EDP Norfolk - - County Life -

Nor­folk is a di­verse county, of­fer­ing some­thing for ev­ery­one, and more peo­ple are hol­i­day­ing in the county than ever be­fore, ac­cord­ing to let­ting agency Nor­folk Coun­try Cot­tages. They saw an in­crease of al­most 30% in book­ings in 2016, a fig­ure which al­ready looks like be­ing eclipsed in this ‘year of the stay­ca­tion’. “We’ve seen the pop­u­lar­ity of Nor­folk as a hol­i­day des­ti­na­tion soar over the past 25 years,” says Lucy Down­ing, brand man­ager. “What’s par­tic­u­larly fab­u­lous, though, is that the in­crease in vis­i­tor num­bers isn’t just from vis­i­tors from out­side the re­gion, but from peo­ple who al­ready live here, us­ing their hol­i­day time to en­joy the many things on their own doorstep.” Here, we give a light-hearted nod to the dif­fer­ent types of peo­ple Nor­folk ap­peals to. THE MULTI­GEN­ER­A­TIONAL FAM­ILY Most likely to be spot­ted in: East coast – Sea Palling, Mun­des­ley, Hap­pis­burgh If you don’t have a young fam­ily com­plete with bucket, spade, a scooter or two and a wind­break then it might be worth bor­row­ing one, such is the ap­peal of this coastal area to mums and dads. While the Blue Flag sandy beaches and clean wa­ters echo that of the Royal Coast fur­ther west, here things are a lit­tle more or­gan­ised. There’s a con­crete prom­e­nade for easy ac­cess, and toi­let fa­cil­i­ties on the beach so you can spend the en­tire day here with­out hav­ing to tramp back to base. Most likely to say: “Hands up for an ice-cream?” What you’ll be do­ing: Spend­ing long days at the beach, swim­ming in shal­low wa­ters or scoot­ing up and down the prom­e­nade; tak­ing day trips to Plea­sure­wood Hills or Africa Alive!; play­ing a round of mini-golf at Mun­des­ley; gaz­ing up at Hap­pis­burgh’s stun­ning red and white striped light­house. THE FASH­ION­ABLY WILDS Most likely to be spot­ted in: The Royal Coast – Holkham, Wells-next-the-Sea, Blak­eney, Bran­caster and the Burn­hams Wild, windswept and sun-soaked (some­times, si­mul­ta­ne­ously) the vast sands which join Holkham and Wells-next-the-Sea at­tract a sim­i­lar crowd; those who revel in the great out­doors and don’t mind get­ting a bit muddy or sandy while do­ing it. This area of Nor­folk is the ideal stomp­ing ground for those who like things spon­ta­neous and un­struc­tured; who are just as at home hav­ing a bar­be­cue of freshly-caught fish as they are din­ing in the many award­win­ning restau­rants and hostel­ries along this coast. Most likely to say: “Pass the sun­screen”. What they’ll be do­ing: Tak­ing the minia­ture train from Wells quay to the beach; catch­ing crabs at Blak­eney; spot­ting geese at Titch­well; eat­ing freshly caught sea-food at Bran­caster; build­ing sand­cas­tles; dune jump­ing; mud­s­lid­ing (it’s a thing, ap­par­ently); al­paca trekking. SWAL­LOWS AND AMA­ZON-IANS Most likely to be spot­ted in: The Nor­folk Broads In the 1950s and 1960s, the Broads had, par­don the pun, broad ap­peal. Hol­i­day­mak­ers would flock here to muck about on the wa­ter. Now the area has rein­vented it­self as a haven for out­door ac­tiv­i­ties and a magnet for ad­ven­ture lovers. There are cy­cle­ways and paths. You can go boat­ing, ca­noe­ing and kayak­ing, ex­plor­ing lesser known trib­u­taries, even tak­ing an overnight bushcraft ex­pe­ri­ence. It’s an area rich in wildlife, flora and fauna, so don’t for­get your cam­era and binoc­u­lars. Most likely to say: “Just catch­ing my breath.” What you’ll be do­ing: Ex­plor­ing the ‘Se­cret Broads’; get­ting away from it all; wildlife spot­ting; tak­ing a boat trip or ca­noe ride around Wrox­ham; hir­ing bikes to ex­plore coun­try lanes and river­sides; learn­ing bushcraft, spot­ting ot­ters; an­gling amongst the back­wa­ters; rid­ing crock­le­bogs at BeWILDer­wood. THE NOR­FOLK NOSTALGICS Most likely to be spot­ted in: north coast – Sher­ing­ham, Cromer, West Run­ton, Great Yar­mouth For those who ap­pre­ci­ate a time when life was sim­pler; when steam trains were a fa­mil­iar sight and when en­ter­tain­ment was of the fam­i­lyfriendly va­ri­ety, some­thing ev­ery­one, from the lit­tle ones to Grandma and Grandpa could en­joy. It’s not that you don’t live in the modern world, it’s just that when it comes to pre­cious time out from the rat race, you pre­fer a gen­tler pace. Most likely to say: “I re­mem­ber do­ing this when I was a kid” What you’ll be do­ing: Tak­ing in a show at Cromer Pier; wan­der­ing around Fel­brigg Hall; book­ing a ticket on the North Nor­folk Rail­way; tuck­ing into Cromer crab; sit­ting in a deck chair on the beach (rolled-up trousers and hanky on head op­tional); sail­ing a wooden yacht on the boat­ing lake. THE RU­RAL RAMBLERS Most likely to be spot­ted in: Ayl­sham, Blick­ling, Reep­ham, Wals­ing­ham, Thet­ford Not ev­ery­one’s am­bi­tion is stirred by the sight of a tow­er­ing moun­tain sum­mit. For those who pre­fer a more ac­ces­si­ble chal­lenge, Nor­folk’s 2,400 miles of foot­paths and bri­dle­ways are per­fect and achiev­able. Fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of old Ro­man set­tle­ments, Queen Boudicca and the like, they make for in­ter­est­ing ex­plo­ration. Rest your feet oc­ca­sion­ally to sam­ple the ir­re­sistible tea-rooms en route.

Most likely to say: “An­other two miles and then cake.” What you’ll be do­ing: Read­ing a Nor­folk Trails map with com­pass in hand; oohing and ah­hing at the splen­dour of Blick­ling Hall (and wish­ing you’d packed your best shoes rather than walk­ing boots); Go­ing Ape in Thet­ford.

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