Waveney River Centre has teamed up with iFootpath to bring you a delightful new walking excursion on the Norfolk-Suffolk border. And to make it even easier, you can simply download the guide and follow it using the iFootpath app. The walk offers plenty to keep the whole family entertained, from a ride on the river ferry and the bustling boat life of Oulton Broad, to the expansive views and wildlife of the Carlton Marshes nature reserve, all topped off with a visit to a telescopic church and a delicious lunch at the Waveney Inn. It’s sure to become a firm favourite.
The adventure begins with a short ride across the River Waveney on the Ternpike Ferry. The river crossing from Burgh St Peter, in Norfolk, to Carlton Marshes, in Suffolk, is less than 100m but the ferry fell out of use in the 1950s leaving only the alternative road journey of more than 30 minutes. However, Waveney River Centre joined with Suffolk Wildlife Trust to bring the pedestrian ferry service back in 2012, opening up a new watery world to walkers.
Once in Suffolk, walkers are welcomed to a world of flower-studded marshes, pools teeming with aquatic life and the shimmer of dragonflies within Carlton Marshes. Part of the Suffolk Broads and managed by Suffolk Wildlife Trust, the marshes are a watery wonderland teaming with wildlife from the tiny water vole to the playful otter and the awe-inspiring marsh harrier. The next stop is Oulton Broad, with chance to watch the bustling world of marinas, powerboat racing and rowing, and perhaps to grab a quick cake and coffee.
Following the return leg through another enchanting stretch of the marshes, walkers have a chance to visit St Mary’s Church which has a thatched roof and a most unusual tower. In the early 1900s locals were fond of telling holidaymakers that the church tower was in fact telescopic and was wound up at the beginning of each sailing season and wound down again to mark the onset of winter! Finally, the adventure ends with some well-earned hospitality at the Waveney Inn.
Waveney River Centre managing director James Knight said: “We’re lucky to have such beautiful countryside and landscapes to enjoy and all on our doorstep. In the 1800s the ferry provided an important link for south Norfolk villagers to reach Lowestoft’s fish market and we are so happy to have restored this historic connection for walkers to enjoy. And when you need to quench your thirst or satisfy your hunger afterwards or en-route, we have that covered too. The Waveney Inn is our destination pub – comprehensively refurbished and offering a menu of delicious, locally-sourced food, freshly prepared and cooked on the premises.”
It doesn’t matter if you are starting the walk from Waveney River Centre in Burgh St Peter or from Oulton Broad in Suffolk, the walking guide has been written to cater for both options. And there’s no need to leave your canine companion behind as dogs are welcome on the ferry, within the nature reserve and in the Waveney Inn.
Walkers can print the guide for free from the iFootpath website or download the iFootpath app, which gives a smarter walking experience with live GPS-powered maps that show your progress as you walk. The app is for Apple and Android devices and costs a one-off price of £1.49, giving you access to hundreds of walking guides in the UK.
So what’s stopping you? Don your boots and discover Waveney River Centre, Carlton Marshes and Oulton Broad.
2 March 2016