Out & About
A scenic market town with excellent shopping, fine wine, literary links and famous folklore.
Nestled within a wide meander of the river Waveney, Bungay is on the border of Norfolk and Suffolk and offers the best of both counties. With a history dating back to Anglo-Saxon times, Bungay boasts several ancient attractions, including the ruins of Bigod’s Castle and the ancient Buttercross – where a market is still held each Thursday. Folklore linked to the area includes the legend of Black Shuck, a ghostly black dog which is said to roam the heaths and coastline of East Anglia and supposedly terrorised the occupants of Bungay’s St Mary’s church in 1577.
What to see and do
Once you’ve browsed the town’s renowned independent shops and cafes, head to Falcon Meadow or Outney Common for scenic countryside and riverside walks, or try one of two official trails: the Bigod Way Trail focuses on the remains of the large Norman castle of the same name; whereas the Town Trail takes you to all the historic buildings and landmarks.
Bungay’s Fisher Theatre is one of the oldest provincial theatres in the country, and regularly hosts plays, films, live music and exhibitions, so it’s always worth seeing what’s on while here.
Has all that wandering got you feeling peckish? A visit to Fen Farm Dairy, which produces delicious raw dairy products, is an absolute must: be sure to pick up a wheel of their infamous Baron Bigod brie.
Craft beer lovers will enjoy a trip to St Peter’s brewery, where you can take a tour, restock your alcohol cupboard or enjoy a bite at nearby St Peter’s Hall, a fantastic moated building dating back to 1280.
Claiming to be Suffolk’s finest deli, Earsham Street Delicatessen offers a wide range of delectable baguettes, salads, quiches, sausage rolls, rare breed pork pies and sweet treats. Championing products from local and artisan producers, you’ll find everything you need to pack up a mouth-wateringly good picnic.
One of the country’s most exciting new wine producers, Flint Vineyard’s tour takes you through the vineyards and winery, followed by a full tasting of their current wines and an optional 15-mile lunch overlooking the beautiful Waveney Valley. Visit the shop to take home a bottle (or two!) of your favourite.
Stay the night
WARDLEY HILL CAMPSITE
Get back to nature at Wardley Hill, an ecological, family-run camping and glamping site in the Waveney Valley. The six-acre site encompasses woodland, a stream and three seasonal ponds. Wild flowers and grass are left to grow to encourage visits from bees and butterflies.
There is a car-free camping field exclusively for tents, with another dedicated area for campervans. Facilities include composting toilets and an open top hot water shower. Campfires and dogs are welcomed.
If camping isn’t your thing, the site also offer three locally crafted shepherd’s huts with all the modern conveniences and home comforts you could need.