Indispensable information
for the first time boat hirer
and the regular Broads sailor
Wroxham approach Wroxham approach

Suggestion for a Norfolk Broads Itinerary
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One week's Norfolk Broads boat hire starting from Horning
This itinerary takes in much of the Northern Broads including Wroxham, Acle, Great Yarmouth and Potter Heigham.
*Click on the red links below for more location information
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Map of northern Broads rivers

Day 1 Afternoon
Horning to Wroxham
5 Miles
1 hour & 15 mins cruise time
Upon exiting the boatyard, turn right, which will take you onto the River Bure. Enjoy the cruise past the pretty riverside village of Horning, with its many premium holiday properties. You pass the Ferry Inn (TFI), and the New Inn, before arriving at the Swan Inn, which stands at a sharp left turn by the river. After cruising past more chalets and holiday homes on your right bank, you leave Horning behind. You pass the entrances to Salhouse and Wroxham Broads on your left. Soon after, you will come across the plush houses, cottages, and chalets which mark the start of Wroxham. The large boatyard you come to on your right bank Barnes Brinkcraft, has extensive free moorings for visiting craft. Alternatively, if you cruise on towards Wroxham Bridge, turning left at the last dyke before you reach it, you will find a further set of moorings, that are free for hire craft stays. A small number of paid moorings are also available out on the main river, outside the Wroxham Hotel, which is just on the opposite bank.
Day 2 Morning
Wroxham to Ludham Bridge
8.5 Miles
2 hours cruise time
You need to return the way you came, back down the Bure. Wroxham Broad has two entrances, so to vary the journey, take a right through the first entrance. You will come across a wide expanse of water, which is home to the Wroxham Sailing Club. Cruise down towards the far end looking out for the exit back out onto the Bure, which actually just runs behind trees, parallel with the edge of the Broad. Once back onto the main river, continue in the same direction, passing the village of Horning, the location of your home yard. Soon after you will see the moorings for Cockshoot Dyke on your right bank, Continue on, passing the entrance to Ranworth Broad, also on your right bank. Eventually, you will see the signposted entrance to the River Ant and Stalham, on your left. Take this turning, cruising on until you see the boatyard which sits just in front of Ludham Bridge. Proceed with caution towards the bridge, noting that an unexpected craft could appear from the opposite direction and that you may need to take evasive action to avoid it. Once under the bridge, free moorings are available on either bank.
Day 2 Afternoon
Ludham Bridge to Sutton Staithe
.6.5 Miles
1 hour & 30 mins cruise time
Cast off and sail away from the bridge. The river above Ludham Bridge is particularly scenic, with opportunities to see Kingfishers, Herons, Swallowtail Butterflies, and all manner of waterfowl. Eventually, you will pass the moorings for How Hill, and its grand house, on your right bank. Cruise on and after a while you will arrive at the pretty, chocolate box lid village of Irstead. Shortly after, the river opens out onto Barton Broad, reputed to be the area where Lord Nelson learned to sail. Parts of the Broad are shallow, so you must keep to the marked channels. Follow the one marked on the right-hand side of the Broad. Head for the far end, where the Broad narrows back down. Look out for the signpost pointing you to Stalham and Wayford Bridge. Take this direction, and eventually, you will see the river diverge. Follow the Stalham and Sutton direction post. Cruise on until you see another signpost pointing towards Sutton. Take this channel. Keep cruising. At the far end is Sutton Staithe. The first set of moorings you will come across, are along a narrow dyke. Alternatively, cruise past these, and you will see further space to moor, opposite a green with the Sutton Staithe Hotel just opposite. Both sets of moorings are free for stays of up to 24 hours. There is a turning area just beyond the final set of moorings. The village centre, is a 15-minute walk from here.
Day 3 Morning
Sutton Staithe to How Hill
5.5 Miles
1 hour & 15 mins cruise time
We're heading for How Hill this lunchtime, so if you haven't already, use the turning area mentioned above, to aid you in returning back down to Barton Broad. Keep to the same channel across the Broad, which will return you to the exit point, and a cruise past the village of Irstead. After a while, you will see the extensive side on moorings of How Hill come into view. Choose a spot and moor up. There is no charge to stay here. How Hill Educational Trust is up on the hill. and incorporates a cafeteria serving food and hot and cold drinks. You will find woodland walks, a secret garden, a water trail by electric boat, and a restored example of an eel catcher's cottage, from the turn of the century.
Day 3 Afternoon
How Hill to Acle
7.5 Miles
1 hour & 45 mins cruise time
Cast off and continue onwards towards Ludham Bridge. Take care when passing under, that no other craft is approaching from the opposite direction. A further short cruise will bring you to the junction with the River Bure again. Turn left here, and sail on down past the entrance to South Walsham Broad on your right, and the ruins of St Benets Abbey on your left bank. After a while, you will see the signposted entrance to the River Thurne and Potter Heigham on your left. Sail past this, in the direction of Acle and Yarmouth. Passing the entrance to Upton Dyke on your right. Soon after, you will see Acle Bridge, which spans the river in front of you. This is your destination for this evening. Free moorings are available on your left bank, just before the bridge. More moorings can be had either just before or after the bridge, on the right bank, though these attract a fee to stay overnight. You will notice a current runs through Acle. Because of this, you need to approach your chosen mooring against the tide, so that you don't lose control, and end up being pushed on to the next boat along. Look at the river and see which direction the current is running. If it's running in the same direction as your boat, you will need to turn around before you come alongside. The current running into you then, will naturally slow you down and provide better control.
Day 4 Morning
Acle to Yarmouth
11 Miles
2 hours & 15 mins cruise time
Yarmouth is your destination today, and to reach it, we will head-on in the same direction, away from Acle. You need to leave the moorings against the tide. So once more, ascertain which way the current is moving. If it's running past from the back to the front of your boat, you will need to turn your boat on its ropes, so that you can head out onto the river, against the tidal flow. Leaving in the same direction as the current will likely end up with you colliding with the next boat along. Once out into mid-stream, head-on in the same direction as yesterday.
The journey down to Yarmouth will take you past the little riverside village of Stokesby, on your left, and then the long stretch of moorings and windmill, known as Stracey Arms, on your right bank. Beyond them, your first sighting of buildings on the horizon, will tell you that you're not far away from the Great Yarmouth. Eventually, you will see the now derelict remains of Yarmouth Marina, which run for around half a mile on the riverside.

