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Find cottages in EssexVisit Essex

Relax, enjoy and discover this beautiful county near London. Essex is a wonderful holiday destination, offering green expanses, fascinating history and a wealth of activities for all the family. Just a short distance from one of the world's most vibrant cosmopolitan capitals, a break in Essex really does offer the best of Britain.

Essex is predominately rural with quiet country lanes, undulating countryside and pretty villages, ideal for gentle walks and country pubs. The county also has 350 miles of lovely coastline, which includes the coastal resorts of Clacton-on-Sea and Southend-on-Sea.

Southend-on-Sea is practically synonymous with the classic idea of a British seaside holiday but it also has a few surprises - not least of which is the stunning Grade II listed pier, stretching over 2 kilometres into the Thames Estuary. If you're holidaying with the family then they may also appreciate a visit to the Great Notley Discovery Centre and Park, 100 acres of farmland with cycling and walking trails and a host of fun activities for the whole family to enjoy.

Some impressive examples of local history are available at Colchester Castle and the small but perfectly formed cathedral at Chelmsford. Colchester was the site of an important Roman settlement and Roman foundations have also been discovered at other locations such as Chelmsford and Braintree.

Less ancient history (but no less interesting) can be found at Audley End House, one of England's grandest stately houses, dating from Victorian times or Hylands House and Estate which was built in 1730.

If you'd like to explore the greener pastures of Essex then visit RHS Garden Hyde Hall or take a stroll around Rainham Marshes Nature Reserve which is near the River Thames and an important spot for wading birds. The Beth Chatto gardens are another place that could go onto your agenda; extending over six acres these gardens were created out of an area that formerly consisted of boggy ground and poor soil.

With miles of protected green belt, some seriously impressive natural landscapes, fascinating displays of history and easy-access to London, Essex has a lot to offer.

All that remains is to find your perfect self-catering accommodation; take a look at our selection of holiday cottages in Essex.

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Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
2
Pets
1

Nestling within 3 acres of grounds, abundant with wildlife, these holiday cottages enjoy far reaching views over rolling countryside. Fishing and boating can be enjoyed at the nearby lake. This is excellent walking and bird watching country and holiday makers will enjoy walks down to the creek. These old farm buildings have been converted, and are grouped around a courtyard, yet each retains individual privacy. The cottages with their mellow decor and quality furnishings, provide complete relaxation in this delightful corner of Essex. This area is well regarded as Essex’s best kept secret with the interesting and popular small towns of Brightlingsea, Wivenhoe, Mersea, Clacton, Frinton and Walton-on-the-Naze, all within ½ hours drive. The town of Colchester is close by, famous for its cobbled streets, castle and zoo, with a wide variety of shops, pubs and restaurants. Further afield are Ipswich, Chelmsford and Felixstowe. Many picturesque villages and Constable country are close by, with Dedham, Manningtree, Nayland, Lavenham and Long Melford to name but a few. Other local pastimes include golf and horse riding. All properties are on the ground floor and have wheelchair access. Shop 500 yards, pub 2 miles.

All on ground floor: Living room with double sofa bed and tiled floor. Kitchen with tiled floor. 2 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite wet room and toilet, 1 bunk. Wet room with toilet.

Electricity panel heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. DVD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Shared laundry room with washing machine and tumble dryer. Patio and furniture. Shared use of communal garden and 2-acre grounds. Parking (2-3 cars). No smoking. Wheelchair access.

WAS
NOW
£318-£811
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
1
Hope House Ref: 30042


