Suffolk Road Trip

A Two Week Spectacular Suffolk Road Trip

Suffolk in England is a blend of historical charm and natural beauty. Its medieval towns, like Lavenham and Bury St Edmunds, showcase well-preserved timber-framed houses and ancient markets, offering a glimpse into the past. Places like Sutton Hoo add to the county’s historical significance with remarkable archaeological finds. 

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Why Visit Suffolk

Suffolk’s countryside, including the Suffolk Coast and Heaths, are Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, offering peaceful landscapes which are ideal for nature walks and birdwatching. Coastal towns like Aldeburgh and Southwold are perfect for enjoying fresh seafood and picturesque views. This mix of cultural heritage and serene natural spots make Suffolk a distinctive destination.

As Suffolk is Damo’s home county, we are very familiar with this area, with some favourite spots that we visit time and time again.  There are some fabulous walks and hikes, both beach and countryside, with plenty of places to park up. There are also loads of shopping opportunities in independent boutique shops, delicious farm shops and scrummy food places. 

How to get to suffolk, england

Whether you are in your motorhome, looking to hire a motorhome or car, these are the key way to get to Suffolk: 

Ipswich Train Station

Trains into Ipswich if you are starting your road trip around the coastline, or Bury St Edmunds if you are starting your road trip inland. You will need to hire a car/motorhome.

Coach/Bus Station

Coaches arrive daily into various parts of Suffolk. You could of course 'backpack' your way around Suffolk using the bus network.

Key Trunk Roads

The main trunk roads into Suffolk from the Midlands, The North and London are the A12 (the coast road) and the A14 depending on where you are heading to.

Our Favourite Travel Booking Companies.

These are our useful links for our ‘Go To’ travel booking apps.  These are the sites that we use all the time when backpacking or need to spend a few days out of the motorhome (visiting the children or repair work on the motorhome).  The Trainline we use for all our train ticket needs in the UK.  we use for all our hotel, hostel and accommodation needs worldwide (this was a life saver in India!) and finally, Viator for our excursion adventures like walking tours or more specialist activities. 

Download our Handy Road Trip Planner

Use our handy ready made PDF planner to help you plan your trip. We created a 9 day planner to use to plan a 1 week trip. Simply print out more copies for each week of your travels. Capture everything you need from your start and end points to where you will stay. There is space to write all the things you want to see and more. Plenty of room for jotting down notes as you plan too. 

1 Week/ 9 Day Road Trip Planner

*Road Trip Planner

*By downloading our planner, you give us permission to send you our newsletter. We send this approx every 6 – 8 weeks.

Best time to Take a Suffolk Road Trip

Suffolk in Spring

Spring in Suffolk truly brings the countryside to life, making it an exceptional time to explore the county’s natural landscapes. The ancient woodlands burst into life with bluebells and wildflowers, creating a vibrant tapestry of colors that contrast beautifully against the lush greenery. This season also sees the re-wilded farmland and protected wetland reserves thriving, providing a sanctuary for a diverse range of wildlife. Birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts can delight in observing species in their natural habitat, from migratory birds returning home to native animals emerging from their winter hideaways.

Suffolk in Summer

July and August are the warmest months to visit Suffolk.

Summer in Suffolk is both stunning and enchanting. When it gets warmer and the sun shines, the towns become lively and full of color. The beaches look amazing with the shining sea, eating outside is popular, and the countryside is buzzing with life.

Motorhome campsites may get booked up earlier, so don’t leave this to the last minute if you are not wild camping.

Suffolk in Autumn

Suffolk shines brightest in autumn, with its landscapes turning into a vibrant palette of reds, yellows, oranges, and browns. This season offers the perfect backdrop for scenic walks through the woods. You may get to see the red deer stags rutting at RSPB Minsmere which is just so majestic. 