Around 15 minutes later, you will cruise on to Yarmouth Yacht Station, your moorings for the afternoon and night. The tide runs faster here, and as such, it's important to come alongside against the tide again. Once moored, you will need to pay a mooring fee, though the rangers on-site, will tie the ropes for you in such a way that you are safe for the night. There's more to navigating Yarmouth HERE. It's recommended that you read these pages to alert yourself to possible pitfalls. The rangers at Yarmouth can offer you advice on when to travel, whether you will need to turn before mooring, and can be there to meet you and give assistance on arrival if you call them on 01493 842794 in advance.
Day 4 Afternoon
At Yarmouth
0 Miles
0 mins cruise time
.The afternoon is free to spend in Great Yarmouth. The town centre is around 15 minutes walk of the Yacht Station, with the seafront and the Britannia Pier, a further 15 minutes walk. The Yacht Station rangers will direct you. Once there, you will come across a shopping centre, a market, and a pedestrianised street leading to the pier. All the usual fun of the fair attractions can be found along the promenade.
Day 5 Morning
Yarmouth to Stokesby
9 Miles
2 hours & 15 mins cruise time
Today, you will be heading back up the River Bure. The current can run very fast here, so ensure you leave against the tide, so as to have proper control of your boat. The Yacht Station staff will assist you with this if you ask them. Once mid-river, cruise out of Yarmouth. You will pass the derelict old marina on your right, before heading back out into the countryside. Eventually, the windmill and moorings of Stracey Arms will come into view on your left bank. A little further along, on the right bank, is Stokesby, your mooring spot for lunch. There is space to moor just before, and outside the Ferry Inn. There is no charge for daytime stops. A few other free moorings are available opposite the children's playground, a little further along. Take care to come alongside against the prevailing current, as described earlier.
Day 5 Afternoon
Stokesby to Potter Heigham
8 Miles
2 hours cruise time
Just a reminder that you will need to leave the moorings against the current so that your boat doesn't get pushed along the quayside onto the next boat while trying to get out onto the river. Once mid-stream, continue back up the Bure, passing under Acle Bridge, and then past the entrance to Upton Dyke, now on your left bank. After a while, you will see the signposted entrance to The River Thurne, and Potter Heigham, on your right. Take this turning, passing the magnificent white Thurne Windpump, which guards the entrance to Thurne Dyke, on your right. Further on, you will pass the entrance to Womack Water on your left bank. Your first sight of Potter Heigham will be in the form of a long line of riverside chalets and cottages, which occupy both banks of the river right up to the village centre, some distance away. When you see the medieval low arched stone bridge which crosses the river, you are close to your moorings for the night. Moorings are available on the right, just before the bridge, or on the left bank by passing under the footbridge, into the large Herbert Woods boatyard
Day 6 Morning
Potter Heigham to Ludham
2.5 Miles
45 mins cruise time
You need to retrace your steps back down the Thurne. So head away from Potter Heigham Bridge, past the rows of chalets. The passing of the last chalet will bring you back out into the reed-lined countryside. After a short while, look out for the signposted entrance to Womack Water and Ludham, (not to be confused with Ludham Bridge) on your right. Cruise down this dyke, which is narrow in places. Eventually, it opens out onto Womack Water, a fairly large expanse of water. At the far end, on the right bank, are the moorings for hirecraft. You will need to moor stern on here. The village of Ludham is around 20 mins walk from here.
Day 6 Afternoon
At Ludham
0 Miles
0 mins cruise time
There is much to see in Ludham, which is another of those chocolate box lid villages, with thatched roofs and stone-built cottages. Plus, Womack Water is very picturesque, so this makes a good spot to spend the afternoon and evening, just watching the many boats come and go.
Day 7 Morning
Ludham to Ranworth

