Harleston is an excellent base for being central to nearly everything in South Norfolk and Mid Suffolk. Placed in the beautiful Waveney Valley on the old coaching route from London to Great Yarmouth, this vibrant Norfolk market town has a great variety of independent speciality shops giving a unique feel to shopping.

It also boasts a museum, several takeaways, restaurants, pubs, leisure centre with recreation ground including a childrens playground and outdoor adult exercise machines.

Every Wednesday the weekly market comes to town, with a variety of interesting stalls selling local goods. Throughout the year there are events like the Waveney Valley Food Festival. Or you can enjoy the music and arts at the weeklong Harleston and Waveney Festival with its packed programme of events held throughout the summer months and plenty of interactive workshops to enjoy, there's sure to be something to interest and entertain.

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Things to See and Do in Harleston

Visit the two award-winning microbreweries (Grain Brewery and St Peter’s Brewery)

Visit The Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum, with its impressive collection of 60 aircraft, 23,000 artefacts and 8 themed buildings on an 8-acre site.
Enjoy one of the 3 circular walks starting in the town, or hire a bike and explore one of the Harleston and Waveney Cycle Rides.

Visit the colony of Grey Seals that can be found at Horsey Gap beach, between the months of December and January, where you can see the grey seal pups in their hundreds.

Visit Southwold and the East coast seaside towns of Warbleswick (good for crabbing) and Dunwich, just 35 minutes drive away. Southwold, with its pier and beach huts is a quintessentially English seaside town.

Visit the RSPB reserve at Minsmere Famous for birds and since 2014 the setting for BBC’s Springwatch.  Shorelands Wildlife Gardens are even nearer, only a 10 minute drive away.

Go Boating on the Broads: either from Beccles, just 25 minutes away or from Wroxham.

Africa Alive, Banham Zoo and BeWILDerwood are popular with families. There is also a local Camel Centre and Go Ape, a tree top adventure in Thetford Forest.

Walking, bird watching, cycling, sailing, windsurfing and fishing are all available locally. Alternatively, visit the fine city of Norwich with its cathedrals, theatres, museums, array of shops and cafes, they even have a city tour bus by day and walking tours by night!

Restaurants in Harleston

There are 2 old coaching inns in the town that have restaurants, and also surrounding villages all boast excellent cuisine.  The Sir Alfred Munnings in nearby Mendham, reopened in July 2011 after a major refurbishment and now has an excellent restaurant.

For those who wish to explore a little further, the renowned Fox & Goose is just 4 miles away in Fressingfield. St Peter’s Brewery is an attraction in its own right (the brewery is open to visitors) and it also has a restaurant.

If you are looking for a good wholesome food then go to Farmers Kitchen Farm Shop & Eatery (previously The Dove) on the A143 at Wortwell. It does an excellent breakfast small and large, brunch, and a well stocked shop of local fruit, veg, meat & more. The Kings Head in Brockdish has a fantastic selection of Gin along with homemade pizza and pasta.

Good local pubs include The Red Lion in Needham, The Bell in Wortwell, The Black Swan in Homersfield, The Cratfield Poacher and The Low House (aka The King’s Head) in Laxfield (famous for not having a bar! It has a traditional ‘tap room’ instead).