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Holiday Barge adventure: a voyage aboard Onderneming from Snape Maltings to Lowestoft.

Perfect weather and a perfect trip for a Holiday Barge. Almost…

Our magnificent Dutch Holiday Barge Onderneming went into dry dock in Lowestoft in March 2022, to have some minor work done to the hull, seals etc. 

We put together a Youtube video to share with you our epic journey (well it was epic for us anyway!) up the Heritage Coast of Suffolk. There will be more to follow as what goes up, must come down…

As you can see, we had amazing (though extremely cold!) weather, scenery, and the most incredible sunset and sunrise! 

It was a 24 hour journey over two days, as we had to leave Snape Maltings on the rising tide, and then wait out at Havergate Island near Orford overnight, for the rising tide the next afternoon to head up the coast. We arrived (sorry, I just spoiled the ending) in Lowestoft at dusk, and we had the best fun!

As the owner, it’s always a nerve-wracking trip though, as anything can happen. Like hitting a sandbank as you head out to sea. We were expecting it though as we were going out on a rising tide, so we didn’t have to wait long before she floated again thankfully!

Our Holiday Barge Onderneming had a hull survey carried out five years ago when we bought her, and it stipulated that in five years we would have to have another one as some parts of the hull were thinner than others. Other than the insurance company insisting on it, we wanted to do it of course, in order to keep her in the best condition, and avoid mishaps. 

The plan was for her to be in dry dock for a couple of weeks, and as I type this, she has had the survey done and all is well. There will be updates soon with some more footage, but at the moment she’s having some welding done to ensure her longevity for many more years to come. She’s also having some external seals replaced as expected, as well as new sacrificial anodes fitted to combat corrosion. After that she will be treated to new primer coats and anti-foul paint, again to protect her from the elements. 

All being well we will be back underway early April, albeit with a much lighter wallet. Let’s just say we’d have been able to buy a couple of brand new cars instead, but this has to be done!

We had some fabulous aerial shots from our intrepid photographer Carl Lamb of ambientLight, as well as the shots we took en route. So why not put the kettle on, make your favourite cuppa, and relax with our little movie, full of video clips and photos from our voyage up the wonderful Heritage Coast of Suffolk. 

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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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WIN an amazing ‘All About Suffolk’ Deli Hamper!

Our favourite foodie emporium, Earsham Street Deli in Bungay has just announced that they are opening at Snape Maltings, right next to Onderneming in 2022! So we’ve teamed up with them once more to give you the chance to WIN a wonderful hamper from Suffolk!

The new Deli will be amazing for our guests, not only staying aboard Onderneming, but it’s also only 20 minutes from Twee Gebroeders in Woodbridge. It’s also going to be a great place to pick up some delicious treats for our Barn guests when visiting Snape and Aldeburgh on a day out. It’s only 35 mins from Woodfarm HQ.

To celebrate, we have teamed up with Michelle and the gang at Earsham Street Deli once again to bring one lucky winner a fabulous ‘All about Suffolk’ Hamper. They are going to put together a scrummy bunch of goodies from our wonderful county, just for you (if you’re our winner of course!)

There’s nothing they don’t know about the world of awesome Deli food and drink, and we are so lucky to have such an array of producers right here in Suffolk, making everything from award-winning chocolate, cheeses, crackers, pastries and much more besides.

We’ll be running this FREE COMPETITION into the New Year, then we’ll pick a WINNER using an online random number generator. That person will be the lucky recipient of a yummy Suffolk hamper of Deli goodness, put together by the Deli gang, selecting the very best produce from around the county.

They’ve been feeding the people of Bungay for longer than we’ve been doing what we do, and we are over the moon that they are now opening in one of our Barge locations at Snape Maltings! Hopefully, it’ll be around Spring when our guests will be able to add a real treat to their Woodfarm stay, with the very best gastronomical delights from Suffolk, as well as other fantastic suppliers around the UK, and the world. You’ll receive your hamper well before they open.

