One of the best places to do this is at Burnham Overy Staithe. Check the tide times before you go, this website can be helpful.

Make sure you take the following;

A crabbing bucket (there are 3 in the summer house for you to use), a crabbing line, some bacon and a fishing net.

Sit on the dock and see how many you can catch (we’ve known some families to notch up as many as 30!), then release them at the top of the course way and watch them scuttle back into the sea. Combine this with a drink and kids tea/lunch at The Hero pub.


There are walks and hikes in all directions starting from or near Docking.  The wonderful Peddars Way is also very close.  For more information on this see National Trails.

Here are a couple of our favourite walks locally;

Spot the pigs

From the house turn right out of the yard and cross the road.  Turn left down Little Lane and at the top there is a lovely Bridle Path opening up onto vast fields.  Follow the track to the top and spot the pigs!

Holkham to Wells

Pack up a picnic and park the car at Holkham. If you can, make sure you park at the beach end of the car park as the car park itself is quite a walk! Follow the path behind the Pine Woods which leads all the way to the café at Wells Beach. You can mix it up by combining walking on the beach and through the woods and then stop and have a picnic or a hot chocolate at one of the beach huts. In peak season there is a small train that runs from the beach car park into Wells town centre. Jump on this and then amble up the High Street looking in the shops as you go and end up at The Butlands, a grassy area with lots of space for kids to run around. For pubs, there is the Crown Hotel and The Globe. If you don’t fancy the walk back, then you can jump on The Coasthopper, the bus stop is just about 100 yards along the road to the left of the convenience store (Londis, we think).

Stiffkey Marshes

Beware very muddy, but great fun (take old clothes!)

When you head into Stiffkey just before the Red Lion pub there is a signpost for a campsite. Walk along the path towards Blakeney and then when you see a set of bridges head towards them leaping over the creeks along the way. A great way to blow away the cobwebs and tire out the children! On the way back head to the gorgeous Stiffkey stores for a coffee and peruse their gorgeous homewares, books and stationary.

Blakeney Point Seal Trips

The four-mile, National Trust-owned spit of high dunes and sand at Blakeney Point in North Norfolk has one of the largest colonies of grey seals in England.  Hour-long seal-watching boat trips, which take you very close to the seals, depart from Morston Quay.  Contact Temples, Beans or Bishops Boats.  Prices are around £10 adult, £5 child.

Titchwell Marsh Nature Reserve

Big skies, a fabulous sandy beach and bird-filled lagoons are just a few of the gems tucked away inside Titchwell’s treasure trove of delights. Located about a 15 minute drive from the cottage between the villages of Titchwell and Thornham, Titchwell Marsh is blessed with diverse habitats that include reedbeds, saltmarshes and freshwater lagoons where avocets, bearded tits and marsh harriers nest. With its big skies, a fabulous sandy beach and bird-filled lagoons tucked away inside, this really is a gem for all the family to enjoy.

Facilities include a café, picnic area, binocular hire, guided walks and nature trails. The freshwater reedbeds have a wide variety of species including rare breeding birds such as bitterns, bearded tits and marsh harriers, whilst otters and water voles are also well established here. Well worth a visit even if you aren’t an avid twitcher!
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North Norfolk Riding Centre in Walsingham – 01328 820933

Hire Bikes

From Holkham Hall and cycle around the park and lake.


Golfing with children

There is a small 9 hole pitch and putt near Fakenham which is great fun for a couple of hours.
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Exactly what it says, football/golf in Hunstanton! Open from 1 April to 30 September, weekends and Norfolk school holidays in October. Closed November to March. 9 holes – Adult £4.60 / 16s £3.60.
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Half day activities close to the cottage

You can’t stay at the cottage and not visit Thornham Deli. The store has wonderful homewares and clothing and a playground for children. A perfect place for breakfast or lunch/afternoon tea, combining it with a walk around Thornham Village.

