Where to see seals in Norfolk

If you're coming to Norfolk and want to experience the natural world, you just have to see the seals.

The colony at Blakeney is made up of Common and Grey seals and numbers around 500. Common seals have their young between June and August, and the Greys between November and January. Both suckle their pups for about three weeks during which time they grow very quickly.

The seals are very inquisitive and often pop up and swim around the boats which can usually sail close to the basking seals on the beach which gives a great opportunity for taking pictures.

Grey seals are the larger of the two species, with large speckles on their coats and longer pointed heads with parallel nostrils. The Common seals have a more rounded face with 'v' shaped nostrils.

Trips go from Blakeney harbour and Morston quay, usually lasting from one to two hours, if landing at Blakeney Point where there is a bird reserve, owned by the National Trust. Here you might see Terns in the summer - mainly Common, Sandwich and Little Terns and also Arctic Terns. Many of them begin to arrive from West Africa in April and breed into the season. They make a small scrape in the shingle where they lay their eggs.

On the sands you might also see Oyster Catchers, Ringed Plovers, Turnstones and Dunlin. During the winter months, you might see numbers of duck and geese including Mallard, Widgeon, Teal, Pintail, Pinkfooted Geese. Greylag and Brent Geese usually arrive from October onwards.

There are also seal trips from Hunstanton to see the group of Common seals in the Wash. This area has a large expanse of shallow tidal sandbanks and is fed by four tributaries.

You might also see seals turning up in the water or on the beach around the Norfolk coast, in Wells harbour or on the sandbanks at Holkham, or you might spot them bobbing around at Horsey, Sea Palling and other beaches on the eastern coast.

There are also seasonal trips, May to September, from Great Yarmouth central beach to see the colony at Scroby Sands.

The seals travel on land at just 3 or 4 miles an hour but can reach 30 to 40mph when swimming submerged!

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