We’ve always enjoyed motorhome holidays in Norfolk: From amazing Holkham, vast beaches and lighthouses to boats on the broads, it’s hard to decide where to go. So last year we decided to make it a road trip and do a motorhome tour of our favourite parts of Norfolk.
Our road trip was with our two children, aged 4 and 8 at the time, so of course, we mostly went to places they loved. But that’s not to say that Norfolk isn’t great for adults too, from things our customers have told us about their Norfolk motorhome holidays and people we’ve spoken to on our own travels, Norfolk seems to have something for everyone. We’re looking forward to a more grown-up trip one day, but it’s going to be a while!
We head into Norfolk from the north, so for a stop near the beach without driving too far, we headed for Hunstanton area. It’s a traditional family seaside resort with big beaches a fun fair and a pier. The main beach is huge when the tide is out, you’ll find people picking cockles and mussels on the water’s edge.
We like the north beach, with its dunes and quirky little beach huts dotted among them and backdrop of the ‘striped cliffs’ of Hunstanton. We took the land train from Searles resort and campsite to the north carpark near the lighthouse, so the trip there was part of the fun. It’s a steep path to the beach from here, the access is flatter from Old Hunstanton.
Hunstanton is on the East coast, but because of its position on the Wash, it actually faces west, so you get some amazing sunsets.
More about Hunstanton
Hunstanton is a great base for a trip to Sandringham. Our kids love the play area and head straight for it as soon as we arrive. It’s built using wood from the Sandringham Sawmill, so lots of different rope bridges, walkways and of course a zip wire. With the addition of the water tower, which was a big hit with our kids, they can stay here for hours.
You can walk or cycle around the royal park, our children particularly like the woodland trails. There are cafes and restaurants too, so even if you don’t want to visit the house and gardens, you can spend the whole day here (and we usually do).
We then headed to the much more laid back and beautiful north coast. We stayed at a campsite we’d never been to before near Burnham Market. Not right on the coast but the hilltop location meant we had amazing views. Completely by chance we went to Burnham Overy Staithe during their watersports regatta. After watching lots of different races; small boats, canoes and paddleboards were just a few, we were keen to get out on the water ourselves. The beach is a long walk, so a boat trip to Scolt Head Island was a great alternative. The boat took us along the creek through the marshes to the island which was a great experience for our kids. We didn’t really know what to expect on the island, we really just wanted a boat trip but it’s completely unspoilt with beautiful beaches and dunes. There’s nothing on the island, but fortunately, we’d taken a picnic, so stayed until the last boat back.
Lots of people from our campsite were eating out in Burnham Market which looks lovely, but we only had time to pass through as we went off to one of our favourite destinations, Holkham.
This wasn’t our first visit to Holkham beach but I still remember the first time I saw it – emerging from the sand dunes onto this vast beautiful beach is a sight I will always remember. On this trip, we also went to Holkham Hall for their Feast in the Park. We took our camping chairs and sat on a lawn by the lake, a lovely spot to enjoy some great ‘street food’.
We had our bikes on the back of the motorhome so we thought we would cycle off a few calories on cycle trails around Holkham estate. There’s also a woodland play area here for the kids, with rope bridges and climbing walls, it reminds me of the play area at Sandringham.
As well as Holkham Hall and stunning Holkham beach, as you drive along the north coast there are lots of pretty coastal villages and the town of Wells next -the -sea.
Blakeney is much quieter than Wells next -the -sea and you can easily park a motorhome on the outskirts. After a short stop at yet another play area near where we parked (yes, our kids just can’t resist a play area) we went to the quay to try a bit of crabbing. It took us quite a while to get the hang of it, but just sitting on the quay watching boats go by kept us entertained. As the tide started to rise our luck changed, so after naming most of the crabs, the kids then released them back into the water before we headed off east.
We’ve visited Cromer before and there are some great campsites on the outskirts. But on this trip we wanted to try something different and stayed in Happisburgh. It’s pronounced ‘Hazebro’, as we were reminded many times when we got it wrong! The lighthouse (the oldest working lighthouse in East Anglia) is nice to visit, but only open on certain days so worth checking in advance.
The beach here is very different to Holkham, it’ much narrower and backs onto cliffs so it’s dramatic in a different way. With a playpark at the top of the cliffs before the slope down to the beach, this is a good little spot for a quiet beach day, but not really enough here to keep children entertained for more than a couple of days, so it was time for a big day out.
As we left the coast and headed inland we had a great day out at BeWILDerwood. It’s a very unusual adventure park based around the books by local author Tom Blofeld. Our children have never read the books, but it really doesn’t matter, the big thing at this place is to be WILD, and they loved it. There are no typical ‘theme park’ rides here, it’s treehouses, rope bridges, zip wires and huge slides. It felt like we were all on a big adventure together, we all joined in the fun, adults can do the climbing too, pretty much everywhere. There were a few places with tiny tunnels I didn’t go in just in case I got stuck!
More about BeWILDerwood
We have visited Great Yarmouth before, another traditional seaside resort, but not this time, we headed for the Norfolk Broads instead.
We stayed at a big campsite just on the edge of the broads, The facilities were not the most modern but the woodland location made it feel a bit like wild camping. There was plenty of space for the kids to play, ride their bikes and enjoy a bit of chill time after a big day out.
After a day sightseeing on the broads, we went to Wroxham for our own little boating adventure. You can go on guided river trips but we decided to hire our own boat and do some exploring. Great fub but very busy so worth booking ahead during the summer.
There are even a few motorhome pitches right by the river in Wroxham, but we’re told you have to get there very early/plan a long way ahead to get one of these.
Roarr Dinosaur Adventure
From here we had a day out at Roarr dinosaur adventure, we didn’t know much about it but when a 4 year old sees a huge dinosaur on a sign, it’s hard to get them to stop talking about it. We weren’t sure how much fun some plastic dinosaurs could actually be, but there are lots of different areas and activities to explore. You need to bring your imagination and a sense of fun, otherwise it would just be some plastic dinosaurs in the trees.
A real bonus for us was the predator high ropes, included in the price which we thought was great value. Our youngest got scared by the height once we actually got up there, but our oldest thought it was amazing.
There are play areas, indoor soft play and shows, although we spent the whole day there we ran out of time and didn’t get to the splash zone. Sometimes when you listen to a 4 year old who’s seen a dinosaur, it can actually lead to a great day.
After another big day out, we continued inland to a lovely little campsite near Swanton Morley. You have to go looking for this place but it’s very well run, you can get logs and log burners to use during your stay. They even do a communal campfire every so often which has a great camping feel as people all gather round together and toast marshmallow (or try). It was the perfect last night for our motorhome tour.
For one last stop, we visited Swaffham raceway. This wasn’t in our plan but we got to know someone on the campsite who’s son was racing there. It was old fashioned stock cars and banger racing, there were even juniors racing (they start as young as 5) which made it all even more exciting for our kids. On the way home of course they both wanted to be racing drivers!
From here we could easily get back on the A47 for our journey home
Our Norfolk motorhome tour was 2 weeks and there are still lots of things we didn’t fit in; Cromer, Caister life boat, Great Yarmouth and more lovely north coast villages we just passed by on this trip.
We’re definitely going to need another Norfolk adventure this year!