Things to do in Walton-on-the-Naze
A trip to Walton-on-the Naze is a wonderful way to escape to the Essex coast, and with the town just a half-hour drive from our park at The Orchards. 14 miles is all that separates our guests from this golden town by the sea.
There are so many things to do in Walton, so we’ve summed up our favourites in this one-stop shop of all the attractions that are sure to add something extra special to any stay with us. Walton is a brilliant alternative to the more household name of Clacton, being much less busy but having an abundance of options on the same beautiful stretch of coastline. From the Naze’s nature reserves to the classic pier, let’s get into the fun for all the family.
1. Walton Pier
You can’t organise a day of things to do in Walton without checking out the town’s pier, which is in fact the third longest in the UK, stretching for over half a mile. A walk along the pier is far from long though, with so much to do at every corner for all ages. Seaside classics like bowling lanes and arcades are joined by one of the largest undercover funfairs in the region, brilliant for a bit of adrenaline-inducing action by the water.
Built in 1830 and lengthened in 1848, the pier retains its classic feel despite adding a whole host of modern features. There’s a café and bar onsite and the end of the pier is the ideal spot for some fishing.
2. The Naze Nature Reserve
The headland after which Walton takes its full name is more than just something that’s written down. This stunningly beautiful area is to the north of the town itself and is a nature reserve full of unspoilt landscapes and fascinating wildlife. A double estuary that lends itself perfectly to marine and amphibious life, The Naze is just south of the start of the River Stour and River Orwell.
A massively important site for migrating birds, the area is developed enough for a stroll through where we highly recommend stopping at the beach and sampling the magnificent breath of fresh air.
3. Naze Nature Discovery Centre
The Naze Nature Reserve is best discovered through a visit to this brilliant information centre. The geological and biological importance of the headland is put into magnificent perspective by the centre’s adventures for little ones and guardians alike.
There are loads of exhibitions to look at too, and several special events dotted throughout the calendar. Essex Wildlife Trust run this venue with the utmost expertise, so don’t hesitate to ask a knowledgeable member of the team for some perspective on what you see on The Naze.
4. Naze Tower
This 18th-century structure stands tall to this very day in the heart of The Naze Nature Reserve. Checking it out is one of the must-see things to do in Walton, with the structure fulfilling various functions over the years. Originally built to guide vessels through a notably treacherous set of water, today it houses an art gallery that switches its focus three times a year.
Refreshed exhibitions are guaranteed, and when they’re coupled with the magnificent surroundings, you see why this is undoubtedly one of Walton’s premier attractions. Admission prices are more than reasonable, and if you’re a regular visitor to The Orchards or the Walton area, you may want to consider becoming a member here, such is the variety on offer for all the family.
5. Walton Maritime Museum
Walton Maritime Museum looks pretty inconspicuous when you first lay eyes on it, but it hides within an absolute goldmine of sea faring history in Walton-on-the-Naze. The building itself used to serve as a lifeboat station, housing the town’s first RNLI lifeboat from 1884. When it was closed exactly 100 years later in the 1984, the property was reborn through the work of the Frinton and Walton Heritage Trust.
There are loads of displays to feast your eyes on, each telling a chapter in the story of Walton’s sea history. You’ll learn about the people who sailed the boats, the models themselves and about the incredible significance of the Naze and the surrounding area for wildlife. It goes without saying as far as things to do in Walton goes, this is a must. Open from the beginning of June until late September, the entry fee is cheap as chips so it’s great value on a day out.
6. Wildlife Boat Trips
Walton’s Wildlife Boat Trips are a brilliant way to see The Naze Nature Reserve and all the spectacular life that comes with it. Meeting at The Chandlery, a two-hour ride takes you round the beautiful north of the town, starting at The Twizzle and heading out the North Sea. You’ll see a wide variety of wildlife, including seals.
Check out the Wildlife Boat Trips page on Facebook and give them a ring to organise a booking. The tours are led by a sea faring expert who was a professional fisherman for 32 years.
7. ViZion VR Walton
Virtual Reality is a concept that grows and grows in popularity with each passing year, and this stellar site in Walton reflects the surge in popularity. Brilliant for kids and adults alike, you’ll be mesmerised by the virtual reality stations that take gamers to new dimensions.
A brilliant all-weather thing to do in Walton, you’ll be transported to different worlds and play as your favourite characters. Located in the centre of town on the high street, parking is only round the corner, so come and sample this futuristic attraction for yourself.
8. Tricky Escape Walton
Escape rooms are always a great time, and things to do in Walton don’t come much more challenging than this. Several themed rooms are yours to book, whether you’re coming with the kids, the extended family or as a couple.
Rooms are rated by difficulty, so you can easily pick one that sounds most promising for your party on the venue’s website. Walton isn’t the only place to try either. There are also rooms available down the road in Clacton and in Harwich.
How to get to Walton-on-the-Naze from us
Walton-on-the-Naze is only a half hour drive from our park at The Orchards, so it’s a brilliant option for a day out by the sea. Here’s how you get there:
Head east past St Osyth towards Clacton-on-Sea
When you reach Clacton, follow signs for Holland-on-Sea
Pass through Holland onto the B1032, through Great Holland and Kirby Cross
Turn right onto the B1033, past Frinton-on-Sea station and into Walton-on-the-Naze