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    The county of Suffolk in the East of England is well-known for its flatlands and beautiful nature reserves. There are many historical landmarks across various towns and small villages, providing you with a laidback holiday experience. Beyond its picturesque attractions, Suffolk is also the birthplace of world-famous singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran and actor Ralph Fiennes.

    In this list, you’ll come across our favourite things to do in Suffolk, which includes visiting the castle that inspired Ed Sheeran's popular hit and walking through an archaeological site from the 6th and 7th century.

    1

    Framlingham Castle

    Explore its curtain wall for views of Framlingham

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    Framlingham Castle is a historic attraction dating back to the 12th century. Once belonged to Queen Mary I, the castle grounds of today has a vast public garden and the remains of the old Framlingham workhouse. For a unique experience, be sure to try the Wall Walk – the 10.5-metre-high curtain wall allows for a panoramic view of the market town of Framlingham.

    To keep the young ones entertained, you can purchase the ‘Under Attack’ family trail for a small fee. Audio guides are available for free. Hungry visitors are always welcomed at the onsite Castle Café.

    Locatie: Church St, Framlingham, Woodbridge IP13 9BP, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 10 am to 5 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1728 724922

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    2

    Snape Maltings

    Come for the history, stay for the shopping and dining

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    Snape Maltings is home to various independent boutique stores, restaurants, and artists of today. Originally an industrial building where barley was malted for beer brewing, the establishment was refurbished in 1969 just in time for the Aldeburgh Festival hosted by Suffolk-born composer, Benjamin Britten. The large concert hall has since held various concerts, including folk and jazz, as well as seasonal shows.

    As Snape Maltings sits on marshlands overlooking River Alde, we also recommend exploring the vast reeds or hopping onto a boat to enjoy the breathtaking views of Suffolk’s east coast – just as the locals do.

    Locatie: Snape Maltings Concert Hall, Snape Bridge, Snape IP17 1SP, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 10 am to 4 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1728 688303

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    3

    Suffolk Owl Sanctuary

    Get up close and personal with the owls of Suffolk

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    The Suffolk Owl Sanctuary is a nature centre in Mid Suffolk. Opened in 2001, it’s home to over 80 owls and birds of prey, including a bald eagle and vultures. Flying displays take place at the park twice daily, while aviary lovers may want to drop by the Discovery Centre to learn more about the British wildlife conservation efforts.

    A Woodland Walk is available within the sanctuary, and you’ll be able to come up close to the resident meerkats at the Meerkat Kastle. If you’re lucky, you might spot several red squirrels roaming the grounds.

    Locatie: Stonham Barns Pettaugh Road, Stonham Aspal, Stowmarket IP14 6AT, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 10 am to 4 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)3456 807897

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    4

    RSPB Minsmere

    Britain’s largest nature conservation charity

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    The RSPB Minsmere is home to many wildlife species and rare birds. Located on the coast of Suffolk, it’s an ideal spot for birdwatching, with most photographers hoping to encounter birds like the nightingale especially in spring. For first time visitors, the RSPB Minsmere offers guided tours by volunteers at the tourist centre.

    As certain areas of the reserve may be damp, it’s advisable to wear waterproof shoes when visiting RSPB Minsmere. There are also designated spots at the marsh that are great for those with movement disabilities. An onsite store serves local food and beverages to help fuel your exploration.

    Locatie: Sheepwash Ln, Saxmundham IP17 3BY, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1728 648281

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    5

    Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum

    Walk down a memory lane of the aviation industry

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    The Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum is an accredited museum nearby the former RAF Bungay airfield. First opened in 1975, it displays over 66 aircraft in its indoor and outdoor museum space. For aviation lovers, the museum brings their piloting dreams to life as they could access selected aircraft cockpits, such as the Fokker F27 Friendship.

    The Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum also carries a range of vintage vehicles and war-related exhibits. Nature lovers can explore the Adair Walk trail towards the River Waveney. Entrance to the museum is complimentary, though a small fee may be required for special access to aircraft cockpits.

