Monday, 29 June 2015


Whether you prefer countryside or beach, it’s time to nip to Norfolk

Written by Wendy Gomersall
As the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – plus their two children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte – settle into their family home, Anmer Hall, a Georgian mansion on the Queen’s private Sandringham Estate, the spotlight is on Norfolk as a getaway destination.

The county has wonderful countryside and beaches, splendid hotels and B&Bs, and picturesque towns and villages – I love Fakenham and Burnham Market – packed with tempting boutiques and plenty of great pubs and restaurants.

Norfolk has its fair share of visitor attractions and sightseeing, too, not least Sandringham itself – – stunning Holkham Beach, with its decorative beach huts, Wells-next-the-Sea, also with a selection of stunnng beach huts, Pensthorpe Natural Park – – 500-acre reserve and former host of BBC Springwatch, plus Titchwell Marsh Nature Reserve – – owned and managed by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.

Relaunched in May 2013, the 26-room Congham Hall Hotel, Grimston, near King’s Lynn, has 30 acres of parkland, including orchards and its renowned Herb Gardens. Its midweek, two-night Summer Garden Offer, from £499 for two sharing, includes dinner, bed, breakfast, two tickets to Houghton Hall’s LightScape exhibition and a trug of three types of herbs to take home.

Four nights for the price of three (same basis) costs £748.50 and includes two tickets to Sandringham. The offer is available Sunday to Thursday until 28 July.

Congham’s new illustrated guide, The Magnificent Seven Norfolk Gardens, is a 90-mile, self-guided circuit available online or as a hard copy from the hotel’s reception. The trail features the hotel’s own herb collection of 400 varieties – some rare, such as goat’s rue, which was once used to try to treat victims of the plague – as well as Sandringham Gardens.


Titchwell Manor, Titchwell, near Brancaster, offers three minibreaks for food lovers. Each includes a visit to a local producer of oysters, quail or venison, a picnic lunch and, later, five-course dinner prepared by head chef Eric Snaith. Choices include the Gourmet Quail Odyssey, visiting Great Ryburgh; the Gourmet Venison Odyssey at Houghton Hall, and the Gourmet Oyster Odyssey to Brancaster Staithe Harbour where guests will be guided to the oyster beds to see how these delicacies are farmed.

A former farmhouse dating from 1896, Titchwell Manor has 27 rooms, from Victorian manor bedrooms to contemporary herb-garden rooms. Each break costs from £830 for two people and includes two nights’ B&B, à la carte dinner on the first night, five-course tasting dinner on the second night, picnic lunch and drinks, plus demonstrations by Eric Snaith and producers.


Contact Wendy at 
Prices are correct at the time of going to press.

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