Norfolk Coastal Villages you Need to Visit

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Beautiful Norfolk Coastal Villages

Norfolk, and North Norfolk in particular, are packed full of charming Norfolk coastal villages that need to be visited. Either as a week long break as a base to explore the area, a long weekend or just a day trip from Norwich. They are packed full of character, all offer something unique and are very quintessentially English.

Read on for the best Norfolk coastal villages!

Blakeney – Norfolk Coastal Villages

This village has to be first on the list of Norfolk coastal villages. It is a very pretty village filled with traditional flint cottages. The High Street is a windy, narrow road that weaves it way down a hill from the top of the village to the bottom. It’s a gorgeous street to walk down, and at the bottom you reach one of the focal points of the village – the quay. Back in the 15th century Blakeney was the third busiest port in Norfolk. Now it is much more peaceful!

There are also plenty of places to eat in the village – the White Horse and Kings Head pubs, the Moorings and hotel restaurants. Plus, there are plenty of walking opportunities. And for the kids (and adults), there is crabbing on the quayside and playing around in the water.

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Walsingham – Norfolk Coastal Villages

One of the very historical Norfolk coastal villages, Walsingham is best known for it’s Shrine of our Lady of Walsingham, and is a well know pilgrimage for Christians. The shrine, otherwise known as the Slipper Chapel, also marks the start of the Holy Mile. Many Pilgrims take their shoes off at the chapel and walk the mile into the village barefoot (I have done this!).

In the village itself there are plenty of 14th and 15th century buildings to admire, and shops, tea rooms and pubs to enjoy!

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Burnham Market – Norfolk Coastal Villages

There are actually 7 ‘Burnham’s’ in this part of North Norfolk. Burnham Market is the biggest and most well known. It is a unique, traditional Georgian village, often called Chelsea on sea!

It is set close to the North Norfolk coastline and is packed full of red-roofed historic pubs, cottages, inns and shops. There is very much still a feeling of traditional village life with an original post office, butcher, hardware shop, fish shop and chemist, and of course a range of boutiques.

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Stiffkey

Stiffkey sits right on the edge of the North Norfolk Area of Outstanding Beautiful, and it perfect located to access Stiffkey salt marshes. The roads weaving through the village are very tiny, despite it being an A road. You should expect to be held up if you meet the local bus coming the other way!

When in the village make sure to stop by Stiffkey Stores. Where you will find an outbuilding packed full of local homeware that is almost impossible to resist, as well as being the local village shop, and a cute cafe. The chocolate brownie is quite literally one of the best brownies you will find. Ever.

 

If you have the time, it is a 6.5 mile return walk from Stiffkey to Wells harbour and back. Wells is the nearest town, and definitely worth a visit. The walk will take you past mud flats and salt marshes, fishing boats and sailing boats Before getting to the Wells working fishing harbour and Wells town. Make sure to fuel up on some fish and chips from French’s before the return journey (best fish and chips on the coast!).

Cley-next-the-sea

Cley-next-the-sea is one of the iconic Norfolk coastal villages. It’s windmill is often used as a symbol of this part of the world. The village is surrounded by beautiful countryside, and the land between the village and the sea is a nature reserve, and makes for stunning walks.

Highlights of the village include the local shop – the picnic fayre to pick up delicious local produce. Cley Smokehouse which is one of the smallest smokehouses to purchase fish. A traditional bookshop, the pub and, of course, the windmill. If you are looking for a unique stay – you are able to stay in Cley windmill!

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Brancaster Staithe

A little further round the coast, and not far from Burnham Market, is the pretty village of Brancaster Staithe.

This is another village that is perfect for those that enjoy long walks. The local area has is a varied landscape including salt marshes, beaches, woodland and grassland at Brancaster Staithe. Fishing and sailing are the heart of the local community, which centres on the lively harbour.

There are plenty of pubs and caf├ęs to stop in after a day of exploring and the White Horse is particularly good. If you are looking for something more active, there is opportunities to go kiting, sailing, body boarding and more. The nearby Scolt Head Island is well known for its birdlife and you can see it from both the salt marshes and harbour. It can be accessed at low tide, but you must watch the tide VERY closely, as it gets cut off very quickly.

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Happisburgh

Signs of some of the earliest human life was found in this part of the county! Flint tools from over 800,000 years were discovered here, as well as some of the earliest footprints outside of Africa.

Nowadays it is home to the oldest working lighthouse in the country. It is also the only independent working one in the UK. If you are looking for an outstanding view, head to the 15th century church standing over the village where you can climb the tower. Finally, make sure you head to the beach to discover a secluded and sandy spot!

Image of Happisburgh lighthouse in one of the Norfolk Coastal villages

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Heading to Norfolk? There is SO much to do, so don’t miss these posts:

Things to do in Norfolk, UK

Amazing places to visit in Norwich, Norfolk!

Castles in Norfolk, UK for an amazing visit

Church ruins in Norfolk to discover!


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image of Norfolk coastal villages you need to visit

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