7:00 p.m. December 12, 2021
Well, not the main house, obviously, but in the lovely coastal countryside of nearby West Norfolk …
The Royal Sandringham Estate is surrounded by nature reserves, hundreds of acres of parks and forests and pretty villages like Wolferton, Babingingley, Shernborne and West Newton. The rich vein of red stone that runs through the region is officially called a carrstone. Nicknamed gingerbread, it gives an air of a fairy tale to villages full of gingerbread cottages. Find them in Ingoldisthorpe, whose name evokes its Viking past, in Flitcham, where Saint Felix visited in the 7th century, and in Dersingham, with its historic tithe barn and national nature reserve.
Sandringham is where the Royal Family traditionally spend Christmas and has been a popular country retreat for generations of monarchs and their families. At one of the entrances to the estate, the spectacular ironwork of Norwich Gates was a wedding gift for Prince Albert Edward (later King Edward VII) and Princess Alexandra from the people of Norfolk.
King George V called the house and estate: âDear old Sandringham, the place I love better than anywhere in the world. The first Christmas speech was broadcast on the radio from Sandringham by the Queen’s grandfather, George V, on December 25, 1932. The Queen made the first Christmas TV broadcast, live from Sandringham Library, 25 years later in 1957.
Where to stay near Sandringham
The Rose and Crown, Snettisham, is renowned for its cuisine, winning the Good Pub Guide award as Norfolk Dining Pub of the Year and also 16 deluxe rooms.
The Heacham Manor Hotel is an Elizabethan mansion with a restaurant, golf course, and a tree believed to have been planted by Pocahontas.
The Ffolkes in Hillington is a 300 year old inn with fabulously furnished luxury rooms. It is also famous for its food, including a brunch feast, pie feast, and street feast.
The Congham Hall Hotel and spa is a secluded boutique hotel in a Georgian mansion with a pool and acres of beautiful gardens – which also provide flowers for the rooms and food for the table.
Where to shop near Sandringham
The Royal Estate has its own shop, selling a wide range of Norfolk products. From preserves and chutneys to candies, ports and liqueurs, there are many products made with ingredients from Sandringham. While Sandringham House and Gardens is closed to the public until spring, the Royal Park and the Courtyard Shop and Cafe are open year round. In addition to food, Sandringham Shop sells handmade crafts, home and garden gifts, and country clothes, most of which are made in Norfolk.
Where to eat near Sandringham
In addition to the award-winning Rose and Crown restaurant in Snettisham, the village is also home to The Old Bank, which was named the country’s best local restaurant by the Good Food Guide in 2019. It offers imaginative and impressive tasting menus that are longer and shorter. and a sumptuous Sunday. breakfast.
Only two restaurants in Norfolk have a Michelin star – and The Neptune in Old Hunstanton is one of them. Reservation essential for this small restaurant specializing in sublime seafood (and which also offers rooms for overnight stays.)
The Duck Inn at Stanhoe is another fine dining pub renowned for its menus filled with beautifully cooked local produce.
Things to do near Sandringham
Luminate Sandringham is a spellbinding illuminated trail, set to ambient music, along a forest path through Sandringham Country Park. It runs until December 19 and includes interactive installations along the way, as well as the chance to warm up with hot chocolate and toasted marshmallows.
Sandringham Country Park is open daily for free with two marked trails through the woods and parks, many more unmarked trails and a new children’s play area.
Stroll through the estate village of Wolferton to admire the now privately owned station where royals from around the world once alighted for Sandringham. One story is that of Edward VII and the Tsar of Russia walking to the station and being asked for their tickets. âI am the King of England and this is the Czar of Russia,â King Edward said. The tax collector reportedly replied, “Nice to meet you.” I am the Archbishop of Canterbury.
at 10 minutes
Snettisham, with its pubs, shops, restaurants and walks, is also internationally famous for its treasures. Snettisham’s treasure of enormous twisted gold necklaces and bracelets was unearthed here from 1948 when a farm worker plowing an ancient lavender field discovered pieces of twisted metal. Believing they were part of a bed of shattered brass, he left them at the edge of the field for several days before finally showing them to local archaeologists. They were iron and silver torcs of the Iron Age and are now featured pieces in the British Museum and the Norwich Castle Museum.
A separate treasure of Roman jewelry has also been found nearby, and the remains of a Roman villa can be found under Snettisham Park – a working farm and tourist attraction open daily.
The Parish Church’s Rising Spire is the second tallest in Norfolk (with the first spot occupied by Norwich Cathedral.) And if you had visited the village in 1474, you might have enjoyed Rockfeste. Village records reveal that Snettisham had its own actors, Morris dancers, and sword dancers at the time, and that Rockfeste was likely a festival of music and dance.
at 15 minutes
Close to Sandringham are the beaches of Snettisham, Heacham and Hunstanton and this west Norfolk coast borders Britain’s largest nature reserve – the Wash National Nature Reserve. The birds come from the Arctic in winter and from Africa in summer. The RSPB Snettisham Preserve is teeming with flocks of resident and migrating birds year-round and in the winter people travel for miles to see thousands of short-billed geese soar into the sky at sunrise.
at 20 minutes
West Norfolk is not just huge open spaces. King’s Lynn has shops, cafes, restaurants, theaters (including the only surviving location where Shakespeare performed), the 1920s Majestic Cinema, and many other awe-inspiring architectures including the Great Tuesday Market Square, the flint cathedral and town hall facing each other on the Saturday market. Square, and the elegant Custom House and Hanseatic Warehouses along the river.