Suffolk is home to some of the most picturesque landscapes in the country. It’s no wonder then that two of England’s most famous painters, Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable, hail from these eastern ends of England. With flagship nature reserves like RSPB Minsmere, and sublime stretches of sand and shingle such as Dunwich Beach, you could spend every waking moment exploring the great outdoors during your stay in one of our Suffolk hotels. We wouldn’t recommend it, though. That’s because Suffolk’s scenery is just the start. You have to sample Bury St Edmunds’ exquisite food scene, you need to delve into the county’s entertainment options, and there’s a whole host of National Trust properties and historic attractions to visit, such as Ickworth House and Sutton Hoo. It sounds like a lot, but the fact that we haven’t even mentioned Newmarket yet, the home of British horseracing, just goes to show that we’ve barely scratched the surface! However, it’s all right here in our local guide to the extraordinary county of Suffolk.
Things to do in Suffolk
Suffolk is full of sublime days out. Take a trip to the iconic Southwold Pier, explore Sutton Hoo, bring the kids to the zoo, learn about the history of the county with some of Suffolk’s museums and historic buildings, or take a walk on the wild side with one of Britain’s best nature reserves.
Visit some of the best beaches on England’s east coast, tick off top sporting options such as Ipswich Town F.C., pay a visit to one of a handful of theatres, or time your trip to Suffolk to coincide with Latitude Festival. As you’ll see, the county’s collective entertainment scene is stellar!
Places to eat
Find out why Bury St Edmunds’ food scene is seen as one of the best in Britain and discover the diverse cuisine on offer in the county town of Ipswich. We’ve also got sea-fresh fish restaurants, enormous full English breakfast recommendations and some tasty treats for those with a sweet tooth.
Come on a county-wide pub crawl with the help of our nightlife guide. You’ll begin with the exceptional craft beers and bars of Ipswich town centre before ticking off riverside pints, waterfront cocktails and scoffing your face with the fine food of the official best pub-chef in Britain.
There are great shopping options all around Suffolk but if you want a truly one-of-a-kind retail experience make your way to Snape Maltings. The complex is most famous for its world-class concert hall and for being the home of Benjamin Britten’s Aldeburgh Festival. However, it also contains some excellent stores, a food hall and boutiques, with a proclivity for homeware, fashion, crafts and antiques.
The Buttermarket is Ipswich’s main shopping centre. It’s where you’ll find TK Maxx, as well as the Empire Cinemas and a bowling alley. The Sailmakers is Ipswich’s other main shopping centre and where you’ll find Topshop, River Island and Pandora. Bury St Edmunds’ main shopping centre is Arc, although you’ll also want to visit the local Bury St Edmunds Market which comes to town with fresh local produce and bargains every Wednesday and Saturday.
There are no major airports in Suffolk. However, if you are travelling from further afield you could fly into either of Norwich International Airport or London Stansted Airport before transferring to one of our Suffolk hotels. The county town of Ipswich is the main transport hub for Suffolk and Ipswich Train Station is on the Great Eastern Mainline, which runs from Norwich to London. The towns of Bury St Edmunds, Felixstowe and Lowestoft all have their own railway stations and are served by Ipswich Buses as well as First Norfolk & Suffolk services.