The Best Winter Walks in Suffolk
Walk off those comfort-food calories and get closer to nature with an invigorating walk this winter. Suffolk has a wealth of trails and waymarked routes sure to tempt even the most reluctant hiker out of hibernation.
Here’s our suggestion of seven to try over the chillier months – all within reach of a tea room, café, restaurant or pub for a post-walk pick-me-up …
- Follow in the footsteps of England’s foremost landscape artist John Constable, who captured on canvas many idyllic views of the countryside now named in his honour. The National Trust’s Flatford and Constable Country trail encourages visitors to explore the picturesque Stour Valley and Dedham Vale, where you’ll see Flatford Mill, Willy Lott's House, the site of The Hay Wain painting, and visit the Village of Dedham, where Constable went to school.
- Near to Bury St Edmunds and also in the care of the National Trust, the south pleasure grounds at Ickworth have all the makings of a great winter walk. Explore a mixture of open parkland and woodland glades, and take in the church, Walled Garden and obelisk monument.
- A three-mile walk following the disused railway line that once linked Sudbury to Cambridge, The Valley Trail runs through riverside meadows that are the oldest continuously-grazed pastures in East Anglia. Wildlife-watchers will love looking out for the badgers, warblers and butterflies that are found here; the area is home, too, to the Deptford Pink, a nationally-endangered plant that thrives in Suffolk’s grassland conditions.
- For slightly more manicured surroundings, plan a trip to Thornham Walks, a landscaped parkland criss-crossed by 12 miles of paths and part of the Thornham Estate to the north of Ipswich. The water meadows here spend part of the winter partially underwater, providing an ideal habitat for wintering wildfowl and waders.
- Suffolk is home to many historic houses and ancient castles, and there are walks to be enjoyed around all. Clare Castle Country Park is the setting for a series of six walks. Varying in distance from two to seven miles these provide the perfect prompt for a visit to Suffolk’s smallest town which is steeped in history and home to a number of specialist stores for those who want to finish their walk with a little retail therapy.
- Pub walks are always popular, and The Greyhound at Pettistree caters perfectly with two downloadable guides giving details of circular routes for customers to enjoy. Water bowls and biscuits are provided for those who are dog-tired afterwards, while a seasonal menu, selection of local ales and an expanding array of single malt whiskies will sate those on two legs.
- Come and say hello to us at our Woodbridge office… close by is the start of a pretty riverside walk that hugs the edge of the River Deben as it flows upstream to Wilford Bridge. As you pass through old but still-busy boatyards and watch the tide flooding and then draining ancient grazing marshes and mudflats, note that on the opposite bank is the world famous Sutton Hoo Anglo Saxon burial ground.
Has this blog post got you feeling inspired? Browse our range of properties ideal for walkers by clicking here and book your next walking holiday in the Suffolk countryside.