for the children's tea.
Booking is advised with 24 hours notice.
Southwold Boating Lake
The scones baked daily at Southwold Boating Lake are truly delicious; served warm with fresh clotted cream and mini jars of jam, accompanied with a pot of tea served in traditional china. You can opt for the full afternoon tea, served on pretty tiered cake stands with sandwiches, scones with jam and cream and cakes including Victoria sponge and coffee & walnut.
Where better to enjoy afternoon tea than out at sea! The Edwardian Southwold Pier is home to the Boardwalk Restaurant. The afternoon tea menu features a selection of finger sandwiches with fillings such as fish finger, tartare and minted peas, egg & watercress, cucumber, dill and cream cheese alongside homemade Blythburgh pork sausage roll and smoked cheddar cheese scone with whipped butter.
The sweet selection includes dark chocolate and salted caramel brownie, lemon drizzle sponge, strawberry jam doughnuts, dipped fruit and fruit scone with clotted cream and jam - all washed down with your choice of tea or coffee.
Afternoon tea costs £17.50 per person and must be booked 47 hours in advance.
The Crown Woodbridge
A sylish, boutique hotel in the riverside town of Woodbridge, The Crown Hotel is an ideal location to indulge with afternoon tea.
There are two menus to choose from; Royal Afternoon Tea which includes a selection of sandwiches, sweet treats, savoury delights and a glass of bubbles; or the Themed Afternoon Tea, which this autumn is The Royal Choco-Holic, with mouth-watering options including a selection of sandwiches, chocolate sweet treats, savoury delights plus your choice of Teapig's tea!
The Royal Choco-Holics Afternoon Tea is priced at £15.50 per person and the Royal Afternoon Tea, £20.50 per person. (Both require a minimum 2 people).
The Sail Loft
Tucked away on Ferry Road in Southwold, literally a stone's throw from the sea, you will find The Sail Loft; the cafe-bar and restaurant serves a tasty menu of hearty pub grub alongside a delicious afternoon tea menu which includes a selection of finger sandwiches, chef's scotch egg with potted smoked mackerel and sourdough toast, fruit scones with cream and jam, cakes and slices, along with an unlimited pot of tea or ground coffee plus a glass of Prosecco!
Afternoon tea is available Monday - Friday from 1.30pm - 3.30pm, costing £19.95 per person and must be booked 24 hours in advance.
The Swan Hotel
Enjoy an afternoon in the refined surroundings of the drawing room of The Swan Hotel in Southwold as you look over the market place whilst tucking in to afternoon tea.
The menu boasts sandwiches, buttermilk scones with clotted cream and jam and a tempting variety of pastries and cakes. Treat yourself by adding a glass of Adnams Champagne or an Adnams Copper House G&T.
Afternoon tea is available daily between 3pm and 5pm and require booking at least 24 hours in advance.
The Victoria Hotel
Standing proud on top of Kirkley cliff and overlooking Lowestoft's award-winning Blue Flag beaches, The Hotel Victoria oozes Victorian grandeur with a stylish dining room and bar. The afternoon tea menu includes a selection of finger sandwiches with fillings such as Applewood cheese, chive & red onion, smoked chicken & wholegrain mustard, honey roasted ham & tomato chutney, smoked salmon & cream cheese, and free range egg & cress.
Savouries to enjoy include confit onion & sage sausage roll and cheese & onion roll, followed by a selection of cakes and tarts and fruit scone with clotted cream and jam - accompanied by your choice of tea or coffee.
If you prefer something a little stronger, then opt for the Gin Afternoon Tea for which you will receive your own Ginpot with a gin of your choice and a mixer.
Afternoon tea is served from 12pm - 5pm daily and costs £14 per person for the standard tea or £19.95 for the gin afternoon tea. Booking is required with a £5 deposit taken.
The Wentworth Hotel
Owned by the same family for the past 100 years, The Wentworth Hotel boasts an enviable location in the charming coastal town of Aldeburgh. Settle down on one of the comfy sofas and watch the promenaders strolling along the sea front as you enjoy afternoon tea.
You can select items from the menu or opt for the set menu which includes finger sandwiches of smoked salmon, cucumber & cream cheese and egg & cress, plus sweet treats of fruit scones with clotted cream & jam, lemon drizzle cake, chocolate brownie, fresh fruit tartlet and flavoured macaroon - washed down with your choice of tea or coffee.
Afternoon tea is available between 3pm - 5.30pm (from 4pm on Sundays) and is priced at £16.95
Thorpeness Golf Club & Hotel
Following a round or two on the 18-hole heathland course, you can tuck into a delicious afternoon tea and enjoy the views at Thorpeness Golf Club & Hotel.
The menu features the chef's selection of finger and open sandwiches served on either white bread, wholemeal bread or rustic baton, followed by sweets including warm fruit scone with preserve and clotted cream with a selection of chef’s cake of the day.
Ufford Park Hotel
With spectacular views across the award-winning golf course, afternoon tea at Ufford Park Hotel is a treat the whole family can enjoy. There are 3 afternoon tea menus available; the traditional afternoon tea which includes a selection of sandwiches, homemade cakes and scones with your choice of tea or coffee; the children's afternoon tea which includes a choice of drink, selection of sandwiches and sweet treats and the themed afternoon tea.
Priced from £19 per person with the children's afternoon tea at £9.95, afternoon tea is served between 2pm and 5pm daily. Booking is required with at least 24 hours notice.