Why Norfolk is one of the best places to see nature up close

Red Deer in the fields at Snettisham Park Farm. Picture: Ian Burt

Red Deer in the fields at Snettisham Park Farm. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Archant

Norfolk and Waveney is perhaps one of the best areas in country for seeing the natural world up close.

Africa Alive lead qualified keeper Zoe Nunn with at the giraffe enclosure during the parks annual an

Africa Alive lead qualified keeper Zoe Nunn with at the giraffe enclosure during the parks annual animal count.Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

As well as an array of different fields and woods, there are several internationally-recognised zoos and nature reserves which thousands of visitors flock to every year.

The Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA) has two parks in the area - Africa Alive! in Kessingland and Banham Zoo, near Attleborough. There are more than 80 species of animal at each, including giraffes, meerkats, lemurs and flamingos.

The RSPB also has nature reserves at Minsmere and Snettisham, where many different types of bird can be spotted by eagle-eyed watchers.

One of the most stunning sights for nature lovers is a murmuration, where thousands of starlings swoop across the sky in a group - making for a terrific spectacle.

The lovebirds are counted during Africa Alivesannual animal count.Picture: Nick Butcher

The lovebirds are counted during Africa Alivesannual animal count.Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher


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And don't forget the coast - the large swathes of beaches along the Norfolk and Suffolk coast also make for good animal sightings, with seals often spotted in places like Lowestoft and even reported sightings of whales of the beach at Cromer.

Penguins preparing to take a dip at the Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary. Picture: Ian Burt

Penguins preparing to take a dip at the Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Ernie the Giant Turtle at the Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary. Picture: Ian Burt

Ernie the Giant Turtle at the Hunstanton Sea Life Sanctuary. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

The starling murmuration at RSPB Minsmere, as captured on camera by Samantha and Tim Seal.

The starling murmuration at RSPB Minsmere, as captured on camera by Samantha and Tim Seal. - Credit: Archant

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