Here's information about our area:
Suffolk is a large county with masses of variety. It has 50 miles of beautiful coastline; two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty; gently undulating countryside dotted with ancient woodlands; vibrant market towns and pretty medieval villages.
Welcome to the Heart of Suffolk Tourism Means Business page, where we have links and information which we hope will be helpful to both existing tourism business within the Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Council areas, as well as to those starting a new tourism business.
Many of our tourism businesses are offering gift vouchers and "experience days" that make lovely presents for any special occasion. Here are a few of our favourites...
Hot off the press! The 2017 visitor guide for the Heart of Suffolk is now available to order and is packed full of useful information for visitors to this lovely part of Suffolk.
Ariel Gallery, located in historic Lavenham, Suffolk is an established fine art gallery buying and selling works by modern and contemporary artists, specialising in art by twentieth century British artists. Our gallery inventory includes paintings, drawings, prints and sculpture.
The Suffolk Owl Sanctuary at Stonham Barns in Stonham Aspal is a charity in Suffolk operating a facility for the care and rehabilitation of owls from the region and at the same time it promotes owl conservation throughout the UK and beyond.
Kersey Mill is in the picturesque countryside close to Hadleigh and the pretty village of Kersey. It has a coffee shop, a second hand clothing boutique, art gallery, flower shop, craft shop with over 29 crafters' work on display and a glass painting studio.
Set in the beautiful surrounds of Pin Mill, on the Shotley Peninsula in the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, this one or two day colour/black and white digital photography course for compact 'point and shoot' or DSLR cameras, including a delicious lunch and drinks at the famous Butt and Oyster pub, teaches you the techniques of photography, digital imaging and printing.
Enhance your visit to Suffolk by attending one of the courses at the Suffolk Food Hall's cookery school on the Shotley Peninsula. The Cookhouse offers the opportunity to learn all sorts of new skills and has courses in bread making, cookery, photography and art.
Assington Mill is a few miles from Sudbury and sits in the middle of the lovely Suffolk countryside. Short courses on a wide variety of unusual rural crafts are offered here and the list includes things such as: keeping bees, goat husbandry, photography, building a windmill, felting, learning to make a clay oven, making cider, writing a novel and many, many more
If you enjoy cycling, then you have come to the perfect place. The gentle landscapes of Suffolk offer beautiful vistas and just enough undulation to make cycling enjoyable for all ages and abilities.
Built in the 16th century, the stately home of Melford Hall is the ancestral seat of the Parker Baronets and is the much-loved home of the Hyde-Parker family. Since 1960, this beautiful historic house has been in the care of the National Trust.
Long Melford church is one of the great Suffolk wool churches. Completed in 1484, it has a commanding, early 20th century tower and cathedral-like proportions. The church has a magnificent interior with a rare display of medieval stained glass.
Plan your perfect family days out in Suffolk with a trip to Jimmy's Farm or the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary perhaps, or what about a day out at Kentwell Hall in Long Melford, home of historic re-creations? We also have a selection of leisure centres with lots of play facilities for children and many events such as wildlife walks and children's theatre and other activities throughout the year.
Thought provoking memorials, beautiful views, peaceful surroundings and fascinating tales going back a thousand years, add to the usual spiritual experience of visiting a church.
Meandering through beautiful Suffolk gardens is a delight for visitors all year round. We have many to choose from, including the historic Grade I listed gardens at Helmingham Hall, the kitchen garden at Abbot's Hall in Stowmarket, extensive woodland walks at Thornham Walks and The Place for Plants arboretum in East Bergholt. Most of our historic houses and museums have gardens of some description, from the extensive parkland at Melford Hall (National Trust), the walled garden and magical woodland trails at Kentwell Hall in Long Melford, to the pretty courtyard garden at the Lavenham Guildhall (National Trust). There's also the new garden, developed by the RSPB at Flatford, which is designed to show us how we can all attract wildlife into our own gardens. And don't miss the garden at Gainsborough's House, with its splendid 400 year old mulberry tree!
Suffolk is a county where many artists have come over the centuries to seek inspiration for their work. The lovely landscapes, the fresh air and the wide skies all help to put a person in a relaxed frame of mind, enabling creativity to flow. Thomas Gainsborough, John Constable, Maggie Hambling, Sir Alfred Munnings are just a few of those who have lived and worked here. We invite you to enjoy the fruits of their, and other artists' labours, and to stroll through some of the many art galleries and craft studios in the Heart of Suffolk.
Suffolk has a well-deserved reputation for being a 'foodie county' and we are lucky to have a really good selection of farmers' markets, farm shops, and a great range of food producers. These include vineyards, chocolatiers, bakers, fruit juice producers, butchers, jam and chutney producers, and micro-breweries.
We are thrilled to see the Mid Suffolk Tourist Information Centre featured in this month's EADT Suffolk Magazine, under the heading "Fab ways to find out more". The centre is packed with information on attractions and events in Suffolk and beyond; cycling and walking leaflets; maps and guidebooks; postcards and greetings cards and an extensive range of gifts, many of them locally made.