Suffolk Coast National Nature Reserve
This delightful coastal nature reserve is situated around the village of Walberswick in the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It's an easy walk taking you past a wide variety of habitats including heathland, reed beds, grassland, woodlands, shingle, lagoons, mudflats and the salt marshes of the Blyth estuary. The reserve is great for wildlife watching. Look out for March Harrier, Bearded Tit, Water Rail and Bittern as you make your way along the waymarked paths.
This walk starts from Walberswick but you could also park at the car park off Lodge Road just west of the village. From the village you follow the Suffolk Coast Path west along the beach before coming to the Dunwich River, which guides you into the reserve. Footpaths then take you past Westwood Marshes and Fen Hill before skirting the edge of Dunwich Forest. You then follow other trails past Westwood Lodge before following a country lane to the woodland at Hoist Covert. The final section returns to Walberswick along the coast path.
If you would like to extend your walking in this lovely area then you could head south and visit Minsmere Nature Reserve and Dunwich Heath which are great for peaceful walks and wildlife.
Also nearby is the town of Southwold where you can follow the Suffolk Coast Path along the shingle beach and the River Blyth. The Sandlings Walk also starts from the town.
Suffolk Coast National Nature Reserve Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
Suffolk Coast National Nature Reserve Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
Suffolk Coast National Nature Reserve OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
Suffolk Coast National Nature Reserve Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
In Dunwich you could enjoy some post walk refreshments at the Ship Inn. Once a haunt of smugglers, The Ship at Dunwich, is nestled in between Southwold and Aldeburgh. On colder days there's a nice cosy fire indoors, while in the summer there's a nice outdoor area with fruit trees. The pub also does accommodation if you need to stay over. You can find it in the little village on St James's St, with a postoce of IP17 3DT for your sat navs.
Further Information and Other Local Ideas
The circular Blythburgh Walk starts at the nearby village and visits the Westwood Marshes, Walberswick and Dunwich Forest. The village is located just to the north west of Walberswick and includes trails along the River Blyth and a noteworthy 14th century church which is lit at night. There's also a notable 16th century pub with an excellent garden area overlooking the estuary. If you followed the Blyth river west from the settlement you will soon come to the neighbouring town of Halesworth. This town has some interesting history with a walk down the central Thoroughfare highly recommended. The pedestrianised area includes many buildings dating back to the sixteenth century.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Walks and the Suffolk Walks pages.