Things to do in Suffolk
Suffolk has a wonderful range of activities and attractions to suit everyone’s taste and pocket. Here's our Guide to things to do for individuals, couples & families
that are slightly less vigorous than our Days Out Guide
and our Kids Days Out in Suffolk
feature for younger children. You can also find a full guide to Rainy Day activities in Suffolk
if the weather isn't kind, and what's on in Suffolk for an up-to-date listing of current & forthcoming events
. Historic Interest
Suffolk has a lot of places of historic interest but they don’t get much more historic than Sutton Hoo
, the burial ground of Anglo Saxon Kings. There's plenty to do at Sutton Hoo, which is run by the National Trust and includes an exhibition hall with video and a full size reconstruction of the ship’s burial chamber. There are Guided Tours and special events during the summer season. See Sutton Hoo
for details and to find their current opening hours.
Things to do in SuffolkKentwell Hall
is one of England’s finest Tudor houses, with a difference! It is home to Suffolk Punch horses, Norfolk Horn Sheep, Long Horn, British White Cattle and the Baudet du Poitou Donkey; less than 60 in the UK and 800 in the world. The wonderful gardens include a wildlife pond and the ancient Yew trees with a modern hedge of ‘Pied Piper’ topiary (see pic above). The Stable Yard Tea Rooms are open for refreshments and light lunches. Kentwell Hall houses many special events throughout the year; Tudor re-enactment weeks, Kentwell through the Ages, Magical Weekends and the award winning ‘Scaresville’. Plus musical and outdoor shows. Click on the link above to see what's happening at the moment.
Suffolk has a few well preserved and impressive CASTLES
including Framlingham Castle
(above), and Orford Castle, below, which are both run by English Heritage. Orford was the great keep of Henry II. You can visit the castle every day and explore the maze of rooms and passageways with a free audio tour. You can also enjoy spectacular views over the beautiful Orford Ness in this lovely area of Suffolk. (see Orford Castle
, pictured below)
If you're coming to Suffolk from Essex then a trip to Castle Hedingham to visit Colne Valley Railway
is a must - it is always rated one of the top Visitor Attractions in Essex. Colne Valley is a really pretty line with relocated station buildings, signal boxes and bridges all lovingly restored and rebuilt. There's a lot to see including the Garden Railway, Travelling Post Office Exhibition... Thomas the Tank Days and during the Summer you can ramble through the Farm Park and enjoy the 30 acres of peaceful, natural countryside by the River Colne. Apart from the wealth of traditional farm animals, some regular sightings have included: Moorhens, Woodpeckers, Kingfishers, Herons and Dragonflies.
If you are a fan of the Railway then a visit to Suffolk would not be complete without a trip to the Mid-Suffolk Light Railway
or 'The Middy' - Suffolk's only preserved standard gauge heritage railway. Learn about the fascinating history of the unfinished tracks, visit the museum and of course, enjoy a steam train ride in a genuine Victorian 4-wheel coach! There are original buildings, passenger and goods vehicles, displays, artefacts and exhibitions. The Middy also holds several special event throughout the summer, during school holidays and on bank holidays, see Mid Suffolk Light Railway
for dates, ticket prices and opening times.
The National Trust have many sites in Suffolk ranging from the glorious Ickworth Park and Gardens, the historic Guildhall in Lavenham, Dunwich Heath with its magnificent heather and beach.....and lots more. For full details of their Suffolk sites and whats on see The National Trust in Suffolk
We have many, many historic and attractive towns & villages in Suffolk, and spending a day discovering them is a great thing to do if you're new to the area. For example, Lavenham
is a Medieval village rich in history and wandering round it is like stepping back in time. You can visit the 16C timber framed Lavenham Guildhall, a National Trust property
to get a feel for Suffolk's wool history, and Lavenham Little Hall
, a late 14th Century Hall House on the main square which is now a small and fascinating museum. For more information on Lavenham please click on the link above, and for more on our Museums please see Suffolk Museums
For details of other Historical Sites and Properties please see - Historical Places to Visit in SuffolkFamily Fun
For what's on & events happening during the school holidays click on Half Term Activities
and Summer Holiday ActivitiesThe Suffolk Punch Trust
Visit The Suffolk Punch Trust near Woodbridge for a lovely day out for all the family. The Suffolk Punch is a local breed of draught horse that takes its name from the county of its origin and "Punch" from its solid appearance and strength. It is a heavy horse developed for farm work, notably ploughing, and is always chestnut in colour. These are rare beasts now days but, thanks to the Suffolk Punch Trust these gentle giants can still be appreciated in their native county. The Suffolk Punch Trust is home to the Hollesley Bay Colony Stud, the world's oldest stud farm for this horse, with breeding going back over 250 years! Today the Trust safeguards the future of this unique animal, and here you can see the horses and yearlings, rare Large Black Pigs, Cattle and Suffolk Sheep. There's a visitor centre and cafe, Heritage Garden stocked with local horticultural varieties of plants and shrubs, demonstrations, pet paddock and activity playground, and much more with regular events and festivals, so find out more about what's on at Suffolk Punch Trust here Stonham Barns
offers a range of things to do in the heart of the Suffolk Countryside. Situated on the A1120 east of Stowmarket there are a variety of retail shops and leisure facilities including Fishing Lakes, Fit Club, Suffolk Owl Sanctuary
where you can hold the Owls, Garden Centre and much, much more to ensure you enjoy your visit with us! Year round, admission to the complex is free and there is free parking.
