North Norfolk Coast. 🐚

A holiday happened! We have not long since returned from a week by the sea. A few years ago we visited the North Norfolk Coast and hoped that one day we would go back. Happily we managed to do just that last week. It was great to get away to such a beautiful part of England. The sea air was a tonic!  Below are a few places we visited, often by using the very handy Coasthopper Bus service.

Brancaster & Brancaster Staithe.

These two adjoining fishing villages were our base for exploring. Both are in an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the National Trust looks after the beaches here. Hugo loved the vast stretches of sand and I was forever scanning the saltmarsh for interesting waterbirds. My favourite breakfast spot was marshside at the White Horse pub, from where you can watch skeins of geese taking off.  We found our own secret seal colony when walking on the beach too. πŸ’—

Typical Brancaster Beach Lifeguard.
View over the marshes at Breakfast ~ White Horse ~ Brancaster Staithe.
Marshside Muffin.
Harbor Seal ~ Brancaster Beach.
Brancaster Staithe harbor.
Eating out ( inside) in Brancaster. The Ship Hotel for food  and Bar 71 for a friendly drink with the locals.


We spent an afternoon on the seafront in the traditional seaside town of Sheringham. With its pops of colour on the promenade ( vibrant murals and rainbow painted beach huts) its a smiley seaside resort. The sandy beach after the huts is dog friendly. 🐾

Sheringham Beach Retro Advert art.
Colourful Beach huts.
Promenade squid.
Kite flying.
Mammoth Trail.
Sheringham Beach.

Burnham Market.

A mile inland from the coast is one of a number of villages called Burnham. This Burnham is full of trendy shops & eateries, looking over a village green. I did remark to Wil that it looks the kind of place where you might find ‘ Made in Chelsea’ being filmed. And researching this post did provide me with the information that the villages nick name is ‘ Chelsea on Sea’ . Fancy that!

Village view.
Admiral Horatio Nelson was born in nearby Burnham Thorpe and frequented a public house in the village.
A pink sweet shop.
Coffee time at the Tuscan Farm Shop.
Inside the Tuscan Farm Shop.

Cley Next The Sea.

Keen birders will have heard about Cley. The marshland between the village and the sea is a renowned Nature Reserve, home to many rare species of birdlife including Pied Avocet, Bittern and Bearded Tit. There is also an impressive 18th Century Windmill ( presently a lovely looking b & b ) and various shops, cafes and galleries. Cley does have a shingle beach, from where you can walk to nearby Salthouse. πŸ¦†

Cley Windmill.
Shingle Beach.
Swan family take over.


Just up the coast from Cley Next The Sea, Salthouse is perhaps it’s quieter counterpart, yet still boasting miles of wildlife packed salt marsh and shingle beach. We spent a lovely afternoon here enjoying some slightly warmer temperatures and fresh tasty seafood. We can recommend the Dun Cow for lunch and I loved the book & gift selection in The Salthouse Store. 🐚

Dun Cow beer garden.
Lunch at the Dun Cow.
Shingle. Much of it contains orangey coloured flint, used in the buildings round here.
Swanning around.
Sign near the Church.
The village store.

Wells Next The Sea.

If like me you can’t get enough of Beach Huts then the charming seaside town of Wells Next The Sea is a must visit. After perusing the quaint gift shops on Staithe Street take a quay side walk to Wells beautiful golden sandy beach. It’s made all the lovelier by a pine forest backdrop and stunning array of colourful huts. I was memorised. The beach like many in North Norfolk welcomes four legged friends.  πŸ¦€

Poetry on the sea front.
Looks tropical doesn’t it! We were actually wearing winter woolies.
Huts galore.
Mr & Mrs Mallard outside their beach hut.
Lifeboat Horse Sculpture.

Hunstanton & Old Hunstanton.

On our previous visit to the North Norfolk Coast we stayed in the family friendly resort of Hunstanton, known as ‘ Sunny Hunny’ to optimistic holiday makers. We just had to revisit and walk along the beach to neighboring Old Hunstanton.

