a user-contributed guide to the best of suffolkA user-contributed guide to the best of Suffolka user-contributed guide to the best of suffolk Login

Five Great Reasons…

….to visit Suffolk this autumn.

#1 The Weather

Autumn is a great time of year in my view. The weather is still relatively mild, the sky can still suprise us with a beautiful display of colour and yes, there is a distinct chill in the air in the evenings, but that just makes for a good excuse to hunker down and get cosy after a day romping through the countryside or sightseeing in some of Suffolk’s visitor attractions.

  Rose Cottage

 #2 Accommodation – Special Offers

There are some great offers on for short breaks in the off-peak season. Make sure you scout around for the best deals, which you will usually find mid-week. For cosy, romantic, self-catering cottages with open fires that welcome dogs, try The Grove Cottages. If you prefer a sumptuous hotel with exquisitely decorated rooms, try The Swan in Lavenham,  The Angel in Bury St Edmunds or Hintlesham Hall near Ipswich.

#3 Suffolk Events

There is a varied offering of events throughout the year in Suffolk, from music festivals, to open gardens; from opera in the park to the Suffolk Walking Festival in May. What’s on offer changes throughout the year of course, but this autumn we can look forward to The Great British Walk – the National Trust’s autumn walking festival, with organised events or self-guided walks across the county. There are also events at Kentwell Hall in Long Melford, including their final Tudor re-creation of the year at the end of September and  their Scaresville Halloween event in October to look forward to, which won a coveted ‘Screamie Award’ recently. This ranks it as one of the scariest events Suffolk has ever seen, just so you are forwarned. It’s not for the faint-hearted.

#4 The Countryside

The Suffolk countryside is full of gentle landscapes, quiet lanes, a stunning coastline and two areas of outstanding natural beauty: The Dedham Vale (AONB) and Suffolk Coast & Heaths (AONB) are beautiful, unspoilt places and couldn’t be nicer for long country walks or leisurely bike rides. One of my favourite areas is in the Dedham Vale in the area known as ‘Constable Country‘ around Dedham, East Bergholt and Flatford. There is a Hopper Bus that runs through the vale until the end of September, which means you can leave your car behind and just hop on and hop off the bus, as the mood takes you. Also not to be missed are the many RSPB sites (Minsmere in particular) and Suffolk Wildlife Trust sites for some lovely walks through ancient woodland.

#5 Food

Yes, Suffolk is fast becoming a ‘foodie county’ with lots of food and drink festivals throughout the year, many vineyards and breweries making superb beverages, farm shops and farmers’ markets with a cornucopia of home grown fruits, cakes and other delicacies on offer. And of course, many, many restaurants and pubs serving excellent food using local produce.

Some of my favourites foodie things in Suffolk include Suffolk Food Safari, where you can go on a course to learn to forage for food, butcher your own meat and bake your own artisan bread to perfection; The Suffolk Foodhall, with its new cookhouse and restaurant which has a stupendous view of the Orwell River and bridge; the Aldeburgh Food & Drink Festival at Snape Maltings at the end of September and Aspalls in Stonham Aspal where the most delicious Suffolk cider is made.  Especially delicious is their award-winning organic cyder.

What are your top tips for enjoying Suffolk this autumn?  Feel free to comment here or on Twitter @thesuffolkguide

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