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 includes many of the popular villages of the north, as well as a taste of the southern Broads, crossing Breydon Water, and visting Reedham and Oulton Broad.
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Map of northern Broads rivers

Day 1 Afternoon
Horning to Wroxham
5 Miles
1 hour & 15 mins cruise time
On leaving your home boatyard, turn right onto the River Bure. You will cruise through the village of Horning, passing many millionaire style holiday homes. The Swan Inn, with its black and white gabled frontage, marks where the river takes a sharp left turn. Cruise on past the last of the riverside holiday homes, and onwards towards Wroxham. You will pass the entrances to Salhouse and Wroxham Broads on your left bank. Shortly after, you come across the riverside chalets and cottages that mark the start of Wroxham. Continuing on, you see the large Barnes Brinkcraft boatyard on your right bank. Moorings are free here for up to 24 hours, Alternatively, continue on towards Wroxham's stone arched bridge. Turn down the last dyke on the left bank, before you reach the bridge. Here is the Faircraft Loynes boatyard. There are extensive free moorings here too. Directly opposite this turning, are the Wroxham Hotel moorings, though you need to pay a fee to stay here.
Day 2 Morning
Wroxham to Ludham Bridge
8.5 Miles
2 hours cruise time
Retrace your steps by cruising away from Wroxham Bridge, back down the River Bure. You will see the entrance to Wroxham Broad on your right bank this time. Take this shortcut onto the Broad for an alternative to staying on the main river, which runs parallel to the broad, behind a row of trees. Cruise on down to the far end where you will see an exit back onto the main river. If you're stuck behind some slow-moving craft, this can be a good means of getting ahead without overtaking and exceeding the speed limits. Once back out onto the main river, continue on past the entrance to Salhouse Broad on your right bank, and cruise back through Horning, which is, of course, the location of your home yard. Once through and back out into the countryside, you will pass the entrance to Ranworth Broad, on your right. After a while, you will see the entrance to the River Ant on your left. The signpost points towards Stalham. Take the left turn onto the Ant, and cruise on up to Ludham Bridge village, marked by the road bridge which crosses the river here. Take care when passing under, as this is a busy section of the river, with craft often passing under the bridge from the opposite direction. Free moorings are available on either bank, just beyond the bridge.
Day 2 Afternoon
Ludham Bridge to Stalham
6.5 Miles
1 hour & 30 mins cruise time
Continue on, leaving Ludham Bridge behind. After a short while, you will pass the extensive free moorings of How Hill on your right bank. How Hill Educational Centre is at the top of the hill and incorporates a cafeteria serving food and hot and cold drinks. There are woodland walks, a secret garden and a restored eel catchers cottage from the turn of the century within its grounds. It makes a good stop off if leg-stretching is required. Further on you will come to the pretty little village of Irstead, with it's millionaire style riverside houses. Continuing on, you will see the river widens out onto Barton Broad, a wide expanse of water, notable because Lord Nelson was reputed to have learned to sail here. The Broad is divided up into marked channels. Take the right leading route across the Broad, aiming for the far end, where there's an exit marked for Stalham and Wayford Bridge. Follow the signs, passing the entrance to Sutton Broad on your right. At the very end of the navigation, is the town of Stalham. Free moorings are available in the large Richardsons boatyard on the right. Alternatively, if you keep left, you will come to Stalham Staithe, which is much smaller with free moorings for around five or six boats. The town centre is around 15 minutes from both sets of moorings..
Day 3 Morning
Stalham to South Walsham
9 Miles
2 hours & 15 mins cruise time
Head back out the way you came, taking the same channel across Barton Broad. This will bring you to the point where you entered the Broad yesterday. Cruise on past Irstead, on your right, and How Hill moorings on your left bank. Eventually, you will see Ludham Bridge in front of you. Pass under, watching out for oncoming craft that might force you to alter course, and continue on to the junction with the River Bure, where you should turn left. Very shortly, you will see the signposted entrance to South Walsham on your right bank. Follow the sign and cruise down the dyke. The Broad is at the far end of the dyke. Cruise down to it, noting the two sets of free moorings on the left bank. South Walsham is a scenic location, so explore the Broad, then return to select a mooring further down the dyke.
