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Southwold Harbour

There are currently 2 comments and 14 photos online for this walk.

Southwold Harbour
Author: Peter Truman, Published: 20 Mar 2010 Walk rating : Rating:star1 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide star1 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide star1 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide star1 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide star0 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide
Suffolk,
Walk Type: Coastal
Southwold Harbour
Length: 3 miles,  Difficulty: boot Southwold Harbour Walking Guide boot Southwold Harbour Walking Guide
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0001_sunny Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Today's weather
12 °C, Clear/sunny, Wind: 6 mph W
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0002_sunny_intervals Southwold Harbour Walking Guide 0017_cloudy_with_light_rain Southwold Harbour Walking Guide 0002_sunny_intervals Southwold Harbour Walking Guide 0003_white_cloud Southwold Harbour Walking Guide 0009_light_rain_showers Southwold Harbour Walking Guide

A walk that should be taken in the early morning just after sunrise or just before sunset to witness the beautiful light in this part of Suffolk. This walk runs from the town centre, along the harbour road and round marshland to return to Southwold where a fine pint of Adnams should be compulsory refreshment and reward.
This is an easy walk on flat ground and takes an hour or so depending on how long you watch the harbour, look at the sunset or of course how long you spend in the pub!

Southwold has always been a popular seaside town for writers and artists or just to relax. The local brewery, Adnams, is still in the town and some fishing still goes on, but tourism is by far the largest contributor to the local economy. It has also become more popular in the last decade or so and in consequence prices have risen ; the house prices are now very high and so many of the houses are now holiday cottages. There's art, music, drama, literature, good food and wine, almost everything that a holiday needs! But there are also some excellent walks along the coats and into the marshland nearby. Once you have left the town the noise starts to disappear and quiet becomes the norm; there are many wonderful paths around and a walk is a welcome break from the busy town.
This walk starts in the town and along the seafront where you can see the pier and the much photographed and now iconic beachhuts. Then along the beach to the Harbour (still used by fishing boats), briefly touching the marshes and then back through the town.
The Suffolk marshes are a haven for wildlife and many birds feed in the area. It is important not to disturb them - be aware that you may see and find many birds during this walk. Please take great care not to disturb and, if necessary, take a detour.
The light at sunrise or sunset at this part of the coast takes on a unique character and walking at that time of day makes this walk so much more special. You will see why artists love this light.

The walk starts from East Street where is meets the sea front. Approximate post code IP18 6EJ. Parking is available in many parts of Southwold but can get very busy, especially at weekends and holiday periods although between autumn and Easter you can almost see tumbleweed blow down the streets. During the rest of the year and if you are early and lucky you may be able to park along the front (North Parade) but otherwise there are car parks near the pier, in Gardner Road or on the Common.
If travelling by train the nearest stations are Halesworth or Darsham, each about 10 miles away. There are buses operated by Anglian Coaches from Halesworth station to the Market Place in Southwold. The 601 service runs regularly every day of the week (separate Sunday service, but still runs).

Walk Sections

Southwold to Harbour
Southwold to Harbour

Start: OS ref TM507758
End: OS ref TM504749

Start point: 52.323 lat, 1.6775 long
End point: 52.315 lat, 1.6724 long

The start point in this walk is just outside the Lord Nelson pub on East Street in the town. There is parking space in Southwold but it can get very busy and be difficult to find a space; the car parks on the edge of the town are usually the only places to find a space unless you get there early in the day. If you walk along the High Street and bear left at the market place (alongside the Swan Hotel) and walk towards the sea front, the Lord Nelson pub will be just before the path along the front. Turn right (south) and follow this path either along the top of Gun Hill or along the promenade.
Follow this path until it turns to sand at the end of the promenade and walk along the sand dunes (taking care not to disturb any wildlife, birds in particular) or along the beach. If you prefer there is also a path running on the opposite side of Ferry Road alongside the marshes, part of the Suffolk Coast Path - but the beach is recommended.
This will take you to the entrance to Southwold Harbour, where the River Blythe opens into the North Sea.

Southwold Harbour
Southwold Harbour

Start: OS ref TM504749
End: OS ref TM497755

Start point: 52.315 lat, 1.6724 long
End point: 52.3207 lat, 1.6626 long

Now walk inland along the side of the Blythe enjoying the sights and sounds of the Harbour. During summer months there's a ferry that takes foot passengers across the Blythe to Walberswick - you will see the ramp to this and can form a useful link to longer walks along the coast. Continue up the road through the harbour until you reach the pub at the end.
Follow the footpath along the river rather than turning onto the road that would take you back to Southwold. Continue along the path until you reach the old railway bridge.

Return to Southwold
Return to Southwold

Start: OS ref TM497755
End: OS ref TM507758

Start point: 52.3207 lat, 1.6626 long
End point: 52.323 lat, 1.6775 long

The route back to Southwold is along the old railway track bed, but before you return do take a bit of time to look across the marshes from the bridge. You can also get a nice view of the boats moored along the river from the bridge.
The route back is along the railway track. You will soon get to a small bank covered in gorse bushes. Take the path that goes to the right and towards the golf course - keep the water tower in view and head towards it and you will not loose your way. Follow the path across the golf course, taking care to avoid any golfers, past the water tower and along the track back towards the town. Turn right to follow the road that heads around the town and follow this towards the sea front. This will bring you out on Constitution Hill. Walk across to Gun Hill and left again along the promenade until you return to the Lord Nelson pub.
I leave it to you to decide what to do next, but I know exactly what I would normally choose...

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2010 by the author ptruman and may not be reproduced without permission.


2 comments for "Southwold Harbour"

Southwold is one of our favourite places in the UK with iconic beach huts. We have been there several times over the last year and walked on a similar route to the one above. Next time we go there we will follow this walk

By Claire on 22 May 2011

Dunes and harbour great with fresh fish and a cafe on the route

By henryhewitt on 06 Mar 2017

The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

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14 gallery images for "Southwold Harbour"

48_0ptruman1269099692 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Beach huts along the promenade, Southwold
48_1ptruman1269099692 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Gun Hill, Southwold
48_2ptruman1269099693 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Beach huts and the southern end of the beach
48_3ptruman1269099693 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Southwold from the beach, looking north
48_4ptruman1269099693 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Gun Hill, Southwold
48_0ptruman1269100291 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Groynes, Southwold
48_1ptruman1269100291 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Walberswick Ferry staging, Southwold Harbour
48_2ptruman1269100291 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Fishing nets, Southwold Harbour
48_3ptruman1269100292 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Southwold Lighthouse
48_4ptruman1269100292 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
The Lord Nelson, East Street, Southwold
48_0ptruman1269100421 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Sunset from railway bridge
48_1ptruman1269100421 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
Solebay Fish Company, Southwold Harbour
48_2ptruman1269100421 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
River Blythe from railway bridge
48_0ptruman1269108795 Southwold Harbour Walking Guide Image by: Peter Truman
Uploaded: 20 Mar 2010
From the path along the old railway returning to Southwold

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