As well as our luxury holiday cottages being open year round for individual families and couples to enjoy we do, from time-to-time, rent out our whole site to large parties for get-togethers and celebrations.
We were recently joined by one such group who were celebrating 30 years as a club – MFMC.
MFMC are a group of 50 motorcyclists and one of their members flew in all the way from Canada to celebrate their anniversary!They shared the cottages and a few members also stayed in classic camper vans in our grounds. They also hired The Green Room venue and courtyard areas and they dined on bespoke wood fired oven pizzas, salads and a few sherbets J – which we sourced locally and provided.
The group stayed with us on the Saturday night and took a ride out along our beautiful coast on the Sunday, before heading back to London.
Group member, Yasmin, said: “It was lovely to meet you both again and thank you so very much for hosting the party. We all had an absolutely fantastic time. The cottages and your location are stunning… you really do live in paradise, thanks for inviting us into your world.”
With Easter just a few weeks away, we are feeling rather excited that spring has arrived. We are certainly enjoying the daffodils that are scattered around the countryside, they glow like little rays of sunshine that offer promise that warmer weather and lighter evenings are on their way.
North Norfolk is definitely gearing up for the holiday season and with the Easter Holidays just around the corner we look forward to welcoming new and returning visitors to the area.
If you are still looking for a break over the Easter weekend, then look no further! Our family friendly cottages are situated in the tranquil countryside, but are only a short drive away from the coast. There are lots of Easter themed activities taking place in the area with plenty of other things to enjoy as a family during your stay too. We are even offering a 10% discount and a personalised, handmade chocolate Easter Egg if you book your stay over the Easter weekend… We promise not to nibble on the chocolate before you arrive, even though it is practically impossible to resist!
Cuddle and bottle feed a baby lamb at the Stow Bardolph Rare Breeds Farm. There is also the chance to hold fluffy Easter chicks and make friends with lots of farm animals including horses, pigs and rabbits.
Take a special Easter Trail at one of the following locations and you may even be in with a chance of winning an Easter Egg!
You may even want to set up your own Easter Egg hunt within the grounds of our cottages.
Grab yourself a line, bucket and some bait (crabs seem to love bacon!) and see how many crabs you can catch from Well’s Harbour.
If you’ve not heard of Geocaching, it’s a worldwide, real life treasure hunting game. All you need to play is a GPS device i.e. a smart phone. Geocache has it’s own app which is available to download and from there you can search for caches near to you which you can then track down. Other than purchasing the app, it is free to do and gives families the opportunity to spend time together enjoying the great outdoors. For full details visit http://www.geocaching.com/
Being situated in North Norfolk, we are extremely lucky to have a number of nature reserves nearby, making our holiday cottages the perfect destination for nature lovers. We also know that the autumn and winter months are an excellent time to visit the reserves, especially for keen bird watchers. Not only do we have a great variety of resident birds including Marsh Harriers, Bitterns, Avocets and Oyster Catchers, the reserves also become packed with winter migrants including Brent and Pink Footed Geese, the Black-tailed Godwit, Fieldfares, Redwings and Bramblings.
Marsh Harrier hunting over local arable land
There isn’t a day that currently goes by where we don’t see or hear a flock of geese flying over us and we know, from reading updates via the social network sites, that the migratory birds are arriving and settling into the reserves on a daily basis.
We offer the perfect sanctuary after a long day outside, braving the elements. Our warm, cosy, open plan cottages have been designed to make you feel at home the instant you walk through the door. The living room space invites you to put your feet up and relax and our large beds are so comfortable, we guarantee a good night’s sleep. We also have a heated, indoor swimming pool on site, which is always a welcoming place to thaw out those frozen, numb toes!
So, dig out your thermals and waterproofs, scrub down your walking boots, clean up your binoculars and rummage around in the back your kitchen cupboard for that Thermos flask. It’s time to book into one of our luxury cottages and explore the Great British Wildlife at some of these popular spots.
We had to start with our neighbour, Sculthorpe Moor, which is situated approximately 2.5 miles from our cottages. This reserve is owned by the Hawk and Owl Trust, a charity that’s dedicated to conserving owls and other birds of prey, in the wild.
The 45 acre reserve has woodland, fen and reedbed habitats and offers a rich variety of wildlife. Throughout the year you can enjoy spotting wildlife such as tawny and barn owls, willow and marsh tits, kingfishers, tree creepers and water and bank voles. During the autumn and winter months you can find bramblings, water rails, siskins and roosting harriers too.
Between October and March the reserve is open from 8am – 4pm, Tuesday to Sunday. All families are welcome to enjoy the reserve – a voluntary donation of £3.50 is suggested from adult visitors.
Okay, so Pensthorpe could possibly be seen as more of an attraction, but we had to include it for the work this place does. This fabulous reserve covers over 200 acres and is nationally renowned for it’s conservation projects on Red Squirrels, Corncrakes, Turtle Doves and Cranes and is also nationally recognised as a breeding site for several species of birds, butterflies, insects and mammals.
