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Water way to go – enjoy the Norfolk Broads by boat

2 September 2021

Water lapping quietly against the side of your boat. Birdsong in the air and a mesmerising view stretching in all directions. The Broads National Park in Norfolk has it all for a trip filled with nature that will nurture your soul.

The Norfolk Broads is a place like no other

A massive wetland landscape teeming with rare and beautiful wildlife. With wonderful towns, villages and Norwich – a stunning cathedral city. It offers the opportunity for the most idyllic holidays. With cruises on the beautiful waterways by all manner of craft – even your own stylish motor cruiser (if you get bitten by the Broads bug!)

This compelling patchwork of rivers and lakes is in fact not a natural landscape. It is a result of intensive digging of peat in the Middle Ages to provide fuel. The empty pits were soon filled by rising water levels and now form a network of over 125 miles or 240km of navigable waterways. Check out Tingdene Lifestyle’s blog on the history of the Norfolk Broads.

The Norfolk Broads landscape is one of beauty and peace, of water, marsh, woodland and wide skies – with views of church towers and windmills. There is abundant wildlife including many rare butterflies and dragonflies. Some of the nature reserves can only be visited by boat, providing a marvellous experience of some of our most elusive wildlife.

The Venice of the East

In fact, the Norfolk Broads has more miles of waterway than the Italian city. Likewise, it has more canals than Amsterdam! The Broads National Park offers visitors an experience unlike any other. Both on its rivers and lakes and, alongside them, on peaceful paths and cycle ways.

Without a doubt, the best way to discover the Broads is by boat. So much of the Broads can’t be reached by road that days – and nights – afloat become a real adventure. There are hidden places, perfect fishing spots and close encounters with wildlife at every turn. There are plenty of places along the meandering waterways for you to moor up and hop out to explore pretty villages and market towns, or to stop at a welcoming pub. The famous Broads motor cruisers have been holiday favourites since the 1930s, and today’s boats have all the comforts of home on board, so even if you prefer to visit during the quieter, cooler months, you’ll have a cosy base for your explorations.

Visit bustling Broadland and you can enjoy many activities including the aforesaid boating holidays, as well as sailingcanoeingkayaking, windsurfing, walking, fishing and cycling. The Norfolk Broads has many lovely hotels, B&B, country cottages, parks and camping sites in which you can stay. There’s also the fantastic Tingdene Marina at Broadlands if you want to own a boat and have wonderful adventures in this magical place, and many more across the UK.

Norfolk Broads from Brundall Bay Marina

Norfolk is a great British wonder

According to The Daily Telegraph, the Broads National Park is one of the 20 Great British Wonders that – scandalously – aren’t World Heritage Sites. It highlights the Upper Thurne Area for its wonderful beaches with hundreds of grey seal pups in the dunes in winter. Plus, lots of other rare wildlife around Hickling and Horsey, including the UK’s largest butterfly, the British Swallowtail, in June.

The big skies and sparkling landscape of Norfolk’s marshland fields are a big draw. It’s a perfect canvas for adventure and relaxation – time to reflect, space to explore, a magical opportunity to enjoy a fabulous break.


Broadland Marina is a place like no other

Perfectly situated facing onto Oulton Broad, between the beautiful Suffolk coastline and the world-famous Broads National Park is Broadlands Marina. It has easy access to the sea via Mutford Lock and direct access to the Norfolk Broads. You can even head to Tingdene’s Brundall Bay Marina on the many cruising routes of the Broads. Close to Lowestoft seafront, sea-going craft can take a coastal trip to Southwold, Aldeburgh, and further afield. Travelling up the coast to Great Yarmouth offers a circular trip back to Broadlands Marina via the Yare and Waveney rivers.

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