St Olaves is a small village with a charming 16th century inn on the bank of the River Waveney, a superb restaurant in the grounds of a 13th century Augustinian priory and a great place for hiring boats to explore the beautiful Broads.
Today the village forms part of the civil parish of Fritton and St Olaves, which in turn is within the district of Great Yarmouth in Norfolk. Prior to local government reorganisation in 1974 however, the village was part of the parish of Herringfleet in the Lothingland Rural District of Suffolk.
St Olaves Bridge, a suspension bridge, is the first bridging point on the Waveney above Great Yarmouth. Haddiscoe railway station, on the Wherry Lines service between Norwich and Lowestoft, is across the bridge approximately 1 kilometre (0.62 mi) from the centre of the village. St Olaves used to have its own St Olaves railway station, but this is now closed.
The village is the location of the remains of a 13th-century Augustinian priory. St. Olaves Priory was dedicated to St Olav. On the site there are parts of the refectory, cloisters, and the priory mill.
The St Olaves Drainage Mill is currently undergoing restoraton works, however the nearby Herringfleet Mill, part of the Somerleyton estate stretching over the county border into Suffolk is the only full-sized smock drainage mill in the Broads with occasional demonstrations.