Stand on the secluded sandy beach in Happisburgh and you’ll be looking out across submerged Doggerland, an area that once connected Britain to mainland Europe.
Rising sea levels in about 6500 BC reduced it to a series of low-lying islands before flooding the entire region. Fishermen trawling this part of the North Sea – named after 17th Century Dutch fishing boats, or doggers – have since netted partial remains of mammoths, bears, hyenas and prehistoric tools and weapons.
And on the beach at Happisburgh (pronounced ‘Haysborough’), the earliest evidence of the human occupation of Northern Europe was discovered in the form of 900,000-year-old footprints. Now a recently developed hike, the Deep History Coast Discovery Trail, lets you follow in the footsteps of our ancient forebears and delve into the world they inhabited.
The 22-mile Deep History Coast Discovery trail starts in Weybourne and passes through Cromer (pictured above)
The trail begins at Weybourne, a pretty, shingle-beach resort on the line of the North Norfolk steam railway which, in season, puffs its way between smart Sheringham and quaint Holt. The trail stretches for 22 miles to Cart Gap, following the line of the coastal path…