The adjoining settlements of Wroxham and Hoveton are known as the ‘capital of the Broads’.
The twin villages of Wroxham and Hoveton sit either side of the meandering River Bure. Together known as the capital of the Broads, this community is the heart and hub of boating holidays on the Norfolk Broads. Hoveton Riverside Park (easy access) is just along the river from the Broads Information Centre (tel 01603 756097) in Station Road.
From Wroxham and Hoveton, modern Broads cruisers and vintage sailing craft ply the magical depths of this ancient network of waterways towards low and narrow arch of the medieval bridge at Potter Heigham, and beyond to Hickling Broad – a haven for migrating birds, including waders, ospreys and spoonbills, and a breeding habitat for the rare Norfolk hawker dragonfly and swallow-tail butterfly.
At Horsey, the Broads come within tantalising reach of the North Sea and the sandy beaches at Sea Palling and Waxham. Horsey is best known for its National Trust-owned ‘mill’, actually a four-storey brick windpump, and round-towered thatched church. Winter wildfowl congregate at Horsey Mere, where the march harrier is also common.
Backtrack along the river and the Bure will take you south to the bustling resort of Great Yarmouth. Or venture northwards towards Barton Broad, where a multi-million pound dredging project has restored the lake for fish and wildfowl (and therefore for anglers and birdwatchers too) and improved navigation. Local legend has it that Norfolkman Horatio, Admiral Lord Nelson first learned his sailing here.
From the thrilling regattas across the Broads through the spring and summer, to the solitude and mystery of walking wetland trails in more blustery months, this landscape changes through the year but its appeal is constant.