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3.5 mile walk
Winterton Dunes is internationally significant as a site of special scientific interest, and interestingly, with its acidic plant communities, has more in common with the dune systems of the Baltic than those found elsewhere on the Norfolk coast.
The dunes are also home to the threatened natterjack toad. You’re far more likely to hear them than see them though – the mating call of the male is very loud!
Away from the scenic dunes and beach, the walk explores the area inland, heading to the magical ruins of St Mary’s church at East Somerton. Though the church survived the reformation, it fell into disuse once the church parish of East Somerton was subsumed into that of Winterton. Today, it is quite spectacular. Set in woodland and overgrown with ivy, a great oak tree grows straight up though the now-roofless chancel.
One of the most prominent landmarks on the walk is another church – the Holy Trinity and All Saints in Winterton village. It is one of several churches built in the 14th century with particularly large towers to act as status symbols. Many generations of sailors have looked to these towers as landmarks from the sea.