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Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path

Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path

Excerpt:
Practical information for the walker


Contents | Introduction | About the Peddars Way & Norfolk Coast Path | Practical information for the walker | Itineraries | Using this guide | Sample route guide: Knettishall Heath to Little Cressingham


 

Practical information for the walker


ACCOMMODATION
Accommodation is available along the length of the Peddars Way and Norfolk
Coast Path. However, there is not a lot of choice along the Peddars Way, which
passes through a thinly populated part of the county, and on occasions there are
just one or two options each night. In these instances you may find it difficult
to pick and choose something appropriate for your budget so may opt to detour
from the path to one of the more substantial, nearby villages or towns, where
you will generally find a wider range of places to stay. Once you arrive on the
coast there is more choice, from campsites to luxury hotels. The route guide
(Part 4) includes a full selection of places to stay both on the trail and in the
nearby villages.


Book all accommodation in advance, especially during the high season
(Easter to September). Pre-planning is crucial, particularly for barren areas such
as the start of the Peddars Way. Also take into account the fact that although
there are fewer people on the trail outside the summer season there are, how-
ever, fewer beds as some establishments shut down over the winter months.

Camping
Camping is an excellent way of immersing yourself in a landscape and there is
a great deal of satisfaction to be gained from spending both the day and night
in the great outdoors. Technically wild camping is not permitted anywhere along the Peddars Way or Norfolk Coast Path although a friendly farmer or
landowner may allow you to pitch a tent in a field (see p74). However, there are
several official campsites, with basic facilities such as shower and toilet blocks,
charging £5-14.50 per person, making this the cheapest and most economical
way of walking the path.

 

You may find that you need alternative accommodation as well if you are
planning short days as the campsites are not spaced evenly along the path.
Equally at certain times of year you may find them closed, so will have to make
alternative arrangements.


Hostels
Youth hostels are good places to meet like-minded fellow walkers and allow
you to travel on a budget without having to carry additional camping gear.
Prices range from £13.95 to £15.95 (£10.50-11.95 for under 18s) per night.
There are two comfortable, modern YHA hostels along the Coast Path, in Wells-
next-the-Sea and Sheringham. However, there aren’t any on the Peddars Way,
so you will need to find alternative accommodation.


Both the youth hostels provide bedding so there is no need to carry a sleep-
ing bag. In addition to traditional dorm rooms they also offer comfortable,
lockable private rooms with en suite facilities. The hostels are generally self-
catering and have well-equipped kitchens, but some also provide meals for an
extra charge. There’s also a lounge and communal area as well as toilet and
washing facilities and a drying room for wet gear. Most also have a small shop
on site selling basic groceries and supplies. Booked beds are usually saved until
6pm on the day, so it’s worth phoning ahead if you are running late or are
unlikely to arrive before this time.


Youth Hostels (YHAs) are, despite their name, for anyone of any age. You
can join the Youth Hostels Association of England and Wales (☎ 0800-019 1700
or ☎ 01629-592700,  www.yha.org.uk) at either of the hostels on the route, or
over the phone or online, for £15.95 per year for an individual (£22.95 for two
people living at the same address or a family, £9.95 for people aged under 26
and under); there is a 10% discount if paying by direct debit. Children under the
age of 18 travelling with either or both of their parents are covered on their
parents’ membership card. If you aren’t a member you can still stay at the hos-
tels but must pay a £3 supplement for each night’s stay.


In addition to the YHA hostels there is an independent hostel at Burnham
Deepdale; it has the same advantages as a YHA hostel in that it offers affordable
accommodation in dormitory or private rooms (some with en suite facilities),
provides bed linen and has a fully equipped kitchen, but it is more informal and
has fewer regulations. Rates are similar too with a dorm bed costing just £9.50.
The Old Red Lion in Castle Acre has dorm beds (including breakfast) for £22.50
as well as private rooms and effectively operates as an independent hostel.
 There is also a bunkhouse barn at Courtyard Farm, just outside Ringstead.
Although the accommodation is more basic, the barn is full of character and
well worth visiting, if only for one night. Excellent value at just £10, the draw-
back is that you will need to bring your own bedding and cooking equipment.

By using YHA hostels on the Norfolk Coast Path and a combination of
independent hostels or bunkhouse barns and B&Bs on the Peddars Way you cut
the need to pack any bed linen altogether, thereby significantly lightening your
load and keeping your costs down.


Bed and Breakfasts (B&Bs)
B&Bs are a great British tradition, and Norfolk boasts some excellent examples
of this type of accommodation. They vary greatly in terms of style and quality,
and also in price, but usually consist of a bed in someone’s house and a substan-
tial cooked breakfast to start the day. For visitors from outside the UK it can
provide an insight into the daily routines and workings of a family home.

 

What to expect 

Most walkers are after a hot bath and a comfortable bed after
a day on the trail. The B&Bs featured in this guide are selected because of their
proximity to the path and therefore their usefulness to the walker.

Rooms are often en suite, but some rooms share bathroom facilities. These
tend to be slightly cheaper. Few places have single rooms so if you are walking
on your own you are likely to have to pay a single occupancy supplement to stay
in a twin or double room. Twin and double rooms are often confused, but a
twin usually contains two single beds whilst a double has just the one double
bed. Family rooms are for three or more people and usually contain a combina-
tion of single and double beds but sometimes have bunk beds.


Breakfast (see opposite) is usually included in the price of the room, and
you may find that the owners also offer an evening meal or packed lunch for the
following day, if asked for in advance.


Tariffs 

B&Bs vary in price from £25 per room for two sharing for the most
rudimentary accommodation to £110 in rather more luxurious establishments.
Most charge around £60-80 for two sharing. Single occupancy of a double or


Peddars Way and Norfolk Coast Path

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