Pensthorpe also works extremely hard to encourage children to discover nature and how they can respect and protect our natural surroundings and wildlife for their future. Interactive activities such as pond dipping, den building and going on an interactive bug walk, all educate the children and help them experience nature first hand.
This year, Pensthorpe also opened up their new adventure play area WildRootz. This adventure play area has been designed to encourage children to play and explore in natural habitats such as woods, fields and streams. It’s adventure play, nature’s way!
Cley Marshes is owned by the Norfolk Wildlife Trust and is their oldest (it was purchased in 1926) and best known nature reserve. In fact, it actually provided a blue print for nature conservation, which has now been replicated across the UK.
The reserve includes a shingle beach and several lagoons, along with a grazing marsh and reedbed. It supports large numbers of wintering and migrating wildfowl and waders and is home to residents including the bittern, marsh harrier and bearded tit.
The visitor centre looks across the marsh to the sea and the views are truly breathtaking.
This popular RSPB reserve takes you past reedbeds and shallow lagoons, before you reach a sandy beach.
There are four birdwatching viewing points, all of which are wheelchair accessible, where you can watch an array of birds including Water Rails, Bitterns, Bearded Tits, plus variety of Waders, Terns and Ducks.
There is something for everyone at this reserve, even the children are encouraged to find different species of birds, insects and animals during their walk and if they find everything on their list, there’s a little prize to collect from the visitor centre.
One final thing we must mention before we go, is the seal colonies around Blakeney Point.
Blakeney Point is a four-mile-long sand and shingle spit and is home to colonies of Grey and Common Seals. It is also one of the most important sites in Europe for breeding terns.
Grey Seal Pup basking in the winter sun
Although the seals can be seen throughout the year, Grey Seals have their pups between November and January and Common Seals have their young between June and August. The best way to view the seals in their natural habitat is by taking a boat trip either via Morston or Blakeney Quay. This is a fantastic experience for all the family as it allows you to enjoy a close view of the wildlife without disturbing it.
Blakeney Point sits within the Blakeney National Nature Reserve. The reserve itself is made up of saltmarsh, mudflats and fresh watermarsh and hosts a diverse range of special wildlife.
Christmas at Cranmer is one of out most favourite times of the year. We thrive on the vibe and excitement that families bring when they stay and it’s something we look forward to when the winter months start to creep up on us.
If you’ve considered getting away over the festive period but haven’t quite made up your mind whether to do so or not, here’s a few reasons why you should spend your Christmas with us:
1) Home from Home
Our cottages are family friendly and give a warm and friendly feel that makes you feel instantly at home. Over the festive period, all of our cottages are trimmed with Christmas trees and other decorations to give you that truly festive feel.
2) Lots of Space
Each cottage has been designed with an open plan living space which is perfect for families who want to enjoy time together. We also have cottages with inter-connecting doors, meaning we can accommodate groups of up to 12 people. In addition to this, our fantastic Green Room is available to hire if you are in need of a large dining space to get everyone around a table for a Christmas Day feast!
3) The Great Outdoors!
North Norfolk is famous for big skies, beautiful countryside and a rugged coastline, and on a cold winter’s day there’s nothing more invigorating than a brisk walk and a good blast of fresh air. Seeing as we all have a tendency to over indulge in rich foods over the festive period a good walk is the perfect tonic to pep you up. Our heated indoor pool is always a very warm and welcoming retreat if you are the kind of person who isn’t keen on braving the elements!
4) Festive Activities
From early December the area becomes a hive of festive activity with lots of events and things to do. There are festive markets to browse around, the Christmas spectacular at Thursford is always popular as is the special Santa steam train trips. The local panto in Norwich is fun for a day out, plus there are plenty of places for children to meet Father Christmas too.
5) Festive Feasts
There are a large number of local food suppliers in the area to help you create the ultimate Christmas gourmet experience. Order yourself a famous Norfolk Black or Bronze Turkey for your Christmas Dinner and try out a variety of local cheeses, our favourite being Mrs Temple’s Binham Blue. We are lucky to have a number of local farm shops which stock an array of other local delights including the famous Bray’s Cottage Pork Pies, Gnaw Chocolate and the very delectable Norfolk Cordial.
Alternatively, if you’d prefer not to slave over a hot stove on Christmas Day, there are plenty of local pubs and restaurants you can book instead, or, we can help you organise caterers who can do the cooking for you in the comfort of your own cottage.
Whatever your needs are, we can help you arrange a very memorable Christmas away from home.
Cranmer Cottages have just received another award and this excellent review from the Green Business scheme :
“Cranmer Cottages a GOLD award winner for the GTBS has just posted figures which demonstrate a 10% saving in fuel use for the site. This is an absolute saving and doesn’t take into account increased occupancy and an expansion in the number of cottages. The site has wind turbines and heat pumps and this helps to demonstrate the significant benefits from adopting new proven technologies. It also demonstrates that even our GOLD award businesses can continue to make savings and reduce their carbon footprints. With good data collection all sites should demonstrate significant savings by adopting the green tourism business scheme. Saving 10% in 2010 is part of a UK campaign called 10:10 and we are pleased our businesses are able to demonstrate this in practice.” Jon Proctor