Cool Place of the Day: Burgh Castle, Norfolk

Every day, a new place to discover or explore, from coolplaces.co.uk

Martin Dunford
Saturday 21 May 2016 09:00
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Burgh Castle, Norfolk

Burgh Castle is a suburb of Great Yarmouth. Sounds great, doesn’t it? But it’s also the site of one of the most intact Roman forts in the country, built on high ground overlooking what would in the fourth century AD have been a vast spreading estuary but is now a glorious expanse of reedy marsh and meadow dotted with windmills like something out of a Dutch 17th-century landscape painting.

It’s an unusual and evocative place: the fort’s walls are gaspingly robust, several metres wide and forming an almost complete rectangle (three of its four walls still stand in their entirety), punctuated by round towers and parapets to clamber about on. However, it’s the location that carries the day. English Heritage has built a visitors’ car park nearby and tarted up the footpaths and signage, making for an altogether more instructive experience than it once was.

But it’s still a beautiful and surprisingly remote spot. Take in the small and ancient round-towered church of St Peter & St Paul before moving onto the castle just beyond, after which you can walk down to the river and join the Angles Way long-distance footpath. You can follow the path alongside the windswept expanse of the Breydon Water, skirting the edge of the RSPB bird sanctuary there, back into Great Yarmouth, or in the opposite direction follow it down towards the Burgh Castle marina and across country towards Fritton, where there is another tiny old church and a great pub and restaurant with rooms, the Fritton Arms, backing onto its very own lake.

Cool Places is a new website from the creators of Rough Guides and Cool Camping, suggesting the best places to stay, eat, drink and shop in Britain (coolplaces.co.uk)

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