Cycling on Norfolk Country Lanes

Tour Overview.

Land and Sea. Mud and Salt. This self-guided tour of Norfolk flits between the two so that one moment you’ll be taking in the famed coastline and charming seaside towns, and the next you’ll be cycling past grand estates (including the Queen’s!), historic market towns and scenes of everyday farming!

Cycling along coastal promendae from Heecham to Hunstanton

136 miles / 5 Days

Norfolk has a reputation as being flat and uninspiring. True, it is mostly flat (which makes leisurely cycling), but it is anything but boring! Starting from King’s Lynn, less than two hours from London by car or train, you’ll pedal an ancient Roman Road, pass a 12th century castle and get lost in the forested expanse of Sandringham Estate. All before you even reach the coast!

The coastline is recognised as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and its diverse scenery includes the striped cliffs of Hunstanton, the tidal mudflats of Blakeney Reserve and the marshes of Cley. This wild environment supports much wildlife; expect to spot seals sun-bathing, deer galloping and an array of rare birdlife which tempts twitchers from around the country.

After heading inland, you’ll pedal beneath a wide, open sky and along quiet roads where tractors outnumber cars! This is farming country at its most attractive. Market towns punctuate the route, each rekindling a historic prosperity and providing the weary cyclist with a hearty meal and somewhere to rest. By the end of your trip, we’re sure you’ll agree; Norfolk is one of England’s most underrated cycling destinations.

Tour Highlights.

  • Blicking Hall. 17th century house rumoured to be haunted by Anne Boleyn.
  • Anglo-Saxon Burial Mounds; Similar to those seen in Netflix’s The Dig.
  • Castle Rising. One of England’s best preserved castles, built around 1140 and surrounded by massive earthworks.
  • Sandringham House and Estate. Home to four generations of British Monarchs and surrounded by 8,000 hectares of estate.
  • Peddar’s Way. Pedal in the foosteps of Roman legions on this arrow-straight road dated to AD61.
  • Holkham Hall. Building this grand house nearly ruined the 1st Earl of Leicester, and thus it is virtually unchanged since 1762.
  • Coastal Towns: Hunstanton; Wells-next-the-Sea; Blakeney; Cley-next-the-Sea.
  • Market Towns: Aylsham; Little Walsingham.

Summary of the Tour.

  1. King’s Lynn to Hunstanton (25.4 miles)

    The first day, and the objective is to reach the coast. But, in a truly thrilling start, you’ll pedal along an ancient Roman Road, past a 12th-century castle and through the forested expanse of Sandringham Estate before you even get there! From Heecham, keep the sea on your left and let the promenade whir beneath your wheels as you pedal the final miles into Hunstanton.

  2. Hunstanton to Blakeney (28.9 miles)

    Today’s route combines inland sections of rolling chalk and farmland with stretches along the marshes and mudflats of the coast. Spot deer lingering around Holkham Hall and seals sunbathing in Blakeney. Or, if you prefer your animals battered and served with chips, make sure to stop for lunch in Wells-next-the-Sea; possibly the best Fish and Chips anywhere on the coast.

  3. Blakeney to Aylsham (22.8 miles)

    Continue along the coast for another eight miles before waving goodbye and veering inland. After navigating bike trails through the manicured gardens of Sheringham Park, you’ll ride along forgotten country lanes bordered by fields which appear to stretch to the horizon. Overnight in Aylsham, a historic market town which found prosperity in the linen, wool, grain and timber trades.

  4. Aylsham to Little Walsingham (28 miles)

    Compare the grandeur of Blicking Hall, built in 1616 and said to be haunted by Anne Boleyn, with the simple doton-the-map villages that litter rural Norfolk. This is a day of panoramic cycling, with views that stretch to the horizon and an impossibly-vast sky parachuting above. Walsingham was one of Mediaeval Europe’s four great pilgrimage sites, more significant even than Canterbury.