The stunning autumnal hues and the gentle weather make Suffolk an ideal destination for those looking to enjoy nature’s seasonal transformation

Flatford Mill in Suffolk in the Winter
Constables House in the Autumn at Flatford Mill in Suffolk

Suffolk in Winter

A visit in the wintertime to Suffolk gives you the beaches for yourself. You can walk on Shingle Street and be the only person there. For bracing walks in the woods and on the coastline, exploration of the quaint villages, where shops are still open because people actually live there. You can enjoy cosy nights in the pub with woodburner and it is easier to find the wild camping spots. 

Suffolk road trip at a glance

~ Ipswich ~ Felixstowe ~ Woodbridge ~ Bawdsey ~ Orford ~ Aldeburgh ~ Dunwich ~ Southwold ~ Framlingham ~  Bury St Edmunds ~  Lavenham ~ Dedham Vale ~

Our road trip starts in Ipswich, makes its way around the coast before coming inland and finishing on the Suffolk/Essex border. It includes our favourite places in Suffolk, where we spent so much time whilst trying to get ourselves into the position to leave the country and travel fulltime in mainland Europe. 

2 week suffolk road trip itinerary


Take a walk around Christchurch Park and Christchurch Mansion, which is a Museum in the park. Walk down to the harbour in Ipswich, where the boats are a plenty, stop for coffee at the waterfront which is a vibrant and cultural hub, buzzing with life. 


A lovely shopping area in Ipswich, known as The Saints, is full of independent shops, bars and cafe’s as well as a lot of historical elements dating back to the 7th Century.

Jimmys’ Farm (of TV fame) is a working farm and wildlife park, on the outskirts of Ipswich, a really interesting stop. They do ‘experiences’ at the farm, but they  are an additional cost on top of the entrance fee. Finally the farm shop has  delicious bits of food which can you can visit to stock up your motorhome fridge if you are doing a motorhome road trip. 


Get a picnic from the Felixstowe Fishmongers from this Victorian beach resort. Enjoy a coffee sitting on the bench in the gardens overlooking the sea on the way to the fishmongers. It has a great sandy beach lined with lovely beach huts. 


If you go slightly down the coast, to Old Felixstowe, you can catch a ‘water taxi’ over to Bawdsey, which is a lovely place that we spent many of our early days, but now has dreaded height barriers on the carpark. 

Felixstowe Fishmongers do the most amazing take outs which are just delicious. You can pop in the shop or order online and pick it up. It really is good value for money.

Woodbridge & Sutton Hoo

Visit Woodbridge, where you can take a boat trip,  stroll around the harbour and riverside walks to see the working mill – one of only two in the country.  Stop for lunch at the Unruly Pig in Bromeswell (super gastro pub) before moving on to Sutton Hoo

The estate of Sutton Hoo (National Trust) is home to one of  the most important archaeological finds ever made, a ship. There is more than just the burial ground to see, with shops, walks and exhibitions. These are only open at weekends though. 

Shingle Street & Butley

Shingle Street is a tiny little hamlet in Suffolk with an amazing pebble beach. Keep your eye on the tides as you get some massively strong currents here and rip tides.  The Suffolk Coastal path starts in Shingle Street – you are able to walk part of it to Butley which takes about 3 hours. 


If you go into the The Oyster Inn Pub in Butley before you drive to Shingle street,  you can lock and leave your bikes round the back of the pub. This allows you to drive to Shingle Street and do the walk back to the pub.  Having worked up a good appitite, treat yourself to a delicious meal and cycle back to the motorhome. A great healthy day out.

Bawdsey Beach, Suffolk
Morning coffee on Bawdsey Beach, Suffolk

Orford, Orfordness and Snape

Orford and Orford Ness are two quiet little gemstones on the Suffolk coastline which can be easily missed.  Orford has a  well preserved castle which is a must to visit. Stroll down to  Orford Quay and take a boat trip across to Orford Ness, an internationally important nature reserve with a military history. Check the opening time as it may only be open at weekends and is closed in winter.  

