Difference between revisions of "Lowestoft"
Revision as of 17:08, 15 January 2013
Once a bustling fishing port, Lowestoft is now a small quiet town on the east coast of Britain.
If coming from the south, the A12 London-Great Yarmouth road passes right through the town. Note that past Ipswich much of the road is single-carriageway and can become congested during summer holidays and weekends so allow 3-4 hours driving time from London. A- and B-roads link Lowestoft to most other locations in Suffolk and Norfolk.
Lowestoft Station is located right in the centre of town and is the terminus of 2 lines. Services to Norwich run every hour and take around 30-45 minutes. There is also a service every 2 hours to Ipswich (on Monday-Saturday most services continue to London Liverpool Street) which stops everywhere and takes around 90 minutes to reach Ipswich. If you are coming from London you have two options, either to get off at Ipswich and catch the slow train from there or carry on to Norwich and get the quick train from there. The latter is more advisable as trains to Lowestoft from Norwich are more frequent and the Ipswich-Lowestoft train can be a frustrating journey due to the many stops on this route.
All buses terminate at the town-centre bus station. There's no direct service to Ipswich and the most useful bus is the hourly express coach from Peterborough via Norwich and Great Yarmouth. Note that getting to Great Yarmouth by train is very indirect and requires a change at Norwich so it's much quicker to take the bus.
Lowestoft is a compact and pleasant town to walk around, boasting award winning Green Flag beaches.
'Gulliver' the wind turbine - the largest in Europe!
Ness point - The most easterly point in Britain, and a signpost noting distances to various major British and international cities.
Lowestoft has one of the finest sandy beaches in the East of England and is a regular winner of the 'Blue Flag' award. The annual air show bring in visitors from all over the region and the town has a festival atmosphere for the two days of the show. Entry to the beach (where the flying takes place and the stalls are set up) is free but a donation to keep the festival running is appreciated.
As well as being a gateway to the Norfolk Broads (via Nicholas Everitt park in Outlon Broad) Lowestoft also has several well-kept areas of park land catering for all needs, Sparrows nest for relaxing, Nicholas Everitt for boating (including powerboat racing) and walking, Normanston Park is very good for football and tennis and Kensington Gardens has tennis courts, a boating lake and a bowls green.
Lowestoft also has Pleasurewood Hills a small family-friendly theme park, Africa Alive (an impressive zoo for its size), Somerleyton Hall complete with Maze, Fritton Lakes, the quintessential town of Southwold (with its award winning pier) and Great Yarmouth all within a simple bus journey from the town.
While Lowestoft town centre has been renovated over the past 10 years it is still extremely lacking with many shops closing in recent years, you will find the usual shops such as Argos, WH Smith, Game, New Look etc. Other than that their isnt a lot with the rest being charity shops, tourist souveneir shops (selling the usual tat you would expect in one of these shops) or cheap pound shops. Avoid Lowestoft Town centre like the plague would be the best advice as it is just apalling. Your best bet is do what many locals now tend to do and get the train to Norwich which is probably up their with one of the best cities in terms for shops in the country or if you fancy something closer Yarmouth's town centre is ok
Lowestoft lacks notable restaurants. The town centre provides the expected fast food chains including McDonald's, KFC and Subway, but no Burger King. There are also numerous Kebab and Asian cuisine outlets, which range in quality. The Spice Den Indian restaurant is very good.
Pub food is also readily available but again varies in quality. 'The Waveney' located in Oulton Broad is a recommendation.
The Lowestoft town centre is fairly run down and quite these days and that includes the pubs and bars. You're best bet is to head down to Oulton broad which is a five minute taxi ride away or catch the train ther. Oulton Broad has really become the main pint for Bars and pubs in Lowestoft with many modern bars such as Winelodge, Broadview and Bridges open, the place is usually heaving during the weekend and can be busy in the week. Therei s also a new nighclub called Escape by Winelodge.
If you do choose to stay in Lowestoft your best bet is the pubs by the bridge with The Harbour, Notley, Iconic and Winelodge all close to eachother although these tend to be very quiet during the week and only tend to get busy on friday and saturday and even then they can be quite.
The seafront areas of Lowestoft are packed with b+b's and contains two large hotels, booking is recommended during the school holidays especially during the air festival and prices tend to range from £25-£90 per night. There is a Premier Inn and Travelodge on the edge of town (head North on the A12 towards Great Yarmouth) and the surrounding area contains plenty of campsites with varying levels of facilities.