So how do you WIN this wonderful Deli Hamper?

Three really easy steps….

1 – SIMPLY SHARE THE COMPETITION POST ON FACEBOOK HERE

2 – ‘LIKE’ OUR PAGE HERE, AS WELL AS THE DELI’S PAGE HERE IF YOU DON’T ALREADY

3 – FILL THE FORM BELOW AND ANSWER A VERY SIMPLE QUESTION! 

(We can’t stress enough, you will need to give us permission to contact you if you win! Don’t tick ‘No’ as you simply cannot win if we can’t contact you. That’s fairly logical right?)

REALLY IMPORTANT NOTE IF YOU’VE READ ALL THIS AND WANT TO WIN
If you do NOT consent to being contacted by Woodfarm Barns and Barges we will be unable to enter you into this competition, as we would be unable to contact you if you were to win. Your name and email address is stored securely. We will NEVER share your name and email address with any third parties. You are welcome to unsubscribe at any time by either clicking the ‘unsubscribe’ link on the emails or by contacting us directly.

Even though we’ve said this, around 5% of you will still tick ‘No’ to being contacted as we have become a suspicious society assuming everyone is out to get us. We’re not, we just want to give you some food, which you will never, ever, ever get if you tick NO. And STILL loads of you will tick no. I just palmed my face in desperation for the future of the human race. Seriously I did!

Terms & Conditions
The prize for this Competition is a fabulous Deli Hamper as alluded to above. We will need to be able to send your prize to an address where it can be signed for, as some of it will be perishable. It may get very stinky if it’s left on your front doorstep all day.

Please note that we cannot announce the winner first on Social Media, it has to be by email. If we do not hear back from you within 24 hours of notifying you that you have won, we will pick another correct entrant and so on until someone responds. By entering you do consent to us announcing your name on Social Media once you have accepted your prize. We won’t divulge any personal info of course, it’ll just be your name. We’d obviously really appreciate it if you could then shout it from the rooftops though!

We will run this competition for a month or so and pick the winner using a random number generator on Google. This will be around the end of Jan or the beginning of Feb 2022. We’ll email every entrant at that time, win or lose to let you know who won. There is no cash alternative.

Victor Meldrew clause; If all that doesn’t suit you or you are of the opinion that “no-one ever wins these” then feel free to not enter and gaze at your navel instead. We have given away so many prizes over the years to some very happy people, but you’ll never be one of them if you bumble through life with Meldrew shaped chips on your shoulders. Do feel free to write and tell us all about how you know that nobody ever wins these things, as it makes us giggle.

GDPR gubbins…
We absolutely never share your info and we retain it purely and simply so we can keep you informed. Informed of our regular Competitions like this one, Exclusive VIP Offers, Cancellations, Events, Places of Interest to you, and News from around the beautiful County of Suffolk. It is called Marketing. We keep you informed of this good stuff so that you may consider us when making your holiday and short break decisions. It’s very simple really, we didn’t invent it.

If you do not wish to hear about the things mentioned you can opt out now by not entering and making a cup of tea instead, or at any time simply by unsubscribing. 

We do not bombard you. This is just a small, independent business, having fun and working hard to promote escapes from the norm in Suffolk; that’s all. We are not out to get you!

We would love to stay in touch with you but it is your choice. We have built our database in a very professional and responsible way and continually given you the opportunity to not hear from us again. If you choose to ‘leave’ us then we wish you all the best for the future and hope you have enjoyed reading what we have had to say in the past.

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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…

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5 Reasons Why You Have to Rent a Cottage or Barn in Suffolk This Summer

The Granary Barn at Woodfarm Barns

At Woodfarm Barns and Barges, it will come as no surprise to learn that we believe renting a Cottage or Barn for a holiday in Suffolk is the best thing you can do in summer. Providing you with everything you need to relax in comfort and style, our Cottages and Barns allow you to experience everything that our fantastic county has to offer from a comfortable and superbly equipped base.

Read the full article on the Woodfarm Barns website…