Canoe Days Out

Suffolk - River Deben - Felixstowe Ferry to Waldringfield

This page was submitted by Eric Craven (E-mail this submitter)
How to get there - Felixstowe is at the end of the A14. The Ferry is to be found North East of the town through the golf course. For those with SatNav the postcode is IP11 9RZ.

You will need to leave a car or arrange collection from Waldringfield which is accessed from the A12. Turn right at Brightwell roundabout and the Maybush pub is around 3 miles further on. The pub is a great place for a meal with great river views. For those with SatNav the postcode is IP12 4QL.

Get a map with driving directions to start or end (enter the postcode of your starting point at A)

Suggested Launch Site - Park in the car park next to the cafe at Felixstowe Ferry and arrange to meet your transport at the Maybush Car Park at Waldringfield. I am sure you will be happy to have a drink after your journey!

General Description - The trip is around 6 miles in length, but with tide assistance and almost no wind, it took me just over two hours of gentle solo paddling.

The tidal river Deben is a lovely place, with very little traffic, occasional yachts and motor boats but no commercial shipping. It winds its way between low lying mud flats and there are several notable features, including pubs at both ends of the journey and also the Ramsholt Arms along the way.

I launched at the ferry slipway about one hour after low water, (keep a close eye on the weather forecast as the very exposed lower reaches can be windy and choppy when the wind is over the tide).

This is not a journey to be rushed and there is a lot of wildlife to be seen along the way. I wish I knew more about the different birds that I saw, which included dippers, curlew and, I think, an egret.

I was spotted by two seals who came very close to see what I was about. Being late in the year, the geese were gathering for their long flight across the sea and several V shaped formations formed up and departed as I quietly and slowly paddled by.

There are lots of small creeks to investigate too at Kirton and Falkenham, but they don't go anywhere and are best avoided unless you have a few hours to spare. The well known 'Rocks' beach is quite close to Waldringfield and usually there are a few yachts anchored in the shelter of the high bank. This is a great place to stop to stretch your legs and explore. Often the water is very calm here even when the exposed reach down to the Ramsholt Arms is very choppy.

I landed close to the scrubbing posts at Waldringfield beach, which is a nice clean stretch of gravel. From there it is easy to trolley the canoe up to the Maybush car park and settle down for a well deserved pint!

Comments on this trip

Maureen and Mike
27 Jul 2014
We did this the other way round, getting in at Waldringfield about an hour after high tide worked well. We had a leisurely paddle, stopped on a beach for lunch, you can get out at Felixstowe Ferry on shingle beaches just beyond the slipway even towardslow tide


Tide Tables
The Maybush at Waldringfield

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The last trip loaded was Great Haywood to Great Haywood (Circular Route) on the River Trent / Trent & Mersey Canal by Peter Robinson