One of the most enduring impressions of Weybourne Beach is the sound of the sea and the stones. The steeply shelved beach produces impressive crashing waves on all but the calmest of days, and the noise of the water dragging innumerable rounded pebbles back and forth is surprisingly loud and yet strangely soothing.
It couldn’t be described as a sandcastle-making beach, unless you have a taste for the Sisyphean or the absurd. However it is a beach for pitching a windbreak and doing a spot of reading and sunbathing. It’s warm – the pebbles absorb and radiate the sun’s heat – and, counter-intuitively comfortable, there being no sharp edges within the deep drifts of sea and time-smoothed stones.
It’s a fine place to take the dog, although you’ll get a work out too – the pebbles move underfoot making walking somewhat laborious – if you’re not used to it, you’ll feel it in your calves the next day.
The car park is set right behind the beach, so it’s easy to get to. The section of beach in front of the car park is situated in a gap between the cliffs on either side – the Norfolk Coast Path descends on one side, crosses the beach and ascends again on the other.
It being Norfolk, any small elevation in ground level is not to be wasted – on days with a gentle inshore breeze, the cliff-top next to the beach is a handy site for launching paragliders. The steady incoming wind prevents intrepid aviators from being carried out to sea, and provides enough consistent lift for extended meanderings up and down in front of the cliff-face.
The steep beach is popular with fishermen – both onshore and offshore. If they’re not out at sea, there’ll be a collection of small fishing boats, stacks of lobster pots and a number of rusty old tractors parked photogenically on the beach.
The cliffs are most impressive in the easterly direction towards Sheringham – to the west they peter out as the land equalises in height with the sea. They’re a soft iron-stained orange colour, made of sand, silt and clay, with some whiter chalk lower down. The tops of the cliffs are dotted with sand martin burrows, and you can watch them flashing in and out when they’re busy feeding their young.
Inland the views are lush and green, with Weybourne Windmill off to the southeast behind the cliffs, and salt marshes and fields behind and to the east. If your timing is right you might catch sight of a steam train on the Poppy Line, chugging through the fields behind the windmill from Sheringham to Weybourne Station and on to Kelling Heath.
Weybourne Beach is a sensory delight – strange, beautiful and full of surprises.
Large hard surface car park with 300 spaces. Open 24 hours.
Price: Mon-Sun 08:00 – 18:00
1 Hour £1.50, 24 Hours £7.00
Free outside these hours.
Limited spaces allocated for Blue Badge holders and motorcycles.
Address: Beach Road, Weybourne NR25 7SR
More info: north-norfolk.gov.uk
There are no facilities at the beach, and no public toilets at the beach or within Weybourne Village.
The village is around 0.7km (0.4mi) away, back along Beach Road. Within Weybourne you can find BunTeas tearoom, a converted former BT telephone exchange, The Village Store, a small convenience store with a deli, and The Ship Inn, a dog-friendly gastro pub with a large garden.
Weybourne Station is further away at 2.1km (1.3mi). This restored period railway station is the only intermediate stop for the North Norfolk Railway, a Heritage Steam Railway running between Sheringham and Holt – also known as The Poppy Line. The station features a souvenir shop and buffet, bookshop and restored Edwardian toilets.
Weybourne Beach is dog friendly, with no restrictions.
Please watch out for any areas roped off to protect ground-nesting birds between April and August.
No lifeguard service at any time of year.