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Canine Dip and Dive!

PLEASE NOTE – THIS IS AN ARTICLE ABOUT A FABULOUS DOG SWIMMING ACTIVITY BUT YOU ARE NOT ON THEIR WEBSITE. IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS, CALL THEM ON 07795 078125 OR VISIT THEIR WEBSITE AT http://caninedipanddiveclub.co.uk/index.html.

At Woodfarm Barns and Barges, it’s no secret that we love dogs. We love them so much, in fact, that we let them write blogs on our website and have made both of our barges dog-friendly. This means that your furry friends can make holiday memories along with you when visiting Suffolk.

Of course, in the hot weather, we realise that it is incredibly important for your pooch (and you!) to be kept cool. With this in mind, we’d highly recommend visiting Canine Dip and Dive in Suffolk, a destination that was featured as a leading spot in Dog Friendly Days Out in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 – Canine Dip and Dive in Suffolk?

Canine Dip and Dive, situated in Otley, is run by Andy and Jo, and is the perfect place for your dogs to gain confidence with water. Inspired by his spaniel Buddy who participated in Superstar Dogs, a game show where dogs and owners perform a “Swim and Fetch” challenge, Andy became a dog trainer who taught dogs how to dive and swim. Building on the success of this venture, Andy and Jo set up a pool to help dogs become more confident in the water and to make sure they knew how to have the most fun in it. The pool in question is an outdoor 32-foot-long dog swimming pool which has a great floating ramp, making accessibility for the dogs even easier. But, for some of the adventurous dogs, the ramp may seem a bit boring, but they are well looked after by a platform that allows them to play Tom Daley for the day, taking dive after dive into the water.

The site is equipped for the owners as well, with changing rooms on site and the whole of the site is fully enclosed. 

Canine Dip and Dive also offer various different classes and sessions. There are:

  • Puppy and senior sessions – perfect for introducing your dogs into the water in a less stressed environment
  • Buddy’s Pool Party – where you and your dogs enjoy the water together, with toys as well being provided
  • Solo session – suited for the dogs who are a bit more timid around others, or if you want the pool solely for owner and dog time.

So, with Canine Dip and Dive being located fairly close to our Barges for rent, about 15 minutes from Twee Gebroeders Barge, and about 30 minutes from Onderneming Barge, why not bring your four-legged friend from your dog friendly Barge to the Canine Dip and Dive? You can find it here:

Address:

Charity Lane

Otley

Suffolk

IP6 9EY

Prices for the sessions start from about £15. Visit their website at: http://caninedipanddiveclub.co.uk/index.html#prices_classes

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Takeaway options when renting our Barges

Kenneth Grahame, the author of children’s classic The Wind in the Willows, once famously remarked that “there is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats”. Far be it from us to challenge an icon of English literature, but at Woodfarm Barges, we would like to humbly submit that “there is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats with some nice food”.

To make our case for this revision as best as we can, we’ve gathered together a selection of takeaway options to enjoy when staying on board one of our Barges for rent in Suffolk.

Royal Bengal
Celebrating its fortieth birthday this year, the Royal Bengal in Woodbridge is a family owned Indian restaurant serving up signature Goan and Bangladeshi dishes. In addition to all of the popular Indian favourites, you’ll also find a range of specialities in the menu that are all created using only the freshest ingredients and finest produce. 

The Golden Key

Experts in the world of takeaways, the Golden Key in Snape offers not only your standard takeaway fare but also an impressive “pub to plate” service that brings you a pub dinner directly to your Barge. For the latter option it’s important to provide at least two days’ notice in order for the chefs to plan and prepare your meal for the evening that you wish to enjoy it. Really widening the scope of what’s possible when choosing a takeaway, the Golden Key allows you to tuck into beef and red wine stew, slow cooked lamb, and a range of vegetarian and vegan options when taking a holiday on board our Barges. 


Earsham Street Deli
For a ‘Takeaway’ with a difference, why not pick up everything you need for a great British Picnic? Who says it has to be out on a blanket in the summer, when you could enjoy it aboard your Barge in the evening too? Coming in Spring 2022, we’re just as excited as our guests at the prospect of this deli opening up!

Suitably convinced that we might be on to something by suggesting that the author of a children’s classic might not be as informed as our resident blog writers? You may well have to take a look at all of our Barges for rent in Suffolk to put the matter to bed.

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The Best Walks Around Woodfarm Barges

A woman walking near a barge for rent in Suffolk

At Woodfarm Barns and Barges, we’re incredibly blessed when it comes to our surroundings. Situated amongst the green, rolling fields of Suffolk, we’ve got plenty of scenic walks for our guests to enjoy when renting one of our Barges. To make it easy to find the one that’s best for you, we’ve rounded up a few favourites. 