Day 3 Afternoon
South Walsham to Acle
6 Miles
1 hour & 15 mins cruise time
Cruise back down to the junction with the River Bure, turning right, which will take you on towards Acle, your mooring for the evening. You will pass the ruins of St Benets Abbey, and a little while after, the signposted entrance to The River Thurne and Potter Heigham, both on the left bank. A further cruise will bring you to the junction with Upton Dyke, on your right. Continue on. After a short while, you will see a road bridge spanning the river. This is Acle Bridge, and free moorings are available just before it, on the left bank. More are available on the right bank, both before and after the bridge, but they attract a mooring fee. You will notice that a current runs through Acle, and as such, it's important to moor against the tide. Imagine if your boat is holding station in the water. If the current tries to move the boat forward, you are running with the tide. If it pushes your boat backwards, you are running against the tide. Coming alongside in a running tide will likely mean you travel too fast and without control, resulting in your boat careering into the next boat along. Mooring against the tide slows your boat down as you come alongside, and provides more control.
Day 4 Morning
Acle to Yarmouth
11 Miles
2 hours & 15 mins cruise time
Ensure you leave your moorings against the prevailing tidal current. To start off in a tide running in the same direction as your boat when casting off, could result in a collision with the next boat along. You may need to turn your boat around using its ropes, to leave against the current. Once in midstream, you need to continue your cruise in the same direction as you arrived yesterday, so that you are leaving Acle bridge behind you. A short while later, you will pass the riverside village of Stokesby on the left, and the extensive moorings of Stracey Arms Mill, on your right bank. Yarmouth is still about an hour away from you, and you will pass mostly featureless marshland on the journey down the Bure. Will see the now derelict Great Yarmouth Marina on the left bank. From here, it's a ten-minute cruise to your moorings for the night. The Yacht Station (not just for yachts), is located on the left bank, just before two low bridges that span the river. The tide can flow quite fast here, and care should be taken to always come in to moor against the running tide, as described above. This may mean you need to turn your craft before coming alongside. The moorings are staffed by rangers who will help you to tie your boat correctly. There are other considerations when mooring or passing through Yarmouth. It is strongly advised that you read this guide to navigating Yarmouth first, which will enable you to arrive and pass through safely.
Day 4 Afternoon
At Yarmouth
0 Miles
0 mins cruise time
Great Yarmouth town centre is around 15 minutes walk from the Yacht Station, with the seafront being a further 15 minutes from there. Ask the Yacht Station staff for directions. Yarmouth has much to occupy you for an afternoon and evening, including a shopping centre, a market, The Marina Complex, two piers, museums, cinemas and theatres.
Day 5 Morning
Yarmouth to Reedham
10 Miles
42 hours & 15 mins cruise time
As explained earlier, you may need to leave your moorings against the tide. depending on how fast it's running. This may involve turning your boat on its ropes. Clearly, you will need to have enough headroom to travel under the two bridges that span the river. The Yacht Station staff will advise and assist you, so please make use of them. Once under the bridges, the river widens out onto Breydon Water, a very large expanse, that was once an estuary. Keep to the marked channel at all times, as straying may well end up with your craft going aground. Ensure you pass on the outside of the yellow post, where you will need to take a sharp right turn, heading towards Breydon Bridge. The correct arch to travel under is indicated by signage. Be sure to have read the guide linked to above, for full instructions. Following the channel, you will see that it diverges at the far end. Keep to the right-hand channel. Very soon you will pass Berney Arms Mill, standing tall on the right bank. Cruise on through mainly featureless marshes. Eventually, you will see the entrance to The New Cut, a long straight "canal", on your left. Continue right, passing under the Reedham rail swing bridge. Soon after, you arrive at Reedham Quay and its free moorings. Come alongside against the current, as this is another location with a sometimes fast running tide.
Day 5 Afternoon
Reedham to Oulton Broad
11.5 Miles
2 hours & 30 mins cruise time
Leaving against the tide, head back down the River Yare, this time turning right at the junction with The New Cut. Follow this long straight waterway until you see the junction with the River Waveney, at the far end. Turn right here, continuing on for a while. Eventually, you pass the moorings for Somerleyton on your left bank, which are immediately before the Somerleyton rail swing bridge. Pass under, ensuring you have enough headroom, and cruise on. After a while, you will see the river diverge. Take the left channel, marked for Oulton Broad. A further cruise will bring you out onto Oulton Broad. This is a picturesque setting, with moorings available at the far end, either outside the Wherry Inn or just to the left, inside the Yacht Station (not just for yachts). All moorings attract a fee on Oulton Broad.
