The landscape of north Norfolk seems made for bikes. It’s not hilly and easily managed even by occasional cyclists. Yet it rolls enough to be interesting, and from the saddle you can go at your own speed and savour the distinctive character of the area – its flint walls, red tiled roofs, birdlife, majestic medieval churches, cosy pubs, grand country estates and wonderful tranquility. And you’re nearly always aware that the sea is not that far away.
North Norfolk Cycling Holidays
Local routesThe Peddars Way.
Cycling PeddarsMagazine Wood is perfectly appointed for a great Cycling holiday. located on Peddars Way and you are permitted to cycle nearly all 93 miles of it! Turn left out of the drive and you can cycle right to the sea and explore this wonderful coastline turn right and a more rural route with some unmade tracks (that can be muddy) will take you past beautiful woodlands and historic estates.
Sandringham Much of the estate of the Queen’s Norfolk residence is designated as Sandringham Country Park, open free all year, an area of 250 hectares of carefully managed woodland and heath. It has two nature trails and is about 15 minutes drive or 40 minutes cycle from us.
The Norfolk Coast Cycleway is a series of signposted routes make it sheer pleasure crossing through delectable Norfolk countryside. The Norfolk Coast Cycleway itself, a single 92mile route parallel to the coast, and ten Explorer Loops which are circular tours you can do within a day. The Explorer Loops link with or partly follow the Cycleway. There are several Explorer loops close to Magazine Wood which include:Ingoldisthorpe Explorer Loop 18 miles
‘Fine views dominate along this route which travels pretty, winding lanes for much of its length. If you’re feeling energetic try outpacing the deer as you ride the boundaries of Houghton Hall park! An easy and delightful ride.’
Route 2Sandringham Explorer Route 22 miles
‘It’s a touch of royalty for much of this route, and it shows in well kept roadsides, pretty cottages, and delightful wooded areas. And you can truly get away from the traffic as the route has some well surfaced off-road sections.’
Route 3Ringstead Explorer Loop 23 miles
A permissive bridleway leading west from the village explores Ringstead Down Nature Reserve (Norfolk Wildlife Trust) an 9 hecatre area of chalk grassland – the largest area of unimproved grassland in Norfolk. Here you can enjoy a drink and a meal at the Gin Trap. At Ringstead the route also crosses the Peddars Way (part of the Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path National Trail);
Route 4Docking Explorer 32 miles
‘A true ‘get away from it all’ route that explores deep into the Norfolk countryside. There’s little to disturb the peace of this ride, apart from the dramatic appearance of Houghton Hall and its bounding white deer, and an unexpected discovery of German war graves. Fairly gentle ride but challenging undulations in parts.Burnham Market and Burnham Thorpe
The attractive old village of Burnham Market spreads around a large central green and has a pub and several stores. Beyond here, the route skirts the south side of Holkham Park, and there’s an optional diversion into Wells-next-the-Sea, an appealing little port overlooking the marshes – which has plenty of places to stay, including the Crown Hotel (also excellent for a meal or just a drink). Just east of Burnham Market, Burnham Thorpe is the birthplace of Horatio Nelson. South of Burnham Thorpe an optional diversion is past North Creake and South Creake (‘the Creakes’), each with its fine medieval church; North Creake has a coffee shop and remains of an Augustinian abbey. Little Walsingham is a charming old medieval village with an extraordinary shrine built to replicate the Virgin Mary’s home in Nazareth.Useful maps
Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 scale Landranger maps 132 and 133 covers the whole of the Norfolk Coast.
Norfolk Coast Cycleway (King’s Lynn to Cromer and Cromer to Great Yarmouth). Available for £2 from Tourist Information Centres; or £2 plus postage from North Norfolk District Council, Holt Road, Cromer, Norfolk NR27 9EL. Tel: 01263 513811.
Bed and BikeBike friendly places to stay
At Anna's House in Thornham which is close to many of the coastal cycle routes you can hire secure bike lockers which can accommodate up to two bikes and kit. Magazine Wood which is directly on the Peddars Way trail also has bike storage facilities.