Dog friendly days out in Norfolk

Pet friendly

Dog on a boat in the Norfolk Broads

There's plenty which is great about Norfolk, from the scenery to the laid-back pace of life, and one of those things is definitely just how dog-friendly Norfolk is. From vast, open beaches welcoming dogs year-round to cafes and restaurants with dog-friendly signs in the window, here are just some of the best pet-friendly places to visit and things to do if you're thinking of bringing your dog along to explore Norfolk too.

Attractions, trips and tours

Beans Boat Trips, Morston

Seals on the salt flats of Blakeney Point in Norfolk
See the seals basking at Blakeney Point

The Bean family have been running boat trips to Blakeney Point since the mid-1930s, passing the company through generations of the family. Today they have six boats which take visitors out past the salt marshes to see the hundreds of common and grey seals which rest on the four mile long sandy spit. Well behaved dogs are welcome aboard Bean’s Boats!

Bure Valley Railway, Aylsham

The Bure Valley in Norfolk
The unspoilt scenery of the Bure Valley

With their own resident Cocker Spaniel, Henry, the Bure Valley Railway offers a very dog-friendly day out in Norfolk. Take an 18-mile round trip following the River Bure through meadows, pasture and the Norfolk Broads to the final destination of Wroxham.

Welcome aboard the trains, beside the line and in the shop and ticket office, the only place they are asked to stay out of is the Whistlestop Café. You’ll always find dog bowls full of water to keep your pooch refreshed and there are even dog parking pitches where you can leave your pet while you grab a cup of tea in the café.

Broads Tours, Wroxham

River boats on the Norfolk Broads
River boats on the Norfolk Broads

Based in the ‘capital of the Broads’, Wroxham, Broads Tours operates river trips and also provides boats for personal hire, on top of a range of special trips and extra events. It’s a great way to delve deeper into the rural Broads and to get up close to the incredible range of wildlife in the area.

On board a river tour, you'll be able to enjoy refreshments, a licensed bar and live commentary all about your beautiful surroundings. Your dog is welcome aboard the boats for the small fee of £1.

Beaches

Holkham Beach

Sandy beach at Holkham in Norfolk
A sandy beach which stretches for miles

We have been raving about Holkham beach recently, and we’re not about to stop! The beach stretches between Burnham Overy Staithe to Wells-next-the-Sea, offering miles of untouched sands where you can let your dog off the lead to run completely free.

Despite the popularity of this beach, it is so vast that it will feel like you have the place completely to yourself. In 2015, Holkham Estate won the best beach category in The Kennel Club’s ‘Be Dog Friendly Awards’, so that has to be saying something.

Winterton-on-Sea Beach

Sand dunes at Winterton-on-Sea beach in Norfolk
Your dog will love running around on the sand dunes

Another long sandy beach where there are absolutely no dog restrictions in place. The section between Winterton and Horsey is home to a colony of grey seals who you’ll see relaxing on the sand or you might spot their heads bobbing amongst the waves – definitely a sight to behold. Race along the soft sand and paddle in the waves or explore Winterton dunes which stretch as far as the eye can see.

Snettisham

Dried mud flats at Snettisham beach in Norfolk
Atmospheric skies at Snettisham

While this isn’t a typical bucket and spade beach, with its shingle and mud flats, it is fantastic for dog walkers and it’s quite romantic too! As one of the few beaches in Norfolk that enjoys a sunset, it’s a lovely place to visit in the early evening, when the sun begins to melt into the water. With no dog restrictions, Snettisham is another beach you can walk uninterrupted for miles. Backed by RSPB Snettisham Reserve, it’s a birdwatchers paradise.

Discover even more great seaside spots with our full guide to dog-friendly beaches in Norfolk

Food and drink

Well’s Beach Café, Wells-next-the-Sea

The Beach Café in Wells-next-the-Sea certainly doesn’t treat your pet any different and dogs are welcome inside the café. That’s not all though, there’s also a ‘Wash ‘n’ Wag’ dog wash which you can use for free to clean off muddy paws and sandy coats after a long walk. This is pretty handy if you’re planning on getting in the car soon.

The Beach Café is a popular post-walk stop off in both summer and winter and it serves a variety of light meals and snacks using local produce. Definitely one to add to the list!

The Orange Tree, Thornham

There’s nothing better than eating out and knowing that your four-legged friend is being catered for too – he is part of the family after all. The Orange Tree in Thornham is a beautiful village pub, where you dog can sample something from its very own doggy menu including delicacies such as pigs ears and gravy or bone with marrow. How great is that?

Deepdale Café, Burnham Deepdale

Enjoy a steaming hot cup of coffee after a walk on Brancaster beach, or start your day with a hearty full English at Deepdale Café. Happy to welcome dogs in the indoor dog room or in outside seating area, they can chill out while you get ready for the day.

Dog-friendly accommodation

If you're planning on having your next adventure with your pet in Norfolk, our dog-friendly cottages in Norfolk offer the perfect places to put your feet (or paws) up. Choose from over 80 great places to stay across the county where both humans and dogs are welcome.

The Farm House at Shelton - dog friendly cottage in Norfolk
The Farm House at Shelton (code: 42594)

Discover even more of dog-friendly Norfolk

It’s great that there are so many places you can take your pet for a dog-friendly holiday in Norfolk - and there's much more to be discovered. Don’t forget all the country parks and stately homes which offer acres of land to explore, as well as a whole host of other dog-friendly beaches!

If you’ve stumbled across any dog-friendly gems in Norfolk that we haven’t mentioned, we would love to hear from you. You can get in touch via Facebook or Twitter.

Lastly, if you’re heading to the coast soon, make sure you download our Dog Spot Beach Guide app to help you find essential information on beaches all over the UK – most importantly, if there are any dog restrictions!

Posted by Hannah on 10th April 2018