Kelling Heath Holiday Park
Nothing nourishes the soul quite like a full week without internet access or phone signal. Usually I’ll get through reading one or two books a year at a push, but when I’m away from all distractions I can easily find my way through a full set of pages in just a few days. Being in nature really brings out the wholesome in me. As much as lockdown came with a much slower pace of life, it hasn’t been until this last week at Kelling Heath Holiday Park that I’ve truly managed to hit the off button and zone out from the news and my emails in favour of a cabin in the forest. The conscious thought part of my brain has only had to switch on to ensure the squirrels in the garden are stocked up with peanuts.
There is something so cathartic about early autumn and the way we all come to be at peace with swapping bright summer days with cosy evenings in. Despite often wishing I could live in an eternal climate of around 26 degrees, I have began to learn to treasure each season, be it for paddling in the sea, gathering brambles for a crumble or crunching my way through freshly fallen snow. For without a harsh winter there would be no excitement for the summer yet to come.
It has been a fair few years since I last stayed in the forest and none that I can remember that wasn’t of Centerparcs branding. Elveden and Sherwood will always be a source of great memories but to be away from the heavy focus on young families at Kelling Heath has been a refreshing change. At Kelling it’s more about getting out into nature at no cost over tourist traps that suck up your spending money. There are pop up food trucks on certain days of the week from local businesses instead of sprawling food chains. Genius.
There’s a 4 mile loop walk from Kelling Heath to Weybourne Beach that takes you right past one of my favourite pubs, The Ship Inn. If you time it right you’ll spot the stream train pulling in to Kelling station too. Norfolk at its best.
Holt Country Park
As I live just a short drive away down the coast, I’m already familiar with the area and most of its offerings but discovered a few more local gems on this trip. Strangely I’d never been to Holt Country Park before which just goes to show how important it is to set time aside to play tourist in your area.