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Welcome to Southwold

I’ve been coming to Southwold in Suffolk for such a long time, it has never really occurred to me that it’s a good enough place to blog about as any. Having got family in the area, I’ve been coming here since I was born and used to spend entire school holidays here. Now I visit at least once a year.

After fighting our way through the traffic and stopping off at my grandparents, I arrived with my family with most of the day gone, but that was no problem because it meant we could immediately get our usual takeaway curry. Southwold has one of my favourite curry houses: Shoeme Balti. We’ve been going for years- since the time when I would order omelette and chips before realising that was ridiculous- and it has always been delicious. We spent our first night curled up on the sofas, with the sea rolling away outside the window, moving only for an ice cream run.

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In the morning, my parents and I were up and out early (at least we were up as the clock reached double digits) and wandered down to the pier for our first coffee of the day. After our walk along the seafront, we sat by the window of one of the cafes, overlooking the water, before walking back to the house via the promenade.

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Our story now jumps ahead with only a stop off to give foodie shout outs to my delicious local bacon sandwich, stuffed with a fried egg and Ketchup, and to my lovely continental-esque dinner of breads, cheeses and meats (and mini sausage rolls, pork pies, crisps and salad- HS family stomachs are not satisfied easily). I love holiday food.

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Anyway, whizzing through takes us to the following night and dinner at the Southwold Pier (the rest of my time has been filled with revision for my upcoming exams- happy holidays indeed). Since my last visit, the cafe/restaurant has undergone a change. It has had a lovely refurbishment and there is a more extensive menu. My soup and burger were pretty decent (apparently the fish and chips are fantastic) and portions were a good size but the highlight was the after dinner treat. Often with the bill, you will get a mint chocolate but this time, they gave us each a piece of rock (by which I mean the sweet, not a stone). This was a proper beach holiday, dinner practically on the sea, with views from every window, and rock.

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During each visit, I spend a day exploring the high street with my mum, so this was the next activity. The street has changed over the years, with some shops surviving the ages, including Daddy Longlegs, a quirky shoe shop from which I bought my then favourite pair of grey suede ankle boots with a kitten heel. I wore them constantly until the metal stick was poking through the heel, so that I tapped away whenever I walked anywhere, and my foot broke through the sole. The shops in the town are slowly becoming more commercialised, with chain shops rivaling our favourite places, but you can still find something different.

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This time, after coffee and lunch at Buckenham’s Coffee House, we went to the new vintage shop. Fingers crossed it’s not just pop-up and will be there on my next visit (if you are a antiques fan there is also a shop behind the newsagents and at the top of the high street- or at least, there was when I last looked). I found a Topshop quilted bag for £4. Not quite vintage but certainly a find. Then there is the camera shop which also now sells books. At first I wasn’t sure about the layout of books piled on books, scattered all around but now I like it. Having to sort through the stacks and shelves to find something means that you’ll often get a nice surprise.

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That evening, we went out for dinner with my grandparents. Picking a halfway point, we went to The Fox Inn at Darsham. Even though we’ve been often, I can only really tell you about the lasagne, which is so good that I get it every time. On this occasion, the portion size seemed bigger so I had a big slab of cheesy, saucy lasagne. I was happy.

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The next day’s activity was our trip to Mrs T’s fish and chips. This is the best fish and chip shop ever, although you have to check dates and times before you go, because it is not always open. It’s down in the harbour (where you can also buy lots of fresh fish) so you have to take a bit of a walk over the beach to get there. Technically, you can drive but it tastes so much better when you’ve earned it; and after you’ve had to wait in the inevitable queue. Walking back also gives you the chance to burn some off, which was definitely necessary after my huge portion.

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My final non-revision related activity was the following evening when we went for dinner out of town at the Sibton White Horse Inn. It was a proper country pub and my dinner of steak and chunky chips, followed by chocolate brownie ice cream was lovely and tasty. Overall a good end to a good week.

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