Places to visit

Crossways Farm is near to many beautiful and historical places, the best known of these being the medieval wool town (now village!) of Lavenham, only 7 miles away. Should you wish to venture further afield, it is only a little over an hour to the coast and the Norfolk Broads.

Please click on the links below to find out more about places to visit and things to do. I have put these in order of distance, nearest first, with approximate driving times in brackets, and have included the main destinations of interest within approximately an hour’s drive (except for the coast and the Broads which are a little more than this). If you would like any further information on less frequented or further afield places (there are many worthy of a visit!) I would be happy to help. There will also be a wide selection of brochures and leaflets available in your accommodation.

Lavenham Guildhall
Lavenham Guildhall

Villages and towns
Cafés, farms & farm shops
Woods & nature reserves
Historical buildings & gardens
Coast, estuary & the Broads
Additional destinations for families




Villages and towns
View over Kersey from the churchyard

Kersey (10 minutes)
Well known for its unique layout and ‘The Splash’, the stream that runs across the road at the bottom of the hill (see header photo). Beautiful views over the village from the church at the top of the hill and a lovely old pub.

Lavenham (15 minutes)
Medieval timber-framed village, with the National Trust’s Guildhall and tearoom on the market place, and a large church that is usually open to visitors. There are several other tearooms in the village, as well as a butcher, bakery, pharmacy, 2 Co-ops and several antiques shops and galleries. There is a farmer’s market the 4th sunday of every month in the village hall (10am to 1pm). The old railway is now a local nature reserve and there are some lovely walks around Lavenham.

East Bergholt and Dedham (25-30 minutes)
The whole Dedham Vale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (‘Constable Country’) and the Stour Valley are worth a day out. East Bergholt and Dedham are just two of the pretty villages in this area. There are many footpaths in the area, including along the River Stour, and boats can be hired from Flatford (National Trust). It is also a good destination for cycling. The Place for Plants (East Bergholt) might also be of interest.

Long Melford (25 minutes)
A beautiful village near Lavenham, with a large church and various shops and tearooms. Melford Hall (National Trust) and Kentwell Hall are open to the public.

Cavendish and Clare (35-40 minutes)
Continuing along the road west of Long Melford, you will come first to Cavendish and then Clare: beautiful villages with various shops and tearooms; Clare is the larger of the two. The River Stour runs through both of these villages. Clare Castle Country Park, the beautiful and historical Clare Priory and the large antiques centre with tearoom in the converted grain storage mill just next door are also worth a visit.


Bury St Edmunds (30 minutes)
A beautiful historical town with interesting ruins in Abbey Gardens. The Cathedral is next to the Gardens. Ickworth House and gardens (National Trust) is nearby in Horringer. Bury has 2 cinemas, a theatre and concert hall, many restaurants and shops and a market on Wednesdays.

Cambridge (1 hour)
Needs no introduction except to say it is accessible by train from Stowmarket and Bury St Edmunds.

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Cafés, farms and farm shops

As well as the places described below, Lavenham has several tearooms, including the Guildhall tearoom. Hadleigh (15 minutes) and Needham market (20 minutes) also have various cafés.

Bridge Farm Barns at Monks Eleigh (10 minutes) has a café, gift shop, second-hand/antique shop, children’s toy shop and small garden centre.

baylham farm
Baby pygmy goats at Baylham House Farm

Hollow Trees Farm, Semer (10 minutes), has a farm shop, café and farm trail for children (and adults!)

Kersey Mill, Kersey (10 minutes) has a café and various shops including a craft shop/workshop with various art and craft activities for children (and adults!) – great for a rainy day, no booking needed.

Alder Carr Farm, near Needham Market (25 minutes), has a farm shop, café and seasonal ‘pick your own’ fruit.

Baylham House Rare Breeds Farm, near Needham Market (25 mins) has a farm trail, café and small gift shop.

Assington Barn at Assington (25 minutes) has a café, farm shop and small playground.

