With it glorious golden sands, colourful beach huts and a quay bobbing with traditional fishing boats, it’s no wonder that charming Wells-next-the Sea can often be found near the top of a list of the country’s best seaside resorts.

Wells is one of my happy places. I have many fond memories of our annual family holidays there – the lazy days on the beach, fish and chips on the quay and sunset walks.

Landlocked in the stifling summer city heat and longing for the coast, a friend and I headed to north Norfolk for a two-day escape.

It really doesn’t take long for the salty sea air to work its magic - for your shoulders to relax, your brow to unfurrow and for your worries to ebb away.

The base for our stay at the end of July, just as holiday season was getting into full swing, was the Globe Inn.

Overlooking the leafy Georgian Buttlands, it became part of the Chestnut Collection – the East Anglian group of pubs with rooms, which also includes The Cricketers in Clavering and the Ship at Dunwich – in 2020 and is newly refurbished.

Check in is from around 3pm, and wanting to make the most of our time on the coast we arrived at lunchtime to reacquaint ourselves with the town and get our bearings – and stuff ourselves with the most amazing mozzarella toasties from Wells Deli on the quay.

East Anglian Daily Times: The stylish dining room at the Globe Inn at WellsThe stylish dining room at the Globe Inn at Wells (Image: Emma Cabielles)

A couple of hours were whiled away very happily pottering – Wells is a pottering kind of place – along Staithe Street, nosing around the boutiques and gift shops, swooning over the rails of colourful Sugarhill Brighton dresses and knits at Nomad and the Bowerbird and the retro-style ceramics at Bringing The Outside In.

There are 19 guest rooms at the Globe, of various sizes and styles. Some are in the pub and others, like ours, are set around a pretty fairylight-festooned terrace.

The décor takes its design cues from its coastal setting, with the landscape reflected in a soothing colour palette of soft greys, greens and blues, stripped back wood, antique lighting and in a quirky nod to the inn’s name, travel ephemera such as guidebooks and vintage suitcases.

East Anglian Daily Times: The Globe Inn has 19 guest bedrooms - and most of them are dog friendlyThe Globe Inn has 19 guest bedrooms - and most of them are dog friendly (Image: Emma Cabielles)

Our twin room was huge – with gorgeous reclaimed wood furniture, stylish tub chairs and an Illy coffee machine.

The bathroom was fully stocked with divine smelling Bramley products and as well as a deep and inviting bath tub in which to soak your cares away, there was an invigorating drench shower to shake you out of your morning sleep haze.

With an abundance of dog-friendly beaches a stone’s throw away, many visitors bring the canine members of the family with them when they go away.

They’re more than welcome in Wells – and especially at the Globe.

East Anglian Daily Times: Four-legged guests are more than welcome at the Globe Inn at WellsFour-legged guests are more than welcome at the Globe Inn at Wells (Image: Emma Cabielles)

Our four-legged friend wasn’t with us on this trip, but rooms come with a comfy dog bed, towel, water bowl, some hand-baked Denzel’s treats and even some Bramley dog shampoo for those sandy paws after a day’s splashing and scampering.

East Anglian Daily Times: Dogs receive a warm welcome at the Globe Inn at Wells, including treats and a comfy bedDogs receive a warm welcome at the Globe Inn at Wells, including treats and a comfy bed (Image: Emma Lee)

And in the bar there’s even more to set tails wagging – a whole doggy menu, including Denzel’s Soft Bake Chews, Soft’n’Squishy Treats, a cooked sausage to gnaw and – get this – an alcohol-free drinks menu featuring the amusingly named Bottom Sniffer Beer and Posh Pooch Tailwagger Creek White Wine.

After we’d unpacked, we headed to the sun-trap private terrace, which is open to residents only, where we relaxed with a coffee and planned our itinerary for the next couple of days.

On our first night we dined at the Globe, starting with a glass of prosecco perched on an outside table, drinking in the evening sunshine.

It was a Thursday evening, but after just a few hours in Wells we had well and truly switched into off-duty weekend mode and the bar and restaurant were buzzing with happy chatter.

If you’re a foodie, then north Norfolk is your destination - there’s an abundance of fantastic produce from land and sea on the doorstep and the kitchen at the Globe puts it right at the heart of the menu.

There’s plenty of fish as you’d expect, but also locally reared beef, the seasonal fruit and veg which thrives in this part of the world and thoughtfully curated artisan produce.

Take its sharing platters for two, for example. If you push the boat out, the Globe’s signature Coastal Platter features half a Sheringham lobster, dressed Cromer crab, Norfolk Gin cured steam trout, taramasalata from Staithe Smokehouse just down the road in Brancaster Staithe, cockles and more.

East Anglian Daily Times: The dining room at the Globe Inn at WellsThe dining room at the Globe Inn at Wells (Image: Emma Cabielles)

The Norfolk cheese board (£20) features Norfolk Dapple, Baron Bigod and Binham Blue and the East Anglian charcuterie board (£19.50) includes Suffolk chorizo.