A visit to Snape Maltings is a definite. Some wonderful little shops and galleries in the old maltings and riverside café where you can stop for snacks and coffees. Rent a canoe and take a trip up the river Alde. 

Aldeburgh & Thorpeness

Ye olde seaside villages! Aldeburgh, another gorgeous costal village but unlike Southwold’s sandy beaches, Aldeburgh is a shingle beach, with fish shacks on the beach to buy delicious seafood for your evening meal. They even have their own tiny museum! There is a lovely Thai takeout, Daves Place, which is also a pub – the food is really good and they sometimes have live music on. Take some time to stop at  Thorpeness Mere where you can enjoy punting or be a little more active and hire a Canadian canoe, kayak or paddleboard. 

Minsmere & Dunwich

Minsmere is one of Europe’s top bird sanctuaries. It is well worth looking for events of interest that are on as it caters for the whole family and has a lovely cafe too. 

Just 2 miles further down the road is Dunwich, an AONB which runs down the coast of Suffolk. It is worth visiting Dunwich museum, before exploring by foot or by bicycle. You can pack up some food and walk to the beach for a picnic in the afternoon. If you want to be more active then you could bike the 7.5 mile (mostly) off road track to Walberswick and grab a pub lunch there.  Southwold is your next stop. 

AONB, Suffolk
Beautiful walks through the AONB at Dunwich

Southwold and Walberswick

Southwold is the jewel in the Suffolk coastal crown, and also the home of Adnams brewery. Southwold is a wonderfully charismatic, unspoilt British seaside town with shops, pubs, restaurants, pier and an amazing beach. You can take an Adnams brewery tour or learn about how to make your own gin, but don’t expect to drive anywhere afterwards! You get 10 plus shots of gin to try before you make your own bottle. I felt quite tipsy!! To clear your head take a walk down to the harbour where you can buy fresh fish landed that day, from the fish shacks. 

Alternatively catch the Walberswick ferry, or walk up the river to the bridge instead.  Walberswick is village trapped in time, with a traditional village green, a couple of pubs and a lovely sandy beach. Walberswick is part of a 1000 acre nature reserve, hosting deer, otter and a wide range of bird species. It also hosted the British open crabbing competition, where entrants battled to catch the heaviest crab on lines. Although the championship no longer takes place, you can still enjoy this ‘sport’. You must throw the crabs back in the sea though! Southwold would make a good base for several days, getting around on bike, or scooter if you have one on the back of your motorhome!

If you are going to be visiting in the 3rd weekend of July - take a day to stop at Latitude Festival for some great music vibes. Latitude is a fantastic family festival which hosts all the top names and more!


Framlingham is also the place Damo and I spent our first months before moving into our Motorhome and also where he bought up his kids so it is a special place for both of us.

Framlingham is an town dating back to Anglo Saxon times which was mentioned in the Doomsday Book in 1086. Framlingham Castle (famously mentioned in Ed Sheerans ‘Castle on the Hill’) is an English Heritage site, surrounded by parkland and a lake. After visiting the castle, there is a lovely circular walk, taking you down to The Mere, through country lanes and back up through the historic town centre. Saturday mornings in the town centre is market day, always a hive of activity and full of locals buying their produce.  

An hours drive (the longest drive of the road trip) will get you to your next stop which is Bury St Edmunds.

Bury St Edmunds

Enjoy the cultural delights that the historical market town of Bury St Edmunds has to offer. Although a town, Bury St Edmunds has a magnificent cathedral to visit. It also has the last remaining regency theatre in Britain along with one of Britains smallest pub, The Nutshell. It has only recently lost its ‘smallest pub’ crown to an even smaller one in Margate. When we visited it has 6 people in it sitting, but I understand it holds 20 standing, but that would be really packed. 

Take a visit to Ickworth House, which is part of the National Trust,  just outside Bury St Edmunds. Take a walk on one of the many footpaths in the 1800 acre estate, (dogs welcome), hire a bike or visit the house. You can have afternoon tea or stay overnight at The Ickworth Hotel, which is just beautiful. 

