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5 things I love about living in Suffolk

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By Aycan Benekli, first year English student at the University of Suffolk

I’m Aycan, a first year English student at University of Suffolk. Before starting my first year here, being an international student, I was a bit nervous.

However, with the lovely environment of Ipswich, the picturesque scenery of the town and the welcoming arms of my university, I began to go out of my shell and enjoy the little things Suffolk has to offer! Here are five of them.

1. The waterfront 

Ask any student or anyone in Ipswich; the waterfront is always one of their favourite places - to go on a walk along the water, clear their minds or take a break from their busy lives at a café near the waterfront. The atmosphere of the waterfront never fails to cheer me up. Plus, if you’re lucky, you’ll spot some swans at the end of the water!

It is also very nice that the main campus is based around the waterfront as you can find lots of things to do, such as visiting various cute and affordable places to eat lunch during your breaks, with the amazing view of the waterfront and ice-cream shops to enjoy summer days.

The location is not only beautiful; it also has a friendly atmosphere. It’s always nice to see people greeting each other, smiling at each other and watching locals go about their day.

With various bicycle paths along the waterfront, you can enjoy your day cycling safely while breathing in the lovely Suffolk air.

Neptun Marina

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2. University of Suffolk 

With its welcoming arms, my uni makes me feel at home. Because student numbers are smaller than other universities, the University of Suffolk allows us to have one-to-one tutorials with our lecturers and you never feel uncomfortable as you may do when you’re around a large number of people.

At the University of Suffolk, you always have a chance to use your voice whenever, wherever! (Plus, the gigantic question mark in front of the Waterfront Building adds to the aesthetic).

sunny days >

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3. There’s always something to do!

The University of Suffolk also offers many opportunities for not only its students, but for the public as well. For instance, we have the spacious Waterfront Gallery, located in the Waterfront Building, which hosts student and artist exhibitions. It’s always great to discover new talented artists and look through beautiful paintings (learn more here).

Also located inside the building we have the Cargo Café, with a friendly atmosphere and lovely staff. It is a place where lots of students visit, whether they’re on a break or they need that coffee to get through their busy day.

Without breaking the chain, let’s move on to another lovely place: Cult Café. Cult is the perfect location for lots of students and locals. Located around the waterfront, you can sit on their comfy sofas while sipping on your tea during the day and enjoying the live music offered at the night time while having the time of your life with your friends! Cult Café also offers 10% discounts for students, which is hard to pass.

Let’s not forget to mention the free talks by guest speakers, poets and also free screenings with the Open Lecture series. All in all, there’s always something fun to do here!

anna airy award exhibition #uniofsuffolk

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4. Art and history in Suffolk

It’s always interesting to learn about different cultures, cities or countries. With Ipswich being one of the oldest towns in England, you can always learn something new about its history.

One of the first places to start with would be Christchurch Mansion, where you can explore Ipswich’s past and also take a peek at the beautiful art and paintings made by various artists from all around Suffolk. 

Sundays

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5. Charity shops 

Who doesn’t love charity shops? Especially the ones full of pretty second-hand books and old (but gold) records. Charity shops always had a huge place in my heart, since what you give goes to those who are in need. I especially love the one in town. The smell of old books makes its way into my soul every time I go inside. Even if I don’t buy anything, just being there around things that carry memories always relaxes me. 

charity shops

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You can take a look at my Instagram (www.instagram.com/aycanbenekli ) for more pictures and memories from my first year in Suffolk if you’re interested!  

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