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9 winter walks with cute café pitstops

Blow away the cobwebs with these great walks and slightly cheaper eats along the way!

If you’re off for a stomp in this weather (hat and gloves not optional), you need sustenance right? Hot sausage roll and a slice of cake – that should keep those energy levels up!

1. Ringstead Circular Walk & Berni Beans, Hunstanton

This 7-mile circular walk takes you around the pretty Norfolk village of Ringstead and its surrounding countryside. It starts (and ends) at the Gin Trap Inn, taking in a section of the Peddars Way, Sedgeford borehole (where local drinking water is drawn from the rock below) and Courtyard Farm – home of conservationist, Lord Melchett.

The walk then continues up and onto some quiet grassy tracks with magnificent views over the coastline, before continuing down onto quiet country lanes and back into the village.

Warm up in the quirky Berni Beans tearoom, which is a short drive away but worth it to experience the arty, vintage decor and unmissable afternoon teas. The tearoom also does knockout Sunday roasts.

2.Horsey National Trust beach walk & Poppylands Cafe 

A short 2 1/2 mile circular walk starting at the National Trust car park (bring change) and along the top of the dunes for approximately 25 minutes. There is a smaller viewing platform about 1o minutes walk from the carpark – suitable for little legs, especially if it’s cold – it can get very windy!

You can walk back the way you came or drop down behind the dunes onto the more sheltered coastal path.

Then step back in time at Poppylands tea room – an homage to vintage 1940’s where you’ll be served hearty home-cooked food. There’s also a great vintage shopping floor upstairs and a chance to get a quarter of cola cubes at the wonderful retro sweet store.

3. West Harling circular walk & Peppers Tea Room  

cafe table chairs wooden dresser counter with cakes

Impress your family and friends with your archaeological knowhow on this five-mile walk in the Brecks area. Along the way you’ll pass through the campsite at Thorpe Woodlands which was the site of a mediaeval settlement until the early eighteenth century. At West Harling Heath you can see a Bronze Age burial ground (or Tumuli if you want to use the correct terminology… maybe a step too far – don’t blow your cover!).

You now deserve to feed that almighty brain of yours with a stop-off at Peppers Tea Room, a 17th Century chocolate box cafe serving great homemade cakes and savoury treats. At the time of writing Peppers is still closed after New Year, but they’re offering Afternoon Tea and Cheese & Deli boxes for local delivery and collection – ideal for a winter picnic.

4. East Wretham Circular Walk, Thetford Forest & Lime Kiln Kitchen

This 7-mile circular walk follows part of the Peddars Way and the Great Eastern Pingo Trail. It will take you past a Saxon Cemetery, various meres (ponds) and the site of a Stone Age settlement.

If you want somewhere a little more child-friendly, High Lodge is my go-to place in the Brecks, with 26 walking trails including an Adventure Sculpture Trail for kids. There’s also a fantastic adventure play area in the woods, Go Ape, bike hire and Segways.

Lime Kiln Kitchen is not far away at Thetford Garden Centre. Don’t judge – this place is incredibly cool, with it’s eclectic decor ranging from Colonial to Victorian and a nod to Art Deco. Big oversized sofas and a roaring fire – perfect place to warm up and indulge yourself with an afternoon tea.

5. Burnhams Circular Walk & Tilly’s Cafe, Burnham Market

A 4.5 mile walk through the atmospheric salt marshes and past a couple of pretty churches. Ladies you might like to take a detour at Burnham Market and look around some of the lovely little boutiques!

Then time for tea at Tilly’s, which is open Monday to Saturday for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea, all of which include freshly-baked goodies.

6. Walcott circular walk & Small Sticks Cafe, Happisburgh  

Leave Happisburgh along the clifftop path and you’ll walk above the site where early human footprints (over 800,000 years old) were found in sediment on the beach in 2013, famously the earliest evidence of human occupation found outside of Africa (good educational fact for the kids). Plus, further along the cliff are the remains of a World War II radar station.

I’m not being clever, I’m referencing all this stuff just in case you need to try and motivate the kids! You’re also not far from the iconic Happisburgh lighthouse – the oldest working lighthouse in East Anglia and the only independently run lighthouse in the whole of Great Britain.

Smallsticks cafe is a cute little place to grab a bite (excellent fresh seafood) at Cart Gap – a stone’s throw from the beach and a slightly shorter walk to the lighthouse if you just want a good hit of fresh air.

7. Hunstanton walks – The Thornham Deli & Cafe & The Old Boat House Cafe 

Depending on how many Quality Street you ate over Christmas, there are a few lovely walks here varying in distance.

If the tide is out you can walk along the beach to Old Hunstanton and around the multicoloured cliffs, or a slightly easier option on the calves is to take the cliff top path. Walk up behind the beach huts and on to Holme Dunes. From 11 Feb, you can stop off en route in our 2018 Muddy Award Winning Cafe, The Old Boat House Cafe!

Thornham Deli

Now if you’re like me and ate the whole tin – continue along the Norfolk Coast Path through Holme Dunes Nature Reserve and onto Thornham (6 miles total). Here you will find the glorious Thornham Deli and cafe packed with all sorts of yummy treats.

8.  Wells-next-the-Sea & The Beach Cafe

A great walk for all ages and dogs plus plenty of parking!

We tend to do a circular walk (about an hour)- head onto the beach and then walk back through the woods finishing at the very funky Beach Cafe with a log burner to thaw out by.

9. Winterton beach & Dunes Cafe 

Possibly my favourite beach walk and I’ll definitely see you up there with our three very excited hounds. The kids – who admittedly will not be so excited -can be easily bribed by a hot choc and warm sausage roll at the Dunes Cafe.

So there we are – we’ve come full circle to sausage rolls again! More details on the walks including maps can be found HERE

If you fancy a walk with a little tipple, check out our Winter Pub Walks!

Find more ideas here

CafesEatMost ReadThings to doWalks

2 comments on “9 winter walks with cute café pitstops”

  • edinchief January 24, 2022

    Thanks for the recommendation Kevin, we’ll go and check it out!

    Reply
  • Kevin January 21, 2022

    Much closer to Ringstead ( in the next village of Thornham) is the Thornham Deli. And Cafe next to the village hall.

    Reply

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