9 of the best places for afternoon tea in Bury St Edmunds
PUBLISHED: 10:27 10 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:08 04 November 2020
After exploring Bury St Edmunds’ numerous historic spots a delicious afternoon tea will be very well earned. Here are 9 great places for you to try in and around the market town
1) The Angel Hotel, Angel Hill
With its stunning, ivy-covered exterior, The Angel is quite possibly one of Bury's most distinctive buildings - that's saying something for a town that is also home to the likes of Moyses Hall and the various Abbey properties.
Located conveniently next to the town's main shopping and tourist areas, it's the perfect spot for finger sandwiches, scones and cakes after a long day out.
2) Harriets Cafe Tearooms, Cornhill Buildings
If you walk into town from The Angel up Abbeygate Street you'll eventually find this tearoom in one of the historic Cornhill Buildings just around the corner from one of the smallest pubs in Britain, The Nutshell.
Previously the property has been used as a library and a fire station, meaning you'll be surrounded by the town's history while eating your afternoon tea.
3) Ravenwood Hall, Rougham
Drive for just ten minutes to the east of Bury to this pretty countryside hotel for either the Suffolk cream tea or the full afternoon tea which also includes their 'dine and swim' experience.
The hall is set with seven gorgeous acres and we'd recommend taking those green areas in - you could also head further out into the countryside if you're feeling limber - before settling in for your scones and tea.
Some more places to eat and drink:
4) Ickworth Hotel, Horringer
Another location that you'll have to hop in a car to reach, The Ickworth Hotel is based within the same stunning grounds of the eponymous National Trust property.
This majestic countryside setting is the perfect match for afternoon tea, a tradition that's been around nearly as long as the house itself. Take your pick of the conservatory, drawing room, library or terrace for an eating experience fit for the English gentry.
5) Ben's Restaurant, Churchgate Street
Considered to be one of the finest eateries in the Bury St Edmunds area, Ben's puts great emphasis on sourcing its produce from as close to Suffolk as possible.
This traceability is continued into both the traditional afternoon tea as well as the gentleman's tea that mixes things up by only offering savoury delights such as BBQ pulled pork sliders and a blue cheese and ham scone alongside a half pint of beer, ale or cider.
6) Really Rather Good, Abbeygate
If you get lucky and secure the right spot in this Abbeygate cafe and coffee house you'll be able to enjoy your afternoon tea while enjoying views of the Abbey Gate straight ahead and the Pillar of Salt just to your left.
With 100s of excellent reviews on TripAdvisor and other platforms, we think the name Really Rather Good is more than justified.
7) Bannatyne Health Club & Spa, Horringer Road
Afternoon tea at Bannatyne's is served within Maxine's Restaurant, a AA Rosette-winning a la carte location that also serves modern British comfort food made from local ingredients.
Tea is served between 3pm and 6pm daily but there will be plenty to keep you entertained at the spa throughout the day if it's more than just food you're after.
8) Marlows Garden Centre, Hollow Road
One advantage Marlows has over all the other locations on this list is that you can get pretty much everything you need to keep your garden in tip-top shape before settling in for an afternoon tea.
Booking in advance is essential so get a few friends together to browse the plants and various home items before finally sitting down and relaxing in their Kitchen Cafe.
9) Grange Country House Hotel, Thurston
Hidden in the quiet countryside around the town, this rustic hotel proudly describes itself as 'Bury St Edmunds' best kept secret'.
We'd recommend getting in now before too many others find out about the hotel, its delicious afternoon teas and outdoor areas that are made delightfully secluded by the surrounding treeline.