This spacious, semi-detached, delightful seaside holiday property is in a fantastic central location. Hope House is unique and has been decorated with a seaside theme in mind and boasts a smart, spacious interior for families and couples. Private parking offers ease and flexibility, and guests also have the use of an enclosed courtyard for an evening BBQ and glass of wine. An ideal holiday base with Clacton Pier just a short stroll away where you will find traditional attractions including bowling, amusements and cafe. Wander along the seafront promenade to a sandy beach, garden walk and the Pavilion Bowl with bar, restaurant and amusements. A few minutes’ walk takes you to the town centre for an array of shops, bars, restaurants, takeaways, the Princes Theatre, Westcliff Theatre, cinema, leisure centre and more. Local attractions include the Martello Tower Petting Zoo at Clacton, the famous Jaywick Martello Tower, Old Maritime Museum at Walton-on-the-Naze, crazy golf, and several firework displays on the pier throughout the year. A short drive will take you to the picturesque village of Great Bentley and then on to Colchester, said to be the oldest recorded town in Britain. The Lifehouse Spa is also a short drive away at Thorpe-Le-Soken. Beach ½ mile. Shop 300 yards, pub and restaurant 600 yards.

Ground floor: Living room with wooden floor. Dining room with laminate floor. Kitchen with laminate floor. Utility room. Shower room with toilet. First floor: 3 bedrooms: 2 double, one with wooden floor, 1 single with additional pull-out single and laminate floor. Bathroom (no toilet). Separate toilet.

Gas central heating, gas, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. Freeview TV. DVD. MP3 connection. Gas hob. Electric oven. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed courtyard, sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue. Parking (2 cars). Welcome pack. Pet free of charge. No smoking. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£291-£926
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
2
Bedrooms
1
Pets
1
Sandy Banks Ref: 29511

This semi-detached, single-storey property is a quaint seafront annexe, the wing of a larger property, in the heart of Clacton-on-Sea. All of the town’s amenities are within walking distance; it is home to an array of shops, pubs and restaurants. Comfortably furnished, Sandy Banks has an enclosed courtyard and a sea view at the front to make your stay even more enjoyable. An ideal holiday base with Clacton Pier, the Princes Theatre and Clacton-on-Sea beach all close by. For attractions heaped in history, visit the famous Jaywick Martello Tower and Old Maritime Museum. Sandy Banks is easily accessed by road and rail. Beach 50 yards. Shop, pub and restaurant ½ mile.

All on ground floor: Living/dining room with laminate floor. Kitchen with laminate floor. 1 double (5ft) bedroom. Shower room with toilet.

Gas central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. Freeview TV. DVD. MP3 player. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Fridge/freezer. Wi-fi. Small, enclosed courtyard with sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue. Parking (2 cars). Welcome pack. Pet free of charge. No smoking. Wheelchair access. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£226-£586
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
8
Bedrooms
4
Pets
0
Sandy Ridge Ref: 29127

Outdoor swimming pool and hot tub

Located in a quiet road opposite the beach at Holland-on-Sea, a stay in Sandy Ridge provides the perfect setting for a traditional family seaside holiday. This detached, spacious house is well-furnished and has a sunny, west-facing garden with an outdoor private swimming pool and hot tub, and is approximately 100 yards from the pedestrian path to the sandy beach and promenade. The property has BT infinity wi-fi, and also close by is the Haven Country Park and the sailing club. The area is excellent for bird watchers, particularly for sighting migrants birds, and for walkers there are numerous footpaths. Set a comfortable, equidistant walk along glorious sandy beaches between the seaside towns of Clacton and Frinton, guests can choose between vibrant Clacton with its 19th-century pier or the more exclusive Frinton; Frinton’s beach is studded with Victorian-style beach huts and both towns have a good range of shops and restaurants. Every year the area hosts the Clacton Air Show on Thursday and Friday before August Bank Holiday, and it is also the base for the start/finish line of the Clacton Triathlon, which takes place on the first or second weekend in September. Further along the coast is Walton-on-the-Naze where you can try your hand at sea fishing on the country’s third-longest pier. Sandy Ridge is a perfect holiday location to enjoy the hidden delights of this part of the Essex coastline and countryside with quaint villages including Dedham and Flatford Mill (Constable Country), tranquil gardens, sandy beaches and excellent shopping. The county town of Colchester, with its zoo and castle, is an easy drive. Garden lovers might like to visit Beth Chatto’s famous garden. Shop, pub and restaurant ½ mile.

Ground floor: Living/dining room with wooden floor and patio doors. Second living room. Kitchen with breakfast area, patio doors and tiled floor. Separate toilet. First floor: 4 bedrooms: 2 double (6ft), 2 twin. Shower room with double shower and toilet.

