With over 130 miles of shoreline, Norfolk and Suffolk have activities and experiences to suit all tastes…
Please, before you travel to the East of England, Know Before You Go – ensure places you want to visit are open, see if you have to pre-book. We’ve supplied click-throughs to attractions for you to check.
The East Coast’s premier seaside resort has 15 miles of unspoiled beaches, stretching from Winterton-on-Sea with its tumbling dunes and quirky café to Hopton-on-Sea, best known for hosting the Indoor World Bowls Championships and located just south of Gorleston-on-Sea with its lovely promenade walks.
At its heart is The Golden Mile, a vibrant stretch of amusements, attractions and entertainment that includes The Hippodrome, the last complete circus building in the UK, The Pleasure Beach with its hair-raising wooden rollercoaster, SeaLife Centre and the quieter Venetian Waterways.
Discover the town’s maritime history at the award-winning Time & Tide Museum.
For Halloween Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach has Fairground Frights from Oct 28-31 5-8pm. Could there be something sinister lurking on The Ghost Train, will the Fun Factory be fang-tastic, and could the world-famous Rollercoaster boast a ghost? The Pleasure Beach is also open throughout half-term, midday-4pm.
Picturesque Cromer is the place to have fish and chips on the Prom after exploring this lovely Victorian town, visiting Amazona, having fun on the sandy beach or taking a clifftop stroll. We’d recommend No1 Cromer and Mary Jane’s. And don’t leave without trying Cromer crab – the best in the country because they feed off the world’s longest chalk reef, just offshore.
Nearby is the highest point in East Anglia, so expect fabulous views, particularly at National Trust Sheringham Park and at Kelling Heath, where there’s fabulous cycling and walking in the Quiet Lanes.
From nearby Sheringham take the North Norfolk Railway to perfect Georgian market town Holt. Or, on the Deep History Coast, walk in the footsteps of the first tourists ever to visit this country – 850,000 years ago.
‘Sunny Hunny’ as it’s affectionately called is the only west-facing seaside town on the east coast – which means you get stunning sunsets. Take a walk on the wide beach and marvel at the candy-striped cliffs.
This is the perfect place to base yourself for serious birdwatching. RSPB Titchwell is in the Twitchers’ Premier League and nearby Holme Dunes Nature Reserve is where Seahenge was discovered – a wooden equivalent of Stonehenge and built around the same time, 2,000 BC. You can see a recreation in Lynn Museum. In Autumn and Winter at RSPB Snettisham you’ll see one of the great birdwatching sights when, at first light, tens of thousands of pink-footed and Brent geese rise from the mudflats of The Wash and head inland to feed. At any time, there’s likely to be over 500,000 birds in the sheltered bay. Incredible.
Norfolk Coast AONB
For outdoor-lovers, the Norfolk Coast AONB has is it all – massive sandy, tidal creeks, salt marsh, pine forest, shingle spits and soaring cliffs.
From Morston Quay, take a boat with Beans or Temples to visit the seals at Blakeney Point, the largest colony in England. Explore Holkham Hall and Estate, waterside Wells-next-the-Sea with its quirky streets, the quaint shops and delis of Burnham Market, pilgrimage village Little Walsingham, and Nelson’s birthplace at Burnham Thorpe. Or discover where he learnt to sail at picturesque Burnham Overy Staithe.
If it’s the unexplored you’re looking for, then there are some places on the Suffolk coast and in its hinterland.
There are lovely beaches at seaside town Lowestoft (visit nearby Pleasurewood Hills), Kessingland and Felixstowe and for family fun try the Southwold Maize Maze with a Halloween Play Park and Pumpkin Picking.
Inland look out for the fabulous English Heritage castle at Framlingham – the one local resident Ed Sheeran sang about on Castle On The Hill – and Deben riverside Woodbridge, a picturesque town with iconic white Tide Mill and great shopping and eating along its main thoroughfare. Nearby is National Trust Sutton Hoo.
The coastal hinterland of unexplored places also includes the market town of Harleston and also Beccles, by the River Waveney, where you can hire a day boat, canoe or kayak.