As the damp and disappointing summer of 2007 fades as a bad memory, we need reasons to look forward to the coming autumn. The season of 'mists and mellow fruitfulness' has much to recommend it and we can always hope for a long, mild Indian summer.
We have so many beautiful areas in England, the choice for a quick getaway is vast. Are you looking for a city break to explore top museums, great theatre or indulge in some serious shopping? Are you looking for a change of pace by pottering around the countryside, enjoying the spectacular change in autumn foliage before retiring to a cosy pub? Or do you feel the pull of the sea taking you to those unspoilt little coastal hideaways, which offer surprisingly sophisticated pleasures and wonderfully fresh air.
It is worth taking a look at East Anglia which can satisfy your choice with a diversity often overlooked. Take a look at the vibrant city of Norwich, the classic countryside of Constable Country in the Dedham Vale and, my own favourite, Aldeburgh, a classic coastal town on the Suffolk Heritage Coast.
On a recent visit, I loved walking along the shingle beach with the sea to one side and buildings of all shapes, sizes and colours on the other. On that beach are traditional fishermens huts where the days catch is brought in from the sea and then delivered straight to the kitchen door of the towns restaurants, such as the AA rosette rated Brudenell and White Lion. Seafood this fresh is a good enough reason on its own to take a break on the coast.
A brisk walk along the coastal path, passing the RSPB reserve, leads you to the very original and quirky Thorpeness. The whole village could be described as a folly, giving every appearance of having buildings hundreds of years old half-timbered, Tudor even but in fact the whole place was created as an upmarket holiday retreat at the beginning of the last cenury. Todays village is built around the Swallows and Amazons lake or Meare as it is known locally. With boats to hire and islands to explore, its a fantasy land in every respect. The Thorpeness Hotel and Golf Club offers accommodation, an excellent restaurant (enjoy your aperitif on the balcony overlooking the Meare as the sun sets magic!) and a very highly rated heathland golf course.
So the choice is vast but with easy access from London and the Midlands, you wont be disappointed with a trip to East Anglia and particularly Aldeburgh and Thorpeness.
Lindsay Chapman has been living and writing about Norfolk several years.
For more information: http://www.aldeburgh-breaks.co.uk