East Norfolk Coast dog friendly

The entire county of Norfolk is the perfect place to bring your well behaved four legged friend and the east coast area is no exception, in fact it could be considered the jewel in the crown for dogs, with 10 super sandy beaches to run about on to their hearts content. Some have restrictions during the summer months but the beaches at Happisburgh, Waxham, Winterton-on-Sea, Hemsby, Scratby and Caister-on-Sea are happy for dogs to run around all year long and with the tide out and the huge East Anglian skies above, it is a pretty impressive place to wander for humans too!

Inland the flat marshes and network of waterways provide endless walks of interest that stretch for a short distance or many miles and whether legs are short or long, everyone can enjoy the varied landscapes. The Paston Way, which in total is 29.5 miles, runs from Cromer to North Walsham. It is a trail that links medieval church to medieval church and along the way ambles down quiet lanes, through picturesque villages, across vast arable fields and quiet grazing pastures with glimpses of the North Sea along the way. Or try the Weavers Way, which links the north Norfolk coast at Cromer to the east Norfolk coast at Great Yarmouth. If you’ve got the time and the dog has the stamina, 91 miles of walking will take you through a diverse landscape of woodland, mixed farmland, the historic country estates of Felbrigg and Blickling Hall owned by the National Trust, the disused railway lines of the Bittern Line Railway Ramble, riverside walks and the famous Norfolk Broads.

Lovely at any time of the year, Bacton Woods near North Walsham is a walkers’ paradise. Here you will find 280 acres of ancient woodland that dates back to Saxon times, where there are over 30 different species of trees and 2 oak trees that are over 200 years old. There is freedom to roam here for dogs, horses and cyclists and three different trails to follow. Further south, touching the edge of The Broads, there are lovely walks in and around the Georgian village of Martham - visit Taylors whilst you are there, unusually a fish and chip shop with a thatched roof! Stroll around Martham Broad a nature reserve of over 140 acres or try Horsey Mere, 100 acres of National Trust land and a wildfowl haven for migrating birds during the winter. From the Mere you can walk down to the coast and view the local sea colony, The Nelson Head pub will welcome both you and your 4-legged friend in to the bar on the way.

This part of the county is also rich in heritage and dogs on leads are welcome at a number of interesting historical sites. The Berney Arms Windmill situated near the top of Breydon Water is about 3 miles inland from Great Yarmouth and can be accessed only by foot or boat. It is one of Norfolk’s best and largest surviving mills that was still in use until the mid-20th Century. Burgh Castle also at Breydon Water is home to one of the best preserved Roman forts in the country and was built in the 3rd and 4th Centuries AD. Aside from the fort itself, the 90 acre site is rich in bird, animal and plant life and its peaceful and secluded position offers wonderful views westward over the rivers Yare and Waveney. The partial remains of a Roman Saxon shore fort can be explored at Caister-on-Sea and the Musuem of The Broads at Sutton Staithe is well worth a visit.

After all this walking, a welcome pit stop would probably be a good idea and you will find that many of east Norfolk’s shops, cafés and pubs are very dog friendly, providing water bowls to keep a dog as happy as its owner. Local pubs that will welcome dogs in the bar area can be found at The Ship at Mundesley, The Hill House at Happisburgh, Reefs Bar at Sea Palling, The Fisherman’s Return at Winterton-on-Sea and The White Horse at Overstrand, all great places to wind down after a great walk and a happy place for 4 legs and a waggy tail to come to rest.

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