Bury St Edmunds is home to Pea Porridge, a 1 Michelin Star restaurant and the food is sublime. Another fabulous restaurant is Maison Bleue. You will need to book ahead though.


Lavenham really must be the most beautiful village in Suffolk. It is an absolutely stunningly preserved medieval village. Go for a wander down the high street, visit the National Trusts Lavenham GuildHall and Little Hall and just take turning after turning to see the beautiful village cottages. Be sure to go to the Blue Vintage Tea Rooms to have an authentic tea with the gramophone playing.

Dedham Vale & Flatford Mill

Dedham Vale , an another AONB, is also known as Constable Country. It is where some of Constable painted his most famous paintings, such as ‘The hay Wain’. National Trust has a carpark near Flatford Mill, so you can park there before visiting some of the key painting spots of Constable. The spots are signposted so you can stand there and see the same landmarks and views that he saw when he created his masterpieces. You can take a nice leisurely circular walk (about 2 hrs)  along the River Stour, through the picturesque village of Dedham, with stopping places for coffee or tea and admire the views before heading back to the carpark. Its the perfect way to end your trip with in the most beautiful Suffolk countryside.

lavenham, half timbered, house-1127029.jpg
The amazingly preserved medieval houses in Lavenham, Suffolk

Camping and Motorhome Park Ups

There are a whole host of motorhome camping sites in Suffolk. From Bury St Edmunds to Southwold to Framlingham, you can find independent sites as well as the larger parks with more entertainment facilities to use.  

This Suffolk road trip has villages and other areas that you could stay in for several days.  Southwold is an example of this.  Please note that you should check the sites opening season as some close in the winter months. 

Festivals in Suffolk

Suffolk has a plethora of festivals at different times of the year. The following are the key ones:

Latitude Festival – a music, comedy and literary bonanza held on the third weekend of July! A 4 day festival with a host of well known artists. I have been to this festival about 10 times. It’s great for children too. 

Aldeburgh Music Festival – Held at Snape Maltings in June is Suffolk’s top music and arts festival. 

FolkEast Festival – Held in August at Glemham Hall in Suffolk where you can take your motorhome for the weekend with a motorhome parking ticket (between £40 and £60 depending on size for 2024)

Beccles Food and Drink Festival – Held at the end of May, this food festival has just the most delightful food stalls with local delicacies. With a mobile cookery theatre as well, you have everything you need to stock up the motorhome fridge! Including local English wines.

Maverick Festival ~ Held in July, Maverick is the UKs first Americana music festival. The festival has a great artists, food, well organised and intimate. Set in restored Victorian barns and outbuildings, you can also take your motorhome.

Does Suffolk Deliver for a road trip?

It absolutely does! A road trip in Suffolk has everything that you could want. It’s full of beautiful spots and interesting things to see. It has amazing, award winning beaches,  where you can relax, charming little Victorian villages and a host of country parks and AONB places. Suffolk also has a huge amount of history. Sutton Hoo is just incredible and Framlingham Castle is exudes atmosphere.  Artisan food, little deli shops and fresh seafood galore. It’s a perfect place to slow down, enjoy the views and have fun exploring. A road trip in Suffolk will give you the opportunity to see some of the best parts of the countryside and really recharge your batteries. 

Norfolk and Suffolk Road Trip

If you have the time and are leisurely driving your motorhome or car and exploring over a longer period of time, we have a Norfolk Road Trip, which would work very well with this Suffolk Road Trip, giving you the best of both worlds in this beautiful part of England. You could also spend a weekend in Norwich from here, a fine city in the heart of Norfolk, just an hours drive from Ipswich, just down the A140. 

Related Posts: Norfolk Road Trip, Norwich City Break, Southwold and Aldeburgh, Suffolk, Wild Camping Rules,   Wild Camping Essentials      

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