Snape guide

Snape is a 'must-visit' destination for anyone who wants to sample the beauty and atmosphere the Suffolk coastal countryside has become famous for, whatever the season.

Check out our handy ‘know before you go’ guide to make your visit a huge success! 

The unique and charming village, situated on the Alde Estuary is famously home to the world-renowned concert hall. The Maltings complex is home to an array of boutiques, galleries, arts centres, cafes, restaurants and grand performance spaces. From 1937 -1947, Snape Maltings was the favoured home place of Benjamin Britten, one of the most celebrated British composers in history. Today, musicians from all over the world come here to study and hone their musical skills. 

Every year in summer, Snape Maltings hosts a month-long festival of music, the Aldeburgh Festival with everything from jazz to choral, classical to contemporary being performed, and in September, the vast outside spaces are filled with the region's top food & drinks producers at the acclaimed Aldeburgh Food & Drink Festival. 

Did you know?

Whilst Snape is probably best known for the Maltings, a vibrant arts centre in a building which would have originally been used for the brewing of local beer, centuries before the Maltings was built the Saxons occupied Snape. The discovery of a 17 metre long Saxon Burial ship in 1862 is evidence of this, along with spear heads, a cloak and fragments of jasper excavated alongside it. 

It is speculated that JK Rowling may have named the character Severus Snape after the town due to its links to Saxon history. 


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Location


Snape Hightlights

1. Listen to world class composers

Towns & Villages - Snape - Concert hall (c) Matt Joly

Snape Maltings Concert Hall is the home of the Aldeburgh Festival founded by composer Benjamin Britten in 1948. Aside from the well-known June festival, this 832 seat venue also plays host to many concerts, workshops and performances of dance and literature throughout the year. Aldeburgh music has become established as a centre for talented young musicians from all over the world, and remains a world-renowned cultural mecca.


2. Visit the Maltings

Towns & Villages - Snape - home & garden

The Snape Maltings complex houses art galleries, restaurants, cafés, shops and stunning holiday cottages inside an intricate network of beautiful brick buildings. Unsurprisingly, it’s a favourite place for visitors and locals alike.

A visit to the House & Garden and Food Hall are a must - here you can purchase a range of Suffolk-made home furnishings and furniture and stock up on some of the region's fine fayre. 


3. Kayaking and Canoeing on the River Alde 

Iken Canoe - Snape - Suffolk Coast

Hire a canoe, kayak or stand up paddle-board and explore the upper reaches of the River Alde with Iken Canoe. From their centre at Iken Cliff, paddle up the winding river to Snape Bridge, stopping in one of the pubs in the village or to enjoy a wood-fired pizza on the lawn at Snape Maltings before returning back, keeping an eye out for rare birdlife and even the occasional seal!


4. River Walks

Towns & Villages - Snape - River Alde

The River Alde at the Maltings is a haven for birdlife with its expansive estuary. Being tidal it’s a place of glistening mud and shallow open water, filled twice a day by the incoming tide and rich in wildlife during migrating months. Here's a selection of walks with varying distances: – Snape Warren along the river is a 2 mile return walk. – Sailors Path walk from the Maltings to Aldeburgh is a 12 mile return walk. – Iken Cliff walk is approximately a 2 mile return walk. – Iken Church walk is approximately a 4.6 miles return walk.

Download these useful Explorers Walking Guides for inspiration!


Useful Information

Check out the Find My Nearest website for helpful information on parking, public toilets, leisure centres, libraries, train stations, cinemas, theatres and museums.

Public Conveniences and Baby Changing Facilities

Public toilets with disabled toilets and baby changing facilities can be found within the Snape Maltings complex.


How to Get to Snape - Public Transport

With Suffolk on Board you can plan journeys using public transport from and to a town or village, named station or stop, or point of interest.

As many destinations along the Suffolk coast are rural there can be limited public transport services on many routes, but there are journey solutions through various local community transport services that will get you to where you want to go/your final destination. These tend to need to be booked in advance but you can find out more and plan your journey at Suffolk on Board. 

By Bus:

There are bus services from both Aldeburgh and Woodbridge to Snape, with a bus stop outside the Maltings. Bus timetables can be found at Suffolk on Board

By Train:

The nearest rail station is Saxmundham with services to Ipswich and onward connections to Lowestoft, Norwich, Cambridge and London Liverpool Street. Snape is a 20 minute car/taxi journey from Saxmundham.

All train tickets can be purchased via the Greater Anglia website or the app.


Car Parks in Snape

Parking is available at the Snape Maltings Complex


Travel Information & News

For the latest travel information listen to or visit BBC Radio Suffolk 

For local news, visit the East Anglian Daily Times of Eastern Daily Press websites.


Covid-19 testing in Suffolk

You can find useful information on Covid-19 testing on the Government website here;

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing/get-tested-for-coronavirus/

Local information on how and where to get a PCR test if you have symptoms can be found on Suffolk County Council’s website here;

https://www.suffolk.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/getting-a-test/covid-19-testing-in-suffolk/

Local information on how and where to get a rapid lateral flow test if you do not have symptoms can be found on Suffolk County Council’s website here;

https://www.suffolk.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/getting-a-test/covid-19-asymptomatic-testing/


Things to do in Snape