Plan Your Day Out in Lowestoft
Lowestoft isn't just a fun-filled holiday resort, it's also a working fishing port with a long and rich maritime heritage to explore. There are also plenty of other attractions, including great shopping and the Marina, one of East Anglia's top theatres.
How to get to Lowestoft
Your journey to Lowestoft will depend on where you’ll be traveling from. You can see how to get to Lowestoft and buy your train ticket.
Britten Centre Market
Lowestoft's traditional street market in the centre of town has a range of stalls, selling fresh produce, locally caught fish and more. It's open Tuesday to Saturday from 8.30am to 4pm.
Historic High Street and Triangle Market Place
Take a stroll to the north of the town centre to this shopping area, which has a wide range of traditional, independent and unusual retail outlets. Occasional markets are held in the Triangle, instantly recognisable by its sail-inspired canopies.
The Town Centre
Lowestoft has a pretty good range of shops for a relatively small seaside town. There are over 40 national retailers, as well as a reasonable selection of independent stores, many of which are still family-run. So, whether you're looking for designer brands or distinctive home furnishings, there's plenty on offer to inspire you. Open every day, the Britten Centre has over 100,000 square feet of retail space, with 19 stores grouped under a barrel-vaulted Victorian-style roof.
Lowestoft Maritime Museum
Appropriately standing right next to the sea in the charming Sparrow's Nest Gardens, this brilliant museum brings alive the maritime history that has shaped Lowestoft over the years. A series of fascinating displays chart the town's development from fishing harbour to thriving international port. There are hands-on activities for kids and a cinema showing wonderful archive film footage.
The setting for this well-presented museum is the Grade II listed 17th century Broad House, situated in neighbouring Oulton Broad's Nicholas Everitt Park. It's dedicated to the history of the local area, displaying a rich variety of treasures, including 18th century Lowestoft porcelain and prehistoric fossils, as well as archaeological finds from the Roman and Anglo-Saxon periods.
Ferini Art Gallery
Known as the 'Gallery by the Sea', this stylish contemporary art space has four studios where you can view regularly changing exhibitions of work by local artists, sculptors and potters.
Lowestoft Arts Centre
This non-profit-making community arts initiative is based at the Triangle Market Place in the Historic High Street. As well as running workshops and demonstrations, the Centre has a gallery displaying a wide range of work by local artists and craftspeople.
The Marina began its life as a skating rink in the 1870s. It was converted to a performance venue in 1897 and remains one of the region's go-to venues for theatre, dance, music, comedy and cinema. London's famous Royal Philharmonic Orchestra has a residency there.
Just down the road in neighbouring Pakefield, the Seagull is a small community theatre which plays host to a regular stream of local talent, as well as regional and national touring companies. Run by volunteers, it's housed in a former school, converted into an arts centre in the 1960s.
A unique feature of the town, the 'Scores' is a network of narrow lanes created over the years by people wearing paths between the Historic High Street and the beach. Follow the Scores Trail for a delightful ramble through a slice of Lowestoft history.
This big recreational green space is a great place for the kids to let off steam, while you relax and enjoy a break from shopping or sightseeing. There are two children's play areas and a café, as well as outdoor sports pitches and tennis courts.
Sparrow's Nest Gardens
Overlooked by the historic Lowestoft lighthouse, these lovely gardens are perfect for relaxation or a family picnic. There's a children's play area and a café, as well as bowling and putting greens.
Located right on the seafront, these formal gardens are a reminder of Lowestoft's heyday as a Victorian holiday resort. They were created by Sir Samuel Morton Peto, who also built the town's port and railway station.
Beaches and Seafront
Gently shelving and blessed with wonderful golden sands, Lowestoft's award-winning beaches rival any you'll find in the UK and further afield. There's a long prom for a leisurely stroll and the dancing Royal Plain Fountains are a popular attraction, particularly on a hot summer's day.
Built in 1903, the Claremont Pier was the hub of Victorian Lowestoft's seaside experience and a stopping point for coastal paddle steamers. It's now a year-round leisure and family entertainment centre with an amusement arcade, a roller-skating rink, a restaurant/café and a nightclub.
Tick off another milestone with a visit to the UK's most easterly point. If you're an early bird, you could catch a spectacular sunrise. Otherwise, it's still a great place for stunning views of the sea and skyline.
Cafés, Tea Rooms and Coffee Houses
Take a break from the day's activities and enjoy a reviving cup of your favourite brew in one of Lowestoft's many welcoming cafés. There's everything on offer from tea and stickies to artisan coffee and croissants. As well as national chains such as Costa and Starbucks, there are also quite a few independent establishments, ranging from traditional English tea rooms to Italian-style coffee houses. If you fancy enjoying sea views with your refreshments, head for Eros Coffee & Ice Cream in the East Point Pavilion or the Martello Coffee House in Sparrow's Nest Gardens.
Restaurants and Pubs
Whether you're after a pub lunch or haute cuisine, Lowestoft has plenty of choice on the menu. As you'd expect, fish and chips is a local speciality and there's no better place to enjoy this traditional British meal than Nemos on Claremont Pier, overlooking the beach and sea. Alternatively, the Triangle Tavern is a historic hostelry for good food and real ales. And if your tastes are more cosmopolitan, there's a feast of options, including Chinese, Mexican and more. The Spice Den at Triangle Market is a popular place for contemporary Indian cuisine and Giardino at Sparrow's Nest Gardens offers an authentic taste of Italy, as well as a patio area for al fresco dining.
Food To Go
Take-away treats have always been part of the British seaside experience and Lowestoft has lots to offer on this front. There's a wide range of options for food to go, from seaside kiosks selling candy floss, rock, doughnuts and toffee apples to modern-day market leaders such as McDonalds, Greggs and Wimpy.
Where To Stay
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Fastest scheduled journey times. Correct at 12/07/2021.
Photographs courtesy of Visit East of England and Visit Essex.