Drove Orchards, a little further along from Thornham Deli, houses a number of yummy food establishments and shops:

Drove Orchards

Eric’s Fish & Chips

Bell’s and Whistles

Joyfull Living

Thornham Beach is also in our view worth a look, followed by a pint at The Lifeboat Inn. This is a wonderful pub both in the winter when you can sit by the roaring fires, or in the summer enjoying a glass of something chilled in the wonderful courtyard area at the back. Good food too although some of our guests have said it can sometimes be a bit hit and miss.

Creake Abbey hosts a Farmers market on the first Saturday of each month and has a lovely café attached for a light lunch.

Days out with the kids

Do check their websites before you go as many are closed for the winter months;

Holkham has a great adventure playground but is only open from March until end of October.

Birchham Windmill – This is considered to be one of the best remaining British windmills and is only a short drive southwards from the cottage.

When it rains

Farmer Fred’s Play Barn is a five minute drive from the house and with free wifi!!

Hunstanton and Wells have great arcades too with penny slot machines

Norfolk Lavender has an animal farm and outdoor play area

Snettisham Park

ROARR! Dinosaur Adventure in Lenwade, north of Norwich has invested £500,000 in a new “Dippy’s Splash Zone” equipped with water play equipment and opens daily from Easter to October, weather permitting. Adults supervising young children must be prepared to get wet! Other attractions include a dinosaur trail, Jurassic skywire, deer safari, secret animal garden and sheepdog displays. Tickets booked on-line cost £10.40 (adult), £13.25 (child).


Beans Boat Trips

Places of historical and national interest

Sandringham Estate

The much loved Norfolk retreat of the Queen and other royals and well worth a visit. It’s best to check the website for opening times and full details, but it’s usually open daily from 1st April to 20th October.

The Royal Family’s private country house, all the main ground floor rooms used by them are open to the public. The Ballroom displays a different exhibition each year, and there are more family possessions displayed in the museum including vehicles ranging from a 1900 Daimler to a half-scale Aston Martin used by Princes William and Harry. There are sixty acres of informal gardens, six hundred acres of country park and the Sandringham Church which the Royals attend at Christmas is worth a visit.

Norwich Gates, Sandringham Estate
Photo © G Laird

Still maintained in the style of Edward and Alexandra, Prince and Princess of Wales (later King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra), all the main ground floor rooms used by The Royal Family, full of their treasured ornaments, portraits and furniture, are open to the public.

The Museum, housed in the old stables and coach houses, has a collection of vehicles ranging in date from the first car owned by a British monarch, a 1900 Daimler, to a half-scale Aston Martin used by Princes William and Harry as well as a photographic exhibition which shows the history of Sandringham House from 1870 to the present day. A display tells the mysterious tale of the Sandringham Company who fought and died at Gallipolli in 1915 and there is also a fascinating collection of gifts given to Her Majesty The Queen by people from all over the world.

The sixty-acre gardens include the formal North Garden, the Stream Walk and Queen Alexandra’s Summerhouse, perched above the lake. The formal planting of the Edwardian age has given way to great sweeping glades, bordered by splendid specimen trees and shrubs, to create an informal garden full of colour and interest throughout the year. A free shuttle from within the entrance will carry passengers less able to walk through the gardens to the house and back. Guided garden tours take place on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11am and 2pm.

Sandringham Church is also well worth a visit, and there are six hundred acres of the Country Park open to all. There is a café, coffee shop and gift shops close to the coach and car parks. Sandringham’s welcoming country house atmosphere is commented on by almost every visitor, and the most common complaint is that people have not allowed enough time to see everything there is – at least 3 hours is necessary, and there is enough to fill a full day’s visit.

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Blickling Hall

Nobody ever forgets their first sight of the Blickling Estate, run by the National Trust. The breath-taking red-brick mansion and ancient yew hedges sit at the heart of a magnificent garden and historic park in the beautiful Bure meadows. The landscape with its hedges and narrow tree-lined lanes has changed little over the centuries and is quintessentially Norfolk. Explore the house, with its nationally important book collection, and hear the real voices of the servants who once worked ‘downstairs’.

