Visit Suffolk’s 'Secret Coast' and take a short boat ride out to this wild and remote shingle spit to uncover some of its secret past.
This is the largest vegetated shingle spit in Europe and is an important nature reserve with a diverse range of habitats including shingle, saltmarsh, mudflat, brackish lagoons and grazing marsh. The Reserve provides an important location for breeding and passage birds as well as for the coastal shingle flora and wildlife, including a large number of nationally rare species.
From 1913 until the mid-1980s the Ness was used as a secret military test site and today visitors can walk amongst some of the unusual and intriguing test sites and buildings.
You can explore the Ness on foot following a 5 mile trail (booklets available to guide you), but you can do as much or as little of the trail as you wish. In addition to the abundant natural sites on view, you can explore some of Britain’s secret military history and view displays including original testing buildings that are open to visitors.
Volunteer wardens are present on the site when it's open, so please ask any questions.
Access around Orford Ness NNR is on foot only, but tractor-drawn trailer tours operate 1st Saturday of the month July-Sept, booking essential on 01394 450900. Food & drink
There are no catering facilities on Orford Ness so visitors are encouraged to bring supplies. Picnics welcome. There are shops in Orford to buy provisions, and there's a tea-room near Quay.
For more local information, please see:Orford Guide