6.5 Miles
1 hour & 30 mins cruise time
Head back out of Womack Water, back on to the Thurne, turning right at the junction. Eventually, you will pass the white Thurne Windpump, and the entrance to Thurne Dyke, on your left. Shortly after, is the junction with the River Bure. Here you should turn right. Continue on, passing the ruins of St Benets Abbey on your right, and the entrance to South Walsham Broad on your left. Shortly after, you pass the entrance to the River Ant, on your right bank. Keep to the River Bure, and after a while, you will see the signposted entrance to Ranworth, on your left bank. Take this turn, and cruise down the dyke, which eventually widens out into Malthouse Broad. The village of Ranworth is situated at the top end of the broad, as are the free moorings. You will need to stern moor here. This is a particularly sought-after location, and you may need to wait a while before a mooring is vacated. If this is not for you, there is the option of returning to the Bure, turning left at the junction, and continuing on for a short distance, until you arrive at your home boatyard, which is situated on the right bank, just before you cruise through Horning.
Day 7 Afternoon
Ranworth to Horning

2.5 Miles
45 mins cruise time
Leave Ranworth behind, and cruise back to the main river. Turn left at the junction and continue on until you see the dyke which leads to Cockshoot nature reserve on your left bank. Just a little further away, on your right bank, is the narrow dyke that takes you back to your home boatyard in Horning. The advantage to staying your last night at your home yard is that you won't be jostling with other craft returning in the morning, and you can choose a mooring closer to your vehicle.
Day 8 Morning
at Horning
0 Miles
0 mins cruise time
All too soon, it's time to pack up the car, complete the "admin" of checking how much fuel you've used, and prepare to vacate your holiday home for the past week by 9.30am.

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2024 & 2025 HOLIDAYS
Sleeps minimum
Taking pets
Duration of holiday

Start dates

2024 & 2025 HOLIDAYS
Sleeps minimum
Steers from
Northern or Southern Broads
Standard of boat
Please read guidance

Pet(s) allowed
240v system (?)
Has microwave
Bow thrusters (?)
Wifi onboard (?)
I know its name
From this boatyard

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