Hidden Gem

  • Dogs: 4 dogs welcome

  • Sleeps Max: 4

  • Bedrooms: 2

  • Bathrooms: 1

A charming cottage with the beach on the doorstep

“What a fantastic week, Hidden Gem has exceeded my expectations in every way. Fantastic walks from the door, miles of dunes and beach, very friendly locals who love it when dogs get to play with visitors!”


This much loved little gem of a Norfolk holiday cottage has the famously dog friendly Winterton Dunes and beach just outside the kitchen door! (see more about them here on the beaches).  So miles of walks are right there for you and your dogs and there are some really easy and beautiful circular walks too – see a selection here.

  • See the YouTube video here…. giving you a wonderful view of the inside and out!
  • Winterton village has a dog friendly pubThe Fishermans’ Return.
  • Have a read of our Hidden Gem blog, written by the owners, to get more of a feel for this cottage.
  • Dotty4Paws came to stay and loved it  – read the glowing review here
  • There is a small supermarket store and a post office store which also sells take away coffees and cakes.
  • Poppy’s Tea Room is right next to the Post Office and there is a fish and chip shop next door too.
  • The Dunes café has been replaced by an Airstream selling coffee and snacks, right on the beach.  Norfolks Edge.
  • Winterton On Sea is pretty much the perfect dog friendly Norfolk holiday village!
  • Be sure to explore much of the Norfolk Broads and the amazing Norfolk, dog friendly coastline.

For the dogs:

  • M, L and XL dog crates (kept in garden storage box for guest use)
  • Dog sitting.  If you would like to go out for a few hours and leave the dogs, please don’t leave them alone.  You can contact sue@eastrustoncottages.co.uk for dog sitter recommendation – Shannons Sitting Services – or Sue may be able to do it.
  • Stair gate on request
  • Couple of soft dog beds, blankets, throws and towels
  • Dog bowls, spare leads, dog collar tag with ‘On Holiday’ to borrow

For the humans:

  • Vodafone Superfast 2 WiFi (50Mbps)
  • All bed linen and towels
  • Hairdryer in each bedroom
  • Welcome basket with local goodies
  • Tea, Coffee, Sugar, Milk & a Tassimo Coffee Machine with some complimentary pods for your arrival.
  • Extra outside chairs, buckets spades, beach mats and binoculars
  • Maps, books, DVDs, CDs, games, jigsaws, pads, pens, pencils and colouring books.
  • Oil fired central heating throughout and first basket of logs and kindling for woodburning stove (further supplies available locally)
  • Travel cot and high chair available upon request
  • Quiet space to work
  • Washing machine and dishwasher tablets
  • Iron and Ironing board
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About the property

All about the inside:

Entrance is via the big conservatory with tiled floor and furnished with sofa, 2 comfy arm chairs, large footstool, coffee table and with window and roof blinds. A proper sun trap – dogs love it in here. From here straight into the…

Cosy and warm with a wood burning fireplace, antique features, 2 x two seater leather sofas, an armchair and footstool.  There’s a flat screen TV with HD, freesat and Netflix, Blu Ray DVD player, CD player/radio/bluetooth and Alexa Echo Dot. From here you go through the …

Light and airy with dresser and book shelf and a lobby area with hooks for coats and space for boots. Off this is the….

Downstairs bath/shower room
WC, separate shower and bath, basin, towel rail and storage cabinet.

Generous size and very light and airy with wide view onto dunes. Fitted with all appliances inc electric oven/hob, fridge/freezer, washing machine, dishwasher, microwave, toaster and slow cooker. Table and chairs to seat 4. Back door leads out onto the dunes!

Back through towards the Lounge and on the right are the stairs.  They are steep, due to the age of the cottage but have handrails on both sides and are carpeted.

Front bedroom
Two lovely metal framed single beds, wooden floor, arm chair, wardrobe and chest of drawers, bedside tables, feature fireplace and a window overlooking the front garden.

Back bedroom
A lovely place to wake up in the morning, sitting up with a cuppa and enjoying the view over the dunes!  A comfy solid oak kingsize bed, wooden floor, bedside tables, wardrobe, chair and chest of drawers.

All about the outside:

There is room for one car on the off road parking outside the cottage shed. Parking for an extra car may be found round the corner on the residential road.  Entrance is through the gate to the small front yard. The surface is shingle and decking with seating and coffee table so you can sit out and enjoy the sunshine. It is fully enclosed with 6ft gate and fencing all round. Very secure. Lovely seaside themed decorations here too and little bit of greenery.

Will this property suit my dogs?

Ideal for dogs who love to run a lot!  There are acres of dunes and the beach right outside the back door.  So if they don’t like travelling in the car, no problem.  You can do a different walk every day – leave the car parked up.  If they are barkers then this may not be the place for them as there are neighbours but the courtyard is very secure and no body passing can be seen from here.  The dead end road location also means it is very quiet.

