Needham Lake is a 13 hectare popular countryside attraction, centred around a flooded gravel pit, close to Needham Market.
It's been consistently ranked among Visit England's top most-visited free attractions in the UK, and was ranked twelfth during 2020.
Part of the site is a Local Nature Reserve - with wetland areas, meadows and a small woodland. It's home to a variety of wildlife, and in the summer you can find many species of dragonflies and small birds.
Look out for the nest boxes found throughout the site. Wild flowers are plentiful with pyramidal and bee orchids easily seen from the paths.
How to find us
Access from B1078 Coddenham Road, IP6 8NU
OS Grid ref: TM 093547 (Explorer 211)
Activities on offer
|Walks||20 minutes walk around the surfaced lakeside path
Longer walks via access points off the path
|Orienteering||We have two permanent orienteering courses
Maps for these can be downloaded below or picked up from the information room on site
|Angling||Angling permits for the lake (both day ticket and club membership) are available from Birds Tackle (01473 830683) on Station Road, Great Blakenham|
|Children's play areas||For younger children: There is musical play by the car park, and other equipment (adults will need to be present) near the café. Natural play - from wooden tubes, to toad stall weaving - can be found around the lake
For older children: a climbing boulder and informal play equipment is located around the lake. There is a small den building area where children can build their own shelters from the materials provided
New play equipment will be gradually introduced around the site
|Events||During the school holidays there are some children’s activities and other events|
|Field games||We have plenty of grass space for outdoor games|
|Picnics||Picnic tables can be found around the site
Please help to keep the site clean and take your rubbish home with you
|BBQs||Barbecues are only permitted in part of Mill Meadow, near the main entrance car park
They must be raised off the ground, and not placed on the wooden picnic tables
An ash disposal bin is provided for BBQ disposal
No fires must be lit anywhere on site
|Café and visitor centre||The Duck and Teapot café near the main entrance offers refreshments including hot snacks, cake, tea, coffee and ice cream
We are proud that the café, which also serves as a visitor centre for the area, opened in May 2022. There are public toilets on the premises, including a changing facility. Visit The Duck and Teapot's Facebook page for more information
|Toilets||We have two toilet blocks on site - one at the café and one by the car park, with baby changing and disabled access. Facilities open in the morning and close in the early evening|
|Car parking||We have two free car parks at the lake, including a charging point for electric vehicles|
|Dog bins||Dogs are welcome, but they must be kept on a lead on the surfaced paths
Owners must clean up after their dogs. There are several dog bins located around the site
|Litter bins||Please use the litter bins near the café. We encourage visitors to take their waste home for recycling|