The Norfolk Broads are one of the most popular wetlands in Europe. These inland waterways are a popular holiday destination and attract tourists from all over the world. Norfolk Broads are also the largest wetlands that are protected in the whole of Britain. In fact, the broads have a status that is the same as that of any national park.
The Norfolk Broads have an area of 303 sq. km. These are features navigable rivers that are lock free, and which run over a length of 200 kilometers. Other than this there are woodlands, grazing marshes and shallow lakes that make up the broads. One can find some of the rarest species of wildlife and plants found in the UK, in the broads. These include both the beautiful white water lily and the vibrantly colored swallowtail butterfly.
The Norfolk broads are basically made up of 43 other broads that comprise of shallow lakes. The broads also comprise of rivers, namely the Ant, the Bure, the Thurne, the Yare, The Chet and the Waveney.
History of The Norfolk Broads
The Norfolk Broads were created as a result of the continuous peat diggings that people engaged in during the 9th to the 13th century. Peat was an important fuel in those days and was used for the purpose of cooking and heating.
However, as there was an increase in the level of water all over the world, the peat diggings were flooded and filled with water. Thus, the broads and the waterways were formed.
The waterways then became very important routes for shipping and transporting cargo between the several towns and villages that were located by the broads.
The transportation in the Norfolk Broads was done with the help of Wherries that are large boats which feature single sails. Although, the wherries were very useful just some years back, today there are only few of these that used for the purpose of transportation. Nevertheless, the wherries remain a popular tourist attraction of the Norfolk Broads. Most people visiting Norfolk Broads still prefer hiring wherries so as to enjoy a relaxing holiday.
Tourism in the Norfolk Broads
Tourists have been visiting the Norfolk Broads since the 1890’s and from then the broads have been attracting tourist who like boating. In fact the Victorian’s used to hire a piano so as to enjoy music aboard their boats or ships. Thus, they sailed the enchanting waterways of the broads for weeks together. Today, almost 1 million visit the Norfolk Broads each year.
Other than boating, there are several other activities that tourists like to enjoy at the Norfolk Broads. In fact, some of them even prefer staying at the broads for weeks together.
When you visit the Norfolk Broads you could stay at the several hotels, and cottages that are located in the Broads. The Broads have been developed to a great extent today to facilitate the stay of the tourists. Besides, there is a Norfolk Broads Authority that takes care of the Broads. The Broads Authority not only maintains the broads but also sees to it that the tourists have a great time at Norfolk so that they keep coming back.