You Unplugged

Shortlist symbol Add to shortlist button.

The Maybush Inn (c) Adnams

Take to the water...

Suffolk's opportunities for taking to the water are endless.  With rivers, lakes, reservoirs, not the mention miles of coastline there are so many ways to enjoy the water.  Whether you would like to try a new skill of sailing or paddle boarding or just prefer to sit and watch the world go by let us take you on a trip to discover what the beautiful waterways of Suffolk have to offer.  
View of the River Deben from Waldringfield (c) Martin Pettitt
View of the River Deben from Waldringfield 

Hoist the sails

If you are new to the water, Suffolk has a range of sailing opportunites for both the experienced and novice alike.  At Viking Mariner's they will take you on board and you can either be shown the ropes and techiques for saling or just relax and watch how it all works.  Choose from an afternoon sail with cream tea, a whole day luxury sail or go for a sail and stay.

Just outside the town of Ipswich is Alton Water, a man-made reservoir.  In this picturesque setting you can either launch your own boat but if you want to learn to sail, this has the perfect calm water to start you off.  You can also have a go at paddle boarding, windsurfing and rowing.  For those in your party who would prefer to stay on dry land, there are plenty of other things to do around the water.  Hire a bike and pedal on the surfaced track or a longer 8 mile cross country route.  Other activities include walks and a children's play area, you can even pitch up your tent and stay the night!

Viking Mariners yacht moored at Ipswich marinaViking Mariners moored in Ipswich 

Paddle board or surf?

Paddle boarding has become such a popular sport and here in Suffolk there are plenty of places to stand up and paddle.

The choice is yours though, do you surf or paddle board?  In the coastal town of Southwold, with its iconic lighthouse, you can decide and take lessons in either at the Southwold Surf School.

On the banks of the River Stour, is Sudbury Boat Hire and from here you can hire paddle boards, canoes and kayaks for your trip along the river, stopping off at a local pub or even staying overnight at the Secret Wild Camping site.

Surfing in Lowestoft (c) Chris Read PhotographySurfing in Lowestoft

Relax on a river cruise

If the idea of having to do all the hard work to make your way across the water is not for you, then worry not.  No matter what the weather is doing, let one of the many river cruise boats do the work while you relax and enjoy the scenic Suffolk landscapes.

Board the Orwell Lady, who is moored at Orwell Quay on Ipswich waterfront, for a sightseeing tour of the River Orwell.  There is a choice between a 1hour, 2.5 or 3.5 hour cruise.  The latter cruises down to the historic Harwich Harbour, where the Pilgrim Fathers departed on their epic journey aboard the Mayflower. 

MV Jahan is on the River Deben and on a 2 hour trip with her you will see and hear about the rich wildlife and history of the Suffolk Coast and Heaths area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. 

At Flatford, the birthplace of the famous painter John Constable, the Stour Trusty II, an electric boat will pick you up for a trip along the River Stour.  The tour takes in Stratford St Mary, Dedham, Flatford and Brantham.

The Orwell Lady in Suffolk
Orwell Lady on a River Orwell cruise

Canoeing, kayaking and rowing

Canoeing, Kayaking or rowing is not only great excercise but a great way to see the countryside along quiet waterways and across lakes.

At Thorpeness, on the Suffolk Coast, The Meare boating lake is a family favourite.  Hire a rowing boat and row across the Meare.  Drop oars and explore Peter Pan's island and fantasy forts.  You'll get some great views from here of the 'House in the Clouds', a famous English folly, which is available as holiday accommodation. 

Combine a canoe trip with a bit of nature watching too on the Alde Estuary between Snape and Aldeburgh.  Leisurely discover the creeks and flood waters, you may even be lucky enough to get up close to see the seals basking on the mud banks but please don't disturb them.  Canoes, Kayaks and stand up paddle boards can be hired from Iken Canoe.

Thorpeness Meare (c) Karen Roe

Where are your favourite places to take to the water in Suffolk?

Let us know via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram