Our Blog Posts

Here’s where we write about all sorts to do with spending time in Suffolk & Tuscany. There’s lots to scroll through, including where to eat & drink, what to do, places to walk & visit and things like that. There’s some daft stuff in there too. Hope you find something of interest to you.

Our ‘Coronavirus Cleaning Regime’

The first half of 2020 has seen many changes in our lives and in our businesses; many bad, some good. One of the things that we know you are going to be interested in as a new era dawns, is our Coronavirus Cleaning Regime during our changeovers between guest departures and arrivals. We have often written and talked about our stringent maintenance, but now more than ever, you will want to rest assured that wherever you stay, it has a very strict coronavirus cleaning regimen in place. Well, we do. I think anyone prepared to talk about it in the…

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4 reasons why Suffolk is the perfect year-round holiday location

Many holiday locations have their ‘ideal season’: Some say that it wouldn’t be summer without a trip to Cornwall or the Isle of Wight, while swathes of people head to The Cotswolds for vibrant autumn walks and cosy pubs. However, Suffolk is one of those very unique places that works its magic all year round. At Woodfarm Barns, we think ourselves very lucky to experience all four glorious seasons in Suffolk – and we are delighted to say that our guests say the same! We are busy throughout the year, which is a testament not only to how popular Suffolk…

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‘Lording it up’ in luxury in a Suffolk Farmhouse

Fancy being Lord & Lady Woodfarm when we emerge from hibernation? Just to clarify, we are equally happy to welcome Lord & Lord Woodfarm, or Lady & Lady Woodfarm. In ‘normal times’, Woodfarm House is home for the weekend, or a midweek break, to extended families or groups of friends, but we aren’t living in normal times right now are we? It’s unlikely we will be able to welcome large groups for some time yet, so we came up with a cunning plan in the shape of a 40% Discount, as we would rather have guests enjoying Woodfarm House, than…

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WIN STUFF in our “Goatee or not Goatee?” Competition!

Yes, there really was a poll to decide whether or not my new Goatee should stay or go, so we turned it into a competition! “Goatee or not Goatee?”. That was indeed the question this week as I sprouted hair on my chin just to pass the time during lockdown. It turned out to be mostly grey though! Anyway, we ran a silly online poll and lots of you voted! The end result was 46.1% in favour of it staying, and 53.9% in favour of it going, so it went! But just how many people voted is the burning question?…

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WIN with our COVID Captivity Cuppa Countdown Competition

What does that even mean you might ask? Well it’s happening during this captivity madness, it involves you WINNING some posh tea & coffee, and some things to drink it out of. And the countdown bit? I’ve counted the screws I kicked over at the start of lockdown! Possibly the most tenuous competition in the world, but you can still WIN a nice PRIZE! WIN all these ‘Lockdown Lovelies’ to make your ‘COVID time’ Cuppa experience a thing of beauty. You can even invite friends round to share with you in your garden now. Nah, yer right, just hog it…

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6 romantic restaurants in Suffolk

If you’re looking for a romantic evening in Suffolk, we’re not short of suggestions for our favourite intimate eateries – but here are six that will definitely up the romance factor for your night out! Of course, if you’re looking for a romantic getaway in Suffolk, there’s no better place to stay than Woodfarm Barns. With our luxurious two-person Cottages, complete with comfortable double beds, log burning fireplaces and – to top it all off – large hot tubs to enjoy under the night sky, Woodfarm is a haven for couples who want some alone-time in the tranquility of the…

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Happy Lockdown Birthday Woodfarm! 11th Birthday Competition

The Woodfarm brand is 11 years, and to celebrate, even though we are in Lockdown right now, we are going to do what we like to do and give away a FREE BREAK in one of our Barns, to one Lucky Winner, for when it’s all over! As I write this on the 9th May 2020, my business is officially 11 old years today. Ironic that whilst it was a rip-roaring success for almost 11 years, growing year on year, on year, the last 47 days have been the worst in Woodfarm history. On account of we are shut! But…

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How to recreate our breakfast basket with Suffolk produce

If you’ve stayed at Woodfarm Barns or Barges, you’ll have been treated to one of our delicious breakfast hampers, packed with everything you need for a hearty Suffolk breakfast! But how do you recreate one of these at home? Well, whether you want to give one to a friend to share a touch of the ‘Woodfarm lifestyle’, create a fresh one for your other half for breakfast in bed, or you just want a fancy breakfast for yourself, read on to find out how to make your own Woodfarm hamper! Ingredients for your hamper We’ve designed our hampers to reflect…

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Thank you NHS Heroes

There will never be enough words, or the right words, to convey how we are all indebted to, and in awe of, the utter bravery we have seen from our NHS personnel since the Coronavirus struck us. This is just one way a small Holiday Cottage business in Suffolk is trying to say “Thank you”. Hi. My name is Carl. On the morning of March 23rd 2020 I closed the doors on my Holiday Cottage and Holiday Barge business for the foreseeable future. I contacted all iminent arrivals to cancel their breaks. I felt I had no choice. Later that…

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Lambing weekends at Kentwell Hall

Spring is on the way! That means warmer weather (hopefully!), yummy seasonal food in the local pubs and restaurants and a sudden abundance of daffodils. For us, in the heart of the Suffolk countryside, it also means that we’ll see a big rise in wildlife, and our once lonely winter fields will be teeming with farmyard animals. March and April are the ideal months for spotting young and newborn lambs, in particular. However, if you don’t want to go on a wild sheep chase in the countryside, then a trip to Kentwell Hall will almost guarantee you a sight of…

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Why choose a Holiday in Suffolk at Woodfarm Barns?

Thank you for considering a Holiday in Suffolk with us… Thank you for taking the time to look at Woodfarm and considering us for your next Short Break or Holiday in Suffolk, it’s much appreciated. Please let me know if you have any queries by calling me directly on 01449 710032, or emailing carl@woodfarmbarns.com. You can even Whatsapp me by clicking below… This page gives you a little overview of what we’re about. We have lots of pages on our website, where we have carefully placed nice pictures etc but this is all just about info; reasons you might want…

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Easter Egg Hunt with our Barges & Barns

Our Easter Egg Hunt is on! And YOU could be our lucky WINNER! Up for grabs is a very posh, mouth-watering Chocolate selection from Earsham Street Deli, a tail-wagging range of Dog treats from Doodledales, and a whole bunch of Woodfarm branded merchandise. A prize worth well over a hundred quid! Ok folks, we posted this prior to the Coronavirus outbreak and as we are currently in ‘Lockdown’ as I write this, things have changed somewhat! This was to be an awesome competition where you win some great prizes. I would still love it if you want to join in…

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How to keep dogs safe in the car

There’s no questioning it – dogs are more than welcome at both our Luxury Cottages and unique, historical Dutch Barges! We provide all the comforts and conveniences that you need to keep your dog happy while staying with us. We think that a happy dog is equal to a safe dog, which is why we decided to put together a few handy tips on how to keep your dog(s) safe in the car when you’re (hopefully!) travelling down for a fabulous Suffolk holiday with us. 1. Give them a good walk before the journey If you don’t want your pup…

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What’s on in Suffolk in 2020?

What’s on in Suffolk during 2020? Funny you should ask. Here’s a whole bunch of things to get you excited this year…. There’s so much to do in Suffolk at any time, but here’s a guide for you of lots of events throughout the year. So have a little read, get your diaries out and start planning. Most of these events are Dog-Friendly but do double-check first. March 21st Flatford Ramble – Constable’s Footsteps April 4th Framlingham Country Show & Festival of Dogs 19th Suffolk Young Farmers Country Fair at Stonham Barns 25th April Flatford Ramble – Spring Bluebell Walk…

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Crash on Planet Trash

What is Crash on Planet Trash and what does it have to do with Holiday Cottages? Well, kind of nothing, except that it is an amazing Suffolk based educational project that my friend James is a key part of. So we are trying to help raise some funds. Pleeeeease read on…. Ok, the really quick answer is that a friend of mine is an amazing illustrator and he uses his iPad to draw. He has suffered from depression in the past and his drawings really helped him through some dark times. He’s used them to raise money for MIND, and…

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How we keep our Barns clean for our guests

When looking at hotel reviews, ‘cleanliness’ is a topic that always pops up. It’s obviously a huge indicator of quality for many travellers; after all, none of us enjoy seeing traces of previous guests during a holiday! This is why we take cleanliness at Woodfarm Barns and Barges very seriously. Our fantastic team dedicates hours to cleaning our Luxury, Dog-Friendly Suffolk Holiday Cottages and Historic Dutch Holiday Barges after each stay. They ensure that the cottages are not just tidy, but free of dirt and germs too. You can see from our outstanding reviews that we succeed in our efforts! …

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Days Out in Suffolk to put in the Diary for 2020

Whether you live in Suffolk and are looking for a special day out, or you’re planning a staycation in one of the UK’s most beautiful counties, there is plenty to do in Suffolk. Lying in the east of England, the historic county of Suffolk is bordered by Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, Essex and the North Sea to the east, and boasts glorious rolling hills in the west and the famous broads in the east. If you are looking for days out in Suffolk, there is an abundance of things to do, and here are some of the best: 1. A Sumptuous Spa…

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Holiday Cottage in Tuscany – update January 2020

I bring you this update from Bar San Michele in Lucca, as I visit ‘Trebbio’ towards the end of January 2020. There’s been lots going on at our Holiday Cottage in Tuscany. We have had all the floors taken up as they were very uneven and poorly done. We now have a wonderful new floor throughout the house. I’ve gone for a traditional Tuscan terracotta brick tile for the whole house except the bathroom, which is a lovely slate grey. I didn’t ever imagine that renovating a Holiday Cottage in Tuscany would cost quite so much! We have white tiles on…

