With over 120 walks on offer, this year’s Suffolk Walking Festival is shaping up to be the biggest yet.
Whether you are young or old, a novice or an expert, there is something for everyone. You could kick start your day on a Dawn Chorus walk or end it on a Twilight Safari, have a go at Nordic Walking or spend a day geocaching and seek out the treasures dotted around the landscape.
The three week festival launches with two walks at St Peter's Brewery in Bungay, on Saturday 12 May, each walk including a brewery tour.
Once again, the festival will include a challenge walk and this year’s walk covers over 60 miles in just four days. The walk explores The Sandlings, a landscape of sandy soils, heathlands and forests stretching between Southwold and Ipswich.
This year also sees the launch of the Festival Fringe, a series of events that get you close to nature in the very heart of Suffolk’s countryside. Fringe highlights include 'Twilight Safari', where you can experience nightlife waking up in an ancient woodland; 'Suffolk Sketchbook' where you can learn to sketch in the iconic setting of Snape Maltings; and 'Iconic Images', a series of photography workshops with one of Suffolk’s leading professional photographers.
East Suffolk walks include:
Cllr Jane Storey, cabinet member for Highways, Transport and Rural Issues, said:
“It is great to see such a wide variety of walks and activities in this year’s walking festival and I would encourage as many people as possible to take part. I am hoping to go along to several of the walks with my dog – but there is something for everyone to enjoy.
“The walking festival is a great way to get active, connect with people and most importantly have fun! I hope that this year’s events encourage people to get out, get walking and enjoy the wonderful surroundings we have here in Suffolk.”
BBC Radio Suffolk’s Lesley Dolphin, patron of the walking festival said “It is so exciting that the walking festival continues to grow and grow- this year it’s even got a fringe festival and I’m really proud to be a patron. I’ve loved getting out for a walk ever since I was little when my mum and dad took me to see the red squirrels in Thetford Forest.
“Suffolk is such an amazing place with a huge range of landscapes to explore and what makes this festival so special is that, as well as doing a spot of walking, I learn something about where I live.
“There are over a hundred walks right across the county so there is bound to be something for you, whether it is seeing out wildlife, learning about the silk industry or exploring our villages and towns.”
The Walking Festival is organised by Suffolk County Council and is supported by Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils.
Tickets for the events and walks are now on sale. To buy tickets or find out more information visit Suffolk Walking Festival.
The festival is part of Suffolk County Council’s Discover Suffolk project which aims to improve and promote access to the Suffolk countryside – over 100 walking, cycling and horse riding leaflets are available to download for free from discoversuffolk.org.uk