If you’re looking for ideas for routes to take, here are links to dozens of short walks already planned out for you. For the more intrepid, there are also several long distance paths which will give you an unforgettable walking break through the East Anglian landscape.
Boudicca Way Project
This website (new in 2011) gives full details of the wonderful walks available in this beautiful area of South Norfolk. The Boudicca Way is a long distance footpath which runs for approximately 36 miles between Diss and Norwich. It offers a great place to walk, cycle, bird watch and explore.
Norwich Fringe Project
On the outskirts of the city, Norwich Fringe Project creates public access to areas where conservation of wildlife and the landscape can exist alongside quiet recreation.
Norfolk Countryside Access
This website has details of circular walks of about 4-6 (6-10 km) miles in the Norwich area. You can choose from outings such as a woodland walk at Horsford and St. Faiths, a stroll along the country lanes and footpaths of Salhouse, or the experience of the panoramic landscape of Halvergate Marshes.
Other long distance paths within the area include Marriotts Way, a 21 mile (34 km) route from Norwich to Aylsham. This path is on former railway lines and is also suitable for horse riders and cyclists. Aylsham lies on another long distance walk, The Weavers’ Way, which runs for 61 miles between Cromer and Great Yarmouth.
There are a number of longer paths that set out from south Norwich into the countryside. “Kett’s Country”, a 21 mile (34 km) route to Wymondham, commemorates Robert Kett, leader of Norfolk’s Peasants’ Revolt in 1549. The Tas Valley Way takes you on a 25 mile (40 km) tour of small villages between Norwich and Attleborough.
You can also find details and maps for walks in areas of open access provided under the Countryside Stewardship and Environmentally Sensitive Areas Schemes.
Within the Norfolk Broads there are over 190 miles (300 km) of footpaths. The Wherryman’s Way is a 35 mile recreational walking route from Norwich to Great Yarmouth, following the course of the River Yare.
Norfolk Wildlife Trust
If you like to combine walking with birdwatching or just enjoy superb wildlife habitats, here are some more ideas; Ranworth, Hickling, or Lower Wood (at Ashwellthorpe, near Wymondham).
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
Also has large nature reserves locally. At Strumpshaw Fen, Berney Marshes and Surlingham Church Marsh, for example, you can get out into the fresh air and see spectacular wildlife in beautiful countryside. Also near Surlingham, there is public access to footpaths at the Ted Ellis Trust’s Wheatfen Reserve
• Bure Valley Path to Wroxham (9 miles)
The walk follows the narrow gauge Bure Valley Railway line that links the two towns of Aylsham and Wroxham.
• Roman Town of Caistor St Edmund
Once Norfolk's capital, 1700 years ago you would have been standing outside the high walls of a large bustling market town, a centre of local government, trade and entertainment.
Caistor is one of only a few Roman towns in Britain that have not been damaged or hidden by later buildings. You can walk around the battlements and see all the lambs in the fields around you. It is perfect for a short walk plus there is a car and bicycle park close to the site.
• Boudica’s Way (38 miles between Norwich and Diss)
An information-packed leaflet showing the route and giving information about every stage of the footpath is available from the Tourist Information Centre at Diss
(01379 650523), or from South Norfolk Council’s Leisure Team (01508 533684). The Angles Way walk connects with Boudica’s Way (and the Weavers Way) as it passes through 77 miles (123 km) of the Waveney and Little Ouse river valleys along the Norfolk-Suffolk border. Contact Diss TIC for a leaflet about this route.
Wherever you decide to walk, enjoy the very special environment of the Norwich area, and please remember to follow the Countryside Code