The town's name is thought to have come from the Saxon word Dice or Disce meaning a pool of standing water or lake and referring to 1 Diss' Mere. This 6-acre (2.4-ha) lake is directly adjacent to the main shopping street (Market Pl/Mere St). It is 5½ m deep with a further 16 m of mud at the bottom. Most think it is the result of past glacial action, though some have suggested other theories about its formation.
Diss is 2 miles W from the A140 (Norwich to A14 main road) from which it is well signposted using the A1066 road. The town is well served with cheap and (some) free parking for cars. The town routes into town are relatively cycle-friendly. The town lies on the Regional Cycle Route 30 (Lowestoft to Thetford). Diss is also on the main London Liverpool St – Norwich rail line and hence has frequent trains.
Several bus services to/from Norwich (but rural routes can be slower).
Diss is small enough to walk round with ease although you could potentially park the car at either end if you wanted to be near the car.
- 2 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum, Common Road, Dickleburgh, IP21 4PH, ☏ , email@example.com. 1 Mar-31 Oct Sa-Su & bank holidays 10:00-17:00 (plus W May-Sept). Last admission 16:00. World War II artefacts, related to US 8th Air Force in an old control tower. Museum, café and grounds free.
- 1 Angles Way footpath. A 93 mile walking trail from Great Yarmouth to Thetford following the county boundary between Norfolk and Suffolk.
- Boudicca Way footpath. A 36 mile footpath between Norwich and Diss
- 2 Banham Zoo (Zoological Society of East Anglia), Kenninghall Road, Banham, Norfolk NR16 2HE (8 miles away via B1077), ☏ . Opening times vary through year. Good sized zoo, wide range of animals, good enclosures, well looked after. Entry price varies with time of year and visitor age.
- 3 Bressingham Steam & Gardens, IP22 2AA (2½ miles to W). Opening times vary - check web site. Steam train rides, fairground dodgems & roundabout. Aimed at children.
- 4 Snetterton Motor Race Circuit, NR16 2JU (13 miles to NW), ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 08:30-19:00. Sa-Su 08:30-15:30. Motorsport events, race days, experience days.
- 5 Diss Leisure Centre, 106 Victoria Road, Diss, IP22 4JG, ☏ , email@example.com. Check website. 25 metre main pool. Learner pool. Gym. Sauna. Steam room. Swimming: Adult £4.50 Child (5–18) £2.25 Child (under 5) Free.
The surrounding countryside has many small rural quiet roads without many hills ideally suited to cycling. The network of small lanes will need a map (or GPS or smartphone with mapping) for those not familiar with the area. Most cyclists avoid the busy A1066 running through the town and tend to use the narrower rural lanes. Running past the southern edge of the town is the 6 Regional Cycle Route 30 (Lowestoft to Thetford) which forms part of the UK National Cycle Network.
Town has expected range of small shops and facilities.
- 1 Tesco (Supermarket), Victoria Rd, IP22 4JN, ☏ . M–Sa 08:00–22:00. Su 10:00–16:00. Supermarket (with ATM, Wi-Fi (free but required registration))
- 2 Morrisons (Supermarket), Victoria Rd, IP22 4XF, ☏ . M–Sa 07:00–22:00. Su 10:00–16:00. Supermarket (with Petrol station, Cafe, ATM)
- 4 Madgetts Cycles Ltd, 8 Shelfanger Road, Diss, IP22 4EH, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. M 09:00–17:30. Tu 09:00–13:00. W–Sa 09:00–17:30. Bicycle sales, parts and repairs. Highly regarded by local cyclists.
Diss has a variety of places to eat.
- 1 Saracens Head, 75 Mount St, IP22 4QQ (next to St Mary's Church (near the centre of town)), ☏ . The Saracens serve excellent home cooked food which is on the pricey side but well worth it.
- Flying Chef. If you fancy something "in your hand" is in Diss on Fridays and Saturdays selling hot dogs. The locally made ingredients combine to form one of the best hot dogs you will ever taste! Some would say they are like angels dancing on your tongue!
- 2 Fair Green Fish Bar (Fish & Chips Take-away), 37 Denmark Street, Diss, IP22 4BE, ☏ . M-Th 12:00-14:00 & 16:30-21:30. F 12:00-14:00 & 16:30-22:00. Sa 12:00-22:00. Su 12:00-20:00.
- 3 Diss Tandoori (Restaurant & takeaway), 1-3 Shelfanger Rd, Diss, IP22 4EH, ☏ , email@example.com. Su-Th 17:30-23:00. F-Sa 17:30-23:59. Delivery £3 (on orders over £15).
- 1 The Greyhound Pub, 9 St Nicholas Street, IP22 4LB, ☏ . M-Th 11:00-23:00 F-Sa 11:00-01:00 Su 11:00-23:00. is the place to be. A substantial bar menu is available every lunchtime and the pub is the most vibrant place to be on a weekend evening. You will also get a very warm welcome from the landlord, Dale. The first Monday evening of the month plays host to Leeds Mick's Quiz Night, where you will need to be very well educated to obtain a high mark. Other events are available.
- 2 The Angel Café, 1 Baldry’s Yard, Fair Green, Diss, IP22 4NQ, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu-Su 08:00-16:00. Café and food. Lunch from 11:30. E-mails only checked each evening.
- 3 The Cock Inn (Pub), Lower Denmark St, Diss, IP22 4BE, ☏ , email@example.com. Pub: M-Th 12:00-23:00. F Sa 12:00-00:00. Su 12:00-22:30. Food: Tu-F 12:00-14:30. Su 12:00-15:00.
- 4 Thatchers Needle, 33 Park Rd, Diss, IP22 4AS, ☏ , ThatchersNeedle.Diss@marstons.co.uk. M-Sa 11:30-23:30. Su 11:30-22:30.
- 1 Park Hotel, 29 Denmark St, IP22 4LE, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 2 Cobwebs Bed and Breakfast, 6 Riverside, Denmark Street, Diss, IP22 4BE, ☏ , email@example.com.
- 3 Bay Tree B&B, 3 Pine Court, Shelfanger Rd, Diss, IP22 4EP, ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 16:30-22:30 (earlier by arrangement), check-out: by 10:00 (later by arrangement). No pets. Free Wi-Fi.
- 1 Nearest Accident & Emergency: Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital (Casualty or the Emergency Room), Colney Lane, Norwich, NR4 7UY (23 miles N of town). 24/7.
- 2 Alternative Accident & Emergency: West Suffolk Hospital (Casualty or the Emergency Room), Hardwick Lane, Bury St. Edmunds, IP33 2QZ (23 miles SW of town). 24/7.
- 3 Lawns Medical Practice (GP/Primary Healthcare), Mount Street, Diss, IP22 4WG, ☏ . M 08:00-19:00. Tu W 07:30-19:00. Th F 08:00-19:00.
- 4 Diss Dental Health Centre, 3 Mount St, Diss, IP22 4QG, ☏ . M-Th 08:30-13:00 & 14:00-18:00. F 08:30-13:00 & 14:00-17:00.
- 5 Hado Pharmacy, 66 Mount St, Diss, IP22 4QQ, ☏ , email@example.com. M-Th 07:00-23:00. Sa 07:00-20:00. Su 10:00-17:00.
Diss and its approach roads have 4G from all UK carriers. As of Sept 2022, 5G has not reached this area.