Please note:

  • Hidden Gem is a non-smoking property
  • Bookings are from Friday – Friday with short breaks available occasionally out of season
  • Hidden Gem is a terraced property with a passageway running down the side.  This is property of the neighbours.  Hidden Gem has right of access to use from the back door only to gain access to the gate onto the Dunes.
  • Please do ensure that you consider our neighbours by keeping dogs from barking unnecessarily and ensuring that any dog mess is cleared immediately from the area at the back.
  • Beds are all made up but if you would like your dogs on beds, please bring your own linen and let us know.
  • This property may not be suitable for noise reactive dogs.
  • Please do not leave dogs alone in this property.
  • All supermarkets deliver here.  Please ensure your booking is booked for when you are here.


Hidden Gem is not suitable for wheelchairs.  Being an older style property, the stairs are steep (but do have hand rails)  The shower is separate from the bath and is downstair.

Reviews / Testimonials


And if you want to read more independent reviews, check out these sites too..

Facebook  | Edog Advisor |  Dotty4Paws | The Good Dog Guide | Dog Friendly

“Just reflecting on a wonderful four nights’ respite at Hidden Gem. The cottage lives up to it’s name! The weather has been dry and bright, albeit a blisteringly cold wind. Jasper our GSD x Akita rescue dog has had a ball. He loves Winterton beach. Wide open space friend to run and dog friendly people as well as paws! Such a pleasure. We’ve visited the local area and recommend the Boat House at Ormesby Broad. Wonderful with the sun outside and dog friendly areas in and out. The cottage itself is tastefully geared to people and was alike, as of course, they are part of our family so why not?! Everything has been thought of for a comfy hassle-free stay. Whilst here, our doggy friends have also booked on our recommendation. Four nights has felt much longer as you just fit straight in and get on with relaxing and enjoying. A much needed break following bereavement, so pleased we were able to visit and hope to come back again. Thank you so much for all the goodies, we enjoyed them so much as did Jasper!” – Vicky, Barry and Jasper, April 2022.


“A beautiful cottage in an idyllic location. Everyone in the delightful village says hello. The dunes and beach on your doorstep are so close and so relaxing. The cottage is interesting with all the lovely decor. It was spotlessly clean and and provided all my dogs and my needs. Ralph loved his chosen bed! All was so good we only travelled to Great Yarmouth and Caister-on-Sea  Caister-on-Sea was lovely too. Laura was very helpful. I truly don’t want to leave as we have had such a lovely relaxing time here. Truly pawsome! Thank you so much” – Hazel, Oz, Frankie, Shinx, Theo, Boo and Ralphy 


Having spent 16 months shielding, we were a little bit nervous about coming away, but as soon as we walked into the cottage we knew it was going to be good! It was so welcoming and as though everything has been done so thoughtfully and with love. Beautifully decorated and so clean – we felt so safe here. Everything you could possibly want, and then some! Our two rescue dogs settled in very quickly. Loved our walks on the dunes and on the beach (what an amazing beach!!) We saw seals every day. We had a lovely meal at The Dunes Cafe and also enjoyed a drink at The Fisherman’s Return. Everyone was so friendly. This was our first taste of normal for a very long time and it is hard to be leaving. Thank you Laura, Pete and team for such a wonderful holiday.” Val and Roger Park, Zak and Mia the dogs

“Thank you so much, we love this cottage by the sea! ‘home from home’, you even you put milk in the fridge! We found the Dunes Cafe great and most of all doggy day care ‘The Doghouse’ – a godsend and 5* service! Saw seals in the sea and had great beach walks. The BEST doggy accommodation/holiday by far. All the homely little touches here – well you thought of everything! A very relaxing and enjoyable week. Hope we can come again! And very clean, everything spotless”  – Penny & Alan, Pickle & Pops!! xx 

“Best holiday cottage location we have experienced to date, that said, Hidden Gem had so much more to offer than just the location. It is the first holiday let where we have wanted for nothing in terms of everything you could possibly want in a holiday cottage was to hand, from kitchen tin foil, to a beach windbreak.  Lovely small sheltered back garden to grab some afternoon relaxation time with a book and a cold drink. The attention to detail with the interior decor and maritime theme was amazing. We would definitely stay again. A most appropriately named property”  – Simon Kelly and family. 

“Hidden Gem is a very good name as that’s what it is.  From the moment we walked in we knew we would be happy at home for the week.  The dune walk to the beach, which went on for miles.  We even spent a couple of days sitting there, taking in the sea and the sun.  We travelled to local shops and beaches.  Recommend Poppylands and The Fisherman’s Return.  Definitely coming back next year!  PS Dogs loved it too.  Their little legs couldn’t run any faster!  Thank you all.” – Jo, Gary, Duchess and Beau xx


“What a fantastic week, we have had!! Wall to wall sunshine.  We have enjoyed numerous walks along the beach and in the dunes and Barnaby has been in the sea at least 3 times every day – we have actually managed to tire him out! Hidden Gem really lives up to its name – a perfect holiday cottage and by far the best equipped we have ever been in!  Thank you to Brenda for the lovely scones and jam and welcome pack on arrival.  It was very much appreciated.” – Sandy and Steve, Vicky and Steve and Barnaby (12 month old chocolate lab)