Sailor’s Path – Snape Maltings

Starting outside of our ‘Onderneming Barge’ at Snape Maltings is the Sailor’s path. The Sailor’s Path is around 6 miles long, and in parts, is intertwined with the Suffolk Coast Path which takes you to the picturesque Suffolk coastal town of Aldeburgh. After exiting Snape Maltings, and starting on the path, it follows the River Alde and then takes walkers up to the edge of Snape – a small but incredibly pretty Suffolk village. The path then continues to go through the Suffolk countryside until walkers reach the edge of Aldeburgh where the Sailor’s Path takes them around the town and for the final stretch. Here, walkers have the choice of walking down either the North Sea shoreline or the tarmac bike and cycle path towards the centre of Aldeburgh. To explore Suffolk’s countryside, why not take a walk down the Sailor’s Path when renting one of our Barges?

Rendlesham Forest Walks

Just a short drive from the town of Woodbridge, and our ‘Twee Gebroeders’ barge on the River Deben, is a place which is famous for its supernatural activity, a subject you can read more about in our blog here. Rendlesham Forest is located on the outskirts of Suffolk Coast & Heaths Area of Natural Beauty and it has three different walking routes, managed by Forestry England. Firstly, there is the Easy Access Trail, which is accessible for wheelchairs and prams and takes in the flowers and the animals of the area and is around three quarters of a mile in length. There’s also the Phoenix Trail, which takes walkers through three miles of conifer plantations, wetland and heathland areas. Lastly, there is the UFO trail, named after the 1980 Rendlesham Forest UFO sighting, and it connects walkers with places within the forest linked to the sighting. If you want a day out exploring a Suffolk forest, why not walk through Rendlesham Forest?

River Deben Walks around Woodbridge

Near to Woodbridge Tide Mill Museum, you will find the ‘Twee Gebroeders’ – one of our Barges on the River Deben. And, if you want a scenic walk, you won’t have to go far for it. Just hop back onto land and you will be greeted with a choice of two walks. Either, you could follow the River Deben in a southerly direction, which takes you down towards Martlesham Creek, where you can continue and walk around parts of it, and then into the village of Martlesham. Alternatively, you can go in a northerly direction past Woodbridge Quayside, and then onto Melton’s Boat Yard. Both walks offer tranquility and scenic views over the River Deben, and there are plenty of opportunities for a stunning photo.

Sutton Hoo Walks – Woodbridge

Just across the River Deben where you’ll find the ‘Twee Gebroeders’ is Sutton Hoo, a site made famous for a major archeological find of treasures and artefacts from the Anglo-Saxon period. Walkers are welcome to share in the discovery of these treasures when enjoying one of the many walks on offer. You could give the ‘River View Walk’ a go, where you can walk through 0.8 miles of woodland and look at the stunning views over the River Deben and Woodbridge, along a “moderate” route. You can also walk the 0.5 mile route to the Royal Burial Ground, along a “easy” route, which is also dog-friendly, to discover the story behind the ship burial of an Anglo-Saxon king. What’s more, you can walk the Pinewood Walk of 1.1 miles through the woods and see the stunning views over the River Deben on this “easy” route. The Sutton Hoo Valley Walk spans over 1.3 miles and includes the Royal Burial Ground as well as the landscape of Sutton Hoo in an “easy” and dog-friendly route. Lastly, there is the Sutton Hoo Woodland Walk – a two mile, “moderate” route which takes in parts of the Valley Walk. Finally, there’s the Pinewood Walk which traverses the Royal Burial Ground and woodland, which is also open to your four-legged friends. With five different walks on offer which allow you to discover the countryside and history at the same time, why not visit Sutton Hoo?

With all of these walks on offer, and many more, why not book one of our Barges and get out exploring the Suffolk countryside?

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A Dog’s Day at Woodfarm Barges

Following my delightful trip to Woodfarm Barns, I was more than a little excited to discover that The Humans had booked a weekend away on board a barge with Woodfarm Barges. The announcement of this news, however, had me curling my paws. I’ll relay it to you now, fair reader, as it was an altogether ridiculous spectacle.

Barging into the room (pun intended) after a day at work, Human 1 not only woke me from my peaceful slumber, but offended my eyes with a garish sailor’s outfit he’d adorned to deliver the news.

“Guess where we’re off to?!” he screeched with all the grace of a goose.

“No, you didn’t!” Human 2 replied, clearly besides herself and on the verge of an embarrassing episode.

“I did! You’ve been on at me all week, and we had such a good time at the barns that I just couldn’t resist!”

Throwing her arms around him, Human 2 kept repeating “you’re the best, you’re the best, you’re the best!”

Was she seeing the same man I was? He wasn’t the best, he was positively the worst. I mean, a sailors hat, a striped tee shirt and goofy grin- whoever heard of such a thing?!

I can only thank my stars that he didn’t do it down the park in front of all the neighbourhood dogs. It’s bad enough that they insist on me wearing a wooly jumper in winter. The Alsatians have a literal field day when they spot me out in that thing.