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HS2 Suffolk style…

HS2 has hit more controversy as it now tops £106 BILLION at the time of writing. We do things a little differently in Suffolk, with far less embarrassing results… Whilst HS2 spirals out of control to make it ever so slightly faster to get from A to B, I bring you embarrassing news of some local controversy regarding our own version SHSS2; that’s ‘Slightly Higher Speed Suffolk 2’. That’s the new travel service making access to rural parts of our fair county more accessible, shaving up to 15 minutes of some journey times! For years we’ve been getting on just…

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Extraordinary Holiday Cottages in Suffolk (and Tuscany!)

Extraordinary Holiday Cottages. According to the old advert, The Halifax gave us extra. And that’s what we have always aimed for at Woodfarm. I do a lot of thinking whilst running this little business of mine. One of the things that I think about is why, over the decade since I started Woodfarm, it has exceeded all of my expectations. I think it’s all about providing extraordinary holiday cottages, as opposed to ordinary. This little paperweight on my desk was a present a number of years ago and it’s a constant reminder to me of how we go about doing…

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Our pick of the best farm shops in Suffolk

If you’re heading to Suffolk for a foodie holiday, we’ll let you in on a secret: we have some of the best farm shops around. Suffolk and the surrounding counties of Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex are home to excellent food and drink producers, including some nationally (and even internationally) known brands such as Adnams, Stokes and Dingley Dell Pork. Our farm shops reflect this completely, offering the most mouth-watering local produce that will make you want to come back again and again. Need a place to stay? Woodfarm Barns is ideally situated and within easy reach of a great selection…

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12 Days of Christmas: WIN a FREE BREAK!

Here’s the form to fill in for your chance to WIN the FREE BREAK, with a really tough question you must get right. And don’t forget you MUST Fill in the form, Share the competition post on your Facebook or Instagram pages, and ‘Like’ Woodfarm Barns and Barges on Facebook, or Bargesandbarns on Insta… Loading… OK, we know Christmas is over now but as we started it on Christmas Day 2019, that’s what it was all about. You can even recommend a friend to enter, for the chance to BOTH WIN! For the 12 Days of Christmas 2019, we thought…

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Re-cycle bikes and improve lives

Re-cycle (.org) are a Colchester based charity sending bikes to Africa to transform lives. And through a Suffolk-based friend involved with the charity, we buy our bikes, which in turn helps raise funds.  Re-cycle take unwanted bikes and ship them to partners in Africa who run bicycle projects, refurbishing, distributing and maintaining bikes, running bicycle maintenance workshops and teaching courses in safe riding.    In 2019 Re-cycle sent over 10,500 bicycles to Africa. Spadge Hopkins has been collecting and receiving bikes for Re-cycle since 2016. When he has a decent amount, another volunteer comes to collect the bikes in a…

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Shop Local and support your community

When you Shop Local, you’re not just ‘buying stuff’, you are investing in the area you live. We all know that shopping with the likes of Amazon and ASOS is convenient, but pleeeeease don’t forget those businesses that still provide quality, customer service and a smile. Shop Local and you get all that, as well as sustaining your local community, not to mention cutting down on air and road miles. Before I go any further, I don’t want you to think I’m on a planet-saving soap-box here, because I’m not. This is just about the week I’ve had, shopping with…

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Bug Hotel @ Woodfarm Barns

Providing a Bug Hotel is just is just one way we can help the conservation of this lovely planet of ours, so we decided to get to it! We are in the accommodation business, and we just happen to care about the planet we live on in, as well as the other beings on it. So we decided to have our very own Bug Hotel at Woodfarm Barns!  I’d seen these in various places, usually on woodland walks. But I was enjoying breakfast in the Summer, at one of my favourite places, Honey & Harvey and noticed one outside. Their…

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Trolley Coins from Woodfarm Barns & Barges

Trolley coins are the latest little giveaway when you stay with us, just to make your life a little more convenient and to remind you of your favourite place to stay! If you’re anything like me and have to scrabble around for £1 when you need a trolley, these little gems will come in handy! In our cashless society, I’ve often had to pop into a shop to get change just to shop there. With our new trolley coins I’ve now always got one with me, and every guest at Woodfarm Barns or Barges now has one too! If you…

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The Crowfield Rose

The Crowfield Rose is our nearest pub and is walkable from Woodfarm Barns. The week I started work on the renovations here in 2009, I went round for a lunchtime pint with my builder. We just happened to go in on the day they were closing! Doh! Well, after being closed for ten years, they are now back with a bang! Earlier in 2019 I’d heard it was re-opening, which was obviously great news as it is walkable from Woodfarm Barns. Once it had opened I popped in for a pint and met the landlord, Glen Hughes. Glen is a…

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