Though small, the pretty town of Orford has many wonderful attractions including a boating river, a quayside, an oysterage, a famous smokehouse, an award-winning artisan bakery and a notable castle.
Unsurprisingly, Orford is one of the most popular destinations for people on weekend visits to the Suffolk Coast. For a great walk, we recommend taking a stroll around this intriguing little town and the area surrounding it. These are just some of the sights you shouldn’t miss.
Orford Castle has one of England’s most unusual keeps. Its polygonal tower is totally unique. It’s extremely well preserved, and this well–kept condition means that visitors can explore the maze of passages, chambers, chapels and halls that would first have been used by Henry II.
Orford Castle proudly overlooks the town
Orford’s beautiful church was a favourite place of the composer Benjamin Britten, who performed some of his church parables here, as well as the first performance of his opera, Noye’s Fludde, the recording of which can still be heard today.
St Bartholomew’s Church in Orford heard the first recital of Britten’s opera, Noye’s Fludde (c) Visit Churches
This traditional little quay is a great place for crabbing, an excellent summer pastime. Moored at Orford Quay is the Lady Florence River Cruise Restaurant, a charming boat that takes up to 12 passengers out onto the Rivers Alde and Ore for catered cruises. A lunch or dinner cruise can be had, with all food prepared on board from local ingredients, including fresh Orford-landed seafood.
Boats on the tranquil River Alde at Orford (c) Martin Pettit
PUMP STREET BAKERY
Perhaps the most famous artisan bakery in Suffolk, Pump Street Bakery attracts critics and foodies from all over the UK. As well as many kinds of delicious breads and pastries, including ‘Britain’s Best Baguette,’ Pump Street has now started making their own chocolate, using a bean to bar philosophy. Take your time and enjoy a meal in the café, or buy a warm roll and take it with you on your walk.
Pump Street Bakery is a must-visit for any foodie
BUTLEY ORFORD OYSTERAGE
You’ll sample some of the freshest seafood in Suffolk at the Butley Orford Oysterage. Every day the restaurant’s two fishing boats bring back the day’s catch, while plump freshwater oysters arrive from Butley Creek, less than a mile away. After your meal, don’t forget to visit the Pinney’s of Orford shop at Orford Quay, where you can pick up some exquisite smoked delicacies.
The smoke room at Pinneys
THE CROWN AND CASTLE
The Crown and Castle is an ideal place to end your day walking around Orford, or break for one of their superb pub lunches, best enjoyed al fresco in the garden, which overlooks Orford Castle. Winner of numerous accolades for its delicious home-cooked food, cosy rooms and friendly staff, the Crown and Castle well deserves its reputation as one of the best inns on The Suffolk Coast, so if you’re planning on staying in Orford a little longer, this is the place to rest your head.
Enjoy views of the Castle from the Crown and Castle