  5. Little Walsingham to King’s Lynn (30.6 miles)

    The empty country lanes and farm-scapes will now be familiar. There’s another arrow-straight stretch of Roman Road, and you’ll also pass Anglo Saxon Burial Mounds. Take a moment to stop and wonder who, or what, might be buried beneath. Back in King’s Lynn, we’re sure you’ll agree, there’s something timeless and fascinating about Norfolk.

Itinerary.

Day 1: King’s Lynn to Hunstanton (25.4 miles)
Day 2: Hunstanton to Blakeney (28.9 miles)
Day 3: Blakeney to Aylsham (22.8 miles)
Day 4: Aylsham to Little Walsingham (28 miles)
Day 5: Little Walsingham to King’s Lynn (30.6 miles)

Dates and Prices.

  • 10th March -
    16th March 2021
    £620

    Luxury Accommodation. Based on Two People Sharing.

  • 10th March -
    16th March 2021
    £520

    Premium Accommodation. Based on Two People Sharing.

Route.

All our routes are available to our Komoot followers.  Follow Cycle Britain on Komoot.

What’s Included.

Accommodation.

5 nights of high-quality accommodation.

Route plans.

Accessible as a GPS track on your phone before you even leave.

Expert staff.

We are available to support your trip and answer any questions.

Luggage Transfer

We carry your bags between hotels so you don’t have to!

Unrivalled knowledge of cycling in Britain.

We pride ourselves as being the experts in British cycling!

What’s Not Included.

A Bike and Helmet.

There are various local rental companies if you don’t wish to bring your own.

A Guide.

This is a self-guided trip, but don’t worry; our route plans are really simple to navigate with. We advise you to have basic bike maintenance skills, such as fixing a puncture.

Transport to/from King’s Lynn.

King's Lynn is easily accessible by car or train.

Travel Insurance.

We highly recommend you purchase travel insurance.

Food.

Most of your accommodation options include breakfast, but lunches, snacks and evening meals are not provided.

Pre-Tour Accommodation

We do not include accommodation in King’s Lynn the night before your tour begins. If you want us to arrange this for you, please let us know and we’ll be happy to help.

Accommodation.

We have accommodation options to suit a range of budgets, however, all have been selected because we are sure you’ll find warm hospitality and enjoy a pleasant, memorable stay there.

Premium: Centrally-located 3 and 4-star hotels and B&B’s where rest and comfort is guaranteed!
Luxury: Expect to arrive and be wow’ed! Our premier package promises accommodation with character; you’ll stay in luxurious 4 and 5-star hotels, old manor houses and even a converted lighthouse!

Trip Suitability.

This is a Grade 1 tour, which means it is suitable ‘for those new to cycling who can ride a bike and are aspiring to do something challenging.’ These routes are ‘gently undulating’ and ‘the aim is to enjoy the outdoors on a relaxed tour’.

The average daily distance is 27 miles and includes daily climbs of 750 feet (230 metres). You can use an electric bike to flatten the hills and make this journey extremely enjoyable.

Gallery.

Frequently Asked Questions.

Do you cater to vegan and vegetarian diets?

Absolutely! Inform us in advance of any dietary requirements and we will be glad to cater to you.

Will we be able to wash our clothes on the trip?

There will be opportunities to wash clothes in your accommodation or at a launderette.

What level of fitness do I need?

This is a Grade 1 tour, which means it is suitable ‘for those new to cycling who can ride a bike and are aspiring to do something challenging.’ These routes are ‘gently undulating’ and ‘the aim is to enjoy the outdoors on a relaxed tour’. Check out our coaching section for more info.

What level of support is offered?

This is a self-guided trip meaning we arrange your hotels, a baggage transfer and provide you with detailed route notes. We remain on hand to answer any questions and offer support.

Can I use an e-bike for this tour?

This route has been designed with electric bikes in mind. All our accommodation options can charge e-bikes batteries overnight.