    Locatie: The St, Flixton, Bungay NR35 1NZ, UK

    Openingstijden: April–October: Sunday–Thursday from 10 am to 5 pm. November–March: Tuesday–Wednesday and Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1986 896644

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    foto door Tanya Dedyukhina (CC BY 3.0) bewerkt

    6

    Southwold Lighthouse

    Enjoy a bird’s-eye view of the town of Southwold

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    The Southwold Lighthouse is a popular landmark built in 1887. It remains operational today, guiding vessels through the east coast as they make their way to the Southwold Harbour. Inside, you can make your way up 113 steps and marvel at the sight of the Southwold town from the top of the lighthouse.

    Be prepared if you’re planning to visit, as you must wear covered shoes for safety purposes. Children below 110 cm aren’t permitted to explore this site. Guided tours of the Southwold Lighthouse take approximately 30 minutes.

    Locatie: Stradbroke Rd, Southwold IP18 6LU, UK

    Openingstijden: Wednesday from 2 pm to 4 pm, Saturday–Sunday from 11 am to 1 pm and from 2 pm to 4 pm

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    7

    The Fens

    A natural coastal plain also called the Fenlands

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    The Fens is a reclaimed marshland located in eastern England. Spanning over 1,500 square miles, it’s rich in ecology and supports various wildlife species such as the bearded tit and the bittern. For adventurous hikers, there’s a 280-mile long Fen Edge Trail that stretches from the Suffolk borders to Lincolnshire.

    If you’re lucky to visit The Fens in colder months, be on a lookout to see if the meadows have frozen over. You could spot the locals partaking in Fen skating – a sport similar to ice skating – and perhaps even join them if you’re brave enough.

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    8

    Kentwell Hall

    Visit one of England’s finest Tudor houses

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    Kentwell Hall is a historic Tudor home in the Suffolk countryside. Sitting across 25 acres of gardens, this structure was said to date back from the mid-16th century. While much of the home has since been restored, it still retains an original Tudor setting, including stunning stained-glass windows. It also features the notable sculpted cedar tree, which is the largest single wood carving in Britain.

    Various events take place in Kentwell Hall throughout the year, including the award-winning Scaresville Halloween celebration, Tudor re-enactment weeks, open-air cinema, and opera evenings.

    Locatie: Long Melford, Sudbury CO10 9BA, UK

    Openingstijden: Wednesday–Sunday from noon to 4 pm (closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1787 310207

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    9

    Rendlesham Forest Centre

    Walk the mysterious UFO sighting trail

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    Rendlesham Forest is a woodland park located 8 miles east of the town of Ipswich. Featuring 3 walking trails of varying difficulties, the forest is best known for a supposed UFO sighting that happened in late November 1980. This rumour has since gained worldwide attention, sparking the establishment of the 3-mile long UFO Trail by the Forestry Commission.

    The Rendlesham Forest Centre is popular among local families, as there are designated picnic and play areas catered to younger children. Avid cyclists can find 2 bike trails and bicycle rental services in the grounds.

    Locatie: Tangham IP12 3NF, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 8 am to 4 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)3000 674965

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    10

    Sutton Hoo

    Uncover Britain’s early medieval cemetery

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    Sutton Hoo is an archaeological site of early medieval cemeteries dating back to the 6th and 7th centuries. Sitting by the ridge of the River Deben, some of the most notable finds include an ornate Sutton Hoo helmet and an original Anglo-Saxon ship burial – 1 of the only 3 Anglo-Saxon ship burials in the world.

    While these artefacts are now housed in the British Museum in London, many still visit Sutton Hoo to explore the Royal Burial Ground. You can also explore several countryside trails within this 255-acre estate. There’s also an onsite café serving light snacks and homemade beverages.

    Locatie: Tranmer House, Woodbridge IP12 3DJ, UK

    Openingstijden: Daily from 10 am to 4 pm

    Telefoonnummer: +44 (0)1394 389700

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    Elie Lam | Schrijver

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