Five walks to experience the beauty of the Broads National Park

Barton Broad - Its tranquil setting makes Lynn Utting happy. Picture: LYNN UTTING

Barton Broad - Its tranquil setting makes Lynn Utting happy. Picture: LYNN UTTING - Credit: Lynn Utting

The Broads National Park are made up of a network of more than 125 miles of waterways that are teeming with wildlife and history. 

Exploring the Broads by foot makes for some fantastic walks, ranging from a gentle evening stroll to a weekend-long backpacking adventure. 

Here are five walks that showcase the beautiful landscape of the Broads.

1. Irstead Staithe Circular

The Irstead Staithe Circular may be only a short stroll at three miles long but it is also one of the prettiest. The circular trail takes you along the Barton Broad board walk, which snakes through swampy woodland towards a clearing that offers panoramic views of the broad. If you are lucky, you may spot common terns, kingfishers and even otters. The walk continues to Neatishead before returning to Irstead.

Hickling Broad. Picture: James Bass

Hickling Broad is a quiet and tranquil space - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2012

2. Hickling Broad 

Slightly longer at five miles, this walk travels around a Norfolk Wildlife Trust-managed nature reserve. As you meander along the reedbeds and water banks, you'll likely see a number of bird species. Marsh harriers, avocets and oyster catchers have all made their home at Hickling. As an added bonus, the Pleasure Boat Inn can be visited along the way for a short break. 

The River Yare on the Norfolk Broads. Picture: Denise Bradley

It is a long walk, but Wherryman's Way is a brilliant trail to explore - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2012

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3. Wherryman's Way

For a longer expedition, the Wherryman's Way is a great choice, and travels from Norwich along the River Yare to Great Yarmouth. Sculptures and information panels are hidden along the walk, adding something unexpected as you pass the natural scenery. At 35 miles long, the walk may be best split into two or three days. 

A lone reed isolated against the blue sky with Thurne Mill in the background.Picture: James Bass

Thurne Mill is one of the most photographed landmarks on the Broads - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2012

4. Thurne Mill walk

 This walk goes past one of the most photographed landmarks in Norfolk, the white-painted Thurne windmill. The mill was built in 1820 and it still stands tall amongst its surroundings. The walk is only 3.3 miles and can be started at the Lion Inn pub.

Breydon water .Picture: James Bass

The marshes around Breydon Water have an abundance of wildlife - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2014

5. Halvergate and Berney Marshes

Explore the reed-lined marshland of Halvergate and Berney marshes with this great circular route. At 7.5 miles long, it will take four hours to complete the journey through the flood banks of Breydon Water.  Hopefully along the way you'll spot wigeon or shelducks. 

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