Discover the Norfolk Broads
A guide to 12 great days out in the unique environment of the Norfolk Broads compiled by people who live there

Discover the Norfolk Broads - A guide to 12 great days out in the unique environment of the Norfolk Broads compiled by people who live there

Accommodation Activities Attractions Food and Drink Shopping What's On
and Events
Where are the
Norfolk Broads?
Day One: Day Boat Trip - Wroxham to Coltishall / Gateway to the Norfolk Broads

Wroxham is considered to be the Gateway to the Norfolk Broads, with many of the region’s boat hire firms being based here. A small but bustling place that is home to Roys of Wroxham, said to be the largest village store in the world! What better place to climb aboard a Broads cruiser for the day and explore the area afloat.

Start : Fineway Cruisers, Riverside Road, off the A1151 in the centre of Wroxham
Ordnance Survey Explorer map OL40; grid reference TG306177
SatNav postcode NR12 8UG

Cost Guide : £££££

For day boat hire we recommend Fineway Launch Hire in Wroxham. This is a family run business where you will find clean and reliable boats with a choice of either eco friendly electric or diesel powered. Don’t worry if you’ve no experience with boats, as the rules of the river are simple to follow, and after a brief training session you will be Master and Commander of your own vessel.

Once you have hired your boat our recommended route for a day trip is as follows:

•   When you leave Fineway Launch Hire boatyard turn right onto the main River Bure and pass under the historic Wroxham bridge. As the bridge itself is low you will find that many of the holiday cruisers cannot get through and the river will be noticeably quieter on the other side.

•   The water quality is so good here, you will find water lilies growing wild and you can see the river bed in many places. Watch out for the vivid blue flash of the kingfishers as they dart along the river from tree to tree!

•   Be sure not to miss ‘Bridge Broad’ – it is signposted but very small. This is one of the prettiest Broads and is not accessible on foot. You will also pass a large sloped grassy meadow (Cane Meadow), which sweeps down to the river and has a sandy edge. It is quite normal to see people picnicking and swimming here as it is popular with locals
•   Further along you will come into the village of Belaugh – there are no shops here but there is a public staithe and the pretty village church which sits high on the hill is well worth the walk. Venturing further you will come to Coltishall Common, which is an ideal place for a lunch stop with two pubs sitting side by side.

•   The Rising Sun is located right by the river and has tables outside, ideal for those long hot summer days, together with seats inside the old granary offering lovely views across the marshes and reedbeds. With a varied main menu, including classic dishes and daily specials, together with a range of snacks and lighter bites, this is an ideal spot for lunch. Vegetarians are well served with two standard options on the main menu, together with a very tasty homemade veggie chilli.

•   The King’s Head is next to the road and has much more of a restaurant feel, so if fine dining is what you are looking for, this may well be the place for you. Kevin, the owner and head chef, is the only member of The Masterchefs of Great Britain in the Norfolk Broads. Locally caught seafood, rare breed pork and locally reared beef are all regulars on the range of a la carte, light and set menus, and the homemade desserts are a speciality.

Most boats will not proceed further than Coltishall Common but in small day boats it is possible to go a little way further towards the end of navigation at Coltishall Lock, and you can be rewarded with the sight of kingfishers flitting along this quiet and peaceful stretch of water, before turning around and starting your return journey.

Useful Norfolk Broads Contacts

Below you will find suggestions for accommodation, activities, attractions, food & drink and shopping.  All useful contacts while visiting the Norfolk Broads.




Food and Drink


Anchor & Riverside Cottages

Four bedroomed cottages directly on the main riverfront with small private mooring for a dayboat & free WiFi access. 20% under occupancy discount all year for up to 4 guests!

Fineway Launch Hire

Operating from our boatyard situated in the heart of the Norfolk Broads on the river Bure in the busy village of Wroxham we provide rental services of day boats, a cabin cruiser and a riverside cottage.

Elizabethan House Museum

Museum of domestic life in a 16th-century house. Hands-on activities throughout the house. Childrens playroom filled with toys from the past. Conspiracy room, where the trial and execution of Charles I was plotted. Events during school holidays.

Norfolk Mead Hotel, The

Built in 1740, the Norfolk Mead, formally a merchants house, is set in 8 tranquil riverside acres on the river Bure. Just 7 miles from the city of Norwich and 10 miles from the coast. An ideal location for a weekend or longer break.

Sutton Pottery

Small studio workshop in rural East Norfolk, established by Malcolm Flatman in 1977 in the Broadland village of Sutton, near Stalham. He uses the Potters Wheel and the fire of a gas kiln to create a large range of reduction stoneware entirely by hand.

Day One Day boat trip Wroxham to Coltishall – £££££
Day Two Walk / Wildlife watching Ranworth & Fairhaven Gardens – ££££
Day Three Walk / Seal watching Horsey Mere and Beach – £/££ - YF
Day Four Guided boat trip / Wildlife watching Hickling Broad & Sutton - ££££
Day Five Canoe trip Wayford Bridge to Neatishead, via Barton Broad – £££ - YF
Day Six Cycle ride and Picnic Clippesby to How Hill – £/£££ - YF
Day Seven Day boat trip Ludham Bridge to Neatishead via How Hill – £££££
Day Eight Walk / Wildlife watching Salhouse & Cockshoot Broads – ££
Day Nine Canoe trip Martham to Horsey – £££
Day Ten Learn to Sail from Hunter’s Yard at Ludham - £££££
Day Eleven Walk / Boat trip Barton & Alderfen Broads – £/££ - YF
Day Twelve Cycle ride Discover the Norfolk Broads in a Day - £/££
YF - Young Family option available

A cost guide is included for each day out, ranging from lower cost (£: free or up to £15) to higher cost (£££££: £80 up to £100). These costs are based on a family of 4
undertaking all the activities suggested and are accurate as at the date of publication.

"The Broads are man-made, resulting from ancient peat workings which flooded as sea levels rose"

Wildlife Fact File
Alcedo atthis

Probably our most colourful native bird, the Kingfisher as its name implies is an expert at diving for and catching fish which it swallows whole. Despite its dazling plumage, it can be hard to spot when amongst foliage, so look out for it skimming quickly, low over open water and if you are lucky you may see it dive after its prey.

1. Allow around 5 hours for your trip and it is a good idea to telephone Fineway Cruisers on 01603 782309 and pre-book your boat. Fineway Cruisers have free customer parking
2. The Rising Sun opens at 12 noon every day and serves food until 9pm. To book a table telephone 01603 737440
3. The King’s Head opens at 12 noon and serves food until 2pm at lunchtimes Monday to Saturday and then again from 6.30pm to 9pm in the evenings, and all day on Sunday. To book a table telephone 01603 737426, or for more information visit their website www.kingshead.

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Accommodation Activities Attractions Food and Drink Shopping What's On
and Events
Where are the
Norfolk Broads?

Discover the Norfolk Broads - A guide to 12 great days out in the unique environment of the Norfolk Broads compiled by people who live there