We had a lovely week in north Norfolk in July. It’s our 3rd holiday there in 2 years – that should tell you something! We have absolutely fallen in love with the area – the beautiful coastline, how family friendly it is and how there is a mix of unspoilt beach areas with a bit of old fashioned English seaside charm thrown in too.
We stayed in a cottage in Briston, just outside of Holt and about 20 minutes drive to Sheringham or Cromer on the north eastern coast of Norfolk or about 30 minutes from Wells-next-Sea and the other beaches on the north coast. We booked through Ketts Cottages, the same as last year and would use them again. As soon as we got to Norfolk we headed straight to beach at West Runton where the tide was just going out.
Rain was forecast for the next day so we went to the Sea Life Sanctuary in Hunstanton. Afterwards, the sun had come out so we let the girls go on a couple of rides in the fun fair next to the beach.
Rain was forecast again the next day (though didn’t materialise until much later on) so we went to the swimming pool in Sheringham as Imogen loves swimming but doesn’t often get to go. We followed that with tea in the The Pigs pub in Edgefield. Imogen was thrilled with the pig signs / pictures everywhere, the photo below was of her point at them and say “Piggy! Piggy! Piggy!”.
The pub has a family room right next to an play room with lego and other toys in. The Piggleplay area outside is fantastic! Designed by the creators of the tree house adventure attraction, Bewilderwood it has a den building area, tree house, slides, climbing walls and a zip wire. Easily the best pub play area I’ve seen – as a child or as an adult! The food is great too – I had ‘Iffits’ – Norfolk’s version of tapas and a gin with rosemary too which was delicious.
We were lucky to spend most of the rest of the week on the beach. We discovered a new favourite one too – Brancaster which lies on the north coast in between Hunstanton and Wells.
It has sand dunes to run up and down, so much soft sand when the tide is out, little channels left by the sea – perfect for little ones to splash in or be pulled along on boogie boards, hoards of shells to collect, a car park with a really friendly parking guy who gives change for the machine, a refreshment / beach shop hut (selling the all important 99s!) and toilets.
We had been to the famous Holkham beach last year and found it to be spectacular but a long old trek from the car with little ones. We tried the beach at Wells-next-the-Sea this year (which is next to Holkham) and preferred that though it was a bit muddy and it didn’t beat Brancaster. It did have a lovely beach cafe though selling lunches, ice-creams, booze, beach paraphernalia and refreshments for dogs. You’ve got to love a place where the wifi password is “tellmywifiloveher”!
We also visited Cromer again – not an amazing beach but an old fashioned seaside town with amusements and a pier. We had a ball on the tuppenny fall games in the arcades then went for fish and chips at No1 Cromer again – they serve kids’ meals in a bucket which you can keep – never fails to delight us. Afterwards we walked along the pier and and watched families crabbing. There are few spots in the area for crabbing but I thought the girls were probably a bit too young to have the patience to do it yet.
We spent the last full day back at lovely Brancaster before stopping in Felbrigg Hall on our way home.
I’ve already been looking at places to stay for our next trip there (in fact, I’d move there tomorrow but you know, life and stuff keeps us in London).
Last year I wrote about our 2015 week in Norfolk and our day at Blickling Hall. The year before I wrote more about Cromer, West Runton, Sheringham and about our trip on the Poppy Line – the North Norfolk Steam Railway as well as our stay at Barnhouse Cottages.
About Hue Me Happy
Hue Me Happy is about finding the little rays of sunlight that help keep a sense of balance in every day life. For me these are cups of lovely coffee, a house or garden filled with flowers, time to think and be creative, being outdoors, wine infused evenings with friends and mini-adventures that take me outside of the normal routine. I’m Sian, a 40-something Mancunian mama living in north London.
This post was first published in 2016.