Hunstanton in Norfolk is our favourite seaside town to take the kids for a day out. The reason we love this town so much is that it jam-packed with things to do. So if you are asking yourself what is there to do in Hunstanton? Check out this list of some of our favourite things to do.
Things To do in Hunstanton With Kids – Quick Answers
1. Wash Monster – Take a boat trip to see seals in The Wash.
2. Go Rock Pooling – Hunstanton is ideal for rock pooling and beachcombing.
3.Clifftop Walk – Head North for the Clifftop walk.
4. Largest Joke Shop – World of Fun in Hunstanton bills itself as the world’s largest joke shop.
5. Play on the Beach – Bring the bucket and spade.
6. SEA LIFE Centre – SEA LIFE Hunstanton has a seal rescue centre.
7. Amusements – Check out the amusements at the old pier.
8. Fossil Hunting – Look for fossils near the North cliffs.
9. The Lookout – Enjoy the views from The Lookout.
10. Esplanade Gardens and The Green – Explore Hunstanton’s green space.
What is There to Do in Hunstanton With Kids?
1. Wash monster
The wash monster is more than just a boat, it’s a boat with wheels! Hunstanton sits on The Wash, a shallow area of the North Sea. Sandbanks make it impossible to navigate near Hunstanton with a traditional craft. For the Wash Monster though, these are no problem, it can simply drive over them. A voyage on the Wash Monster is a fun and unique experience that I would highly recommend for children of all ages. We took our trip out into The Wash in September, and at that time of year, there are common seals resting on the sandbanks which our family thought was excellent.
Trips on the Wash Monsters (there are 3) are run by Searles Sea Tours from the South Promenade near the SEA LIFE Centre. You can find tour times and prices on their website.
Rockpooling is my favourite activity on any beach and Hunstanton is the first place I remember going to do it. The best places I have found to dive in and discover are at eh Northern end of the beach. The tide goes out a long way, revealing a lot of pools.
If you’re not sure about climbing over slippery rocks, then why not try some beachcombing? All types of shell litter the beach here. We love seeing how many different ones we can find.
3. Clifftop Walk
The Clifftop Walk was created deliberately in 1897 when the town turned the fields to grass and benches and shelters put up for visitors. It was the vision of the fantastically named Hamon le Strange, son of Hunstanton’s founder.
It’s windy on top of the cliffs at Hunstanton, but the views out to sea make it worth the effort. Statues and points of interest can be found along the way to Old Hunstanton, Brancaster and beyond.
The Norfolk Coastal Path National Trail begins in Hunstanton, where it joins up with the Peddar’s Way, and follows the coast all the way to Hopton-on-Sea. This means that if you are up for an epic walk, you can just keep going. Maybe not with the kids in tow though.
4. Largest Joke shop
My clearest memory from visits to Hunstanton as a child is of the joke shop in the centre of town. The World of Fun shop has been open since 1978, and although the joke section is not as big as I remember it being in the ’90s, it is still pretty cool. It now offers a lot more souvenirs, as well as everything you need for a party.
5. Play on the Beach
As well as being a good beach for rock pools, Hunstanton is also perfect for building sandcastles, so make sure you bring a bucket and spade. Pebbles and shells make excellent decorations too.
The tide in The Wash retreats a long way, leaving plenty of space for beach games. On our last visit to Hunstanton, we witnessed games of beach cricket, volleyball and football on the sand.
6. SEA LIFE Centre
As a family, we are partial to visiting aquariums. What makes the SEA LIFE in Hunstanton special is the seal rescue centre. Both Grey and Common seals give birth on Norfolk’s beaches at different times of the year. The centre takes in orphaned or injured seal pups and takes care of them until they can be released into the wild.
As well as the seals, the SEA LIFE Centre also has a plethora of other aquatic animals. The jungle room, with its leaf-cutter ant display, and the pirate playground are also both favourites of ours.
Hunstanton, like most British seaside towns, has a decent number of amusements. Located where the pier pavilion once stood is The Hunstanton Pier Family Entertainment Centre. This colourful building contains the usual collection of 2p machines and arcade machines for some wholesome family fun.
The pavilion at the head of the original pier was destroyed and rebuilt many times throughout its existence. The pier itself survived in several guises for over 100 years before being destroyed by storms in 1978.
8. Fossil Hunt
The cliffs to the North of Hunstanton town are stunning. They are also a great place for fossil hunting. Hunting for fossils directly under the cliffs is not recommended due to rock falls. Instead, at low tide look for rocks on the beach that might contain some treasures. You are looking for shells, ammonites, sharks’ teeth and other marine fossils.
9. The Lookout
The Lookout at the North end of Hunstanton, just before the clifftop path is a lovely spot to spend some time. The views across The Wash are spectacular, and a helpful map allows you to identify all the landmarks on the horizon. The North Sea windfarm and Skegness, 12.5 miles away in Lincolnshire, are notable places to try and find.
10. Esplanade Gardens and The Green
Central Hunstanton, between the South Promenade and the Cliff Parade, is dominated by green space. This area is a lovely place to spend time with kids when they are tired of the beach because there are so many things to do here.
The Green is located between the pier amusements and the joke shop. The grass here is always full of families having picnics. Just to the side of the amusements, there is a unique plastic waterful sculpture.
The Esplanade Gardens occupy the rest of the green space along the clifftops. The gardens are pleasant to stroll around and also contain many other seaside diversions. These include miniature golf, a bowks green and a playground.