Attractions and Days Out in Aldeburgh
Aldeburgh is a very popular seaside destination for people of all ages and interests.
It is a town with a wealth of history to be explored, an abundance of nearby nature and wildlife,
water sports and is ideal for those who like to explore on foot or by bicycle.
A popular destination for holidays and day trips, Aldeburgh remains pretty much the same as it has been for decades,
key feature of this are the Fishermen who launch their boats from the shingle beach and still sell much of their daily catch from huts on the beach.
Changes are most noticeable on the high street which now boasts a number of designer shops, boutiques, emporiums and galleries plus award-winning restaurants.
The nearby Snape Maltings Concert Hall, provides the backdrop to a rich musical heritage,
with Benjamin Britten’s world renowned Aldeburgh Festival of Music and the Arts held in June
and a wide range of musical and arts events throughout the year. For more details please check out
Whats On - Aldeburgh
On the seafront, the Moot Hall houses the Town’s Museum and is a major focal point, with its ancient timbers and outside staircase.
At the top of the Town Steps, leading off the High Street and up the cliff, there is a wonderful view over the roof tops and out to sea.
Famous residents include Elizabeth Garrett Anderson (the first female doctor and mayor) and
her younger sister Millicent Garrett Fawcett (a campaigner for woman's suffrage) who were both born in Aldeburgh.
The poet George Crabbe was born in Aldeburgh and Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears became residents of the town in 1942.
In the sixteenth century Aldeburgh had a thriving harbour and shipyard at Slaughden, famous for building the Pelican (later re-christened the Golden Hind),
Sir Francis Drake's Flagship and the first English Ship to circumnavigate the world.
The RSPB’s popular nature reserve at Minsmere is four miles from Aldeburgh and the National Trust’s Dunwich Heath, is just eight miles away and all around
the Suffolk Coast and Heaths are designated as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Aldeburgh has a gently sloping shingle beach that has won awards for cleanliness and good management, the southern end near the Martello Tower slopes more sharply and is very popular with beach fisherman.
NB: From May to September no dogs are allowed on the beach
The Aldeburgh Museum
Situated on the Aldeburgh Sea Front, the Moot Hall is one of the best preserved public Tudor Buildings in Britain and a major focal point in the town.
Still a working meeting place, the Moot Hall is used as the Town's Council Chamber, Town Clerk's Office and houses the Aldeburgh Museum.
The Museum charts the history of the town from Roman Times and houses a fascinating number of historical artefacts, stuffed birds, moths and more.
Some unusual objects include several chests (treasure style, sadly empty!) dating back to the fourteenth century that have washed up on the beach over the years.
There is a nominal admission charge for adults, but accompanied children are free, manned by volunteers it is open to the public from April to October,
please check the website for specifics
The Town Steps
is a public footpath that leads up the side of the cliff (cliff is a bit strong, but I suppose it does classify as one) from the High Street to The Terrace and offers wonderful views over Aldeburgh and the Sea.
At the top there are seats and a small roofed brick built shelter where you can sit in comfort from offshore winds and count satellite dishes
is a four-metre high steel sculpture erected as a tribute to Benjamin Britten and his music, it stands just outside of Aldeburgh near the Thorpe Road car park on the coast road between Aldeburgh and Thorpeness.
The phrase "I hear those voices that will not be drowned" (from Peter Grimes) is pierced through the steel and people are encouraged to clamber over it
There are two lifeboats stationed at Aldeburgh, one of which is a small 16' D Class lifeboat used for inshore work and recovery in the River Alde.
The lifeboat station includes a shop and history of the exploits of the volunteer crews
The Martello Tower at Aldeburgh is a unique quadruple Martello Tower south of the town.
Built during the Napoleonic War it is the largest of its type and can be rented as self catering accommodation from the Landmark Trust.
It Sleeps four in two twin rooms.
The sea wall here at Slaughden (to the south of Aldeburgh) is quite wide and is a popular place to drive to and park up with sea views on one side and the River Alde on the other.
Being bone idle I often drive down to do some 'birding' from the car and it never ceases to amaze me at the number of walkers who pass by oblivious to what's around.
One Christmas someone walked up to ask why I had a Scope poking out from the car and within a few minutes of pointing out the Red Throated Divers and the Common Seal working offshore
I was surrounded by about twenty walkers all wanting to have a go at the Scope and my Binoculars.....
Aldeburgh Golf Club
Aldeburgh Golf Club was founded in 1884 and is one of East Anglia’s best golf courses, it is rated amongst the top 70 Championship Golf Courses in the Golf World Top 100.
