Great food and drink and a varied history awaits, from Bronze Age barrows and Iron Age torcs, to Roman forts and nineteenth century iron works.
All of this is set against the dramatic landscape of the Norfolk Coast, with saltmarsh, sand dunes and wonderful beaches. It’s a lot to fit into three days, and you’d be forgiven for wanting to come back soon. Many visitors to Norfolk’s northwest corner do.
Number of days: Three
- Difficulty: Gentle
- Distance: 25km/14.75 miles
- Landscape: Coastal and countryside
- Start/end: Snettisham/Holme/Brancaster
- Ken Hill/Snettisham circular walks
- Distance: 0.5km/6.75 miles
Start your tour by walking the waymarked Ken Hill circular route. It follows public rights of way across the Ken Hill estate and is signposted from the centre of Snettisham village. After skirting the base of Lodge Hill through mixed woodland, signs for the Snettisham circular route will lead you out toward the coast. Or you can continue on the Ken Hill route for a 2.24 mile round.
The walking is best dry weather and during clear weather you can enjoy great views across The Wash. Return to the village for a long lunch or a quick sandwich in one its pubs or restaurants before heading off again. St Mary’s Church is close to the village centre. It's always open during daylight hours and there’s a lot of the village’s history on display inside.
- Hunstanton-Thornham, Norfolk Coast Path
- Distance: 8km/5 miles
Hunstanton was developed as a seaside holiday destination by the Lord of the Manor, Henry Styleman Le Strange, during the Victorian period. Follow the National Trail past Old Hunstanton, along the coast, toward the historic village of Thornham. The route passes through the Norfolk Wildlife Trust reserve at Holme-next-the-Sea.
In 1998 an Early Bronze Age timber circle was discovered on the beach at Holme. The local press quickly nicknamed it 'Seahenge'. Archaeologists excavated the site the following year to prevent it being lost to the sea. You can see the preserved monument at Lynn Museum in King’s Lynn.
There are plenty of places to stop for refreshments on the Thornham Circular walk. The village itself has plenty of historic sites and we recommend an overnight stay here to get the most out of it.
- Brancaster Staithe Circular walk
- Dstance: 6.6km/4.1 mile
Start Day 3 with the Brancaster Staithe Circular walk. The walk is fully signposted with easy to follow bright blue waymark discs. The route follows public rights of way along salt marsh land, through wooded common, down country lanes and past the site of an old Roman Fort. The views over Scolt Head Island and along the coast are breathtaking and from there it’s easy to see why much of the Norfolk Coast is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Once your walk is done, you'll find a good choice of places to eat and drink in Brancaster Staithe. Any of them would be a good place to look back on your trip and sample some more local food before you head home.
For a map of bookable accommodation options as well as a tool to create your own itineraries see the National Trails website.
If you’re planning on a longer stay and want to learn more about the heritage of West Norfolk, a visit to Lynn Museum is a great choice.