Enjoy the British coast away from the crowds this summer
We all know the delights of Southwold and Aldeburgh – the beach huts, the boutiques and the fantastic fish and chips! In the height of summer, these wonderful British seaside towns can get very crowded and the hustle and bustle just isn’t quite as relaxing as it could be.
Suffolk is a county full of wonderful places to explore and sometimes some of the lesser known spots are forgotten about. If you’re looking for somewhere that is bit more relaxed than the popular main beaches in the region we’d suggest a trip just north of Southwold to the golden sandy beach of Covehithe. Tucked just away from the hustle and bustle of Southwold, tree trunks extrude from the cliffs right along this stretch of beach. Though tricky to get to as you need to park in the town and take a stroll down a footpath, you’re guaranteed of a quiet hideaway away from the crowds. Although suffering from the highest rate of erosion in the UK, it’s a picturesque location certainly worth a visit before it erodes into the sea! If visiting, please ensure you stay safe – erosion can happen at any time and the cliff is very crumbly, so it is recommended that people walk inland via the official Suffolk Coast Path (signed) or along the beach but remember to check the tide timetable as you can’t walk along the beach at high tide.
Again, near Southwold you’ll find The Denes Beach which is a combination of sand and shingle and popular with windsurfers. On one side is the mouth of the River Blyth and Southwold on the other. Although close to the popular town, The Denes is much quieter, yet still charming and during the summer months you can hop on a ferry which will take you from Southwold to Walberswick for crabbing.
Not just a spot for those with a penchant for binoculars and bird watching, the secluded beach of National Trust Dunwich Heath is a peaceful spot just outside of those main seaside areas. It is ideal for families and friends seeking a quiet spot to enjoy during the height of summer. Obviously, you can bring your binoculars and dogs are allowed off the lead on the beach all year round however, there is one small family area where dogs are requested not to be taken. In addition to the beach you have 200 acres of heathland to explore which, during the summer, is a sea of purple heath and yellow gorse. There is plenty of parking – free to National Trust members – toilets, a gift shop and a lovely café selling homemade cakes, hot and cold drinks and ice creams. The unspoilt surroundings mean this hidden gem is well worth exploring.
It may not have sand but it’s no less beautiful; Shingle Street faces the North Sea and sits between Bawdsey and Orford in a hamlet on the Suffolk coast. Whilst not ideal for sandcastles, it is an ideal spot for a bit of solitude. In fact, there are few places as quiet, hauntingly wild and beautiful. The shingle comes alive with flowering plants during the summer months. With just a few cottages and a Martello tower for company, this is the perfect place for a spot of kite surfing and a gourmet picnic. Take a thick blanket to protect yourself from the shingle. Great place to see the sunrise.
Along the shoreline of the River Stour there is a quiet and isolated stretch of beach near Ewarton – Johnny all alone Creek. To one side there are saltings and behind you there are fields surrounding you on one side. You can access Johnny all alone creek along the river path from both Holbrook and Shotley. This little known spot on the Suffolk coast could soon be your favourite.