Wells-next-the-Sea & The Beach Cafe | Norfolk | East Anglia

The Beach Cafe won the ‘Be Dog Friendly’ Award for the best Cafe/ Restaurant in 2015, so when we visited the North Norfolk coast this was the number one destination on our agenda…

The cafe sits within the Holkam National Nature Reserve, right at the end of Beach Road in Wells-next-the-Sea. You can walk down to the beach from town but it’s quite a long way for little Lhasa legs, so we drove. There is a large car park on the left when you get to the end of the road. You do have to pay to park there but the prices are reasonable and there are plenty of spaces. There are also restrooms and outdoor showers next to the entrance of the car park.

We decided to go for a walk first. In our excitement and eagerness to feel the sand beneath our toes we misread the signs and ended up walking onto the beach from the wrong side, along a raised boardwalk which was to the right hand side of the Beach Cafe. It wasn’t until later on that we realised that there is a designated path to the dog friendly side of the beach at the far end of the car park. Fortunately no one seemed to mind, everyone was too busy enjoying the afternoon sun!

The dog friendly path to the beach is actually a nicer route, with a tap at the end of the boardwalk where water bowls can be filled and paws rinsed off.

Once you are on the beach, dog owners are advised to stick to the left hand side. The signs are much more obvious when you follow the designated dog friendly route.

The soft golden sand is the same texture as light brown sugar (without the stickiness) and it goes on and on for miles… The famous Wells beach huts are painted in an array of beautiful colours and set the scene for a picturesque seaside view.

This was truly one of the most beautiful beaches that we have visited in Britain.


 Elsa absolutely loves sand

There is something about the texture that sets her off and before we know it her nose is caked in it, fur is flying and she rolls and bounces around thoroughly reveling in it. It’s a joy to watch, but also means that we take half the beach home with us!


Elsa soon found some dogs playing in the water and decided that she wanted to join in too… Their owners were very friendly and we all enjoyed watching the dogs play together while chatting.

This was the first time Elsa had ever gone into the sea and thankfully she seemed to instinctively know her limits as far as the water was concerned. After wading in beyond her depth with the other dogs she quickly made her way back to shallower water. This was much to our relief as we were not dressed for swimming, but poised and ready to jump in after her if she’d needed us!

After another roll in the sand we decided it was time to head to the Beach Cafe for a drink and some ice cream.

 Although it was mid-September a glorious heat wave had brought many people out to enjoy the unexpected good weather, so it was quite busy but there were still tables available. Everything about the Beach Cafe is dog friendly and nearly everyone there had at least one dog!

We absolutely love the self-service dog water station, which was very popular with the many canine visitors that we saw.

Elsa was too snobby for the communal bowls on the ground and preferred to drink directly from the tap!

There are also plenty of dog ‘parking’ stations where you can easily tether your dog while you enjoy a drink or bite to eat.

Elsa humoured us while we took some fun holiday photos!

Directly opposite the Beach Cafe there is also a Joules store. They sell a range of clothing, footwear and accessories that are particularly useful for a day ‘beside the seaside’ in this branch. This was a lovely surprise as Joules is one of our favourite dog friendly retailers!

After soaking up the amazing scenery on the beach it was great to rest and enjoy the atmosphere at the Beach Cafe. Everyone was incredibly friendly and we spent some time talking to the owners of another Lhasa Apso while enjoying our ice cream as Elsa dried off in the sun.

 That evening, when we returned to our ‘home away from home’; the gorgeous Barn Owl Cottage, Elsa was absolutely exhausted. After a quick wash and brush up she ate her dinner and we enjoyed a peaceful evening while she lay sprawled out on the floor, gently snoring. The perfect end to a beautiful day!

Wells-next-the-Sea Beach Cafe

Wells-next-the-Sea NR23


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