Lackford Lakes Nature Reserve
Please note that Bernard's hide will be closed on Thursday 21st November to allow repairs to the ramp to that viewing hide.
Lackford Lakes has a fully accessible visitor centre and café with views of the reserve, open 7 days a week.
Please be aware there is limited access for dogs around Sayers Breck, with no access to the lakes or hides. Only assistance dogs are allowed in the centre and around the reserve.
Know before you go
Entry feeLackford Lakes is free to visit, however if you wish to support our work on the nature reserve, please consider making a donation or becoming a member of Suffolk Wildlife Trust.
Very good, mostly surfaced paths.
Fully accessible visitor centre with allocated parking and toilet for disabled people. The 1.5km Kingfisher Trail is negotiable by wheelchair, with ramped access to four hides.
The Winter Hide, reached by a firm 150m path from the car park, offers easy access for all visitors.
Parts of this reserve are accessible by mobility scooter.
Please note - Bernard’s Hide is a short stay hide
We ask visitors to spend a short while in this popular hide.
Stays are for a maximum of 1 hour with no return for 1 hour.
Quick-view seating provides short waiting times to ensure all visitors have the chance to enjoy wildlife from this hide.
When to visit
Opening timesVisitor Centre : Open 7 days a week 10am to 5pm. Refreshments available 10am to 4:30pm
Reserve open from dawn until dusk.
Best time to visitAll year round
About the reserve
Listen to the sound of singing birds in spring with the arrival of nightingales and warblers from Africa. The first bees and butterflies start to make appearances on bright spring days.
Later in summer, the reserve is alive with damselflies and dragonflies. Swallows and martins sweep over the water's surface feeding on small flies. The lakesides are busy with nesting great-crested grebe, kingfisher, tufted duck and water rail. Bright stems of purple-loosestrife, common fleabane and gipsywort create colour at the water's edge.
Gold and red colours mark the coming of autumn with the arrival of a wide range of wildfowl. Birds including shoveler, lapwing, goosander, bittern and goldeneye depend on the lakes during the winter months.
The visitor centre and café is open 7 days a week and sells hot and cold drinks, pre-packed sandwiches, hot and cold savouries, ice cream, lollies and a variety of cakes and snacks, some of which are gluten free.
Our seasonal trails!
Autumn is a time of change on the reserve. The autumn colours around the reserve can be amazing from the sunset over the lakes to the leaves changing colour. To celebrate this we have a mystery tree trail around the blue trail. Follow this to try and identify our mystery tree leaves.
For a suggested donation of £3 visitors can borrow a pair of binoculars. For a small donation children can try the autumn spotter sheet.
Just head inside when you arrive to find out more!
If you are visiting as a group, please contact us on 01284 728706 in advance to check availability. Guided walks may be available if requested at the time of booking.
Upcoming events at Lackford Lakes
Lackford Lakes Blog
Late autumn at the lakes
We are now into November at the lakes and many of our ducks are now arriving or will be arriving in the next few weeks to spend the…
Autumn gathers momentum at Lackford
This week on the reserve has seen the first redwing joining us for winter, joining lovely birds like long-tailed tit, grey wagtail, a…
Lizards, dragonflies and butterflies enjoying the summer
It has been very sunny this summer at the lakes and the result is much of our smaller creatures have been showing really well. Common…
School visits to Lackford Lakes
"England’s wildlife is under great and ever growing pressure. It is vital that we restore our land on a landscape scale so that it can support more wild plants and animals. "
-Sir David Attenborough