Once a flourishing Saxon seaport, it lies in the Waveney valley and is a popular boating centre. It is dominated by the detached 14th century bell tower of St. Michael's church. Like the main body of the church, the tower is perpendicular in style and is 97 foot tall. The interior of the church was badly damaged by fire in 1586. It has a 13th century font.
There is an unusual 18th century octagonal Town Hall.
Beccles Museum is housed in Leman House, a Grade I listed building and has a collection of agricultural, industrial and domestic items, including collections of tools, boat building, printing, costumes and natural history.
Roos Hall is said to be the most haunted house in England.
Beccles has strong connections with the printing trade. The firm of William Clowes was once the town's biggest employer and also the largest printing firm in the world. A printing museum contains many examples of composing and printing equipment.
Nowadays the plastics industry provides most of the jobs in the Beccles area.
Worlingham is a suburb of Beccles.
Until 1960 the Beccles to Yarmouth Railway ran across the marshes.
Beccles is twinned with Petit Couronne in France.