After the commotion died down, the Humans took up their iPads to find even more things to do in Suffolk. Dog-friendly things to do, obviously.

Though they’ve learned I never dignify their questions with a response, they kept asking if I was excited and would I be ok on board a barge.

As a dog that knows his port from his starboard, and his stern from his bow, my four sea legs would be perfectly at home.

I’ve also read Moby Dick several times, so I also knew that there was nothing the open seas could throw at me that I wouldn’t be prepared for.

(I did later learn that the barge was to remain moored for the entire duration of our stay, and I really needn’t have worried about huge white whales threatening our trip.)

Following a few days of anticipation on my behalf, and plenty of itinerary building on the behalf of The Humans, I was placed in my travel crate and we were on our way to Woodfarm Barges. Thankfully, the Humans left the fancy dress in the Big Basket Downstairs on their way out of the house.

Immediately upon our arrival at Snape Maltings, it was evident that Woodfarm Barges are just as spotless and just as superb as Woodfarm Barns. Three double cabins, three bathrooms and two lounge areas?! I could hardly believe my luck. I could easily walk the length of the vessel and The Humans would have no need for me to don my wooly jumper for another of their walks.

Once we’d settled in and The Humans had their customary glass of bubbles and I’d had my customary bowl of water, we set about doing all of the dog-friendly activities suggested on the Woodfarm Barns and Barges websites. 

You really have to hand it to those guys – I suspect they actually spend more time researching things for us canines to do than they do human activities.


Quite right, too. 

Barge stern

All in all, I was treated to days of endless walks through picturesque fields, pub bowls of water in Southwold, Felixstowe and Aldeburgh. I journeyed along the Sailor’s Path, visited Walberswick, took a dip at Thorpeness, and even got to see what all the fuss was about surrounding Rendlesham Forest. Turns out the fuss is fully justified. Even I, a dog that is fitter than a butcher’s dog (I know, I’ve seen the dalmatian that belongs to our local butcher, and he isn’t a patch on me), couldn’t have possibly walked all of the trails in a single day.

I really feel that I can be quite harsh on The Humans sometimes. They do treat me to stays and days out at some of the best places in England, after all.

I’m reliably informed by the proprietor that you can easily book a place on board one of these barges in Suffolk by clicking the following link. I think you really should do it, it’s fantastic. And that’s coming from one the most discerning of poodles around.

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5 Reasons Why You Have to Rent a Barge in Suffolk This Summer

Kenneth Grahame, celebrated author of The Wind in The Willows, once famously declared that “there is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as messing about in boats”. Whilst the Barges available to rent Woodfarm Barges are moored, we’re still confident that our guests are able to discover the truth of this wisdom when enjoying a holiday on board either Onderneming or Twee Gebroeders.  

Dating back to the 1800s, our converted Dutch Sailing Barges are comfortably furnished and equipped with everything guests would expect from modern holiday accommodation. From cozy cabins to comfortable saloons and all the necessary amenities, they are effectively floating cottages which can be used as the perfect base from which to enjoy everything that Suffolk has to offer. 

Read the full article on the Woodfarm Barns website…

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10 of the Best Places to Wine and Dine in Suffolk

At Woodfarm Barns and Barges, we’re committed to providing the best possible experience for couples looking to get away for a holiday in Suffolk. Situated amidst beautiful countryside surroundings and equipped with hot tubs and cosy bedrooms, we’re fairly sure that our accommodation has everything you could possibly require for a memorable romantic break.

We’re confident, too, that the location of our Cottages, Barns and Barges make it easy for guests to do all of the things they could possibly want to do when taking a break, whether they’re celebrating a special anniversary or simply enjoying a summer holiday.

Read the full article on the Woodfarm Barns website…  

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Secret Suffolk: 5 of the Best Hidden Gems You Should Know About

Every county in the world has its hidden gems and Suffolk is no exception. Behind every one of its standout attractions, there are various exciting destinations tucked away just waiting to be discovered by the more informed traveler. 

From a forest and walking trail rumoured to be visited by UFOs, to a farm full of rare breeds, there’s a lot more to our floral and historic county than meets the eyes.

Read the full article on the Woodfarm Barns website…

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Snuggle Up In Suffolk: How To Plan The Perfect Romantic Summer Staycation

We’re pretty confident that Suffolk rivals the big boys when it comes to romantic holiday destinations. We’re so confident, in fact, that we previously mentioned it in the same breath as Paris and Venice when describing the best place to take a couples holiday.

Doubling down on this suggestion, we’re back to provide you with a detailed plan for the perfect romantic staycation in Suffolk. From fine dining to long walks on the beach and even horse riding, we’ve got everything you could possibly desire from a couples holiday right here in our beautiful county. 

Whether you’re marking a special anniversary or simply fancy a memorable summer holiday with your better half, here are five exciting activities to consider when planning a romantic break in Suffolk:

Read the full post on the Woodfarm Barns website…