Little and Great Walsingham

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Little and Great Walsingham are lovely Norfolk villages with a rich history dating back over a thousand years. In medieval times, Walsingham was one of the most important pilgrimage sites in the world – a rival even to Rome! Unfortunately, all of the religious centres were destroyed in the 16th Century by Henry VIII. This walk exploring Little and Great Walsingham passes many of the main attractions of these small villages. The first is the remains of the friary just to the south of the village. The ruins are beautiful, with a house interweaved within the walls and exterior lights to brighten it up at night. Another view is available a bit further along on the other side of the building.

The route then meanders its way along quiet country lanes past the parish church and through countryside to Great Walsingham; it is smaller than Little Walsingham and much quieter. The route passes the old Berry Hall Guest House which was built in the 16th Century over a ford (with a small waterfall). In the adjacent field to the ford is a peculiar ruined piece of wall, seemingly attached to nothing, although I believe it to be related to the moat next door and part of a much older castle or fortified manor-
house. The route next passes a second church, with the ruins of a third in the field on the right (if you are interested in ruins then it's worth the little detour, although little actually remains).

The last section of the route follows the country lane back into Little Walsingham and to the main attraction of the village – the abbey. At the time of doing the walk (May 2011) it was £3.50 to enter the abbey grounds. All that remains is the large arch and window standing at full height. The abbey was founded in 1153 but was a pilgrimage centre long before. The walk distance and time does not include a stop at the abbey ruins, so time and length will increase with a stop at the grounds. The last section follows the High Street back to the car parking area.

England - East England - Norfolk - Countryside


Ancient Monument, Cafe, Church, Flowers, Food Shop, Gift Shop, Great Views, Mostly Flat, Museum, Pub, Tea Shop, Toilets, Wildlife, Woodland

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