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Irstead Staithe

Discover some of the countryside easily reached from the staithe, including the Barton Broad Boardwalk.

2¾ miles (4.4km) approx.

The link below will take you to a pdf of the route.


What’s it like?
This walk will help you discover some of the countryside easily reached from the car park or moorings. Irstead Staithe was traditionally used for loading and unloading goods including reed and sedge cut from the marshes. Now it is managed for nature conservation. The boardwalk will take you on a mysterious journey of discovery into a lost world which has remained isolated for half a century. The mystery trail leads through swampy, wildlife-filled carr woodland, with resting places and tapping edges along the way, and emerges to give a surprise panoramic view over Barton Broad, a national nature reserve owned by the Norfolk Wildlife Trust. Sorry, no dogs except guide dogs on the boardwalk please.

What wildlife lives there?
The boardwalk viewpoint has wonderful vistas across the broad. In summer terns scream and feed their young on the green platforms. You may see playful otters too. An access pack to make the boardwalk more user-friendly for visitors with sensory impairment is available for loan – please contact the Broads Authority (tel 01603 610734) for details and take your own player.

What else is there to see?
St Michael’s Church, near the staithe, which is 14th century and has one of the oldest rood screens in Norfolk. The font dates back to the 13th century.

Did you know?
Barton is the second largest of the broads.