An off-centre view of Cromer Pier from the coastal path on a beautiful sunny day with blue skies. You can clearly see the wrought-iron framework and the Pavillion Theatre at the end

‘Gem of the Norfolk Coast’, Cromer, England

In Counties, En-Route, Norfolk, Our Journeys, Trip-Types, UK Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

More than just crab…

Our second base for our 5 day ‘Norfolk’ road trip, was in the quaint seaside town of Cromer. Perched at the top of the Norfolk coastline, this little town hasn’t lost its knotted handkerchief charm.

Looking down on the entrance to the illuminated Cromer Pier.

All quiet on the Cromer Pier

Quick Links

Benefit of the doubt

Intro Paragraph

A view of the illuminated, elegant, Cromer Pier, after dusk, under orange and blue hues.

The pier at dusk

Cromer’s motto is “Gem of the Norfolk Coast’, which you’ll spot on signs around the town & proud of it they are.

A view of the shoreline in Norfolk behind an information board declaring Cromer as "Gem of the Norfolk Coast".

Gem of the Norfolk Coast - Cromer

Promenade

What I particularly liked about Cromer was that it wasn’t too brash. It had the charm of the bucket ‘n’ spade family fun, mixed with the traditional promenading of couples along the pier.
Looking down from the clifftop promenade to the elegant Cromer Pier reaching out to sea on a bright summer's day.

The elegant Cromer Pier

The pier which is now Grade II listed stretches out around 500ft into the North Sea and was given a new lease of life in 2013 by the local council. Along the pier, you’ll find the Pavilion Theatre still hosting the customary ‘end-of–the-pier’ entertainment, this is so memorable for me and very traditional with British seaside towns.
An off-centre view of Cromer Pier from the coastal path on a beautiful sunny day with blue skies.  You can clearly see the wrought-iron framework and the Pavillion Theatre at the end

Cromer Pier & Pavillion Theatre

Great Yarmouth which we visited a couple of days earlier still draws in the big names of the 70’s & 80’s.

Escape for a few days

Are you searching for a tranquil hideaway to unwind in, while you explore the picturesque Norfolk landscape?

After a day visiting the golden beaches or touring the charming, quaint villages return to one of the handpicked properties and unique retreats at Holiday Cottages.

Crabbing

You couldn’t visit Cromer and not mention the crab.

A refrigerated stall selling freshly boiled and dressed Cromer crabs outside a shop in Cromer.

Cromer Crab

Cromer used to be a thriving fishing town, but unfortunately this has depleted over the years. However, it still upholds its reputation for its celebrated local crab, which is still caught and brought in by fishermen's boats daily.

A small fishing boat on the shore at Cromer at dusk

Boats at dusk

Further reading

If you're intrigued by Norfolk, a UK county with an interesting past, then wy not check out  "The Little Book of Norfolk".  Full of facts and obscure information. It's a fun read on the region.

You can pick it up for your Kindle or in good old hardcover. (Depending on region)


Amongst the lanes

Strolling around the cobbled lanes of Cromer was really intriguing, you felt like its old charm hadn’t left it.

Unknowing where the narrow lanes would lead you to, or to which little shop you would stumble upon.

Colourful terraced houses in Jetty Street, Cromer, Norfolk

Jetty Street in Cromer

The view along the Esplanade at Cromer with the beautiful glow of dusk over the North Norfolk coastline

Sunset over Cromer

George Skipper

We had seen Mr Skipper's work in Norwich; he was the architect behind some of the cities iconic buildings including the Royal Arcade and Norwich Union’s head office ‘Surrey House’.

The beautiful art deco glass window and surrounding stonework above the entrance to the Royal Arcade, Norwich

The entrance to the Royal Arcade in Norwich

Now we were to discover that he was the brains behind the wonderfully imposing Hotel de Paris, sitting high above the pier commanding the top spot of the cliff top.

The red brick facade of the George skipper designed Hotel de Paris, high above Cromer beach on the North Norfolk coastline.

Hotel de Paris

Cromer Lighthouse

A lighthouse has stood at Cromer since 1669, the current one which was built in 1833 stands ½ mile from the cliff edge as the previous lighthouse succumbed to the vigour’s of nature and fell into the sea in 1866.

Cromer's white Lighthouse contrasted under a deep blue sky

The Lighthouse

The light in the present lighthouse stands 275 feet (84m) above sea level, however it wasn’t until June 1990 that the lighthouse was converted to automatic operation.

Finding the Lighthouse

The lighthouse tower is not open to the public, but you are able to wander around the area below it. We struggled to find signposts for it but found you can drive up to it through Cromer Country Club.

Then there were goats

Who knew….well apparently the herd of eight Bagot goats were brought in to nibble at undergrowth and keep the cliff top vegetation under control.

I had to double take, as it isn’t the usual sight you see in the seaside – donkeys ‘yes’, goats ‘no’.
 
I didn’t like to tell anyone, but I only counted seven.

Long-horned goats grazing on the grassy of the west cliff in Cromer

Do I see goats?

Has to be done!

We venture passed the goats and down onto the seafront, only to be greeted by a row of colourful little beach huts.

Brightly coloured beach huts line the shoreline at Cromer, on the North Norfolk coastline

The brightly coloured beach huts

We were really lucky with the weather and went for a stroll before we dined on fish ‘n’ chips with lashings of salt & vinegar at ‘No.1 Cromer
A plate of Fish 'n' Chips at No1, Cromer, with a generous portion of battered cod atop golden chips, garnished with a lemon and a sprig of parsley

Fish 'n' Chips at No1

One evening we also ate at the Red Lion, the food was fantastic and if you enjoy your ales this is the place to go.

It could be busy

No.1 Cromer fish & chip shop can get quite busy, so you may have to enjoy the British past-time of queueing.

Where we stayed

Our choice of hotel while we were staying in Cromer, was the Edwardian Cliftonville Hotel, it was in a lovely location along the cliff top with amazing views over the North Sea.
The exterior of the Victorian Cliftonville Hotel in Cromer, Norfolk

The Cliftonville Hotel

I have since found out that the architect George Skipper who I mentioned above, designed the façade of the hotel along with the main staircase, stained glass windows and a Minstrels’ Gallery.

The hotel also had plenty of on-site free parking.

Would you like a little more?

We have created a little YouTube video of Cromer for you to have a look at.

Why not subscribe to our YouTube channel and get the latest clips as we post them?

Have You?

Taken in Cromer and enjoyed its quaint charm? Have you had the crab, but not visited its namesake. What's stopping you?

* This post may contain links to affiliated sites where we earn a small commission at no additional charge to you.

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About the Author

Janis

Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight. Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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