And Swannington Farm produce features on the starters and mains menu – in the chicken and smoked ham hock terrine (£8.50) and the 10 oz sirloin steak (£29.50).

Eyeing up the generous platefuls coming out of the kitchen, it was obvious we weren’t going to go hungry - so in this round of the starter or pudding debate, dessert was the winner.

Our choices were very much in keeping with our mini-break's maritime theme – my friend went for the dressed Cromer crab with Norfolk new potato salad, toasted bread and Blakeney leaf salad (£19). A classic done well was her verdict.

And as we were at the seaside, it had to be fish and chips, mushy peas, tartare and lemon (£17.50) for me.

The batter was light and crispy and the fish melted in the mouth. The chips were cooked just right – plump and fluffy in the middle, the way I can never get them at home.

Originally hailing from the north, I love my mushy peas – but I’d never had them like this before. Using garden peas rather than the usual marrowfat made them bright and fresh in colour and taste.

To finish off the meal, I went for the Norfolk strawberries with set honey cream – which had a most pleasing wobble to it – and honeycomb (£9).

My friend also went for a fruity option – the maple baked apricots, pumpkin and thyme granola – as it was a vegan option it came with ‘ice cream’ rather than ice cream (£9).

After dinner there was more pottering – this time down to the quay to walk off dinner and watch the sunset, before retiring to our room to sink into those dreamy mattresses and crisp white sheets – and we soon both nodded off.

The next morning, we were booked in for breakfast at a leisurely 9am – and with a day exploring the Holkham estate on foot planned, we felt that a couple of courses was well justified.

East Anglian Daily Times: Breakfast options include eggs benedict, the full English, fruit, pastries and moreBreakfast options include eggs benedict, the full English, fruit, pastries and more (Image: Emma Cabielles)

First there was a trip to the East Anglian Breakfast Table for fruit and juice (there were also Fen Farm yoghurts, Glebe Farm cereals, toast and pastries on offer).

Then we settled down to peruse the cooked breakfast menu.

I am very much a breakfast enthusiast – it's my favourite meal of the day for dining out – and a hotel breakfast is one of my ultimate treats.

The Full Norfolk – streaky bacon, sausage, black pudding, grilled mushroom, tomato, granary toast and eggs – was very tempting.

But I went for fish again – it must have been the sea air. This time it was a delicious tangle of Staithe Smokehouse salmon with scrambled eggs on a doorstop of toast.

My friend opted for the veggie breakfast, which came with all the trimmings you’d expect, including vegan sausage and sunny fried eggs.

Other cooked choices included eggs Benedict (with Norfolk ham), wild mushrooms on toast, a streaky bacon or sausage butty and porridge with honey.

Set up for the day, we headed off to Holkham.

Wells’s neighbour, it is only a short drive away – you can also get there via the picturesque coastal path, or catch the Coasthopper bus.

There is so much to do – spend the day at the wild, untamed beach, marvel at the magnificent hall and its hidden treasures, take a rowing boat out on the lake, see how the restoration of the Walled Garden is progressing, hire bikes and explore on two wheels, or, if you’ve got a head for heights, scale the treetop trail. And look out for Orion the Steppe Mammoth who is in residence until September as part of the Go Go Discover trail.

You can also enjoy a Feast in the Park this summer, with an array of street food vendors in attendance (check the website for the full schedule) including toasties from the Cheese Truckle, Thai by Phat Khao, The Duck Truck, loaded fries by the Bucket List, Sri Lankan street food from Amma’s Kitchen and Mr Ragu’s amazing Italian-inspired sourdough bread sandwiches.

We took the blue trail around the park – a good morning’s walk - and spotted fallow deer as well as taking in the Obelisk and the Monument, with a pitstop in the Courtyard Café, where the huge wedges of cake and freshly baked scones are impossible to resist.

East Anglian Daily Times: There are plenty of nooks in which to relax with a glass of wineThere are plenty of nooks in which to relax with a glass of wine (Image: Emma Cabielles)

After a jolly night enjoying paella and mac and cheese at the fun and cosy bistro Bang in Wells (a stone’s throw from the Globe at the top of Staithe Street), another dreamy night’s sleep and a visit to the East Anglian Breakfast Table, it was sadly time to check out.

We spent our last morning doing one of my favourite walks – the coastal path between Morston and Blakeney. And to make it even better there’s now a branch of Two Magpies bakery (their sausage rolls are legendary) in Blakeney and an array of street food trucks so you can pick up some refreshments before turning and making the return trip.

Thanks to the Globe and their friendly team we went home refreshed, well-fed and well-rested – that's the wonder of Wells.

Need to know

A dinner, bed and breakfast package at The Globe Inn costs from £250 per night this autumn. The package includes a restful night in one of the stylish bedrooms, dinner for two and a freshly prepared breakfast. For more information, visit theglobeatwells.co.uk