It's true that most people are attracted to the North Norfolk Coast with visions of sandcastles, picnics, blue skies and sunshine, and there is an undeniable beauty in the summer months. Yet the deepest winter months are just as beautiful for the visitor, if somewhat wilder and fresher. It's a different experience but a rewarding one.
While many traditional seaside attractions and facilities close for the winter, Dalegate Market remains open, supplying locals and visitors alike with all they need, from groceries to hot chocolate and warm clothes to lunch. An oasis in a wild and natural landscape.
At the heart of Dalegate Market is Deepdale Cafe, open throughout the year offering breakfast, lunch and cake. Enjoy its seasonal specials including delicious local dishes like Brancaster mussels, delivered from less than a mile away. See the daily changing specials board. There's a permanent menu that includes a great breakfast range, burgers, jacket potatoes, sandwiches and afternoon teas. The perfect pre or post beach walk food, otherwise known as Après Beach Walk.
There may not be mountains or much snow, but it certainly appreciates the finer side of life in the winter and enjoy what it has in abundance – beautiful coastline, huge skies and open space to breathe and relax.
Brancaster and Holkham beaches are just a couple of miles away. The beautiful salt marshes of Brancaster Staithe harbour are on the other side of the road, along with the historic round towered St Mary's Church.
Around Deepdale Cafe are gathered a wonderful selection of shops, which make Dalegate Market such a great place to visit.
One Stop Nature Shop are here to help you do just that, explore the natural beauty of the North Norfolk Coast. Its range of binoculars, telescopes and microscopes combined with the staff knowledge and all manner of guide books make this a must visit shop. It also supplys you with the latest news on wildlife sightings.
Relish Boutique is a changing delight like the natural surroundings of the North Norfolk Coast. This treasure trove of a shop is a place you need to spend time in, as there are many hidden gems in the range of jewellery and accessories, and always new additions.
Gone Crabbing, as you can tell by the name, is a shop truly inspired by the North Norfolk Coast. You can wrap up warm in one of their fleeces or find a souvenir of your visit. Gifts and a fantastic range of kids and adults clothing.
The Hare & The Hen is Philippa Lee's gallery of beautiful art and crafts, and where she creates her stunning pottery. Another of the shops where taking time to look is hugely rewarding, with an ever changing selection of paintings, sculpture and more.
Dalegate Market is also home to two excellent services for visitors to the North Norfolk Coast.
Norfolk Hideaways is a holiday cottage agency with a wide range of properties along the North Norfolk Coast, while Deepdale Bike Hire is open all year for cycle hire. Cycling is a superb way to explore the local area. Book in advance during the Winter months, see the website for details of the range of bikes.
Deepdale Information, a visitor information centre for all your local information needs, from tide times to postcards, bus timetables to visitor attractions.
Enjoy the North Norfolk Coast without the crowds this winter. Wrap up warm, enjoy the bracing coastline and use that all as an excuse to relax at Dalegate Market with good food and some retail therapy.
Dalegate Market is easy to reach. The Coasthopper bus which stops right outside the door, connecting with King's Lynn, Hunstanton, Cromer, Sheringham and Blakeney. There is free car parking for visitors using the shops and café, and a bike rack for cyclists.
Naturally walkers with muddy boots are also most welcome, and the Norfolk Coast Path is just across the road and there are circular walks from Dalegate Market taking in some breathtaking views.
If you are visiting with your dog then there is seating available in and outside the café for people with dogs, and most of the site is dog friendly.
Dalegate Market is open all year. More information on the cafe, shops and other services, including opening hours, can be found on the website www.dalegatemarket.co.uk