Aldeburgh Area Tourist Guide
The Aldeburgh area has long been a favourite Suffolk destination for artists, composers and the yachting fraternity and is ideally situated within the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Natural Beauty. Historically, Aldeburgh was a busy port with a flourishing ship building industry. The original Golden Hind – Sir Francis Drake's legendary Galleon that sailed the Globe in the 1500s – was actually built here.
Aldeburgh isn’t just a beautiful seaside resort aesthetically, there is much to occupy yourself with in this bustling town. Whatever you are interested in, there is sure to be something to suit you! There is something for everyone on the High Street if shopping is your bag; with both independent and well-known shops, Aldeburgh’s high street boasts a wide range of products for you to peruse.
Explore the local culture and discover that Aldeburgh has many fantastic art galleries and historical sights to hold your attention. There are three galleries in Aldeburgh, with exciting collections of art, sculptures and photography for those with a creative mind. The Red House is a must for anyone interested in the life and work of the composer Benjamin Britten. This was the house in which he lived and worked for the final two decades of his life, a really fascinating piece of history. You must also take the time to admire the beautiful 4 metre high sculpture of a scallop shell on the shingle beach at Aldeburgh. This sculpture is a tribute to Britten and now forms part of the landscape that we know and love. If you fancy a quiet afternoon in, Aldeburgh’s cinema is a perfect location to take the family and enjoy a classic or newly released film in a lovely, relaxed atmosphere. This cinema on the High Street has been screening films since 1919 and is truly an engrained part of Aldeburgh’s community.
After a long stroll down Aldeburgh’s charming seafront, around the yacht club and back, there is nothing better than to pay a visit to the famous fish and chip shop, frequently labelled the ‘best in the world’! People travel from far and wide to savour these culinary delights whilst sitting on the beach watching the tide slowly roll in.
Snape, just a few miles inland from Aldeburgh, is a beautiful place for an evening stroll; the sunset across the marshes is truly something to behold. The village of Snape itself is a historical one, as the site of an Anglo-Saxon ship burial, its heritage stretches back thousands of years. The village, although small, supports two pubs which are of course worth a visit after a long walk along the Sailor’s Path; the route which sailors once used to trek from Aldeburgh to Snape. Snape Maltings is certainly a captivating place, with a rich history of its own. Built by a Victorian entrepreneur, it ceased operation as a barley maltings after some time and Benjamin Britten transformed it into what we recognise as the Maltings today, with opportunities to see virtuosic musicians play in the majestic concert halls. Subsequent years have seen further development with the addition of boutique shopping and eateries including a third pub for the village.
The quaint Suffolk village of Thorpeness is unique, a couple of miles North of Aldeburgh; you will not find another place quite like this. On the coast in an area of outstanding natural beauty, Ogilvie, a quirky Scottish barrister, crafted the Meare in Thorpeness as an homage to J.M. Barrie, the author of Peter Pan in the Edwardian period. This is central to the village’s atmosphere, an incredible piece of design and something that people of all ages admire. The mock Tudor and Jacobean buildings are what gives this village character and a stroll around the village and the Meare in the afternoon sunshine is truly exceptional.
Iken & Friston
Iken and Friston are just a little inland from Aldeburgh and Snape. Friston has a charming church of great historical interest; Norman built with Jacobean and Victorian additions. A lovely to place to sit awhile when out rambling in the surrounding countryside.