“Wow! We were lucky enough to get a late booking and it’s been the most beautiful cottage we’ve ever stayed in. The decors, home touches and thoughtful touches (like the lemon drizzle cake mmm!) have made our week even better. The area is beautiful (even on a rainy Tuesday!) and returning to the cottage after long sandy walks really finished the days off well. We’re taking a little bit of heaven home with us in our memories and we definitely will return.” – Diane and Andy

“Thank you for what ranks in our top 3 most dog friendly cottages in the UK so far! It is lovely to stay where dogs are welcome, not just tolerated! Thank you Brenda for the scones that were almost as good as my mums! Our short break was spent mainly walking sections of the Norfolk Coastal Path enjoying the wildlife and scenery at each section. Incidentally the maps and folder with suggested walks were an excellent resource for us!” – 
Val, Steven, Leo and Poppy


“You have a gorgeous house Laura and Pete – we would love a house just like this! It is so warm and welcoming and has everything for a perfect stay inside or right on the doorstep. Brenda – thank you for making everything so clean and for the gorgeous welcome warm welcome with bread, milk, doggie treats and your gorgeous home made scones and jam – delicious! Thank you for Sinks birthday card – how thoughtful! Beautiful walks on the beach everyday – the dogs were in heaven, on our last morning we were down there to watch the sunrise – so special! We have met lots of lovely friendly people – everyone here seems to be so happy – we can definitely see why! We had a delicious meal in The Fishermans Return on our first night, and enjoyed pints of local ale too! We also had fish and chips from the local chip shop – yummy! Gorgeous breakfasts at The Dunes Cafe and their hot chocolate and cakes are also recommended after a long beach walk! We also enjoyed a warm welcome at the Nelson’s Head in Horsey – we walked in on their annual sloe gin competition and it was great fun – got to join in with their sample tasting! We also had a trip to Happisburgh to stock up on yummy Nero’s Kitchen biccies for the pups and stopped for a pint at the Hill House Inn – lovely! Another recommendation is The Causeway Butchers near Sea Palling – we bought some of their sausages but a highlight was the beer and treacle back bacon – OMG! It is to die for!! Dogs and humans really don’t want to leave – it really is a home from home we’ve all settled in perfectly – think we’re going to have to search the local estate agents!!” – Helen and Co.


“A gorgeous house – probably the best equipped I’ve ever stayed in, waiting for nothing at all! The welcome pack was a lovely surprise too – the lemon drizzle cake was simply delicious and the dog biscuits were very much appreciated. Bobby has had an amazing time – he’s a trainee guide dog for his ‘normal’ life and we do volunteer boarding, so lucky Bobby has had a holiday with us. It’s been a delight – at 16 month, everything has been new and exciting, though he has realised that he can’t eat sand. Shops in the village are all very friendly and happy to let him in, so all good practice when he goes back to London to start his advanced training. he’s loved all the throws, beds and toys – couldn’t believe his luck! The whole holiday has been absolutely amazing thanks!!” – Mel, Paul and Bobby

“Hidden Gem is exactly as it sounds. What a gem of a place you have here. You could not ask for anything more, everything you need is right here in this cottage and on its doorstep. All our dogs have enjoyed every minute, they particularly loved the beach! As for the humans not only having the enjoyment of watching our doggies having so much FUN on the beach. We also had the pleasure of watching the seals popping up to say hello in the sea, not to mention the naughty pleasure of those wonderful scones and huge meals at the Dunes Cafe. Many thanks.” – Faith, Lucca and Lily

“Hidden Gem well it really is. The little cottage is lovely and cosy, plenty of space and amazingly equipped for the dogs. The owners have thought of everything. Outside a short walk along the dunes you have the most beautiful dog friendly beach. To see all the dogs running, digging and swimming is brilliant. My dog will definitely miss his morning swim! 5 minute walk to the Fishersmans return a lovely dog friendly pub perfect for a cheeky pint after a walk. It was lovely to arrive after a long journey to have essentials already here, the kettle was straight on!! We will definitely be back” – Zoe, Harrison Jas, Louis and Karen



“A wonderful week in Hidden Gem, it was our first visit to Winterton on Sea but we will definitely return and Hidden Gem will be our home from home.  Everything is been perfect our three dogs have had an amazing time running free through the dunes and beautiful beach, My husband says thank you for his birthday cake and bottle of fizz & a big “woof” for the  home made doggie biscuits.  Thank you for making our week so relaxed and enjoyable by thinking of everything in Hidden Gem.” – Sharon, Mick, Lynx, Blue & Alfie



How to find us

How to find us: No 2 May Cottages, Back Road, Winterton on Sea. NR29 4BG
What3Words location:  ///hammocks.butternut.partly


Directions: Enter Winterton village from the end of Black Street, past the church on your left hand side. Next look out for the small supermarket store on the left, just before the road narrows, and turn left in front of it, straight into Back Road following it nearly all the way down, with the high terracotta wall on the right. Hidden Gem is the second to last cottage on the right.