5 Suffolk mazes to lose yourself in this summer
- Credit: Frogs Farm
Lose yourself this summer amid the cheery blooms of a sunflower maize at one of the county's newest attractions. At Frogs Farm, at Thwaite, just off the A140 near Eye, Freddy Vaudrey and partner Bekkie Hatwell have created their first sunflower maze after growing the flowers last year.
“A couple of people who visited said we should have a maize maze, so we thought, let’s combine the ideas and do it with sunflowers.” The farm has two mazes. It also offers cut flowers, managed by Freddy’s mother, Jennifer, a pick-your-own wildflower garden and a pumpkin patch in the autumn.
The name Frogs Farm was chosen, says Freddy, because he has often been nicknamed ‘Freddy the Frog’. In keeping with the theme, one of the mazes has a frog in the centre, while the other has 10 small frogs spelling out a password. If children crack the code they receive a sticker.
The mazes are open daily, 9.30am to 5pm until September 1. Last entry is at 3.30pm, £5 per person, free for under-threes.
Refreshments are available to buy, and there are picnic benches. Over the summer, Frogs Farm is offering sunset and prosecco evenings, scheduled a few days ahead, with an eye on the weather forecast. For more details, find @frogsfarmsuffolk.
A day of fun at Southwold Maize Maze. Two maize mazes, pedal go-karts, three jumping pillows, fast double zip line (7-18 years only), ride on tractors (under-sevens only), nest swing, climbing towers and slides and two large sand pits. Great café on site and lovely river walks, new stone baked pizza kitchen.
Open every day until September 5, 9am-5.30pm (last entry 3pm)
Note: no dogs in the maize or play park. Pre-booked only.
Hundred River Farm, nestled in the Waveney Valley and part of the Sotterley Estate, is a small dairy farm that has been managed by the Hall family since the 1960s. The farm is a haven for wildlife and is part of Natural England’s Higher Level Stewardship Scheme. Comprising half water meadows and traditional marsh, the Hereford cattle enjoy a outdoor life quietly grazing the herb rich meadow pastures. They have a fabulous maze open every day of the summer holidays 9.30am to 12.30pm and 2pm to 5pm with daily activities, light refreshments and drinks available. Pre-booked only.
BURY ST EDMUNDS
At Nowton Park you can lose yourself in a maze in the shape of a stylised oak tree, in commemoration of the Oakes family who were the former estate owners. The maze is open May to October every year and is south of the park, 2km from the main car park. There are 2,500 hornbeam trees that make up over two miles of hedging, maintained at a height of around two metres. Hornbeam is similar to beech and keeps its leaves through the winter. The centre of the maze is marked by a fastigiate oak with upright branches. westsuffolk.gov.uk
OK so it's not a maze but it's a challenge nonetheless - at Rougham Estate, near Bury St Edmunds, you can pick your own sunflowers from a choice of 88,000 blooms! With specially cut pathways through the sunflowers, visitors can enjoy a stroll and select the flowers they want to take home. Stems are from £2. Payment is by card only.
There are also picnic areas with deckchairs and benches. Bring your own blankets and hampers, or buy refreshments at the weekend from Mobile Brew, or The Courtyard Café at nearby Blackthorpe Barn. Details at blackthorpebarn.com