Hunstanton Beach by Rob Topliss

Hunstanton Beaches & Sunsets

Hunstanton's main beach has been awarded a Blue Flag and a Quality Cost Award for many successive years and these have also been awarded in 2011

Hunstanton rests on the north-west corner of Norfolk at the mouth of The Wash.  Hunstanton Beach is one of the key attractions of this Norfolk seaside resort. It is thought to be one of the safest and cleanest beaches in the United Kingdom, with its famous cliffs and many sources of family entertainment and amusements along its front. You don't need to book cheap flights abroad and go outside the UK just to have a relaxing vacation. Hunstanton Beach has all the right factors that make for a great getaway.

The limitless horizon and vast skies in Norfolk allow real enjoyment of the often spectacular sunsets over the sea on offer here in Hunstanton. The effect of the changing colours and cloud formations provide the setting for many a romance. This stretch of Norfolk's coastline is truly the sunset coast. In Hunstanton the progression of the setting sun lasts hours longer than in other west facing locations - up to a staggering 5½ hours is possible!! So when it is a great sunset (which is very common in Hunstanton) you have literally hours to enjoy it. Once the sun goes below the horizon in Hunstanton it remains light for hours after - often aided by a beautiful moon rising from the East.

The beach at Old Hunstanton is very distinctive in that it is covered in attractive sprawling sand dunes. The beach to the other side of Hunstanton Town is more open sand. Many watersports enthusiasts are attracted to the Norfolk coast and, in particular, Hunstanton, such as kite surfers and wind surfers. Other activities enjoyed on Hunstanton beach are parasailing and even kite buggies along the sand. Norfolk is also well known for attracting many species of migrant and sea birds. Some birdlife often seen off Hunstanton during the year include Gannets, Guillemots, Long-Tailed Ducks and Velevet Scoters, Petrels and Eider Ducks.

Hunstanton's 830 foot pier was built in 1870 but was destroyed in a storm on 11 January 1978. There are hopes that the pier will be rebuilt in Hunstanton at some time in the future.

Hunstanton Lighthouse and Cliffs

Hunstanton Cliffs and Lighthouse Hunstanton's most famous feature, amongst geologists and holidaymakers alike, is its magnificent cliffs which extend along the town's coastline. You cannot help but notice the cliffs' distinctive layers of red chalk, white chalk and brown sandstone. Locally, the brown sandstone is known as carrstone. Many homes have been built throughout the area with such carrstone.

Hunstanton's first lighthouse was built in 1666. It stood at St Edmund's Point until it was burnt down in 1776. Its replacement did not last long and was replaced in 1844 by the present structure. During the First World War, the lighthouse was used as a base for secret wireless transmissions monitoring Germany navy signals. In World War II it was used as an observation station and gunnery. In 1996 the lighthouse was sold once again. It is believed to be used as a holiday home even today. There is a red brick building nearby the lighthouse which is a coastguard look- out station.

The current lighthouse ceased to operate as a functioning lighthouse in 1921. The lighthouse role was instead fulfilled initially by a lightship and subsequently by a fog buoy and light operated by remote control. Since 1964, the current lighthouse has been a holiday home when the building was sold by the local Council following an advertisement in The Times for £4,740. Seventy offers were received within two days. Located not far from the lighthouse in Old Hunstanton is the RNLI lifeboat station. Well worth a visit.

St Edmund's Chapel

St Edmund's chapel was built in his memory by the monks of Bury on the cliffs at Hunstanton near where he was reported to have landed. The chapel became disused in the 16th century but the ruins now stand on the cliff top and the area has been converted to a garden of remembrance.

Hunstanton Town Sign A Family Enjoy a Hunstanton Sunset by Fleur PetersonOld Hunstanton Beach by Stella Gooch Sunset Among Hunstanton Dunes by Marie Kernon

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