Individual players, parties and societies are welcome with concessionary Green Fees available for 18 hole and 9 hole courses
Aldeburgh Tourist Information Centre
Tel: 01728 453637
Aldeburgh Parish Church of St. Peter and St. Paul
Although most of the church was rebuilt in the 16th century it still retains an original tower that dates back to the 14th century
Aldeburgh Baptist Church
153 High Street
Aldeburgh Roman Catholic Church of Our Lady and St Peter
Aldeburgh Tennis Courts
Four hard courts for public use, no booking required - first come basis
Aldeburgh Recreation Ground
Sailing in Aldeburgh
Aldeburgh Yacht Club
Aldeburgh Yacht Club is located between the sea and the River Alde one mile south of the town of Aldeburgh.
The clubhouse has changing rooms and showers, a bar, a kitchen and dining room
Slaughden Sailing Club
Slaughden Sailing Club is a friendly sailing club in Aldeburgh, there is a clubhouse with galley, changing rooms, showers and a lounge with a fine view over the River Alde
Fishing in Aldeburgh
Fishing off Aldeburgh Beach is a very popular pastime, particularly at the Southern End of the Beach towards the Martello Tower at Slaughden
The Tide Table for Aldeburgh is based on Harwich Tide Times minus 1hr 3minutes
Recently a new Fishing Tackle Shop has opened on the Crag Path opposite the White Lion Hotel where you can order bait.
Contacts are Jim and Sarah McMullan 07794148268 / 07855419071
Walking in Aldeburgh
Walking and exploring around Aldeburgh is very popular and there are many maps available to help.
These can be picked up at several shops in Aldeburgh including the Post Office, various Newsagents and the popular
Our particular favourites are the ones by Wilfrid George, they are a hand drawn labour of love, very informative and inexpensive!
Birdwatching in Aldeburgh
North Warren Nature Reserve
On the northern edge of Aldeburgh North Warren is a mixture of heathland popular with Dartford Warblers and Woodlarks with wet marshy grasslands and reed beds favoured by Bitterns and Marsh Harriers.
During the winter the marshes support large numbers of over wintering wildfowl including the Tundra Bean Goose.
The heathland and a substantive boardwalk around one of the reed beds is accessible from a small car park off the Aldeburgh to Leiston road,
it is though a bugger to find!
The Marshes are overlooked from the Aldeburgh to Thorpeness Road although you will need at the very least a good pair of binoculars to get a decent view.
There is a public footpath near the northern beach car park across the marshes that leads to a Viewing Platform over the North Marsh
(follow the footpath until you come to the old railway embankment and bear right).
On a recent visit here at the end of January there were large numbers of
Barnacle Geese, Greylag Geese, White Fronted Geese, Widgeon and Green Plovers on view.
In addition there were odd numbers of Pintail Ducks, Teal, Shovelers, Shelducks, Mallard and Curlew.
As the light started to fade a couple of Muntjac Deer made an appearance
The Southern Marshes
are down at Slaughden, park up near the Sailing Clubs and follow the footpaths through and around the sea defences of the River Alde.
There are often some unusual birds spotted here and the author has seen a Red Necked Grebe in one of the channels and just missed out on the
Hornemann's Arctic Redpoll in December 2012.
And don't forget to scan the beach here or look out to sea!
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What's on in Aldeburgh
Aldeburgh has a long history of music and entertaining, best known is the Aldeburgh Festival which takes place each June in the nearby Snape Maltings.
There are though concerts and events taking place all year round in many local venues.
Aldeburgh is also a place where artists at all stages of their career come to be inspired and educated.
Aldeburgh Carnival and Regatta
The Aldeburgh Carnival and Regatta is three days of fun for all the family (Saturday to Monday mid August)
which involves virtually the whole town with houses, shops, restaurants and pubs getting decorated around a common theme.
The Carnival culminates with an amazing Chinese Lantern Procession with thousands of participants leading down to the Sea Front where there is a grand Firework Display.
Snape Maltings Concert Hall
Home to the annual Aldeburgh Music Festival Snape Maltings Concert Hall hosts performances all year round.
Snape Maltings is also home to some award winning shops, galleries, a Cafe, tea room, pub (The Plough and Sail), river walks and RSPB Wildlife Information Centre.
The Snape Maltings also host the core events of the annual
Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival
The Red House
The Red House in Aldeburgh is where Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears lived and worked together for almost thirty years.
Today, it is the home of the Britten - Pears Foundation and welcomes visitors to gain insights into Britten's music in the place where much of it was written.
Britten was one of the foremost composers of the 20th century and together with the tenor Peter Pears
formed a creative partnership which led to the founding of the Aldeburgh Festival.
The Britten-Pears Young Artist Programme offers bespoke training and development opportunities to UK and international artists, as well as an extensive education curriculum.
51 High Street
Home to the Aldeburgh Documentary Film Festival, Aldeburgh Cinema has a fascinating history and has been screening films continuously since 1924.
Aldeburgh Jubilee Hall
The Jubilee Hall is used throughout the year for all manor of events and is still used by the festival as an occasional venue.
