Blakeney: King's Arms

WHERE IS IT? Take in the bracing sea air with a walk on Blakeney marshes to work up an appetite, then pop into the cosy surroundings of the historic King's Arms, a stone's throw from the Quayside.

WHERE IS IT?

Take in the bracing sea air with a walk on Blakeney marshes to work up an appetite, then pop into the cosy surroundings of the historic King's Arms, a stone's throw from the Quayside. You cannot miss it for it's most immediately-recognisable feature - the legend 'FH + 1760' tiled into the mellow-red Norfolk-pantiled roof.

WHAT'S IT LIKE?

The King's Arms is a cosy place - a series of little rooms and bars and alcoves in a pub crouched long and low against the winds blowing across the salt marshes and creeks from the restless north sea. There is a lot more to the King's Arms than at first meets the eye. Step inside and at first glance it's fairly rough and ready. But the impression you come away with is the warm and friendly atmosphere. Staff and customers are smiling and chatting. The atmosphere is relaxed rather than interior-designed stuffy and muted. The larger-than-life landlord Howard Davies sadly died earlier this year, but on the walls of this listed building are mementoes from his showbiz days - taking in encounters with Rex Harrison, Julie Andrews and the Black and White Minstrels.

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THE DRINKS

A good selection - beers include plenty of Woodfordes, fruit and traditional ciders and a wine list enhanced by helpful and knowledgeable bar staff.

THE FOOD

Serves food all day. It's not posh, at least it seemed perfectly okay to be dressed in Sunday scruff, straight from the footpaths and lanes around beautiful Blakeney, rather than in Sunday best. And the after-lunch-time bar meal menu is mainly good plain, hearty fare. However, the specials menu board, on offer during traditional meal times, is more gastropub with some truly splendid sounding meals chalked up.

THE ENTERTAINMENT

When you've got the wide open expanses of the Norfolk coastline to explore you don't really need much else. But they hold occasional events, music and dancing. There's a pleasant garden too, and tables in the yard, perfect for families especially on summer days.

THE REGULARS

A real mix of daytrippers, holidaying families, walkers, fishermen and locals. The hospitality is second to none and whoever walks through the door is guaranteed a warm welcome.

t The King's Arms, Westgate Street, Blakeney, 01263 740341, www.blakeneykingsarms.co.uk

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