Gas central heating included (£50per week October-April). Electricity, bed linen and towels included. Satellite TV. Three Freeview TVs. DVDs. Playstation 3. iPod dock. Electric cooker. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Fridge/freezer. Broadband. Large lawned garden with pool patio area and furniture. Juliet balcony. Ample parking. Outdoor swimming pool (10m x 5m, depth 0.9m to 2m), open 9am to 10pm everyday May-September. Hot tub. Welcome pack. No smoking. NB: 4 steps in the swimming pool.

WAS
NOW
£816-£2222
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
1
Pets
1

Nestling within 3 acres of grounds, abundant with wildlife, these holiday cottages enjoy far reaching views over rolling countryside. Fishing and boating can be enjoyed at the nearby lake. This is excellent walking and bird watching country and holiday makers will enjoy walks down to the creek. These old farm buildings have been converted, and are grouped around a courtyard, yet each retains individual privacy. The cottages with their mellow decor and quality furnishings, provide complete relaxation in this delightful corner of Essex. This area is well regarded as Essex’s best kept secret with the interesting and popular small towns of Brightlingsea, Wivenhoe, Mersea, Clacton, Frinton and Walton-on-the-Naze, all within ½ hours drive. The town of Colchester is close by, famous for its cobbled streets, castle and zoo, with a wide variety of shops, pubs and restaurants. Further afield are Ipswich, Chelmsford and Felixstowe. Many picturesque villages and Constable country are close by, with Dedham, Manningtree, Nayland, Lavenham and Long Melford to name but a few. Other local pastimes include golf and horse riding. All properties are on the ground floor and have wheelchair access. Shop 500 yards, pub 2 miles.

All on ground floor: Living room with double sofa bed/dining room/kitchen with tiled floor. 1 double bedroom with en-suite wet room and toilet.

Electricity panel heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Cot. High chair. DVD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Shared laundry room with washing machine and tumble dryer. Garden with private courtyard and furniture. Shared use of 2-acre grounds. Parking (2-3 cars). No smoking. Wheelchair access.

WAS
NOW
£266-£579
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
3
Bedrooms
1
Pets
0
The Lookout Ref: 23855

Located in the prestigious waterside marina, The Lookout provides panoramic views across the Colne Estuary and out to sea. This contemporary, spacious, second floor holiday apartment, with lift access, is well-furnished and equipped to a very good standard with French doors on to a balcony where guests can experience an ever changing horizon. Part of the historic Brightlingsea yachting harbour with nearby beach, sailing, birdwatching, fishing, outdoor swimming pool and local ferry to explore the charming Mersea Island, provides a year-round fascinating holiday location. Shops, pub and restaurant 150 yards.

Lift to entrance. All on second floor: Living/dining room/kitchen with French doors and wooden floors. 1 double (5ft) bedroom with additional folding single. Bathroom with bath, shower cubicle and toilet.

Gas central heating, gas, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Freeview TV. DVD. Gas hob. Electric oven. Microwave. Washer/dryer. Dishwasher. Freezer. Balcony. Garage (1 car). No smoking.

WAS
NOW
£293-£680
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
2
Bedrooms
1
Pets
1
Stokers Loft Ref: BRY

Located in West Mersea just 20 yards from the sea, this delightfully converted property offers fantastic views from its upstairs living area. Stokers Loft is the ideal holiday location for sailing enthusiasts, the public hard for dinghies is just a few yards from the property. It is also conveniently situated for two renowned fish restaurants (the Company Shed and the Oyster Bar), local shops and pubs. Mersea Island is the most easterly inhabited island in the UK and is reached by crossing the Strood causeway (liable to be cut off for short periods during high/spring tides). Only 9 miles from Colchester with its famous castle and zoo, Mersea is also conveniently located for exploring Dedham Vale, Stour Valley and Constable country. A superb location for walking, bird-watching, swimming and cycling, Mersea boasts a beach of sand and shingle. A country club with golf and health club is a short drive away. Shop 75 yards, pubs 250 yards.

