There is something quite special about the suffolk countryside, even if it is raining. Although Suffolk isn’t yet in as tight restrictions as alot of England, the best way to enjoy Suffolk is by exploring Suffolk. Whether that is coastal walks in Aldeburgh or Southwold, stocking up on food at the Suffolk food hall (and admiring the neighbouring cows), taking your dog for a walk at Orwell Country Park, or getting an ice cream in Felixstowe.
Aldeburgh may be famous for its fish & chips, but the quaint high street with an array of independent boutiques and cafes, makes for what could be the perfect afternoon. It’s picturesque, it’s cute and has great food – what else could you ask for.
Just up the road (okay, it’s a drive) is perhaps the most famous seaside town in Suffolk, Southwold. Similar to Aldeburgh, but with a Pier, a bigger shopping area, a brewery which sells gin and an overpriced ice cream shop. Again, it’s pretty, has a quaint pier and the seafront is great for just wondering along. For a hidden gem, and only an 11ish minute drive from Southwold is Covehithe which I would only recommend on a sunny day. The village, if you can even call it a village has a church and a beach and that is it. Park along the road and follow the signs to the beach, which is just that, a beach at the end of a country walk. It isn’t a tourist attraction, but it is secluded and the views are pretty great.
Speaking of country walks, Orwell Country Park is situated on the outskirts of Ipswich and just over the Orwell Bridge. It’s a bit of a hidden gem, but you can park, go on a walk into the woods which leads you down to the beach. Look across the river to see the Suffolk Food Hall, or Pin Mill. I would suggest taking a winter’s picnic, and just exploring. Or if you want to see Orwell Country Park but don’t want to go, then head to the Suffolk Food Hall on the other side of the river. There is a cafe, a farm shop, a home shop, and amazing views of the river. You can even go for a walk and meet the cows. However, you can only get so far before you get lost in a farmers field and need to head back through Freston Woods. It’s fun though.
If you want to stay that side of the river, but also want to experience kayaking or paddleboarding, or even a game of mini golf, then Alton Water may be for you. Choose to walk around the reservoir, or hire kayaks for an hour. If you have your own kayaks then head to Cattawade (near Manningtree). It’s free, and you can kayak up and down.
Now Felixstowe may not be the best place in the world, but I have experienced and tasted the Movenpick ice cream and now I would simply drive there for the ice cream. Two scopes for £4 maybe a bit pricey, but as you sit by the beach and take in the weather, even if a little chilly, there is something special about the beach and seaside in the autumn / winter months.
If the countryside isn’t for you, then head to Ipswich or Bury and explore the two towns. They both have a lot of shops and restaurants to enjoy, but to get the best out of Suffolk this autumn head into the countryside and find some gems.