Take a Look At Our Fantastic Selection of Routes
Holme means dry ground in marsh or water meadow and the pretty little village of Holme-next-the-Sea is located within the North Norfolk Heritage Coast and a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – a lovely place to start your walk! The Peddars Way, which starts near Thetford and joins the coast path at Holme, is one of the most substantial and best preserved of Norfolk’s Roman roads. It is possible that a Roman ferry went across the wash to Lincolnshire from this point. As you follow the boardwalk through the Holme Dunes reserve the beach to your left is where the 4000 year old timber circle was discovered. It is now in King’s Lynn museum. The coast path diverts inland at Thornham to avoid the sluice but the views coming into Brancaster are well worth slight diversion! See here for more information http://www.nationaltrail.co.uk/PeddarsWay/uploads/2%20-%20Thornham%20to%...
Brancaster derives from the Celtic name meaning ‘crow foot’ and this coastal area is a bird-watching paradise! There are also spectacular salt-marsh views and acres of pale sand which are perfect for a variety of activities from kite flying to cricket. Famous for its mussels, visit the fishing village of Brancaster Staithe which is the base for the National Trust Millennium Centre with has the aim of conserving 4,000 acres of salt marsh, intertidal mud and sand flats.Top Tip: The Jolly Sailor in Brancaster Staithe is recommended in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide!
Burnham Overy Staithe is a small coastal village in one of the most attractive areas of the North Norfolk Coast, close to Burnham Market. Sailors, walkers and birdwatchers all enjoy this area immensely. The coast here is a series of creeks and salt marshes often with paths through to the sandy beaches beyond. Most of the coast is protected by the National Trust and other nature trusts, being in the heart of the designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty that covers much of the North Norfolk Coast. The coast path runs through the 10,130 acre Holkham National Nature Reserve with magnificent views inland to Holkham Park. A little fact is that Lord Nelson was born at nearby Burnham Thorpe and is remembered in numerous pub names in the area!
Stiffkey is generally pronounced ‘Stewkey’ and is one of the few coastal villages that that has no tradition as a port, of fishing, nor more recently as a base for yachtsmen. However, it does have a reputation for its cockles and bait-diggers have long used its expanse of seashore beyond the salt marsh. The coast path follows the landward side of internationally recognised extensive salt marshes of great landscape and wildlife interest. There are local facilities at Stiffkey, Marston, Blakeney, Cley-next-the-sea and Weybourne so you won’t go short on pubs along this stretch! Scattered along the coast are relics of gun emplacements and pillboxes reminding us of the fears of invasion from across the channel!
Weybourne derives from old English for spring or stream, and is a fishing resort situated in the Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There are remains of an old Augustinian priory founded around 1200 AD on the site of a simpler Saxon church which are worth a look in! Since this village is a designated conservation area, there are many fine examples of Norfolk brick and flint cottages to see dating from the 17th century, through to modern replicas. The village is surrounded by well-ordered arable fields, woodland and heathland. The area is excellent for walking, enjoying the countryside and coast. There are opportunities to see wildlife, sea-fishing on Weybourne Beach and bird-watching are very popular. Enjoy good old fashioned seaside activities at Sheringham and Cromer where there are a full range of facilities. With its pier and its two museums, wide open beaches, spectacular cliffs and famous pier shows, there's lots to enjoy in Cromer so is a great place to finish your walk!
