Swaffham is a Norfolk market town gem, described by local resident Stephen Fry as ‘the perfect market town’, with a magnificent Georgian market square and a host of pretty craft jewellery and specialist shopping outlets. Fine restaurants and traditional inns are plentiful and in the pretty centre you’ll find the Swaffham Museum housed in a Grade II Listed town house with exhibits on local history and an impressive collection of Egyptian artefacts. Swaffham is famously the birthplace of Egyptologist Howard Carter about which there are exhibitions in the museum.
Take a tour of the EcoTech Centre just outside the town centre. The two wind turbines here provide about half of Swaffham’s power and the centre also offers the unique experience of a tour up a huge wind turbine. Admiral Lord Nelson was among the many fans of Swaffham through which cuts an ancient Roman Road, now the route of the popular Peddars Way National Trail which pushes all the way north to the coast to join the Norfolk Coast Path. Just to the north of the town sits Castle Acre Priory & Iceni Village, one of England’s largest and best preserved priory remains dating back to 1090.
Book a luxury Swaffham bed and breakfast for a romantic break in Norfolk or stay in a modern self-catering lodge or a cosy cottage between Thetford Forest and Swaffham. Be assured of an excellent base for touring in Swaffham which is ideall placed for exploring the North Norfolk Coast, Cambridge and an array of beautiful Suffolk and Norfolk inland market towns.
Swaffham’s close proximity to the A47 puts it within easy driving distance of Norwich and the Broads and mainline rail links sit nearby in Downham Market. If you’re on the lookout for a beautiful holiday cottage or B&B in and around this ‘perfect market town’ then browse accommodation in Swaffham now and book.
Housed in a Grade II listed town house, the Swaffham Museum is a gem of a local museum digging deep into the social history of the area as well as displaying treasured collections of both Egyptian and Roman finds. The fascinating Roman finds on display at Swaffham Museum were found locally and include Roman sandals, jars, coins, military badges and more. There were a number of Roman settlements around Swaffham which contained large villas and farmsteads.
Also of great interest in the Swaffham Museum is the impressive collection of Egyptian artefacts. Display boards feature the story of Swaffham son Howard Carter, famous Egyptologist who discovered Tutankhamen’s tomb. The story of the legend of the Swaffham Pedlar which features on the town’s sign is also given due attention within the Swaffham Museum which has an excellent on-site gift shop and tourist information centre.
The Green Britain Centre
If you’ve ever wanted to get up close to a vast wind turbine blade on the ground and take a tour of these giant producers of sustainable wind powered energy then the Green Britain Centre in Swaffham is where to head. Two wind turbines are here in Swaffham producing at least half of the town’s energy. One wind turbine is adjacent to the visitor centre at the Green Britain Centre situated on the outskirts of the town. Guided tours right up into the Wind Turbine are available, pre-booking advised.
Saturday is the not to be missed market day in Swaffham centred around the Georgian Market Place. Local produce market stalls, fine clothing, collectables and antique stalls all feature at Swaffham Market. A choice of traditional real ale pubs, historic Georgian hotels and guesthouses, fine art galleries, stylish cafes, cosy tearooms, craft shops, antique shops and an excellent selection of world cuisine restaurants all feature in the town centre. Market Square is also home to a rather stunning historic Methodist Church dating from 1813 which serves refreshments every Saturday on market day.
Michelle is an experienced travel writer with iknow and has travelled extensively across the UK, Spain, Portugal and the USA. When she’s not busy writing for iknow she enjoys spending time touring museums and art galleries and seeking out the best independent shops in Manchester and Leeds.