The Gamekeeper’s Cottage                                 Suffolk Voted one of the ten best woodland retreats in September 2011
For more information call 01767 261407 or 07915615207 or email

The following reserve/venue  notes are from my experienced birdwatching friends with distance from Gamekeeper’s Cottage shown:

Hen Reedbeds  (Mardle Road A1095 between Blythburgh and Southwold, Suffolk Wildlife Trust free entry) Egret and heron colony, you may see the Bittern, Marsh Harrier, Bearded tits, Reed Buntings, Cetti’s warbler, King Fisher, Water Rail, Stock Dove, Possibility of Turtle Dove, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Osprey possible, Buzzards nesting nearby. Also you may see Muntjacs, the Fox, an Otter and a stoat.  5 miles

Dunwich Heath..park at coastguard cottages where you have to pay or be a NT member. You may see a Dartford Warbler, Stonechats, Marsh Harrier, Kestrel, Sparrow-Hawk, Hen harrier (winter), Nightjars and the tawny owl (mainly heard)  10 miles

Westleton Heath has a free car park. You can hear the Stone Curlew, see and hear Nightjars, hear the Nightingale, see and hear the Cuckoo, have heard the Green woodpecker. There is a huge herd of red deer in the area. There are Land Rover Safaris in the Autumn. 9 miles. In late Autumn and Winter there are huge flocks of Starlings in most of these areas.

Carlton Marshes (near Oulton Broad) is Suffolk Trust and has free parking. You may see the barn owl and Short eared owl. 11 miles

The bridge at East Bridge near the Eels Foot pub is good for hearing the Barn owl, Cetti’s Warbler and you can see Polish Ponies there!  12 miles

Westwood Lodge at Walberswick. Hen Harrier in the winter, Marsh Harriers breeding plus winter roost, usual Spring migrant warblers, Buzzards (breeding), Curlew, Bittern, Little Egret, Woodlark, Nightingale (regular breeder), Hobby, Skylark, Stock Dove, Green and Greater Spotted woodpeckers, Occasionally Yellow Hammer/Ring Ouzel and Wheatear.  8 miles

Walk from Thorpeness to Aldeburgh past RSPB North Warren Reserve you may see  Whitefronted Geese (winter), Pinkfeet, Feral Barnacle and Grey Lag ducks, also Pintail, Teal, Widgeon, Gadwall and Shovellor. You may also see Kingfisher, usual Warblers etc, Stonechat and possibly the Bittern and Little Egret. (Thorpeness 16 miles)

Iken Cliffs estuary/river near Snape Maltings with free car park. Thousands of Avocets overwintering, large number of waders and ducks, Marsh Harriers, have seen up to 8 Bullfinches in bushes to left, Greater Spotted and Green woodpeckers. This is a lovely walk to Snape Maltings with pleasant shops and cafes. You can walk to the right for a small beach area but check for high tide times!  18 miles

Other  reserves

Benacre Broad as well as the nearby areas at Covehithe and Kessingland  (English Nature)  6 miles

Blyth Estuary ( general area) 4 miles

Minsmere (RSPB) 11 miles

North Warren (RSPB)  16 miles

Sizewell Belts (RSPB/Suffolk Wildlife Trust)  15 miles