Double bedroom. Bathroom with over-bath shower and toilet. First floor: Beamed open-plan living room with double futon bed (for alternative sleeping only)/dining room with Velux windows, wooden floor and compact beamed galley-style kitchen.

  • Electricity, full gas central heating, bed linen and towels included
  • Sky TV
  • DVD
  • Stereo/CD
  • Microwave
  • Washer/dryer
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Wi-fi
  • No garden
  • Parking (for 1 car) 20 yards
  • Friday to Friday

WAS
NOW
£281-£618
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
2
Pets
1

Nestling within 3 acres of grounds, abundant with wildlife, these holiday cottages enjoy far reaching views over rolling countryside. Fishing and boating can be enjoyed at the nearby lake. This is excellent walking and bird watching country and holiday makers will enjoy walks down to the creek. These old farm buildings have been converted, and are grouped around a courtyard, yet each retains individual privacy. The cottages with their mellow decor and quality furnishings, provide complete relaxation in this delightful corner of Essex. This area is well regarded as Essex’s best kept secret with the interesting and popular small towns of Brightlingsea, Wivenhoe, Mersea, Clacton, Frinton and Walton-on-the-Naze, all within ½ hours drive. The town of Colchester is close by, famous for its cobbled streets, castle and zoo, with a wide variety of shops, pubs and restaurants. Further afield are Ipswich, Chelmsford and Felixstowe. Many picturesque villages and Constable country are close by, with Dedham, Manningtree, Nayland, Lavenham and Long Melford to name but a few. Other local pastimes include golf and horse riding. All properties are on the ground floor and have wheelchair access. Shop 500 yards, pub 2 miles.

All on ground floor: Living room with double sofa bed and tiled floor. Kitchen with tiled floor. 2 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite wet room and toilet, 1 bunk. Wet room with toilet.

Electricity panel heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Cot. High chair. DVD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Shared laundry room with washing machine and tumble dryer. Patio and furniture. Shared use of communal garden and 2-acre grounds. Parking (2-3 cars). No smoking. Wheelchair access.

WAS
NOW
£318-£811
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
4
Pets
2
Sea Shell House Ref: 30472


This spacious, detached holiday home lies between lively Clacton-on-Sea, and the peaceful avenues of Holland-on-Sea, approximately 200 yards from the beach, and just a mile from Clacton Pier, with its rides, amusements, go karting and 10 pin bowling. Clacton town centre has numerous pubs, eateries, a cinema and shops. There are two fantastic theatres, hosting a variety of shows with celebrities and musicians throughout the year, and traditional pantomines at Christmas. The pier is the focal point for the annual airshow in August, and has regular firework displays on Sundays throughout the summer and autumn. It also hosts the Christmas day swim, where up to a hundred hardy souls, many in fancy dress, plunge into the sea for charity. It is well worth watching, you need to be very brave to join in! There are four golf courses within 5 miles, fishing is popular from the beaches and the pier, and there are several opportunites for bird watching nearby. You can drive, cycle or walk along the coast to nearby Frinton and Walton with their fantastic beaches and unique charm. Throughout the summer months, you can take a two hour guided boat trip around the backwaters to see many species of sea birds, and a colony of up to 100 grey seals. Further afield, visit Colchester, Britain’s oldest recorded town, with it’s castle and world famous zoo. Local towns such as St Osyth, Brightlingsea and Wivenhoe are all well worth a visit. Constable Country is on your doorstep, with fantastic walks along the river Stour and rowing at Dedham and Flatford. Whether you have had a fun time on the beach or exploring the local area, what better way to end the day than relaxing in the warm bubbles of the hot tub. Shop and restaurant ½ mile, pub 1 mile.

Ground floor: Living room with wooden floor. Dining room with French doors and wooden floor. Kitchen with wooden floor. First floor: 4 bedrooms: 2 double, 2 single. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet. Separate toilet.