Lighthouse viewed through the remains of st Edmunds Chapel.
St Edmund was an Anglo Saxon King who was killed and beheaded by Danish raiders. A wolf supposedly protected the king’s head , and when reunited with Edmunds body the head mysteriously reattached itself, a sure sign of sainthood apparently.
Fulmar nesting in Hunstantons stripey cliffs.
Unique striped cliffs.
The Old Town Cafe at Old Hunstanton. A great place for breakfast.
Beach huts in the dunes.

Of course there are lots more places to explore in North Norfolk and what’s above are only a small selection.

We loved the big skies and the stunning variety of coastline. I think Hugo did too. πŸ™‚

Have you ever visited North Norfolk? πŸ¦€


63 thoughts on “North Norfolk Coast. 🐚”

    1. Oh nice. I hope you get to go, it’s such a nice part of the country. Plenty of butterflies I imagine, was a bit breezy to see many on our trip. X

  1. This is a great post, captures perfectly the magic of North Norfolk. We spend a week there most years (Covid years excepted!) and love it. Great birds, lots of magical coastal scenery and some picturesque villages. Can’t wait to return!

  2. What a very uplifting post. We love the Norfolk coast, especially Sheringham and Cromer. As a child we lived in Peterborough and Hunstanton was a very regular day trip destination … it was lovely to be a bit closer to the coast. It is lovely to get away and get back out in the countryside isn’t it? We are in The Yorkshire Dales at the moment and have managed to dodge the rain. We seem to be addicted to hunting out waterfalls … I’m sure I will tell you all about it soon πŸ˜€

    1. Oh fab, there are certainly plenty of waterfalls in the Yorkshire Dales and to my shame I have hardly visited any of them. Look forward to your post!

      1. I have just revisited your post from your annual round up. We have arrived for our stay in Brancaster and will definitely be visiting lots of the places you have shared πŸ˜ƒ

  3. Thank you for a lovely trip down memory lane! North Norfolk – our old stomping ground when we lived in Leicester. Glad you found the secret seals on Brancaster beach – reassuring to know they’re still there! A great photographic journey. πŸ“·

    1. Aw, glad it brought back good memories. I was so happy to see the seals. They were very curious and kept swimming over to see us. πŸ™‚

  4. A superb post! We’ve many happy memories of the north Norfolk coast. Love it. And you got good weather. Wonderful. Happy days! πŸ€—πŸ˜ŠπŸ™

  5. When we discovered North Norfolk we had to keep going back to explore more! It was good to see your photos of all the familiar places. We particularly liked the heaths and downs where you look down over the villages and out to sea, such as Salthouse Heath, Kelling Heath and Wiveton Downs, above Cley. It was lovely there when the gorse was out and great for birdwatching.

    1. There are so many places we missed out on visiting, I’m sure we will return. The heaths sound wonderful for birds and butterflies. πŸ™‚

  6. What a lovely holiday you’ve had!! I love the sign with the excerpt from the Domesday Book. The village has been around at least a thousand years 😳😳. And beautiful weather too!! Thanks for sharing πŸ’•πŸ’•

  7. We adore North Norfolk, many happy days out there (as we are lucky enough to live about an hour and a half away). Salthouse always makes me smile as I kicked my brand new Birkenstock into the water there by accident and made my husband rescue it! I learned to knit at Hunstanton when my Nanny came on holiday with us when I was 5. Can’t wait to go back, hopefully this year.

    1. Thank you! Sounds like you had a good time. Funny that you should mention animal parks, I think I am actually going to one in the lakes this wknd! X

  8. It is so beautiful there and it looks like you were lucky with the weather. All that blue sky! Hugo looks very interested in the breakfast πŸ™‚

    1. Hugo is always interested in our breakfasts. He’s a terror really! His taste is very diverse. From gourmet steak to dead crabs on the beach. 🀣

  9. How lovely your trip looks! I love that part of the country and I love beachhuts. Maybe my next UK break will be up that way, you have tempted me with your photos – though I think I’ll wait until after the summer, I am sure those beaches will get a little busier over the next couple of months, shingle or no shingle (I don’t mind shingle, I come from a town with shingle!). I remember one lovely trip into Cromer – the partaking of a frothy coffee whilst sitting near the lifeboat station, my husband on the beach with our son as a toddler. Son threw a stone into the sea but forgot to let go of it and actually landed in the water himself – dripping wet, freezing cold – it was a February – we had to dash back to where we were staying before icicles formed from his chin!

