Saturday, 01 September 2018 00:00

Whitlingham Country Park

Written by  Joe Lenton
Rate this item
(1 Vote)
Whitlingham Country Park

All Things Norfolk business member Joe Lenton of Original Art Photography focusses on Whitlingham Country Park in the latest of his series of features for All Things Norfolk.

Joe has over 50 international awards to his name and All Things Norfolk are delighted to bring you another edition of his popular series to help inspire you and learn how to take that perfect image to encapsulate Norfolk.

Whitlingham Country Park is a beautiful area of 25 hectares of stunning open parkland and water very near to Norwich city centre 

At its heart is Whitlingham Broad where many water based activities and land based advertures are available for all ages and abilities from taster sessions to skill courses and include Sailing, Canoeing, Kayaking, Paddleboarding, Windsurfing, Bushcraft, Climbing and Archery.

There is a camp site which includes traditional pitches to the more boutique Shepherds Huts. There is also an information centre along with a cafe which sells delicious home cooked breakfasts, hot meals and homemade cakes and scones.

You can do a circular walk around the broad and take in the views with various points to stop and sit on a bench too.

You can find Whitlingham Country Park in Trowse, just a short distance from Norwich city centre.

The postcode is NR14 8TR and there are pay and display car parks available.

For more information about Whitlingham Country Park please visit the official website at



Expanses of water are a great attraction for landscape photographers. As well as offering a chance to see some beautiful reflections, they can also provide the right conditions for atmospheric mist and fog at the right time of year.


Foggy and misty conditions create images that often convert well to black and white. If you are struggling with the contrast, switch to black and white when processing and you will find that you can push things further than you can with a colour image.


At the back of the broad you can also find the river Yare. Occasionally there may be boats moored nearby which make useful subjects for a composition. You may also find that local rowing and canoeing clubs make use of the river for training so there might even be the chance of an action shot.


I often encourage people to try different viewpoints when taking photos. If you always shoot from eye level then the images tend to look more predictable as that is our normal point of view. So, one interesting approach to try near water is to get the camera down as low as possible and exaggerate the perspective. This can be done using stones to provide a temporary platform instead of a tripod. Cameras with flip screens make this much easier; otherwise you have to lie down!


The usual kind of techniques such as long exposure can work here as well. This helps to smooth out the water, which is more useful on windy days. It also stretches the clouds, which can be a lovely effect. You will normally need a neutral density filter to achieve this unless shooting in low light.


Key features to use as subjects include the Whitlingham Adventure centre . At certain times of year you can line up the sunset behind the building for a dramatic effect. Check to find out when this happens.


There is normally plenty of birdlife on the water with swans, ducks, geese and more. You will need a longer lens to make the most of this but you may get lucky if they come to the shore for a feed. With light coloured birds such as white swans you might like to try spot metering to keep detail in the feathers.


Sometimes you may even be able to photograph watersports activities on the broad. Make sure that you check if permission is needed, especially if children are involved. I was lucky enough to be able to take a few photos from a boat on the broad on one occasion.


Whitlingham Country Park offers a variety of possibilities throughout the year. Although it is largely attractive for landscape photographers, there is plenty of scope for nature photography (birds and butterflies) and possibly also sports photography. If you are thinking of using any images commercially please be aware that you will need permission as it is private property. It is a lovely place to go for a walk, a picnic and all within a few minutes of the city centre.


© Joe Lenton, September 2018

Joe Lenton is a professional photography tutor and commercial photographer. He has won over 50 international awards for his images and been featured in exhibitions around the world. He runs photography workshops and teaches various aspects of photography and images processing one to one . For more free photography tips and to enquire about photography training please visit Original Art Photography .

Last modified on Wednesday, 02 January 2019 21:12

Related items

  • Overstrand

    All Things Norfolk business member Joe Lenton of Original Art Photography focusses on Overstrand in the latest edition of his popular series to help inspire you and learn how to take that perfect image to encapsulate Norfolk. 

    Overstrand is just along the coast from Cromer heading East. You can even see Cromer Pier from Overstrand beach.

    The lines of the sea defences can be used as effective leading lines, drawing the eye through the image to the focal point of the pier or sunset, for example. You can either work at ground level or photograph from the promenade for a slightly elevated viewpoint.


  • Cromer on a Foggy Day

    All Things Norfolk business member Joe Lenton of Original Art Photography focusses on Cromer in the latest of his series of features for All Things Norfolk.

    Joe has over 50 international awards to his name and All Things Norfolk are delighted to bring you another edition of his popular series to help inspire you and learn how to take that perfect image to encapsulate Norfolk

    As we move through Autumn and Winter, the weather changes and the hours of daylight decrease. So, often many photographers seem to go into hibernation unsure of what to do until Spring. This month, I'd like to encourage you to make the most of the unique conditions of the cooler seasons. One particular phenomenon that you are likely to see more of is fog.

  • Hunstanton

    We are fortunate enough to have both east-facing and west-facing beaches in Norfolk. So, you can see the sun rise out to see from one side of the county and set over the sea on the other. Hunstanton is in the northwest of Norfolk and it is a great location for landscape photographers, especially around sunset.

    It is a very varied stretch of the coast with "Old Hunstanton" being most well known for its iconic cliffs. The cliffs are made up of different layers of different colours of stone/earth. They can be found in the northern part of Hunstanton with ample parking available near the lighthouse.

    When photographing landmarks such as the Hunstanton cliffs, there are many possibilities available. You can go extremely wide to show more of the landscape, or you can make more of a feature of them by going in closer.

    Help the viewer to understand the scale of landmarks by including something to show the size, such as people on the beach.

  • Sea Palling and Waxham

    This month we move further north along the Norfolk coast. Here we take a look at Sea Palling and Waxham beach. Sea Palling is probably the better known of the two and certainly has more parking and facilities. Waxham can be reached by walking south along the beach from Sea Palling. There is very limited parking available by Waxham beach itself.

    I like to make the most of any unique features at a location. This helps viewers to identify where the image was taken by giving a strong sense of place. It also means that I work differently at different locations, creating varying images by allowing myself to be guided by the environment around me. When we think of Sea Palling, there are a few distinctive elements that come to mind. First of all, there are the tall posts marking the sea defence reefs. These are visible even when the reefs themselves are submerged. They can be used to create leading lines in your composition, with their diminishing height adding to the sense of depth and perspective as you can see below.

  • Caister Beach

    Norfolk is fortunate to have a long stretch of varied coastline. This month we step out of Norwich and head to the coast to begin exploring a series of locations with their own unique character. We begin in Caister. For those of you unfamiliar with it, Caister-On-Sea is just north of Great Yarmouth. A good sized car park can be found on Beach Road (postcode NR30 5HD) by the Lifeboat centre. 

    You can often find interesting things to photograph before you even get onto the beach at Caister. For many years there has been old machinery stored at the end of the car park as well as the Lifeboat building. It is worth having a look at them before going further.