Norfolk’s best villages. Explore Norfolk’s villages including country walks, stately homes and beaches.
Norfolk’s lesser known villages are a little bit like bird watching, trying to spot that lesser known pink footed goose; waiting hours patiently to find it but when you do its beauty and grace is worth the wait.
This quaint little village is often overlooked as it is off the main access route to more popular towns in Norfolk such as Hunstanton, Heacham or Wells-next-sea but it’s worth the detour.
The village is home to a general store and a nursery but the place to be is at The Gin Trap; a 17th century coaching inn with over 100 gins in stock. It also has rooms so if you want to stay somewhere quiet, off the beaten track, look no further. The three-mile detour off the A47 before you reach Sandringham is worth it.
Follow your nose to find this hidden gem. One of the last few remaining working windmills in Norfolk stands proudly in the rolling fields of Great Bircham. Sniff the air and you’ll smell the fresh baked bread which is produced daily. The windmill is open to the public from April until September.
You can climb five floors up to the fans and sails and if you get a windy day, experience the machinery turning in its full glory. A great day out for all the family with opportunities to bake your own loaf, see the farmyard animals and take tea in the tea rooms. You can even stay here in a traditional shepherd’s hut or pitch up camp.
Consisting of East Barsham, North Barsham and West Barsham, the area is located near the local larger town of Walsingham. Dotted only two to three miles apart from each other the villages provide a pleasant walking route on which to see flora, fauna, birds and wildlife and there are plenty of cosy watering holes on the way round.
While you’re on route you may also like to visit Houghton St Giles, another parish of Barsham. Here you’ll find a small chapel but the surroundings, especially on a nice bright day. are breath-taking.
A must visit is the Langham Dome. Built in 1942, Langham Dome is situated on the former RAF station, RAF Langham, where it was used as an active base for 18 years. The dome which was used as a gunnery trainer where new recruits were trained in shooting accuracy, was the first of its kind technology in 1940 to simulate images of enemy aircraft on the inner walls of the dome. The dome is one of only six World War II gunnery trainers left in the UK. The dome opens again to the public in April 2020.
After all that excitement you’ll definitely need lunch, so head to The Blue Bell serving pub classics, steaks, local specialities, sandwiches and more. Child and dog friendly, this is a real family pub which encompasses the heart of the Norfolk charm. Settle down with a drink in front of the log burner on chilly days or grab a takeaway fish and chips and head to nearby Blakeney to enjoy them in the sea air.
If you’re looking for a place to stay, check out The Harper, a luxurious boutique hotel opening in 2021.
Great and Little Snoring
This pair of beautiful sleepy villages live up to their name although, their size doesn’t quite reflect their names correctly when you look at the size of their respective populations.
The pace of life is relaxed with only 150 residents in Great Snoring and 650 in the slightly bigger village of Little Snoring. However, the area is steeped in history and offers delightful walks through the villages and surrounding countryside. Both villages are located two-miles from Fakenham.
Enter this bustling little market town and instantly you will feel a healthy glow, that’s because Alysham is one of only a very few small towns to be granted Cittaslow status. Essentially this means that its residents experience a very good quality of life living here, preserving the towns history and seeks to promote economic, social and environmental sustainability.
The marketplace is one of only a few in the UK to be owned by the National Trust. Visit on market day and you’ll get a real sense of what the town is all about. Plan your trip at discoveraylsham.org/
Don’t miss the town’s main attraction, Bure Valley Railway. Hop aboard a steam train and journey through the county’s beautiful countryside. There’s an annual calendar of events too!