Gas central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. 42" satellite TV. DVD. iPod dock. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Fridge/freezer. Wi-fi. Large, enclosed, lawned courtyard garden with sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue. Parking (2 cars). Cycle store. Hot tub (from mid-december). Welcome pack. Pets free of charge. No smoking. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£351-£1001
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
2
Pets
1

Nestling within 3 acres of grounds, abundant with wildlife, these holiday cottages enjoy far reaching views over rolling countryside. Fishing and boating can be enjoyed at the nearby lake. This is excellent walking and bird watching country and holiday makers will enjoy walks down to the creek. These old farm buildings have been converted, and are grouped around a courtyard, yet each retains individual privacy. The cottages with their mellow decor and quality furnishings, provide complete relaxation in this delightful corner of Essex. This area is well regarded as Essex’s best kept secret with the interesting and popular small towns of Brightlingsea, Wivenhoe, Mersea, Clacton, Frinton and Walton-on-the-Naze, all within ½ hours drive. The town of Colchester is close by, famous for its cobbled streets, castle and zoo, with a wide variety of shops, pubs and restaurants. Further afield are Ipswich, Chelmsford and Felixstowe. Many picturesque villages and Constable country are close by, with Dedham, Manningtree, Nayland, Lavenham and Long Melford to name but a few. Other local pastimes include golf and horse riding. All properties are on the ground floor and have wheelchair access. Shop 500 yards, pub 2 miles.

All on ground floor: Living room with double sofa bed and tiled floor. Kitchen with tiled floor. 2 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite wet room and toilet, 1 bunk. Wet room with toilet.

Electricity panel heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Cot. High chair. DVD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Shared laundry room with washing machine and tumble dryer. Patio and furniture. Shared use of communal gardens and 2-acre grounds. Parking (2-3 cars). No smoking. Wheelchair access. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£318-£811
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
3
Bedrooms
2
Pets
0
Coast Cottage Ref: 29215

Mersea Island is the most easterly inhabited island in the UK, located on the estuary of the rivers Blackwater and Colne, it is reached by crossing the Strood causeway (liable to be cut off for short periods during high/spring tides). Located in West Mersea next to the church and just a 250 yards from the sea, this cosy, Victorian, semi-detached cottage is the perfect place for a romantic holiday break. A superb location for walking, bird watching, swimming and cycling, Mersea boasts a sandy/shingle beach. Cudmore Grove Country Park with its adjoining beach is great for relaxing walks in its own vineyard. A country club with a health club and golf is a short drive away. Only 9 miles from the county town of Colchester, with its famous castle and zoo. Mersea is also conveniently located for exploring Dedham Vale, the Stour Valley and Constable country. Shop and restaurant 20 yards, pub 100 yards.

Ground floor: Living room. Dining room. Kitchen. First floor: 2 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 single. Shower room with toilet.

Electric woodburner in living room included. Gas central heating, gas, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Freeview TV. DVD. iPod dock. Gas cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Courtyard with sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue. Public car park 100 yards (£2.50 per day). Welcome pack. No smoking. Friday to Friday. NB: Step in garden.

WAS
NOW
£286-£662
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
1
Hycliffe Ref: 24157

Hycliffe is a tastefully furnished, single storey detached holiday property with the beach a few yards away and extensive sea views over Point Clear Bay and the bird sanctuary. Known as the sunshine coast, this part of Essex is a hidden gem and Hycliffe is ideally situated to visit the nearby resorts of Frinton, Walton-on-the-Naze and Clacton or for exploring nearby Constable Country and the county town of Colchester with its castle, museum and zoo. Ideal for cyclists, walkers and bird watchers, visitors can also take a trip by a foot ferry (seasonal) to Mersea Island and Brightlingsea. Shops 200 yards, pub ½ mile.

Ground floor: Living room. Dining room/conservatory. Kitchen. 3 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 twin, 1 bunk. Shower room with toilet.

Electric heaters (£30per week). Electricity, bed linen and towels included. Freeview TV. DVD. CD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed lawned garden with patio and furniture. Ample parking. No smoking. NB: Slopes in grounds and external steps to doors.

WAS
NOW
£320-£802
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