Article by Emma Lee in the EDP – www.edp24.co.uk/features/best-camping-and-glamping-sites-norfolk-1-6465389
Campsites.co.uk has revealed the winners of its 2019 camping and glamping awards, with five sites in Norfolk among them.
Whether you pitch up for a truly back to basics experience under canvas or prefer a yurt kitted out with home comforts, camping and glamping are an increasingly popular choice for holidays. More and more of us are opting to take a UK ‘staycation’ for weekend and longer breaks. Wall to wall sunshine may not be guaranteed, but camping is a brilliant way of switching off from our screens, reconnecting with family and friends, exploring the coast or countryside and, most importantly, just having fun.
As well as helping holidaymakers find places to stay, the website Campsites.co.uk provides inspiration for places to visit and practical tried and tested tips for novice campers.
It has just revealed the winners of its 2019 Camping and Glamping Awards and there are plenty of winners and commended sites in Norfolk – perfect timing if you’re starting to think about your holiday plans for the spring and summer.
Deepdale Camping at Burnham Deepdale was the east of England winner of the popular choice award. One of the trailblazers of the current camping renaissance, in addition to pitches for tents, campervans, motorhomes and trailer tents, Deepdale also has a backpackers hostel, with self-catering accommodation in private ensuite rooms and dormitories. As well as the beautiful, untamed wilds of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty to explore, there is a packed programme of events, including pizza nights, makers’ markets and, in March, its own festival, the Deepdale Hygge. Pinecones Caravan and Camping in north Norfolk was also commended in this category.
Glamping sites are popping up around the county, and these ready pitched and kitted out bell tents, yurts, camping pods and shepherd’s huts are ideal for families who want to try a holiday in the great outdoors, but aren’t ready to commit to buying all their own camping gear.
Tucked away in a quiet corner of a private estate in north Norfolk, The Hideaway was commended in the east of England’s best glamping site category.
One of three sites run by Wild Luxury, and very aptly named, there are woodlands to explore, complete with a zip line and den building opportunities and the lodges, which sleep from six to 10, come with fully equipped kitchens, wood burners and more. There’s even a ‘Pamper Pod’ equipped with hair dryers and make-up stations – and spa treatments can also be pre-booked.
A step up from camping, caravanning has also had a makeover – glamavanning, anyone? King’s Lynn Caravan and Camping Park, at North Runcton, about a mile from the outskirts of town, was named the east of England’s best caravan park. Set in about 10 acres of mature parkland, it’s ideally situated for exploring the coast and the Fens. Meanwhile Beeston Regis Holiday Park, near Sheringham, was commended in this category.
As life becomes increasingly screen based, camping is the perfect opportunity to stop swiping, slow down and enjoy being in the great outdoors. It’s ideal for a holiday with children – think of the memories that will be made toasting marshmallows over a campfire, stargazing and building dens.
Ling’s Meadow at Hepworth near Diss, which has bell tents, shepherd’s huts, eco friendly facilities – and even a herd of alapacas to make friends with – was commended in campsites.co.uk’s best family campsite category.
And in easy reach of the north Norfolk coast, Thetford Forest, the Broads, Norwich and numerous wildlife and heritage sites and a great base for walkers and cyclists, Spring Farm Campsite at Shipdham was commended in the best campsite for couples category.
Climate change and the impact we are having on the planet is at the forefront of many people’s minds at the moment: indeed, cutting down on flying because of its impact on the environment is another reason why many people are choosing to holiday at home. And another Norfolk site was commended in the greener site category for the work it does caring for the countryside, without compromising on the fun of camping.
If you’re looking for adventure, then the wild “camp and canoe” package at Alderfen Marshes at Surlingham on the Broads should tick the boxes.
All you need is a sleeping bag – tents, camp beds and cooking equipment are available to hire, so you can really travel light. And you get a Canadian canoe so you can get out and explore the unique, watery landscape. Stays are limited to two or three nights, it’s adults only and pitches are rotated around the six acres of wilderness for sustainability.