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Three Go To Norfolk - Days 1 to 5

Day 1 to 5 Away.

Day 1

The car was packed and we set off around the scheduled 1030am departure time.

All was plain sailing until on the A2 we began the descent down the hill, after the Bluewater turn off, towards the M25 for the Dartford Crossing.

Solid traffic over the flyover and the same nonsensical two lanes into one to join the already stationery traffic.

We wanted to get off to get into the service area at Thurrock and so chose the left tunnel. From the A2 to the entrance to the tunnel it took 40 minutes. A further ten until we parked up.

A takeaway Costa later we were on the road. We planned to stop again before arriving at Claire's sister's house near Stowmarket.

The service area at Colchester across the A12 from the football ground was packed. So I aborted. In the end we stopped just before Ipswich.

In total it was about 4 hours from home to the A12/A14 roundabout just south of Ipswich.

We had a pleasant couple of hours with lunch and scones before the last hour's drive to the Cottage with a quick drop in at Tesco.

The cottage is self contained in the garden of the the main house. One bedroom, kitchen and lounge.

The garden is L-shaped and secure with fences all around.

We had a few problems with Reggie overnight as he wanted to be on the bed. In the end he found his own bed and we got some sleep.

Day 2

We had a late start after the rough night with Reggie.

After breakfast we got togged up and chose Old Hunstanton as the destination.

The beach there is dog friendly all year around and there's a big parking area.

After one false start where the satnav took us to the wrong place, we eventually parked. It's about £2 an hour. Four quid later we set off along the top of the cliff to the Lighthouse Café.

Lunch for us. Good value sandwiches. So-so coffee.

Nearby are two buildings. The lighthouse itself, and the Coastguard look out building.

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And then to the beach. Both of us had shorts on so paddling was okay but we had forgotten the aqua shoes at home. Still carrying trainers wasn't that difficult.

The sea was about a quarter of s mile out and it looked as though the tide was going out.

I let Reggie off the lead do he could run free. He loves the sea and was soon enjoying himself.

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We stayed there until the parking was almost up. So we walked back, dried feet and drove back to the cottage.

This time via Morrison's to get dinner.

An evening if relaxing to follow...

Where tomorrow?

Day 3

Today's visit was to the National Trust site at Blickling Estate.

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Nissan Connect claimed it was around 19.5 miles away but the cross country journey seemed more like 50. It took over an hour.

On arrival I found a good parking place. As it was grass with no marked spaces I did leave plenty of room to get the back door open to sort Reggie out.

We had a coffee whilst we perused the map.

Some areas are dog friendly and that includes both the café by the entrance and the Courtyard restaurant nearer the house.

We decided on the Lake Walk and set off. It says it's 1.9 miles but my phone registered that I walked 3.1 miles!

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I brought the Nikon D50 with me. It's bulkier than a phone but generally takes good photos.

The walk is around the outside of the main house and garden. It's a little uneven in places. One stumble and I felt something rip. Yes. My shorts. Rent asunder around the undercarriage.

After the walk we retired to the café and enjoyed a sausage roll with Reggie. Washed down with Lipton's Lemon Tea.

Rather than "enjoy" the country lanes on the way back I set the navigation for Aylsham Station.

This is the northernmost station on the Bure Valley Light Railway.

I wanted to see what it was like and maybe see the trains. On the platform were a couple of diesels.

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I like heritage railways but Reggie doesn't.

From here we returned to Clinton Cottage but via the more major roads, A140 and A47, rather than the potholed back lanes.

Once back it was time to sit in the garden with a book/kindle and a large mug of tea.

Tomorrow. Bressingham Gardens. Claire to meet her sister Sally for a wander about. The site looks positively dog unfriendly and despite another railway 🚂 museum I need to look for something Reggie and I can do....

Day 4

Up and out at 10am. It's cloudy today with a chance of rain early.

Today we have two destinations. Claire is meeting sister Sally to look at the gardens at Bressingham. Reggie not allowed in the garden.

There is also a garden centre where Reggie can go, and a Steam Railway 🚂 where he can't.

So the plan is to drop her off and head to a nearby fen and have a walk.

Stage one successful and we met up with Sally. Whilst there I took a photo of the big steam engine outside.

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Stage two to find Redgrave and Lopham Fen. It's dog friendly. Luckily it is signposted off the A1066 about two miles west of Bressingham.

Once parked and Reggie on the lead we checked the walks board. I chose the spider trail. It's only 2kms but with iffy looking clouds that looked enough.

We had gone less than half a mile when we came across evidence of cows. A lot of evidence laid like land mines all over the paths.

In fact they were bullocks. A group of around a dozen were ahead. Mostly ignoring us but Reggie was reticent. One of the bullocks followed us. When I stopped it stopped until after about 50 yards it gave up.

Of the famous raft spider 🕷️ we saw nowt.

We did see a small brown deer. When I say we I mean me. Reggie spending his time sniffing the undergrowth.

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Maybe not the best wildlife photography...

We had a few stops for Reggie to have a drink. Then as we neared the visitor centre I saw the Lopham Loop, a 500m loop.

It was only as I saw the "land mines" that I realised we had joined the Spider Trail. Luckily no bullocks!

Then it began to rain. Back at the car, despite marked spaces, some 🤡 had parked so close I couldn't open the back door to get Reggie into his seat and harness.

Eventually we arrived back as Bressingham about 1220.

We had lunch and there are four tables, effectively in the entrance hall to the garden centre, where dogs are allowed. We had a table and lunch.

Whilst they went have a look around I went and put Reggie in the car for a rest, and went to watch the little steam train.

Once we said our goodbyes we headed towards Diss and Wymondham, stopping at Waitrose to shop for dinner tonight and tomorrow. Also picked up some beer and cider.

Tomorrow? Rain forecast. Maybe a "local" day.

Day 5

Raining.

It was forecast but was supposed to have been over by lunchtime. So we packed up the car and set off for Wells next the Sea. We picked the car park at Holkham Beach.

It looked to have dried up before we got there but it was cold and windy. We paid to park and had a coffee before a walk to the dog friendly beach, and then along the edge of the harbour.

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In the end we gave up and set off for Wells itself. Jam packed. Nowhere to park so we headed along the coast road towards Cromer before heading for home.

Eventually arriving back at Clinton Cottage at around 4.45pm.

Snacks and Kindle time.

Tomorrow the weather is slightly better before it all turns to shit on Thursday. So where to?

Posted by InvictaMoto 15:17 Archived in England Tagged norfolk

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