The spring is an excellent time to go away in Britain and Ireland because temperatures are warming up, flowers and trees are bursting to life and people have a spring in their step as they say goodbye to the winter.
If you’ve not visited the Norfolk Broads National Park before then this spring could be just the time to do it.
The Broads themselves are man-made and consist of over 125 miles of navigable, lock free waterways that meander through the beautiful countryside and gorgeous towns and villages. Locals like to think of it as the Venice of the East!
The Broads and Rivers
The Broads can be split up into the Northern and Southern side, both offering beautiful scenery and many places to explore.
If you are planning to visit the Norfolk Broads this spring then you are likely going to try your hand at boating and there are many places that will teach you how and what to do. The Broads are a great place to learn and you’ll find a lot of first timers, with no locks and easy to navigate rivers and waterways it makes for hassle free boating.
The River Bude in the Northern Broads is said to be one of the prettiest in the area, starting from the gorgeous village of Coltishall this river flows through the hustle and bustle of Wroxham, cruises on into Horning (which has loads of great riverside pubs should you fancy a little break or a spot of lunch) and on into Great Yarmouth.
Another favourite in the Northern Broads is the River Ant and Barton Broad which is a much more picturesque route that still has some beautiful towns along the way.
Heading down to the Southern Broads you’ll find the River Yare and Breydon Water, the biggest of the rivers in the Broads.
This is a tranquil and beautiful route travelling through the gorgeous countryside and eventually coming out onto the vast but shallow expanse of water at Breydon Water.
The least typical of all of the rivers is the River Waveney and Oulton Broad. Take this route and you’ll cross the Norfolk/Suffolk border and head through Olaves and Somerleyton and onto the lovely market town of Beccles where you could hop off and have a mooch.
Towns and City
The Norfolk Broads is actually the only National Park that contains a city as well as many lovely towns and villages so if you do visit the Norfolk Broads this spring you can take your pick and go and explore.
Norwich is the city that you’ll find in the Norfolk Broads and is an attractive, University city, but if you’ve come away to get your countryside fix you’ll probably avoid the city and head for the many gorgeous towns and villages that the Norfolk Broads have to offer.
The town of Potter Heigham is a great place to hire your boat and so may well mark the start of your journey, it is home to a bridge that is one of the most difficult to navigate under in the Broads, if you aren’t experienced on a boat then we’d probably suggest avoiding this one but it is fun to go and watch the other sailors navigate it!
Woodbastwick comes highly recommended for a visit, this quieter and more tranquil of places has twice won the ‘Best Kept Village’ award and is a beautiful place with a medieval, thatched church. It is also home to Woodforde’s Brewery and The Fur and Feather so you can’t go far wrong if you like a nice pub lunch and a pint.
Aylsham is another lovely spot, this charming market town in the upper reaches of the beautiful River Bure has the northern terminus of the Bure Valley Railway close by which runs to Brampton, Buxton and Coltishall, for the train enthusiasts amongst you.
Come to the Norfolk Broads this spring and expect an abundance of wildlife, it really is a great spot to see English nature at its finest.
Many people come to the area for bird watching alone, with spring and autumn bringing hosts of migrant birds to the area.
You can also expect to see 25 species of freshwater fish, otters, butterflies, dragonflies and so much more wildlife in abundance.