North Norfolk coastal village with picturesque working staithe and a large area of coastal habitat, particularly noted for birdlife
An Introduction to Brancaster
Brancaster is actually made up of 2 villages, Brancaster Staithe and Brancaster itself. Brancaster is mainly residential, with all the interest centered on Brancaster Staithe, a working fishing village. Many local families still make their living by fishing from the staithe, which has always been famous for its first class shellfish. You can buy their catch from stalls either at the staithe or on the main road. The local area has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and you can see for yourself by taking a stroll along the North Norfolk Coastal Path.
Brancaster Staithe is a lovely spot for a walk. You will find plenty of fishing boats and equipment; you can buy their catch from a fresh fish stall. The harbour is also home to Brancaster Sailing Club, with many sailing dinghies stored in and around the harbour. Brancaster is an excellent place to walk a section of the North Norfolk Coast Path, such as the four mile walk west to Burnham Overy Staithe.
A queue for fresh fish at Brancaster Staithe
Boat on the mud at Brancaster Staithe
Low tide at Brancaster
Fishing boats at Brancaster Staithe
Sailing dinghies and boats at Brancaster
Lobster nets at Brancaster
Cottages at Brancaster Staithe
The North Norfolk Coast Path
The fabulous view over the marsh from the North Norfolk Coast Path
Most books state that Admiral Horatio Nelson learn't to sail at Brancaster. However, in the mid to late 18th century, there was virtually no such thing as sailing for pleasure; so Nelson probably came to Brancaster Staithe from his home in Burnham Thorpe and persuaded local fishermen to take him out in their sailing boats. This would have taught the young Nelson about winds and tides, which would be invaluable to him in later life.
On the main coast road (A149) you will find a fresh fish shed, a local shop and The Jolly Sailors - one of the most popular watering holes on the North Norfolk Coast.
The Fish Shed at Brancaster
Staithe Seasons shop at Brancaster
The Jolly Sailors, a popular watering hole
Situated a couple of miles to the west of Brancaster is RSPB Titchwell Marsh, a renowned nature reserve and a haven for native and migrating birds. The freshwater and saltwater habitats at Titchwell support a huge variety of wildlife, lots of which are visitors to Britain, as they migrate here for the winter from much colder places. This means the wildlife on view continually changes throughout the year and this makes Titchwell a very popular place for bird watchers to make several, repeated visits during the year.See our separate guided picture tour or Titchwell Marsh.
The path taking visitors to beach along West Bank
Island Hide and Parrinder Hide
Bird watchers viewing the marsh
The East Trail
The wide expanse of sandy beach at low tide
Brancaster Summary of what to SEE and DO
Walk along part of the North Norfolk Coast path.
Buy fresh fish from the shop.
Enjoy a stroll around the harbour.
Enjoy a pub lunch at the Jolly Sailors Pub.
Visit nearby RSPB Titchwell Marsh.
Brancaster is a great place for a walk - both around the harbour and along the coast path. Whatever the time of year, the fresh air and views are amazing. A pub lunch in the Jolly Sailors is popular too!