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Holkham beach

22 practices to well-being in Norfolk

You live a busy life with a hectic schedule. You’re tired all the time and stressed. If you tick those two boxes, then you need to spend time in Norfolk. Come and recharge your batteries, find some balance and calm, where there are no distractions, and rediscover a state of being comfortable, healthy and happy in stunning surroundings.

Anyone can do it and it doesn’t have to cost anything. Better still, do it with friends or family.

Here’s our top tips for places to go and things to do for well-being and mindfulness when you visit Norfolk. This is the place to be aware of living in the present moment.

What better way to finding peace than sitting by the sea and watching the sun sink down to the horizon? Hunstanton is the only west-facing seaside resort on the east coast so they’re particularly spectacular there.

Hunstanton

Cromer Pier

Or enjoy the added drama of the Victorian pier at Cromer, which has the world’s last end-of-pier theatre.

Cromer Pier theatre

Visit Thetford Forest but don’t just stay at High Lodge and enjoy the facilities. Take a walk on the quiet routes, or the Pingo Trail, and commune with nature. Listen to the birds in the trees. Be very still and you might be lucky enough to come across wild deer or horses.

Pingo Trail

Off-road cycling in Thetford Forest

Or hire a bike and pedal gently through the huge woodland on waymarked trails.

Explore Thetford Forest

We all know the meditative benefits of being by water, so what could be better than being in the Norfolk Broads – 125 miles of navigable, lock-free waterways. Hire a boat and float gently along…

Explore the Broads

Sit by the water at somewhere like Fairhaven Water and Woodland Garden.

Fairhaven Water Gardens

Or hire a cycle for a slow pedal by the water.

Cycling in Norfolk

Norfolk has hundreds of miles of short and long distance trails, many of them circular.

Pick a stretch of the Norfolk Coast Path to walk. It’s popular to get the coastal hopper bus to return to where you started.

Inland, you could try Peddar’s Way, which follows the old Roman route up to the coast in the west of the county.

Walking in south Norfolk
Alternatively, walk through the tranquil and gently rolling countryside of south Norfolk on the Boudicca Way, which takes in the old Roman town of Venta Icenorum at Caistor St Edmund outside Norwich.

Weavers’ Way, between Great Yarmouth and North Walsham, takes you through stunning Broadland scenery.

If you’re feeling a little more energetic, you could even try a little jog.

Walking routes in Norfolk

You don’t have to be religious to enjoy the calming solemnity of Norfolk’s churches. They provide a wonderful opportunity to sit quietly in peaceful surroundings.

Norfolk has a wealth of medieval wool churches, built by pious landowners made rich by the wool trade who wanted to show their devotion.

Norfolk churches

In the middle of the vibrant city of Norwich you could find calm in the magnificent setting of the Norman Cathedral.

12 reasons to visit Norwich Cathedral

With over 90 miles of coastline there are lots of opportunities to take a relaxing swim when you visit Norfolk. You have to get the timing right, but for shallow, warm tidal pools head to Holkham as the water is going out. These quickly inundated when the sea comes back in, but for a couple of hours you’ll have swimming to savour.

Holkham beach

You could also try wild swimming in the cool, clear waters of a secret stretch hidden in the countryside. Try Santon on the Little Ouse at Thetford, Lammas near Buxton on the River Bure, or Outney Common on the Norfolk-Suffolk border close to Bungay.

There are wonderful gardens to enjoy across Norfolk – things of beauty and great places for mindfulness meditation.

East Ruston Old Vicarage has one of the most celebrated privately-owned gardens in Norfolk.

East Ruston Old Vicarage

Houghton Hall’s five acre walled garden with its contemporary sculptures is a thing of beauty.

Houghton Hall

If you want time for quiet meditation whilst picking up some growing tips, then head to Felbrigg’s Walled Garden...

Felbrigg Hall

Or another National Trust property at Oxburgh Hall.

Oxburgh Hall

And a third, Blickling Hall and Estate offers care-free walks in landscaped gardens and woodland. Look out for Norfolk’s only pyramid!

Blickling

If you’d like to see what man and nature can achieve together, then head to Sheringham Park, 1000 acres of natural beauty with landscaping by Humphry Repton. From the gazebo and look-out you can contemplate the stunning views along the coast.

Sheringham Park

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