Exploring the salt marshes from Blakeney and Salthouse to Morston will take you into a world of bird watching, crabbing and hidden vistas within this unique landscape between sea and sky. There are the bird sanctuaries and coastal walks along shingle beaches and places to visit, explore and enjoy.
> SALTHOUSE > CLEY > WIVETON > BLAKENEY > MORSTON
As you drive west of Sheringham through Salthouse you will see a small community of houses along with a pub serving excellent food called the Dun Cow, it’s a great spot for lunch and across the green is Cookies Crab Stop a seasonal café serving what Norfolk does best, fresh seafood. The beaches here are shingle and are located on the fringes of salt marshes with teeming wildlife – wild birds in particular. As you travel along the coast road you will come across the Norfolk Wildlife Trust Centre at Cley. There are easy walks into the marshes from here and hides from where you may look at the resident birds, as well as seasonal flocks.CLEY
Cley is a charming coastal village. There is an 18th c. windmill and interesting craft shops and galleries and you may gain access onto walks across the salt marshes. Picnic Fayre also sells delicious morsels to make up a picnic to take with you while you are walking. You may also be tempted to take some smoked fish and meats from the Cley Smokehouse.
As you move on through Cley, west along the coast road towards Blakeney you will come across Wiveton Hall Farm. One of our all time favourites for lunch is the Wiveton Hall Café and if the weather permits, it is a great al fresco dining option. It started as a pick your own fruit farm but has diversified into one of the better places to eat along this part of the coast. The food has got better and better each year, they cook hearty and delicious meals and snacks on the premises and wood fired pizza in the late afternoon, early evening. The dining room has been painted an unsettling Pepto Bismol pink, so if you can book a table outside with views down across the salt marches towards the sea, with the right weather it is blissful, it is one of the most beautiful locations on the. Another great spot for lunch or dinner is the Wiveton Bell pub, off the coast road and out the other side of Wiveton Village on the crossroads, it has a good menu of modern classics and a garden at the back for enjoying the perfect pint in the sunshine.
A section of the saltmarshes is a National Trust Nature Reserve and is a great place to head off to see the seal colonies off Blakeney Point. You can book a boat rip from one of the charter companies situated on the harbour front outside the Blakeney Hotel. You may sometimes have to pick up a boat at Morston – just up the coast, if the tides don’t allow for the boats to get into Blakeney. Take a wonder through the village though to see the charming houses and get a bite to eat in one of the delightful pubs or cafes. Our favourite is either to grab a prawn sandwich and a cup of tea in the car park (this is really far better than it sounds) or else head up for afternoon tea in the first floor “Lookout” room of the Blakeney Hotel with fabulous views out to sea. There are a few shops and galleries here – our favourite is the Flint Gallery opposite the Kings Arms.
Morston lies further along the coast just outside Blakeney, towards Wells and Holkham. If you are looking for another gastronomic treat you have a couple of excellent choices here. The first is the Anchor a pub that serves great pub food in a relaxed atmosphere. If you can’t find parking outside it, persevere just beyond it is the track down to Morston Quay which has plenty of parking space and walk back. For a fine dining experience there is the Michelin starred Morston Hall where you will enjoy the truly innovative cuisine of Chef Galton Blackiston. Prior booking is essential. Whilst you are parked on the Quay we would also recommend you visit BlueJacket Workshop to catch the latest creations of a very talented group of designer makers and artists. The gallery is in a boat-building workshop and they design and make their own furniture, textiles and sell antique and re-cycled pieces, as well as paintings, prints and a hand-crafted soft furnishings. There is always something interesting and the gallery keeps the stock fresh, so it is worth checking out as new items are being made all the time. They are open on most weekends.
More about places to enjoy in North Norfolk