1. Enjoy a Spa
Once a Georgian hunting lodge, today Bedford Lodge Hotel maintains the charm and character of a country house with additional luxury and comfort. Set in three acres of secluded rose gardens this is a destination to unwind in stylish and fragrant surroundings. The rooms are cosy and friendly with all the little details to make it a ‘home from home’.
The spa itself is decadent, flooded with light from the floor to ceiling windows and with all the amenities you need to really chill out. From the sparkling hydrotherapy pool, to the sauna, steam rooms and bubbling hot tub, there are multiple ways to find peace. Why not take advantage of one of the Spa days or Spa breaks where you can book additional treatments like facials and indulgent massages, along with a range of food and beverages to be enjoyed in the quiet spa lounge.
Not only is The Swan at Lavenham one of Suffolk's most iconic buildings, but it's also home to an award-winning spa Weavers House; so it's the perfect place to spend a day of relaxation and pampering. Here you can make use of the sauna, relaxation suites and hydrotherapy pool and vitality pool and indulge with a massage, body scrub, aromatherapy treatment, detox, facial or wrap.
If you fancy turning your spa day into stay, the sumptuous rooms are packed with character features including oak beams, fireplaces and four-poster beds. Each room also comes with a beautifully comfy king-size or double bed, bathrobes and luxury Temple Spa toiletries.
2. Explore a Country Estate
When it comes to extensive country estates, we really are spoiled for choice in Suffolk. Make your way to one of these Stately Homes and take in the sights, sounds and smells of the lush surroundings.
Set among 1,800 acres of majestic Suffolk parkland, National Trust Ickworth is part of an estate dating back to 1702. The huge site offers miles of varied walks with bountiful wildlife and hidden twists and turns to explore.
Striking Euston Hall is a handsome sight, built by Lord Arlington in 1666, this historic family home is surrounded by 10,500 acres of rolling parkland, farmland, broadleaf woodland and landscaped gardens, leaving you with plenty to explore. Wind your way towards the watermill, past the octagonal temple and look for St Genevieve, a 17th Century church that has remained charmingly unchanged through time.
Kentwell Hall is a romantic 16th century stately home in Long Melford. With its rose covered moat, topiary gardens and a fantastic circular walk, there is plenty to see and explore. Visit the quaint walled garden, herb garden, and spot the many variations of fruit tree. Traverse bridges, wander amongst ancient Yews and Cedars and look out for the Sculpted Tree, based on the tower of Babel, which is the UK’s single biggest wood carving. During the Spring and Summer the gardens are at their most colourful and fresh, birdsong can be heard all around and the sweet smell of wildflowers floats by on the breeze.
The expansive estate at Melford Hall offers an abundance of wildlife and stunning views of the expansive Suffolk countryside for miles around. The deer park and gardens are perfect for a gentle stroll or a brisk walk and are especially gorgeous at this time of year with carefully planted borders beginning to bloom and blossom on the trees. There are some lovely ponds too, just right for sitting by- see if you can spot a frog, newt or curious garden bird.
3. Take in the views from St Edmundsbury Cathedral
Experience Bury St Edmunds from a different perspective! St Edmundsbury Cathedral tower tours offer visitors an exciting way to see the city as well as a chance to see behind the scenes of this historic location of peace and reflection.
The tour takes you through the facts and figures behind the Millenium project which saw the building of the tower and vault and takes you up the 202 steps to look out across the city skyline from on high.
4. A Wander Around the historic Wool Towns
While away an hour or two exploring the picturesque Wool Towns of Lavenham, Clare and Long Melford. All within a short drive from Bury St Edmunds, the Suffolk Wool Towns are some of the best-preserved historic towns and prettiest villages in Suffolk.
In the 15th century, the wool trade was at its peak and the Wool Towns were some of the riches towns in the country.
Today, you can see evidence of this wealth, in the timber-framed houses, grand churches and buildings, in fact, Lavenham is known as ‘England’s Best-Preserved Medieval Village’, containing no less than 340 listed buildings.
5. Read a book in the Abbey Gardens
Since 1912 when it became a public park for the enjoyment of local inhabitants, the peaceful Abbey Gardens have provided locals and visitors alike with a tranquil setting for quiet contemplation and leisure.
Choose to sit and read amongst the greenery or take a delightful stroll through the formal gardens and herb garden, along the River Lark and past the 11th century Benedictine monastery.
The aviary is wonderful, inhabited by Canaries, Budgies, Teal Ducks, Finches and Doves. While away the time listening to their chirping and perhaps get refreshments from the little on site cafe.
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