Bring a bike or grab a map of way-marked walks and head out into the park. Keep your eyes open for lost buildings, stunning views and wildlife who call it home.


Garden, Blickling Hall
Photo © Christine Matthews

The story of the estate unfolds over a thousand years. The landscape with its hedges and narrow tree-lined lanes has changed little over the centuries and is quintessentially Norfolk.

Blickling’s owners have used the estate as a place of quiet refuge, while playing their part on the world’s political stage. Philip Kerr, 11th Marquis of Lothian, left this estate to the National Trust in 1940, and he’s vital to its story. Without him, it’s unlikely that Blickling would still be around for you to explore, along with many other places that are much loved in the area.

Outside, the formal garden is the result of three centuries of inspired planting, and the gently undulating historic parkland is great for exploring. Grab a map of way-marked walks or our cycle trail and head out into the park. Keep your eyes open for lost buildings, stunning views and wildlife who call it home.

With three cafes on-site and a pub, there’s plenty of choice as to where to eat. Whether you’re a book worm, plant lover or stamp collector, don’t miss the Blickling shops and gallery selling a variety of local art and crafts.

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Houghton Hall

With its domed corner towers, this is one of the finest Palladian-style houses in England, built and furnished between 1722 and 1735 for Robert Walpole, Britain’s first Prime Minister. Its sumptuous Stone Hall, Marble Parlour, Cabinet Room and Salon are just some of the parade of state rooms, all lavishly endowed with pictures, statuary and fine furniture. There is also the Marquess of Cholmondeley’s collection of 20,000 model soldiers and militaria. The Hall is surrounded by parkland, home to a herd of white fallow and exotic deer, and there is a restored walled garden.

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Felbrigg Hall

Dovecote in Felbrigg Hall walled garden Photo © Jonathan Billinger

One of the most elegant country houses in East Anglia, the Hall is a place of surprises and delights, a mixture of opulence and homeliness where each room has something to feed the imagination. From the stained glass windows in the great hall to the nodding mandarins in the chinese bedroom; from Queen Mary’s teapot in the dining room to the copper pans in the kitchen. Story boxes for the children help explain some of the history of the house.

Outside, the decorative and productive walled garden is a gardener’s delight and inspiration, providing beautiful flowers for the hall, with the allotments in the walled garden providing fruit and vegetables for the community.

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Multiple winner of Norfolk’s Best Large Attraction (EDP Norfolk Tourism Awards), Pensthorpe Natural Park is perfect as a full day out for families, bird watchers, wildlife enthusiasts and garden lovers. Located along the river Wensum, in the heart of North Norfolk, you can explore 700 acres of woodland walks and lakes; four stunning gardens, including the Millennium Garden designed by renowned plantsman Piet Oudolf; WildRootz – a huge outdoor adventure playground and; Hootz House, an award winning indoor play area, which is great for kids of all ages, including big kids that are young at heart! There’s also a soft play area especially for the really little ones.

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Walsingham Abbey

The garden and grounds surrounding Walsingham Abbey are famous for the spectacular ruins of the medieval Priory of our Lady of Walsingham, one of the medieval world’s most important places of pilgrimage.

In the late 17th century a country house, known as Walsingham Abbey, was built over part of the ruins. Then in the early 19th century the house was enlarged and a landscaped park laid out around it.

Snowdrops and The River Stiffkey, Walsingham Abbey, Norfolk
Photo © Richard Humphrey

Over time along the river and woodland walks surrounding the house, an unrivalled display of massed snowdrops has been established, a truly remarkable sight in early spring.

‘Walsingham’ is two unspoiled, closely linked North Norfolk villages. Little, or ‘New’ Walsingham, and nearby Great or ‘Old’ Walsingham; less than a mile apart, together they offer a wealth of historic buildings, shops and places to eat, drink and stay.

The long history of religious pilgrimage to the shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, which ceased at the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1538, has been revived in modern times. Both the Anglican and Roman Catholic Shrines now bring many thousands of pilgrims to Walsingham each year.

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