Bordered by 50 miles of glorious easterly coastline and scattered with quaint towns and villages, Suffolk is the perfect combination of beachy goodness and olde-English romanticism. It’s chock-full of ancient abbeys, stately castles, gorgeous countryside and cosy pubs, making it a wonderful staycation destination for UK travellers. If you’re heading to the South East (we approve!), then swing by the sunset-coast and keep busy by checking out our 5 reasons why everyone should visit Suffolk…
1. Discover the medieval magic at Framlingham Castle 🏰
So pretty (and probably, you know, sturdy) that Mary Tudor chose to gather her troops at this very spot before marching to London to claim her rightful throne. Framlingham Castle is where history was made, and an excellent insight into the old dynastic power struggles of Britain. Take a stroll around the outer walls and enjoy the gentle Suffolk landscape. Suffolk singer Ed Sheeran referenced the castle in his latest hit Castle of the Hill – a song he refers to as a ‘love song to Suffolk’.
2. Take a trip to picturesque Lavenham 💛
England’s Best-Kept Medieval Village, Lavenham is a check list of all the reasons we feel nostalgic for the England of the past. Home to the famous half-timbered, slanted houses of its winding streets, it’s now a mecca of classic tearooms and adorable souvenir shops. No stranger to a bit of magic, Lavenham was the location used for Harry Potter’s mystical village birthplace, Godric’s Hollow, in The Deathly Hallows films Part 1 & Part 2!
3. Enjoy the high-life at Helmingham Hall 💐
Since the foundations were first set down in 1490, Helmingham Hall has been a much admired country hall. It has stayed in the Tollemache family – a noble family of Suffolk – ever since these 15th century beginnings. The perfectly crafted grade I listed gardens were designed and nutured by Lady Xa Tollemache, an award winning gardener who won more than her fair share of medals at the Chelsea Flower Show. From afternoon tea in the Coach House Tearooms to dog competitions and classic car festivals – there’s always something coming up at this historic hotspot!
4. Sculpture spotting 🎨
Time to get back to the coast. And for many, nothing can beat the beautiful stretch at the northern end of Aldeburgh beach, where Maggi Hambling’s scallop sculpture sits a proud and eccentric ode to Lowestoft-born composer Benjamin Britten who founded the Aldeburgh Festival. Now an iconic part of the heritage coast, it’s a superb spot for picture taking (shell-selfie… can we call that a thing?) a chow-down at one the beach’s iconic fish and chip shops and a blustery walk with lovely horizon views.
5. Explore the ancient ruins at Sutton Hoo ⚒
A beautiful estate haunted by a gentle, sultry beauty, River Deben views and one of the greatest archaeological discoveries of all time. Sutton Hoo is a royal burial site dating back to the 6th and 7th centuries in historic Woodbridge. Explore the excavated ruins of this National Trust site at the exhibition hall and surrounding area, and take this short, beautiful walk through the estate.