It is the main venue for the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival.
Thorpeness Meare is a large shallow lake of some 40 acres two miles north of Aldeburgh. There are cafes and restaurants onsite and you can hire rowing boats, kayaks, canoes, punts, dinghies and sailing boats.
No-where is the Meare more than three feet deep and there are many islands on the Meare based on locations found in the book Peter Pan which children are encouraged to play on.
Thorpeness Hotel and Golf Club
For an outstanding golf break in Suffolk, visit Thorpeness Golf Course on the stunning heritage coastline. Boasting one of the most picturesque and enjoyable golf courses in Suffolk, this is the perfect place for golf and outdoor enthusiasts.
Playable all year round, over the last three years on average, the course has been open for 360 days per year
House in the Clouds
A unique folly with five bedrooms (two doubles and 3 twins) and great views over Thorpeness Golf Course, Thorpeness Meare and the sea.
Thorpeness Windmill is a Grade II listed post mill which was built in 1803 at Aldringham and moved to Syleham then onto Thorpeness.
Originally built as a corn mill, it was converted to a water pumping mill when it was moved to Thorpeness.
Long Shop Museum
The Long Shop Museum is an award winning attraction based in the original Garret Works Buildings.
The Long Shop is a grade II listed building built in 1852 as the first production line for the manufacture of portable Steam Engines.
There are four exhibition halls, a resource centre, picnic garden and gift shop where you can discover Leiston's unique history and visit the home of the Garret Collection.
Orford Ness National Nature Reserve
Orford Ness National Nature Reserve is an internationally important nature reserve with an abundance of rare flora and fauna
with a fascinating 20th-century military history of secret Cold War military testing.
It is the largest vegetated shingle spit in Europe, although it is South of Aldeburgh the only public access is by ferry from Orford Quay.
Havergate Island is an RSPB Reserve famous for its breeding Avocets and Terns which can be seen throughout the spring and summer.
Lady Florence provides a different and exciting fine-dining experience.
The River Cruise Restaurant offers Brunch, Lunch, Dinner & Sunset Cocktail Cruises on the rivers Alde and Ore from Orford regardless of weather & tides.
Every cruise includes an informative commentary on both the intriguing history that made this area, and the wildlife that now inhabits it.
Orford Sailing Club
Orford Sailing Club is a friendly open club for sailors of all abilities, based in the picturesque village of Orford within sight of the medieval castle.
Sutton Hoo is the burial ground of the Anglo-Saxon kings of East Anglia and is one of Britain's most important archaeological sites.
The exhibition hall tells the story of early English history and there are priceless royal treasures that were discovered in a huge ship grave.
Buttrum’s Mill is built of red brick and at just over sixty feet is the tallest surviving windmill in Suffolk.
It was a working mill until 1928, when the stones turned for the last time.
The Mill is open (afternoons only) Sundays and Bank Holidays from the end of March to the end of September and Saturdays from the beginning of May to the end of August - Entrance Fee
Woodbridge Tide Mill
Tide Mill Way
There has been a mill here since the twelfth century although by the late nineteen sixties the current Woodbridge Tide Mill was near collapse.
It took the efforts of a lot of dedicated enthusiasts and fourteen years, but now the Woodbridge Tide Mill is up and running again and open to the public.
A trip around the mill is a fascinating experience, there is much to see, but please note the mill wheels only work for two hours either side of low tide.
The Mill is open (late morning to late afternoon) at Easter, April weekends and daily May to September - Entrance Fee
Dunwich Heath is an area of coastal lowland heath, sandy cliffs and beach, home to rare wildlife, such as the Dartford Warbler.
Dunwich, Westleton and Saxmundham
One of the RSPB's most famous reserves, a beautiful place for a day out whether you are a bird watcher or simply enjoy country walks.
Onsite there is a large car park, toilets, a sizable shop selling Membership, Books, Optics, Birdfood and Feeders, gifts etc. and a cosy tea room serving hot and cold snacks.
which has some photos and notes on some of our exploits at Minsmere.
Sole Bay Brewery
Brewing great beer from the finest ingredients and creating award winning wine
Orford River Trips
Orford Marine Services
An entertaining and educational cruise in an area rich in wildlife and history.
The route circumnavigates Havergate Island an RSPB Bird Reserve, internationally famous for its rare breeds and migrant birds.
During the summer there are also early evening Childrens Activity Trips.
Attractions and Days Out in Suffolk
Attractions and Days out in Suffolk:
Family Attractions and Amusements; Zoos, Children's Farms and Animal Sanctuaries;
Country Parks, Nature Trails, Bird Watching and Wildlife; Watersports and Cruising;
Stately Homes, Gardens and Parks; Museums and Galleries;
Castles, Abbeys and Churches; Theatres and Music in Suffolk
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