Jimmy’s Farm  at Wherstead (30 minutes) is a rare breeds farm and makes a good day out, especially for those with children. You can walk round the ‘farm park’ and feed the animals, and there is a restaurant, farm shop, butchery selling Jimmy’s Farm free-range meat, and an outdoor café as well as a few gift shops.

Easton Farm Park (45 minutes) is another popular destination and includes a café and heated indoor play area.

Farmers’ markets: Wyken Vineyards has a farmer’s market every Saturday morning, and Lavenham has one every month.

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Woods and nature reserves
Bluebells at Dollops Wood

Bull’s Wood, Thorpe Green (10 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Northfield Wood, Onehouse (10 mins; Woodland Trust)
Bradfield Woods, Bradfield St George (12 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Lavenham Railway Walk (local nature reserve) – Lavenham to Long Melford (15 mins to start in Lavenham)
Wolves’ Wood, near Hadleigh (15 mins; RSPB)
Dollops Wood, Polstead (20 mins; undesignated)
Groton Wood, near Kersey (20 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Priestley Wood, Barking (20 mins; Woodland Trust)
Arger Fen and Spouse’s Vale, near Assington (30 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Lackford Lakes (35 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Thetford Forest (40 mins; Forestry Commission)
Redgrave and Lopham Fen, near Diss (45 mins; Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
Lakenheath Fen (50 mins; RSPB)
Wicken Fen, near Wicken, Cambridgeshire (50 mins; National Trust).

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Historical buildings and gardens
Pakenham Mill
View from Pakenham Mill

All of these destinations have a café or tea room.

Lavenham Guildhall, Lavenham (15 mins; National Trust)
Kentwell Hall, Long Melford (25 mins; privately owned)
Melford Hall, Long Melford (25 mins; National Trust)
Flatford, near East Bergholt (25 mins; National Trust)
The Place for Plants, East Bergholt (25 mins)
Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds (30 mins)
Pakenham Water Mill, Pakenham (30 mins)
Ickworth House, Bury St Edmunds (35 mins; National Trust)
Helmingham Hall, Helmingham (35 mins)
Wyken Vineyards, Stanton (35 mins)
Fuller’s Mill Garden, West Stow (35 mins)
Clare Castle Country Park, Clare (40 mins)

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Coast, estuary and the Broads
Dunwich beach
Dunwich beach

Coast & estuary
There are many beautiful beaches and places to visit and walk on the Suffolk coast, including Southwold, Walberswick, Dunwich, Aldeburgh, Thorpeness, Orford, all approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes by car. RSPB Minsmere, Dunwich Heath (National Trust) and Orford Ness (National Trust) are also popular destinations on the coast.

Woodbridge (45 minutes) on the River Deben, the Anglo-Saxon burial site nearby (Sutton Hoo, National Trust), and Snape Maltings (1 hour) on the River Alde, are also interesting places to visit. There are many restaurants and galleries at Snape Maltings, as well as a concert hall which is home to the famous Aldeburgh Festival in June and Snape Proms in August.

The Broads

The Broads
The Norfolk Broads start at Bungay (1 hr) on the River Waveney, the border between Norfolk and Suffolk. There are of course countless places to walk, cycle, hire boats and take boat trips on the Broads: here are just a few suggestions.

Canoes and kayaks can be hired at reasonable rates from Outney Meadow caravan park (1 hour) near Bungay. Continuing east from here you will reach the pretty market town of Beccles (1 hour 10 mins).

Further north, you can reach most places on the Broads within approximately 1 hr 30 minutes. There are many places worth a day out, particularly Horsey (where you can take a boat ride on the broads, visit the wind pump (National Trust) and a beach where you can often see seals) and How Hill Nature Reserve.

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Additional destinations for families

Oasis Camel Park near Halesworth (1 hour) has small animal petting, camel and donkey rides, train rides and a café and gift shop.

West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village (30 mins) and Moyse’s Hall Museum hold various events throughout the year. There is also a café, large playground and footpaths through the country park and along the river.

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