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Norfolk is a county in eastern England, the largest one in terms of size, with an area of about 2,000 square miles. Therefore, visitors here will find open country as well as scenic lakes and bays, all of which make for the perfect getaway or an excellent respite from the busy cities. Norfolk is best experienced in two of the main attractions of the area: the Wash and the Norfolk Broads.
Who to Book With
Norfolk County has many car hire companies whose rental rates are easily viewed and compared via online booking sites. Many of the companies have their offices in or near the county town of Norwich. First Self-Drive and Norwich Car Hire both have offices on Paddock Street in Norwich. Hertz and Europcar also each have a desk at the terminal building of Norwich Airport.
Best Time to Go
The climate in Norfolk is milder than that of the rest of the United Kingdom due to its position on the British east coast. Annual rainfall is low compared to Cornwall, Cardiff and the Lake District. There are lots of sunny days too, making visits in spring or summer a good choice.
Need to Know Essentials
Renters who booked the vehicle online must have the following when collecting the vehicle:
- Booking confirmation
- The credit card of the renter
- The driving licence of renter (or an International Driving Permit)
- Secondary identification with a photo
Norwich, the county town, is the transport hub of the area. Roads all go through this city, with the M11 motorway branching off onto the A11 close to Cambridge the best way to get from London to Norwich. The journey should take about two hours. The National Park and Ride Directory lists Norfolk as the county with the most Park and Ride sites, with almost 5,000 parking spaces available. The car parks are situated along the roads leading into the city centre of Norwich.
The main transport hub of the county is Norwich, from where roads radiate out to all areas of the UK. Frequent train services from London are available, and bus connections run to nearby counties as well as to London and Birmingham. Although buses and trains are sufficient for commuters, those wishing to explore the quiet countryside and the remote open country are advised to hire a car.
Two railway lines provide services for residents and visitors travelling between Norfolk and London. Run by the National Express East Anglia, trains depart for London frequently, up to 35 times daily, taking only two hours from Norwich. Direct services are also available to Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth, both located along the coast. King's Lynn by the Wash in the west also receives trains from London King's Cross. These services are operated by First Capital Connect.
There are plenty of companies providing taxi services in Norfolk, not just in the main towns such as Norwich, although there are certainly a lot more found here. ABC Taxis, A2B Taxi, Five Star Taxis, Beeline and Dolphin Taxis and many more are represented in Norwich, with services available within and outside town. Many of these companies have websites that accept online bookings.
Routes within the region are operated by First Eastern Counties. One bus line, Excel X1, begins at Peterborough Railway Station and runs to Wisbeach, King's Lynn, Norwich and Lowestoft. For journeys involving larger distances, National Express operates several services to Birmingham and London. It is advisable to check online as discounts are often offered.
The idyllic countryside is what many holidaymakers come to Norfolk for. Tourists can enjoy endless areas of open natural beauty as well as lazy boat rides along the many waterways of the county. When you have your own car here, such experiences in the more outlying areas of the county become available.
Norwich - A good starting point for visitors coming to Norfolk. This lively town has many cultural and historical sites well worth the visit, including the 900-year old Norman church, the Norwich Cathedral, as well as the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, found on University of East Anglia campus.
The Wash - This is a bay in the northern part of Norfolk. This square-shaped bay is one of the largest estuaries of the UK, home to a range of wildlife and birds, including waders, geese and ducks. Those interested in seeing more wildlife can head to Hunstanton and the Sea Life Sanctuary, a rescue centre for marine animals found near the Wash.
The Norfolk Broads - A protected area comprised of navigable rivers, lakes and canals. Boating, kayaking and biking are ideal activities to do while enjoying the beauty of the Broads.