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Feted for its wide skies, glorious coastline, tranquil rivers and crimson-red poppy fields, Norfolk is the perfect place to stop and enjoy the view. It’s somewhere that life moves at a slower pace – even the royal family come here to wind down. Add to this the nostalgic feeling of travelling along heritage railways with a little steam train chugging away, and you’ll have all ingredients required for an unforgettable experience. Featuring three different railway journeys with time to explore each destination, a cruise on the Norfolk Broads, and visits to Oxburgh Hall and Sandringham Estate, this tour is sure to exceed expectations.
Make your own way to our hotel on the outskirts of Norwich, where you will meet an experienced Tour Manager. Dinner is served in the hotel tonight.
This morning, we board our coach and travel to the market town of Aylsham to join the Bure Valley Railway. This delightful route takes in some of the most unspoilt countryside as it crosses 17 bridges and passes through idyllic villages to reach Wroxham, known as the ‘capital of the Norfolk Broads’. You have some free time here before we travel to the pretty village of Horning and board the Southern Comfort Mississippi Paddle Boat for a cruise on the Broads.
The route takes us along the Bure River, passing thatched cottages, windmills and Norfolk reed beds, with an excellent commentary which also points out the water birds. From here, we travel by coach to the medieval city of Norwich, where there’s free time to explore the narrow lanes, speciality shops, and impressive castle and cathedral – a fine example of Romanesque architecture. We return to the hotel by coach and enjoy dinner this evening.
Today, we board our coach and travel to Holt. On arrival, we have some time to explore this pretty little town before heading to the station to board the North Norfolk Railway, which is affectionately known as the Poppy Line. Our train journey travels from Holt to Sheringham. On arrival, there is plenty of time to explore this lovely coastal town before we board the coach for the seaside resort of Cromer. There is time to have a meander around Cromer and take in the scenery, before heading to Cromer station. Here, we board the Bittern Line for a relaxing train journey back to Norwich. On arrival, your coach transfers you back to your hotel for dinner this evening.
This morning, we travel by coach to Oxburgh Hall, built in 1482 by the Catholic Bedingfeld family. During its 500-year history the hall has seen many changes, which is partly due to the hardship the family faced. In the early 19th century, the 6th Baronet began work to decorate and furnish the hall in the antiquarian style you see today. This beautiful, moated manor house is surrounded by nearly 175 acres, containing gardens with seasonal interest, streams and woodland walks. There is plenty of time to explore the delightful hall and gardens.
This afternoon we visit Sandringham Estate, where we discover the gardens and enjoy a self-guided visit of the house. Sandringham was built in 1870 by The Prince and Princess of Wales, who later became King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra. Both Queen Alexandra and later Queen Mary were great collectors of objects d'art.Members of the Russian and European Royal Families were frequent guests at Sandringham House and brought gifts of enamel, silver and silver-gilt, for example, Kaiser Wilhelm I of Germany gave a fine Dresden porcelain chandelier and mirror frame. The walls are hung with family portraits by leading contemporary court painters: Heinrich von Angeli, Sir Luke Fildes, Franz Winterhalter and Edward Hughes. An important collection of oriental arms and armour is housed at Sandringham House, brought back from the Far East and India in 1876. We return to the hotel by coach and enjoy dinner at the hotel this evening.
After a leisurely breakfast, it is time to check out of the hotel and make your own way home.
Please note that we cannot guarantee all rail journeys will be steam hauled.
Single Room Supplement from £180.00 (5 days).
You will stay for 4 nights on a half-board basis at the 4-star Sprowston Manor Hotel, Golf and Country Club.
Location: Wroxham Road, Norwich, NR7 8RP
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Single Room Supplements
Single Room Supplement from £180