    1. Oops that was short and sweet. There was certainly plenty of shingle at Cley and Salthouse. I believe a storm caused the car park at salthouse beach to be covered in so many pebbles that it has never been dug out. Hope you get to see some lovely beach huts this summer. Will you be trying to get to France? X

      1. Shazza, where I was born, Hastings the shingle is regularly shifted along the shoreline by the sea, then lorry loads are taken back to reform the beach from before! France – well there’s a long story. We are currently midway through selling our house there – it’s rather sad overall.

      2. I didn’t know that about Hastings. πŸ™‚
        Sorry to hear about France. What a shame. Maybe you can find something over here? We love our caravan near the lakes, though sometimes I wish we had found one by the sea. X

  10. Looks like you had a great trip Shaz. Good to have a change of scenery – and definitely a change as it’s so flat down there!
    It’s a long journey to get there. And nomotorway for a good part of the way. That’s put me off holidaying in East Anglia, although I’ve been to Cambridge and nearby a few times with work in the past. But it looks like it was worth the journey for you,

    1. It took us 4 hours to get there, but due to traffic and accidents 6-5 hours to get back, which wasn’t great. However we really enjoyed our time there and the countryside is a complete contrast to here. The North Norfolk coastline particularly is so diverse. You can walk it all too along the coastal path, passing saltmarsh, dunes, shingle, golden sand, rock pools and red and white stripey cliffs. πŸ™‚

  11. Thanks for a lovely sunny post, even if cool. I have passed through Norfolk & DH’s grandmother came from Surlingham. I too love the seaside, beach huts & bracing sea air. Won’t be walking anywhere today, as it blowing a gale & lashing down with rain & nearby Melbourne could be in a strict lockdown again by tomorrow. Oh, when will this pesky thing ever end. Take care, stay safe & hugs from down under.

    1. Oh Susan so sorry about the new lockdowns. There may be similar things in store for us as we are surrounded by towns with rising case numbers again sadly. Luckily the vaccine rollout is working here , but you just don’t know what will happen. X

  12. Great post – we stayed in a cottage a few years ago now 5 minutes walk from the Dun Cow, your post refreshed the memories of the area. So nice to get away again.

    1. Thank you! Amazingly we were originally going to be staying in Salthouse, not far from the Dun cow too! But the holiday firm rang us two weeks before our holiday to say the cottage had been sold! Luckily we found somewhere in Brancaster, but Salthouse looks a lovely place to stay.

    1. Haha, I did go for a paddle one morning. My intention was to try and swim. But I don’t know how these wild swimmers do it, it was freezing! The seals looked happy though bobbing about.

      1. Some of my friends go wild swimming in a small reservoir on Longridge Fell, good for the endomorphins, apparently. I may join them in August.

  13. What a lovely visit you had! My Mum came from Norfolk, and I spent a horribly cold 3 winter months in Wroxham in the mid 1950s. I can’t get over those pebble beaches you have on your coasts – very uncomfortable to walk or life on. Here in Southern Africa we have huge sandy beaches – nary a pebble in sight!

    1. It was certainly a work out trudging over the pebbles! I do like the diversity of our coastline , though I much prefer sand. X

  14. I’ve holidayed in that part of the world several times. Your photos make me think you’ve explored more thoroughly in a single visit than I have over my few trips. When I was a nipper, hot weather would precipitate a day-trip to Hunstanton to sit on the beach, so the area will always have happy associations for me.

    1. It’s a lovely area isn’t it. I really liked Hunstanton, we actually stopped in a holiday cottage there on our other holiday there a few years ago. I love those red and white striped cliffs.

  15. I am planning to visit Norfolk this summer and having read your post I might actually go to Brancaster or nearby and then visit Cromer and Norwich separately. I am looking forward to it!

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