Aldeburgh - Southwold Suffolk Coast Guide

Aldeburgh is a small fishing village and resort on the Suffolk coast between the ports of Felixstowe and Lowestoft. The village is perched right on the beach with the estuary of the River Alde to the south and west of the village. Aldeburgh is best known for the music festival which takes place in June each year but it worth visiting at other times as well. Southwold is a small seaside resort overlooking Sole Bay on the Suffolk Heritage Coast. 

                                                                    Southwold Suffolk

Aldeburgh beachThe attraction of Aldeburgh is its quiet charm and lack of the flashiness found in many modern resorts. There is a huge shingle beach directly in front of the town and plenty of hotels and guest houses. There are some excellent cafes and restaurants to tempt the foodies and some atmospheric pubs serving good local produce. The music festival was started in 1948 by Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears who both resided in the town. The festival has grown each year as more a more people are drawn to the high quality performances that are offered. The concerts are centred on the Snape Maltings Concert Hall a round three miles inland from Aldeburgh. The sea is still a central part of the village life however and there is a fishing fleet based on the beach and boat building is still undertaken to traditional lines.

To find hotels and holidays in the area - Go to Aldeburgh hotel listings  


The coast on either side of Aldeburgh is unusual and a good location for wildlife as there are relatively few visitors to the area. To the south is Orford which was once a fishing village but which has now been cut of from the sea by the River Ore which has deposited a shingle bank between the village and the sea. The huge shingle bank in front of the village is known as Orford Ness and is partly owned by The National Trust and there is a also a bird reserve there as well. A lighthouse warns local shipping of the dangers of the shingle spit which projects out into the sea for a mile or so. 


To the north of Aldeburgh is Southwold a small seaside resort with a nice beach and a Victorian era pier. The pier has had an eventful life having been damaged in storms over a century or so.  It was reduced to only 150 feet by the 1970's however it has now been restored to something like its original length and now stands at 650 feet with a new deck and buildings.  Southwold also has a lighthouse which was constructed in 1890 and strangely appears to stand  among the towns houses

Adnams, the Suffolk brewer, has been in the town since 1660 and re-built on the same site in 1890 - must be popular! The harbour area is still active and is a good place to relax and watch the boats go by. 


Places to visit around Aldeburgh

Aldeburgh Moot Hall Museum - Moot Hall, Market Cross Place, Aldeburgh, Suffolk IP15 5DS - Phone: 01728 454666

Aldeburgh Tourist Information Centre - High Street, Aldeburgh Tel 01728 453637

Snape Maltings Concert Hall - Nr. Saxmundham, Suffolk IP17 1SR Phone: 01728 688303/5

Orford Castle - Ruins of 12th century castle - Orford, Suffolk IP12 2NG - Phone: 01394 450472 Map

             Southwold pier         

                                  Southwold Pier                                                     Orford Ness

Map of the Aldeburgh area

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Ukcoastguide 2019