Well-managed public access is vital to ensuring the Broads remains a spectacular place for escape, recreation and enjoyment.

The Broads Plan sets out a long term aim for the sensitive management of tourism and recreation stating that where possible improvements should be made to access routes and their connections to key tourist facilities and sustainable transport links.

Integrated access strategy

The integrated access strategy was developed in 2013 to deliver this element of the Broads Plan by better connecting moorings, nearby villages, facilities and tourist attractions.

The long-term aim is that by working with councils and other stakeholders new paths and moorings can be developed and existing ones improved. Extra signposts will be put up to direct holidaymakers to nearby facilities and the use of mobile app technology will be investigated.

The strategy's key objectives are to:

  • Cycling in the BroadsImprove links between land and water and to the water's edge
  • Improve access links to local facilities, settlements and visitor destination points
  • Encourage sustainable travel choices such as public transport, walking, cycling and non-powered boating and improve links between public transport provision and visitor destination points and access routes
  • Provide appropriate information and interpretation on access to recreational opportunities
  • Work with partners and local communities towards the long-term objectives of this strategy, seeking to make the best use of shared knowledge and resources
  • Produce an annual action plan and monitor this in line with the Broads Plan review process.

Rights of way

Under the 2000 Countryside and Rights of Way Act walkers can enjoy mapped areas of previously off limits common land, heath, downland, moor and mountain without having to stick to paths.

About 150 hectares of this land is in the Broads, covering 14 distinct areas including Herringfleet Hills near Somerleyton, part of Outney Common in Bungay and East Ruston Allotments. Full details of these access rights can be found on the Natural England website.

In common with other national park authorities we have an access responsibility meaning we can place notices indicating boundaries, restrictions and exclusions and appoint wardens. We also decide applications from landowners and others with legal interests to exclude or restrict access.

The Local Access Forum has a key role in advising the Broads Authority on access functions and are consulted on applications.

Access All Areas video

This short film was produced to inspire and inform people with disabilities. Presented by Mik Scarlet, it gives a taste of activities available in the Broads.