We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

Bonn, Germany
Level Contributor
151 posts
3 reviews
Save Topic
Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

I am a foreign student quite keen on exploring new places, interested in culture and history rather than booze and partying, and got a free return ticket London <> Ipswich by a friend who isn't traveling there anymore.

Before going there however, I wanted to ask what I can find there, whether it is worth it to do a day trip, and any special things to do and see.

Online search didn't provide much useful/interesting information so far.

Would appreciate guidance!

London
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
20,678 posts
45 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

You've got a free ticket? Of course it's worth going there!

It is a fine old East Anglian town with many old buildings, a rejuvenated waterfront, and is seriously under-rated IMO.

Typing 'Ipswich tourist information' into Google Search brought up this:

http://www.visit-ipswich.com/

Bonn, Germany
Level Contributor
151 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

Thank you! I saw that website already.

I just thought someone might have more "must see/must do" or "insider" tips =)

(e.g. I usually read Wikipedia/similar article about a place before traveling there and decide what to see based on that... but Ipswich seems to be quite unknown, sorry =) )

Essex
Level Contributor
28,240 posts
69 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

Well, then perhaps you should go and explore it, and then edit the Wikipedia article yourself and update it, eh??

http://www.ipswichlife.com/

London
Level Contributor
840 posts
1 review
Save Reply
4. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

Until a few years ago my only knowledge of Ipswich was the uninspiring five-minute walk from the station to the football ground, as I'd been there for a couple of matches. Then I married someone whose parents live just outside the town and I discovered that another five minutes walk from the football ground would have brought me into a really interesting and cheerful town. Now I go as often as I can. The link wirewiper gave is a fairlly good and accurate summary of what there is to see. A good place to see is Christchurch Mansion, at the souther end of Christchurch Park in the town centre. It's not particularly amazing as Elizaberthan mansions go, but it is free! The waterfront is also a good place for a meal and a drink, especially if it's a sunny day.

Edited: 11 April 2012, 12:23
Ipswich, United...
Destination Expert
for Ipswich
Level Contributor
7,520 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

Although Ipswich does not have a Cathedral as such (though the Bishop of St Edmondsbury and Ipswich has his official residence in Ipswich), it has a fine collection of medieval churches, all within easy walking distance of each other. This site is particularly good, and as well as giving detailed information about each church (if you press the underlined links) it also gives an overview of Ipswich in general:

http://www.suffolkchurches.co.uk/ipsintro.htm

Strangely, although it is an ancient town, around forty years ago it found itself at the cutting edge of modern architecture. An up and coming architect, Norman Foster, designed a revolutionary new style of office building for the insurance company Willis, Faber and Dumas, (now just known as Willis). Its strange shape, its black glass walls and its cascading escalators are now commonplace, but at the time it was the first of its kind.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willis_Building_(Ipswich)

www.flickr.com/photos/steved373/6158562307/

You can pop your head in the main entrance to take a glance at the interior. It's a strange experience, as the materilas used now seem a little old-fashioned, yet the style, imitated since in cities all over the world, still seems very modern. It made Norman Foster's name. As you are from Germany you willl probably know that Sir Norman Foster, when he was much more famous, went on to design the dome and other features in the rebuilt Reichstag in Berlin. So you could say that if it wasn't for Ipswich the new Reichstag might never have existed in its present form!

Ipswich was also the birthplace of Cardinal Wolsey, who had plans to make Ipswich a centre of learning but fell from grace the year after his new college was opened and Henry VIII maliciously closed it down. St Peters by the Waterfront was briefly the College chapel, and now houses an interesting series of tapestries that chart the History of Ipswich from the 5th Century onwards. Cardinal Wolsey, for different reasons, was hated by both the Catholic and Protestant factions, and only his native town still retains some affection for him, choosing to remember him as an animal lover and his advanced ideas about education (he said it should be an enjoyable experience, something my teachers in the twentieth century still did not know yet!). A new statue in his memory was unvailed in Ipswich last year.

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=cardinal+wolsey+statue+ipswich&view=detail&id=FA5050900C4C9C172E5A349DBD92B96463594E0B&first=0&FORM=IDFRIR

Edited: 11 April 2012, 14:40
London
Level Contributor
840 posts
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

And watch out for the majestic view of the Orwell Bridge just before the train gets into Ipswich.

Yaxley, Suffolk
Level Contributor
608 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

I suspect that the reason you can’t find much information on line about the town is that there really isn’t that much there to see as a tourist. Others have already mentioned the Waterfront and Christchurch mansion and the churches. Other than that I can’t for the life of me think of anything else to come and see. It does still have some nice buildings around and near the centre. The shopping is ok. There are several good restaurants and cafes. Some half decent pubs as well. Personally I would visit the Mansion, then have a wonder round the shopping area and end up on the Waterfront for a nice meal in one of the bistros there and then sit outside Isaacs on the Quay (weather permitting) for a few drinks.

Ipswich, United...
Destination Expert
for Ipswich
Level Contributor
7,520 posts
30 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

I think perhaps you take the town too much for granted, Easternpromise, particularly as Hanna says she has an interest in History. As well as the churches and the waterforont, Ipswich has a wealth of Medieval and Tudor buildings, in total more than Lavenham and some other villages on the tourist trail. It may not be publicised much as a touristy town (partly due to its geographical location), but that is not the same as not being of interest to tourists.

There were quite a few tourists on the couple of Ipswich walks I went on last year. Speaking of which, the programme for this year's Ipswich walks is now out:

visit-ipswich.com/what_to_see_do/ipswich_wal…

They take place on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
2,137 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

When I approach Ipswich on the northbound A12, there is a large brown tourist/visitor information sign showing Ipswich has a Mansion, Museums, Brewery (tours) and Waterfront.

Also an interesting outdoor town centre market several days a week.

I think there might still be Stadium tours of Ipswich Town FC, Portman Rd.

There is also a Transport Museum in Cobham Rd (limited opening times)

May 6th during the morning, a large gathering of historic vehicles in Christchurch Park.

visit-ipswich.com/what_to_see_do/ipswich_wal…

cimuseums.org.uk/venues/town-hall-galleries.…

cimuseums.org.uk/venues/ipswich-museum.html

http://www.itfc.co.uk/page/StadiumTours

London
Level Contributor
840 posts
1 review
Save Reply
10. Re: Complimentary ticket to Ipswich. What to do/see there?

This film probably says it best. See for yourself.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qob0l-hqdmc

The film was obviously made a few years ago but it's still fairly accurate, except that the university building on the waterfront was finished three years ago.