Simon Jenkins walks from the Snape Maltings concert hall to Aldeburgh beach, under the vast skies and through the marshland that so inspired the composer
Just a few yards separate the doors of Snape Maltings from the Alde marshes. They pass from modern concert hall to utter serenity. Music and place do not always make happy partners, but the music of Benjamin Britten is infused with this Suffolk coast. I once heard the high-pitched chords of his Sea Interludes drift out of a rehearsal and settle among the reeds rustling in the water, in perfect harmony with nature.
After a day’s hiking, a cosy place to bed down for the night feels like heaven. All these boltholes are in walking country and many offer extras such as guides, pick-ups and picnics
At the foot of the imposing Cadair Idris mountains, the Old Rectory in Tal-y-Llyn offers access to Snowdonia’s quieter southern reaches, as well as good walking around the nearby market town of Machynlleth, including Glyndŵr’s Way National Trail. Two of the B&B’s four attractive lake-view rooms have big, free-standing baths, ideal for an end-of-walk soak, or muscles can be soothed in the hot tub outside.
Walks An easy 2-mile trail loops around Tal-y-Llyn lake – look out for otters. A tougher haul is the climb up 893-metre Cadair Idris along the Minffordd Path via Llyn Cau (6 miles).
• Double from £100 B&B, rectoryonthelake.co.uk