Blakeney Point

things to do in autumn in north norfolk

Autumn is a stunning time to explore north Norfolk. It is still warm and it's less crowded to enjoy the beautiful scenery and wonderful wildlife. The leaves are transforming woodlands into a backdrop of red, gold and orange, fungi springs up overnight and the skies are full of migrating birds. 
Here’s our list of best things to do in Autumn in north Norfolk.

Heritage Open Days: Each year in September, the annual Norfolk Heritage Open Days, enables you to discover some of north Norfolk’s hidden gems and historic sites and buildings celebrating of the area’s heritage. Spanning two September weekends (11 to 20 September 2020), the Heritage Open Days festival is a fantastic and unique opportunity to explore some of north Norfolk's normally hidden sites as well as some more familiar landmarks.

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Cromer Musuem

Explore the Deep History Coast: This unique stretch of coastline is home to some of the earliest evidence of human British civilisation with footsteps left by the UK's first tourists nearly a million years ago. The world's biggest mammoth skeleton remains were found at West Runton and a 500,000 year old flint axe was discovered in Happisburgh. Autumn is an ideal time to explore the Deep History Coast when the beaches are less busy to hunt for fossils and walk the Discovery Trail.

THINGS TO DO IN AUTUMN ON THE DEEP HISTORY COAST

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Go for a wander: There’s no better time to put on the walking boots and stride out through the north Norfolk countryside with beautiful autumnal colours and crisp leaves underfoot. Head to the parks and forests of north Norfolk to enjoy the total beauty of this season. The National Trust’s Sheringham Park has mature woodlands with spectacular viewing points over the surrounding countryside and coastline with excellent pathways. Not to be missed is the peaceful woodland of Holt Country Park where you can be surrounded by Scots pine and native broad-leaved trees, one of the best green spaces in the country. Foxley Wood is Norfolk’s largest ancient woodland and in the autumn, you can immerse yourself in the sheer silence of the woods. Bacton Wood, also known as Witton Wood, has ancient Sessile Oaks among more than 30 different species of tree including pines, Douglas fir and larch, all set in 280 acres. Or have a walk along the marshes at Brancaster Staithe which is stunning at this time of year.

SEE OUR TOP FIVE AUTUMN WALKS

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Autumn woods

Head to the coast: For a bracing walk, head to the coast and it’s likely it’ll just be you, the shoreline, the sea and sky. Take a walk along crunchy shingle at Blakeney Point, in the dunes at Sea Palling or stride out along the wide expanses of Wells, Holkham or Brancaster.

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Brancaster Beach

Go birdwatching: Autumn is the time when thousands of birds migrate south from the Arctic. Marvel at the V-shaped squadrons of pink-footed geese from Iceland and Greenland along the north coast at Titchwell and Cley and wonder at the waders in The Wash at Snettisham. There are large numbers of geese and ducks returning for the winter and thousands of thrushes and finches migrate, returning from their summer breeding grounds. Robins, starlings and goldcrests arrive for winter and you may be lucky enough to have a sighting of wrynecks.

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Pink Footed Geese at Cley

Wonder at the wildlife: The Broads National Park is home to more than a quarter of the rarest wildlife in the UK. During Autumn, you may catch a glimpse of an otter as well as the distinctive markings of the Bearded Tit, which lives in the wetlands. In October, you can still see butterflies before they hibernate for the winter. There is a better chance of a sighting by visiting one of the coastal reserves, such as NWT Holme Dunes, where you may be fortunate to see the mottled grey and brown graylings, and small coppers sitting on flower heads.

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Otter at the Broads National Park

Get up close to deer: Head to Holkham Hall, to see a deer rut during the Autumn season. This is when stags use their antlers to fight rival males to attract females. 

The Houghton Estate is renowned for its unusual herd of white fallow deer that roam in the 450 acres of parkland surrounding the hall. There are over 1,300 deer and 12 different species. Recently, smaller groups of vulnerable and endangered pecies from around the world, such as Pere David from China, and Sambar and Baasingha from India, have been added, as part of a conservation initiative in collaboration with our partners in zoology.

Check opening days and times as well as how to visit (pre-booking), so you know before you go.

Deer at Holkham Park

Star-gazing: North Norfolk boasts some of the UK’s darkest skies with clear views making it the perfect place for a spot of star-gazing. Kelling Heath Holiday Park runs Star Parties (check in advance) where you can go along with a blanket, a flask and your binoculars and marvel at the stars above.

WATCH 'STARGAZER' VIDEO FILMED AT KELLING HEATH

Northern Lights at Cley WIndmill

Feast on local seasonal produce: There are so many lovely eateries such as pubs, restaurants and cafes to choose from in north Norfolk with locally sourced, seasonal food, often with a warm fire and even warmer welcome. This is the time of year to try local apples, broccoli, blackberries and mussels, to name a few. You can also buy local seasonal food from delis and farmers’ markets to create your own delicious dishes.

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Mosey around a museum: Many of the museums in north Norfolk show unique collections and exhibitions, providing an insight into the past - ideal for days out and family fun, especially on cold and rainy days. Check in advance of your visit for opening days and times as well as how to visit (pre-booking, limited capacity).

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RNLI Henry Blogg Museum