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Travel Diary: A Weekend in Woodbridge

At around 1pm on the Saturday of Bank Holiday weekend, Dan and I were hurtling up the A12 towards Suffolk, towards Woodbridge. Although it’s only an hour away, we tended to lean towards Kent or Sussex for day trips, so I had never been to Suffolk before, and wasn’t sure what to expect.

After taking a couple of wrong turns down country lanes, we arrived at our destination: Thatched Farm Bed and Breakfast. There, we unloaded the car, fed Ted a lunch, and decided on our next steps. Dan was desperate to watch Southend United play their televised final game, so we had to rush to get food for ourselves. I’d contacted the local dog friendly pubs to ask if they would be showing it, and only one – the Bull Inn – would, but in their one room where dogs are not allowed.

Although we wandered into the town centre not long after 2:30pm, it was a ghost town. Never have I seen such a deserted town on a Saturday afternoon, nor have I struggled so much to find somewhere to eat. It turns out, almost all the pubs in the area stop serving food between 2pm and 6pm. Dan and I trudged between three pubs in an attempt to find lunch, but had to settle on peanuts and a Guinness at King’s Head, which was pretty disappointing.

Ted was incredibly jealous of Dan’s Guinness.

Despite the disappointment, King’s Head seemed like quite a pleasant establishment, so I reserved a table for dinner in the evening. Dan and I were famished as we sat down at gone 8pm, so with empty stomachs, we ordered shared nachos to start, and a Cajun chicken burger each. Boy did we make a mistake! About three quarters of the way through the plate of delicious nachos, we realised we probably wouldn’t be able to eat our burgers, which I suppose was lucky, as I found the spices slightly too strong for my liking, and probably wouldn’t have eaten the whole thing if I was hungry.

After breakfast on Sunday morning, we made the short journey to Sutton Hoo. It’s a National Trust location: the site of a Saxon burial ground and the place where the famous Saxon helmet was discovered. It was a perfect place for a dog walk in the morning, with four different walking routes. The best part of the walk was definitely the bluebells that were in bloom throughout the forest. I love wildflowers, and the spread was so vast, it was as if the forest floor was covered by a thin blue blanket.

Then, after returning to the B&B, feeding Ted, and having a quick nap, we made our way to Framlingham Castle, a 20 minute drive away. There we had a spot of lunch outside the castle, before stumbling on some sort of medieval festival within the castle walls. We had no idea it would be there, so it was a pleasant surprise, and really added to our experience of an otherwise ruined castle. However, it does have some spectacular views that are well worth seeing for yourself.

View from the battlements at Framlingham Castle

On our last night, we debated going out again for dinner, but we could see that Ted was utterly exhausted. Instead, we took a short trip to the nearby KFC and settled in for the night watching Live at the Apollo and oddly enough, Naked Attraction before drifting off to sleep.

On Bank Holiday Monday, we packed ourselves up, had our second delicious breakfast, and made the trip back to Essex. However, on the way, we made a pit stop to Flatford, made famous by the artist John Constable. Of all the places we visited on the weekend, Flatford was definitely the most picturesque, and I wish we had spent a bit more time there – we were rushing back to watch Episode 5 of Game of Thrones. It’s got flowers, a canal, and pretty, little houses, so what better way could anyone end a Bank Holiday weekend in Suffolk?

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