Things to do out of season and over winter in Greater Yarmouth
When the nights draw in, the clocks go back and the crowds leave Greater Yarmouth, it's a great time for an out of season break, to explore the area as the locals know and love it. There's still plenty going on and great fun to be had, whatever time of year you visit.
The unusual collection of Asian animals at Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens is open all year round and well worth a visit at any time of year. You can see tigers, monkeys, leopards and alligators up close all round this lovely zoo.
In nearby Ormesby St. Margaret, The Boathouse overlooking The Trinity Broads has a warm welcome, delicious food and a roaring fire during winter. Next-door Rollesby, another pretty village also on the edge of the Trinity Broads, is home to The Waterside, a fabulous restaurant serving delicious afternoon teas.
If you're up for a winter beach walk, then a trip to the dunes at Winterton-on-Sea from November onwards and a walk along the beach towards Horsey will bring you face to face with grey and harbour seals who breed in the dunes and on the beach. Make sure you watch the wildlife from a safe distance though. There's a great beach café at Winterton serving amazing home made cake and hot chocolate on your return and a traditional fisherman's pub in the village.
If you'd rather stay inland, there are some great walks near Filby and from Fleggburgh up to Rollesby and back, which are also tranquil places for birdwatching and fishing. Norfolk is one of the driest counties in England, perfect to get wrapped up and stride out over rolling Norfolk countryside at any time of year, especially if you know there's Sunday lunch, a pub supper or a blazing fire waiting on your return.
A winter's day on Great Yarmouth seafront is still a whole lot of fun. A quick walk along the beach or esplanade will blow any cobwebs away, then visit the Sea Life Centre,an amazing opportunity to learn more about the coast and the animals who live off shore both locally and further afield.
Several arcades remain open all winter, so you can have a play on the 2p slot machines or on a virtual reality video game.
If you walk through the amusement arcade at Wellington Pier, you'll find a fanastic ten-pin bowling alley with floor to ceiling views out over the beach and the sea.
A short stroll from the seafront towards the river brings you to Blackfriars Road, home to a large section of the medieval town wall. You'll also find Silver Darlings café just next to the award winning Time & Tide museum of Great Yarmouth life, well worth a visit to find out all about the herring industry and how this small fish impacted on Great Yarmouth life.
A trip to the cinema is a great way to round off your day on the seafront, the Hollywood cinema is right at the northern end, overlooking the whole of the Golden Mile and shows all the latest blockbusters.
From here it's a short walk to the town centre with lots of shops, a permanent market, the Victoria arcade and a refurbished shopping mall. The town centre has a number of unusual independent shops and stores, well worth a visit if you're looking for something a bit different. You'll also find plenty of places to eat.
A stroll from the town centre, Great Yarmouth Potteries and Smoke House is an ecclectic collection of shipwrecked treasure and memorabilia from the fish wharf, surrounding a potter's wheel and several oil paintings on canvas. Wander round or book yourself onto a craft class and have a go at pottery or painting.
There are more shops along pedestrianised Regent Road as you head towards the seafront. You can also see traditional seaside rock being made in the two rock factories and have a game of ten-pin bowling in Regent SuperBowl.
To round off your day, St. George's Theatre has a varied programme of all sorts of entertaining performances, from musicals to comedy to plays and shows.
Attractions open out of season
Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens, near Great Yarmouth has a 250-year-old landscaped garden, a play area and a wide selection of Asian mammals, birds and reptiles including tigers, crocodiles and storks.
Time & Tide in Great Yarmouth is set in one of the UK's best preserved Victorian Herring curing works, and tells the story of the area from its ice age origins to the present day. Experience the heady atmosphere of a 1950's fish wharf.
The Nelson Museum in Great Yarmouth offers you the chance to find out more about local hero, Admiral Lord Nelson, and the times in which he lived.
Built in 1854, the Wellington Pier was only the seventh pier to be constructed in Britain. Following significant reconstruction, the pier has a bright and airy ten-pin bowling alley and a family-friendly amusement arcade.
Dive into the underwater world of SEA LIFE Great Yarmouth and be wowed by the many strange, beautiful and fascinating creatures of the deep. Prepare for astonishing close views of everything from humble starfish to tropical sharks.
Relax in the spacious and informal setting of Great Yarmouth SEA LIFE Centre Restaurant, and enjoy a light snack or meal, 'Kids Eat Free' Meal Deal available with every adult Meal Deal purchased.
SEA LIFE Centre Great Yarmouth offers an interactive, hands-on visit for schools, along with a saving of up to 40% for groups of 10+ A school trip to SEA LIFE will inspire and amaze your pupils at all levels.
St George's Theatre is one of only 10 Grade 1 listed theatres in the UK. With over 100 different productions a year, the theatre is the heritage jewel in the crown of entertainment venues in great yarmouth. Open 52 weeks a year!
Visit Hollywood Cinema in Great Yarmouth to catch the latest blockbuster movie releases on the big screen and indulge yourself in a classic cinema snack while you sit back and enjoy the action.
Great Yarmouth Potteries and Smoke House
Great Yarmouth Potteries is a fully working pottery. From liquid clay to finished ware. Gift shop, refreshment area, herring smoking museum. Video showing fishing era and town wall 700 years old.
Merlins Sports Bar
Merlins Sports Bar, Great Yarmouth, has a lot to offer the keen indoor sportsman. With a range of pool and snooker tables, dartboards, large screen tv's and a bar serving food all day, Merlins is the perfect place to unwind with friends.
Docwras Rock Factory & Shop
Docwras Rock Factory & Shop, Great Yarmouth, has a long history in the town going back over a century. Come and watch seaside rock being made and see the fabulous range of rock and confectionery on display in the shop. Sweet heaven!
Potters Rock Factory
Potters Rock Factory, Great Yarmouth, sells an impressive variety of sweet items including seaside rock, pick and mix confectionery and soft drinks. Perfect for gifts or as a personal treat.