This section follows the Suffolk Coastal Path through the outskirts of Felixstowe from Cobbold’s Point, along the shoreline to Felixstowe Ferry, across the River Debden via the Bawdsey Ferry, and further along the beach until the car park at Shingle Street. Along the route are the remains of six Martello Towers, small cylindrical fortifications built along the East and South coast between 1805-1812 against a threatened Napoleonic invasion. Bawdsey Ferry is a small foot ferry across the Debden between the hamlet of Felixstowe Ferry and Bawdsey. It operates between 10am and 6pm on weekends from May to the end of September. http://www.suffolktouristguide.com/Ferries.asp . The walk passes the site of RAF Bawdsey, the first of a chain of radar stations built in 1937 to detect incoming enemy aircraft. The site is now maintained by volunteers http://www.bawdseyradar.org.uk/
This section follows the Suffolk Coastal Path from the car park at Shingle Street, along the edge of the River Ore and the Butley River, before heading inland over the small Burrow Hill and to Chillesford, through the edge of Tunstall Forest, before reaching the upper end of the Alde River estuary at Snape Bridge. Shortly after leaving Shingle Street, the path passes the Young Offender’s institution known as Hollesley Bay Colony. It began as a colonial college in 1887, training those intending to emigrate abroad. It was purchased as a borstal in 1938, and became a young offender’s institution in 1988. One of its more notable inmates was Jeffrey Archer. The path crosses Burrow Hill, which may or may not be a burial mound. Beneath it is said to lie a ship and a Danish king, with all his weapons and treasures about him. 1978 excavations before gravel was dug from the hill found evidence of 8th century iron working and a cemetery. Butley Priory was founded in 1171 by Ranulph de Glanville, a courtier of Henry II, following the murder of Archbishop Thomas Becket. Only the gatehouse remains, converted into an upmarket B&B and wedding venue. Snape Maltings were originally built in the 19th Century for the malting of barley for brewing into beer. The buildings have since been converted into shops, galleries, and an 832-seat Concert Hall.
This section leaves Snape Bridge and follows the northern bank of the River Ore towards Aldeburgh, before bypassing the edge of the town and heading back to the sea, which it follows until reaching the village of Thorpeness. Be sure on this section to avoid the Sandling Way, which runs alongside the Coast Path for some, but not all of the way. The village of Thorpeness was inherited by the Scottish playwright Glencairn Stuart Ogilvie in the early 1900s, who set about rebuilding a model seaside village of mock-Tudor and Jacobean buildings, inspired by the writings of J.M.Barrie, author of Peter Pan. He even created an artificial lake, the ‘Meare’, by flooding open fields in 1910
This section runs along the shingle beach for almost the entire section, with a slight diversion inland before entering Dunwich. 2 miles north of Thorpeness lies Sizewell Nuclear Power Station. There are two sites; Sizewell A, which is in the process of being decommissioned, and Sizewell B, the newest nuclear station in the UK. Be sure on this section to avoid the Sandling Way, which runs alongside the Coast Path for some, but not all of the way. The path runs along a section of beach bordering the Minsmere RSPB reserve. Facilities in the visitor’s centre are free, but there is a charge to explore the reserve itself. http://www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/m/minsmere/index.aspx . Just north of Minsmere is the National Trust’s Dunwich Heath Coastal Centre, complete with tea room and gift shop. The heath is home to many rare bird and plant species, including the Dartford Warbler, Nightjar and Woodlark. Dunwich was once a bustling town, home to more than 4000 people, and with a history dating back to the 11th Century. However, a series of severe floods in the 13th and 14th centuries began a process of destruction that led to its almost complete abandonment by the 19th century. There is a small museum revealing the history of this “decayed and disfranchised borough".
This section runs along the edge of the Dingle and Westwood Marshes, and through the village of Walberswick, before crossing the River Blyth, and entering the town of Southwold. Walberswick became a major trading port from the 13th Century. The British Open Crabbing Championships are held every August, with the winner being the person who catches the heaviest crab within 90 minutes. Almost half the properties in the village are holiday homes. Southwold was an important fishing port in the Domesday book. It was badly damaged in a fire in 1659, and many of the buildings were not rebuilt, leaving open spaces or greens that remain to this day. The town contains a popular pier, has a lighthouse in the centre, and is home to Adnams Brewery.
This long section runs inland from the sea north of Southwold, before rejoining the beach at Kessingland. It enters Lowestoft along the A12 before a final run along the seafront, to finish at the Tourist Information Centre. The path double’s back on itself just before entering the hamlet of Covehithe. This village was once a small town in the Middle Ages, before falling victim, like Dunwich further south, to coastal erosion. The ruins of the large church of St Andrew show just how prosperous the village used to be. Kessingland is a large village and a popular holiday destination. It has also been the site of Palaeolithic and Neolithic discoveries, and the remains of an ancient forest lie buried on the seabed just offshore. Lowestoft is the most easterly town in the United Kingdom, with Ness Point, just north of the end of this final section of the path, the most easterly point in the British Isles.