For more information and to see exactly what's on please see: Stonham Barns Leisure and Retail VillageStarglazing Ceramic Painting and Clay Studio
makes for a wonderful day out for all the family. If the sun is shining you can enjoy the roof terrace from their great location at the top of the Suffolk Food Hall. Learn simple techniques such as mark making and surface printing that will help you create something really special. To find out more about what you can do and the opening hours, click on the link above.
For family-friendly days out ideas, for both young children and teenagers, please see our guide to some action-packed and adventurous Days Out
, and Kids' Days Out in Suffolk
Sizewell B Visitor CentreFood and Eating Out
For a more 'modern' experience, take a look at the Visitor Centre at Sizewell B Nuclear Power station near Leiston. Here you can find out all about about nuclear power station operations and how our electricity is generated from nuclear power. Pre arranged site tours are available but must be booked in advance .
What with all these things to do and activities found in Suffolk, not to mention the vast and breath-taking countryside, you are bound to work up an enormous appetite when on holiday here!
So please see our guide to Eating Out in Suffolk
for ideas on where to eat in Suffolk, and information on our fantastic Farm Shops and Farmers markets
.Events - music, theatre, art exhibitions and more
There are ALWAYS lots of great events taking place in Suffolk so for some ideas on what's on please see Suffolk Events
For those with a musical ear, Suffolk offers a wide range of concerts
throughout the year, from amateur choirs singing in the their local Church to world class professionals playing in the converted malt house concert halls of Snape Maltings
, featuring a wide range of musical genres.
For a guide to all musical Festivals happening in Suffolk, please see Suffolk Festivals
and for concerts see Music in Suffolk
Things to do in SuffolkSpinning Wheel Theatre
offers regular events during school holidays including a Summer School, plus other opportunites throughout the year for aspiring creatives, young and old, to get involved! They also put on professional performances which can often be found touring Suffolk. To find out what's on right now, see their link above.
Other things to do in Bury St Edmunds include a visit to the Greene King Brewery and Museum
: Ickworth House, Park and Gardens is another National Trust property and is unusual in that it contains a rotunda and Italian Gardens (see Ickworth House
:) and the last working water mill in the UK at Pakenham Water Mill
For more information on Bury St Edmunds, please see our Guide to Bury St Edmunds
and Days Out in Bury St Edmunds, The Suffolk Coast
If the weather is bright and you want to head for the Coast there are plenty of beaches
to chose from, offering everything from traditional amusement arcades to the unique Amber Shop and Museum
which follows the fascinating story of Suffolk amber, and features a number of beautiful amber carvings and artefacts from around the world. Find out more about a great day at the Beach by clicking on the link above.
Alternatively, do a bit of ship spotting on the Harwich Harbour Ferry
at Felixstowe! This foot and cycle ferry has been in existence since 1912 and connects Felixstowe, Shotley and Harwich. Running hourly services between April and October it is a unique way to view the massive ships travelling to one of Europe's biggest container ports at Felixstowe and is bound to be a hit with the children! Felixstowe
itself is a wonderful seaside town boasting an award winning beach, beautiful promenade and lots of attractions for the family. There are also a range of walks and cycle routes, which involve the ferry - lots of fun! To find out more about where you can hop onboard see Harwich Harbour FerryGardens
As you'd expect from a rural county with a rich agricultural history like Suffolk we have many and possibly our most famous Garden open to the public is at Helmingham Hall which is owned by the Tollemache family, whose ancestors have lived at the Hall for the past 500 years, enjoy sharing their passion for the beautiful gardens. The gardens surround the impressive Tudor moated Hall set in a 400 year old ancient deer park. The rich traditional gardens are complimented by a wonderful balance of nature and the modern accents inspired by the current Lady Tollemache, a well-known garden designer and Chelsea Gold Medal Winner. Find out more about Helmingham Hall here
, Suffolk Gardens open under the National Garden Scheme here
, and otherSuffolk Gardens open to the public
Things to do in Suffolk
If you have a passion for antiques and discovering hidden treasures, attending one of the regular auctions at Mander Auctioneers in Glemsford
will make for a great day out. At a Manders auction you can find an array of furniture, silver, pictures, ceramics, jewellery and more. Auctions are held on Saturdays, with the Friday before being a viewing day - so you can decide which item you want to snap up in advance! For more information and a list of auction dates, please click on the link above. Also take a look at Yoxford Antiques Centre & Gardens
and Woodbridge Antiques Centre
if unearthing hidden treasures is your thing!Courses
are a great way to spend time in Suffolk and get to know the area.
Assington Mill offers an eclectic mix of over 50 short rural skills and crafts courses throughout the year, which include beekeeping for beginners, hen keeping, story telling, upholstery and a wealth of others, so if you fancy trying something a bit different, click the link above to find out more.
This is just a small flavour of the fantastic courses and educational days out you can find in Suffolk - please see Courses in Suffolk
for much more!
Find more things to do in Suffolk by clicking on the links below -
⇨Days Out in Suffolk
⇨Suffolk Tourist Attractions
⇨What's On Suffolk
⇨Beaches in Suffolk
⇨Shopping in Suffolk
⇨Shoppers' Guide to Suffolk
⇨Walking in Suffolk
⇨Cycling in Suffolk
⇨and Current Art Exhibitions
⇨Horse Riding in Suffolk
⇨Fishing in Suffolk
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