Day 6 Morning
Oulton Broad to St Olaves
8.5 Miles
2 hours cruise time
Make your way back across the Broad, to the point at which entered. Cruise on, keeping right at the junction with the River Waveney. You will pass under Somerleyton rail swing bridge, and the adjacent moorings, before a cruise along the Waveney, to the junction with The New Cut, this time on your left. Keep right, spurning the Cut this time. A little way along is the little village of St Olaves. On your right bank, you will see the free moorings of The Bell Inn, just before the road bridge that crosses the river here. Alternatively, pass under the bridge (height allowing) and a little further along, on the right bank again, you will see a small wooden windmill, adjacent to which, is a second set of free moorings. The tide can run fast here, so be careful to come alongside against the current if needs be, as described above.
Day 6 Afternoon
St Olaves to Stokesby
18 Miles
4 hours cruise time
The afternoon cruise will take you back onto the northern rivers, which involves a fairly long trip. The headroom you would have at the low bridges in Yarmouth will decide when you can depart your moorings. The guide mentioned above, explains this in more detail. Basically, you need to arrive at Yarmouth when the water is low enough for you to get under the bridges. If in any doubt, call the Yacht Station on 01493 842794 for advice before leaving the moorings. You need to continue on down the Waveney, which is pretty featureless until you come to Breydon Water. Keep to the marked channel, ensuring you keep right at the channel junction, so heading towards Yarmouth. Pass under Breydon Bridge, and turn left, outside of the yellow post which marks the entrance to the River Bure, and the Yacht Station. You will recognise it from your stay a couple of days ago. Ensure you have sufficient headroom to traverse the bridges, and cruise on up to and past, the Yacht Station. Continue on up the Bure, passing the extensive moorings of Stracey Arms Mill, on your left. Shortly after, you will see the pretty riverside village of Stokesby, our lunchtime stop, come into view on the right. There are free daytime moorings available just before and outside, The Ferry Inn. A little further on, also on the right bank, is a small set of free moorings, adjacent to the children's playground. Beware that the current can still run fast here. If necessary, come in to moor against any running tide.
Day 7 Morning
Stokesby to Potter Heigham

8 Miles
2 hours cruise time
Assess the state of the current, and if necessary, leave the mooring against the tide. Continue in the same direction, cruising away from Yarmouth. Soon. you will see Acle Bridge before you. The bridge has plenty of headroom, so there should be no height issues. Cruise on, passing the entrance to Upton Dyke on your left, before coming across the signposted entrance to the River Thurne, on your right bank. Take the right turn and cruise past the statuesque white Thurne Windpump which marks the entrance to Thurne Dyke on your right. Further on, you pass the entrance to Womack Water and Ludham, on your left bank. Continue on up the Thurne. The sight of riverside chalets and holiday homes lining the banks of the river, indicates you are sailing into Potter Heigham. Continue on until you see the old stone arched bridge, spanning the river. Free moorings are available either on the right bank or in the large Herbert Woods boatyard, accessible by passing under the footbridge on the left bank.
Day 7 Afternoon
Potter Heigham to Ranworth

7 miles
1 hour & 45 mins cruise time
About turn, and cruise away from Potter Heigham Bridge, back down to the mouth of the river. You pass the entrance to Womack on your right and the magnificent white Thurne Windpump, on your left bank, before arriving at the junction with the River Bure. Take the right turning, and proceed on, passing the ruins of St Benets Abbey and the entrance to the River Ant, on your right, and the signposted entrance to South Walsham, on your left. After a while, you will see the signposted entrance to Ranworth, on your left. Take the left turn and proceed down the dyke. After a short cruise, the dyke widens out onto Malthouse Broad. Free stern on moorings are available at the top end of the Broad. Ranworth is a very popular location, due to its scenic qualities. As such, you may have to wait for a mooring. If that's not for you, there is the option of continuing on back to your home mooring in Horning, which is a further 30 to 45 minutes cruise, back out on the River Bure.
Day 8 Morning
Ranworth to Horning
2.5 Miles
45 mins cruise time
As you need to vacate your boat this morning, ensure you start out earlier enough to get back to the boatyard by the handover time. Cruise back out of Malthouse Broad, turning left at the junction with the Bure. Horning, the home of your boatyard, is around a 30 to 45 minutes cruise away. When you see the moorings for Cockshoot Dyke on the left bank, you know you are close. Take the marked dyke back into the yard, which is on the right bank.

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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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