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   drowned’. Follow the beachside path to Aldeburgh, passing colourful fishing boats and black tarred fishermen’s huts selling today’s catch. The Aldeburgh seafront is a delightful mish-mash of buildings from across the centuries: pastel-painted cottages, hotels with veranda restaurants, the 16th-century Moot Hall (now housing the town museum), a boating pond, and not forgetting the statue of Snooks the dog. Continue past the lifeboat station and the South Lookout tower, leaving the town behind at the Brudenell Hotel as you head on towards the distant Martello Tower (available as a holiday let through the Landmark Trust).
Before reaching the tower, take the footpath fingerposted to the right along the raised dyke flanking the River Alde, following it for 3km as it meanders along the water’s edge and around Aldeburgh
Marshes. There are two footpaths off to the right along the way, which make for shorter options if preferred; the first, after 500m, leads back to the Brudenell Hotel, the second, after roughly 1km, cuts across the marshes to join a later stage of the route.
The River Alde is peppered with moored yachts and offers glimpses of Iken Church in the distance to the west and plenty of opportunities to
enjoy the open
views and birdlife.
Look out for little
egret, redshank,
reed bunting, mute
swans and warblers,
and listen for the
song of skylarks.
At the end of a long
straight
stretch of riverbank take the footpath off to the right. There’s no fingerpost here, but instead follow the yellow waymarker arrow down some wooden steps. The waymarkers lead you straight across the marshes, passing through a number of metal gates, to the allotments (note the grapevines!) on the edge of Aldeburgh. Go through the allotments, straight on
past the bowls and tennis clubs and right at the road, before turning left into Park Lane. Cross Lee Road, remaining on Park Lane and, at the Church of Our Lady and St Peter, pause a moment to enjoy the views across the rooftops and out to sea.
Drop down the steps back into town, explore the shops, galleries and cafés at leisure, and then make your way back along the waterfront to the car park.
Shell shock: Maggi Hambling’s Scallop sculpture and left, a boat on the shingle at Aldeburgh
Distance 7km
Time 2 hours 30
Terrain Pavement and footpaths
Map OS Landranger 156 or OS Explorer 212 Access Beachside car park on Thorpe Road (parking charge); buses from
Ipswich, Halesworth and Saxmundham
Walk taken from Suffolk: 40 Coast and
Country Walks by Darren Flint and Donald Greig Published by Pocket Mountains www.pocketmountains.com
Twitter: @pocketmountains
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