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Holidays in Orford

A charming coastal village with wonderful walks

UK | East of England | Suffolk | Orford
Views toward Orford Ness

A lovely little coastal town situated within the Suffolk Coast and Heaths area of outstanding natural beauty, Orford is the perfect destination for those looking for a spot of rest and relaxation by the sea. Originally an important fishing village and port during the Middle Ages, it has recently been voted as one of the 101 best places to live in Britain by the Sunday Times.

The medieval castle built by Henry II is one of the area’s most important landmarks and overlooks the winding River Ore; from the top of the castle you can drink in the wonderful views towards Orford Ness and beyond. The area is almost as famous for its smoked salmon and Butley Oysters so make sure you sample some of the local cuisine while you are there!

Hop on a ferry boat from Orford Quay to get to the National Trust nature reserve of Orford Ness and Havergate Island. The latter is an RSPB nature reserve and brilliant for birdwatching. Walk along the shingle beach to visit the spectacular red and white stripy lighthouse – some guided tours are given but do make sure you check dates before.

There are miles of both coastal and country walks in the area but one in particular to do is the Orford Town Walk which gives you an interesting tour around the town, passing the castle and finishing at the bustling Orford Quay.

Orford Castle view

Stop at the Pump Street Bakery and treat yourself to a box of their fabulous rhubarb doughnuts, made famous by the Oscar-winning director Mat Kirkby in his acceptance speech for best live action short in 2015. There are lots of other tasty dishes to try while there, especially their freshly baked sourdough breads.

If you are thinking of presents to take home, Orford Crafts is a good bet; with lots of local produce and artisan products like pretty baskets and pottery, you will be sure to find something gorgeous.

"Sample the infamous smoked salmon and Butley Oysters from the area, you won’t regret it!"

If you feel the need to learn, above the shop is the Suffolk Underwater Studies – a museum of archaeology and geography which has lots of fascinating records of the area on show.

For water babies, make sure that you take a river cruise, which will give you an insight to all of the sights of the area; there are great boat trips that go up to the popular resort of Aldeburgh and down along the coast to Shingle Street. The sailing club also comes alive during the summer months so be sure to head there if you love being at sea.

Orford has a variety of dining options - pop to one of the local pubs such as the friendly Crown and Castle or head to Pinney’s of Orford for some locally-caught seafood, including lots of smoked products that they smoke in their own traditional smokehouses.

If you don’t fancy eating out, you can also buy fresh fish there and take it home to cook on the barbie!

While you’re there

Orford Ness

Visit this stunning National Trust nature reserve and hop on a ferry boat to get there.


A beautiful fishing village just up the coast from Orford, known for its vibrant music and arts scene.

Orford Castle

A great opportunity to explore this famous landmark with spectacular views across to Orford Ness.

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