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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 0 Star rating
Sleeps
10
Bedrooms
5
Pets
2
The Moorings Ref: BWM


Overlooking the North Sea with stunning views from most rooms, this unique detached property is the perfect seaside holiday home. An extremely spacious house, it provides the ideal base for any family or group of friends. The Moorings has been restored to a very good standard enhancing its many original features. On entering the property, guests are greeted by the grand entrance hall and sweeping staircase with stained glass windows. It boasts 5 bedrooms which comfortably sleep up to 10 people, and a spacious living room which has large panoramic windows overlooking the water and an open log fire for cosy nights in. A large games room for the young (and the young at heart!) has a table tennis table, piano, Playstation 3, TV, books, board games and much more. The large dining room has French doors which open onto the patio and lead into the enclosed, lawned and courtyard garden, just perfect for a summer evening barbecue and a glass of wine from the wine cooler in the kitchen. With historic Harwich and Dovercourt on your doorstep, there is plenty to see and do. Dovercourt Bay’s award-winning beach is just across the road, and Dovercourt town centre is only 100 yards away, with a mixture of local and national stores. Along the seafront, find cafés, a boating lake, tennis courts, putting and croquet, roller skating, a small amusement arcade and a sports centre with an indoor pool. Neighbouring ‘old’ Harwich is full of history, with the Redoubt Fort and maritime museums open all year round. It is also home to the Mayflower Project, where visitors can see the building of an exact replica of the famous ship that took the pilgrims to America almost 400 years ago. From Harwich Ha’penny Pier, catch the foot ferry over to Shotley Marina or the Edwardian seaside town of Felixstowe, getting a close up view of the huge container vessels that berth at the docks. Travel a little further afield, by car, bus or train, to Colchester, Britain’s oldest recorded town, with its castle and internationally recognised zoo. Constable Country is on the doorstep, with fantastic walks along the River Stour, and rowing from Dedham and Flatford. Clacton-on-Sea, Frinton-on-Sea and Walton-on-the-Naze, three uniquely different seaside towns, are all within 15 miles. From Walton, take a guided, two hour trip around the ’backwaters’ to see, not only a number of different rare seabirds, but also a large colony of grey seals. Harwich Golf Club is just 2 miles away, and Clacton and Frinton each have two courses. There are a number of pubs and restaurants within walking distance. This unique property and special coastal location will be sure to create fantastic holiday memories for you, your family and your friends. Shop, pub and restaurant 50 yards.

Spacious living room with open fire and sea views. Large dining room with wooden floor and French doors to garden. Galley-style kitchen. Games room. Bathroom with toilet. First floor: Three double bedrooms, one with 5ft bed, one with balcony, one with sofa bed (for alternative sleeping only). Twin bedroom with TV. Bunk bedroom. Two shower rooms, each with toilet. All bedrooms with sea views.

  • Open fire - initial fuel included, thereafter available at cost
  • Electricity, full gas central heating, bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cot and high chair on request
  • 42" satellite TV
  • DVD
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Wi-fi
  • Small enclosed courtyard garden with patio and furniture
  • Barbecue
  • Parking (for 3 cars)
  • Cycle store
  • Games room with Playstation 3, table tennis, piano, TV and board games
  • Welcome pack
  • Pets free of charge
  • No smoking
  • Friday to Friday
  • NB: 5 steps to garden

WAS
NOW
£1012-£2258
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
11
Bedrooms
5
Pets
0
Butlers Farm Ref: BTA

Set at the end of a pretty country lane, this large detached Grade II listed farmhouse dating back to 1610 is perfect for a family holiday, celebration or get together with friends. Steeped in character with beams and an inglenook fireplace in the living room, it is set in 4 acres of delightful grounds with an outdoor heated swimming pool. The holiday property has fantastic views over open countryside, with an enjoyable 15-minute walk across fields to the pub but is only a few miles from the charming market town of Saffron Walden. Saffron Walden is one of England’s finest towns packed with half timbered medieval buildings and has a wide selection of shops, restaurants, galleries and a museum. Butlers Farm is ideally situated to explore Essex, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. Within easy reach is Cambridge (14 miles), famous for its colleges, museums, botanic gardens and art galleries. Visitors can try their hand at punting along the River Cam. Newmarket is 17 miles for a day at the races and Duxford Imperial War Museum is 8 miles. Other local places of interest include Audley End House, gardens and miniature railway, Mountfitchet Castle, Linton Zoo, Wimpole Hall and Anglesey Abbey. Shops 2 miles.

Large beamed living room with open fire in large inglenook fireplace and French doors. Kitchen/dining room with Aga (for cooking) and doors leading to conservatory. Utility. Separate toilet. First floor: Double bedroom with 5ft bed and en-suite bathroom with separate walk-in shower and toilet. Double bedroom with 5ft bed. Two double bedrooms, one with additional pull-out Z-bed (for +1). Twin bedroom. Bathroom with separate shower cubicle and toilet.

  • Open fire - no fuel provided
  • Electricity, bed linen and towels included
  • Full oil central heating included (January-March £300 per week)
  • Cot
  • High chair
  • TV
  • DVD
  • Stereo/CD
  • Aga included
  • Microwave
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • 4-acre garden with terrace and furniture
  • Parking (for 5 cars)
  • Private, outdoor, heated swimming pool (40ft x 20ft, depth range 3ft-8ft) £150 per week, open end May bank hol-end August, with changing facilities
  • No smoking
  • Couples and family bookings only
  • NB: Fenced pond in garden

WAS
NOW
£1553-£2613
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
10
Bedrooms
5
Pets
3

In a rural location on the edge of the ancient village of Castle Hedingham, these two detached, single-storey holiday homes, set in the owners’ 10 acres of grounds, have far-reaching views over open countryside. The accommodation is well-presented and has the added benefit of a heated indoor swimming pool - the pool is shared between the two cottages (refs W43379 and W43233) and both are allocated 3 hours of private use per day (one hour in the morning, one in the afternoon and one in the evening - the rest of the time is shared use). There is also a large fully equipped barbecue area which can be hired. Castle Hedingham lies in the valley of the River Colne on the ancient road between Colchester (20 miles west) and Cambridge (30 miles east); it still retains many beautiful timber-framed, medieval and Tudor buildings including Hedingham Castle (a Norman castle, the ancestral seat of the Earls of Oxford). The area is ideal for walking or cycling. Nearby places of interest include the Colne Valley steam railway, Sudbury and Saffron Walden. Shop, pub and restaurant 0.5 miles.

Single step to entrance: All on ground floor: Living/dining room/kitchen. 5 bedrooms: 3 double, 2 twin. Shower room with toilet. Wet room with toilet.

Both properties: Electric heaters and electricity by meter reading. Bed linen and towels included. Cot and high chair on request. Freeview TV. DVD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Fridge/freezer. Shared landscaped 10-acre grounds with sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue (at cost, by arrangement with owner). Ample parking. Cycle store. Shared indoor heated swimming pool (8m x 3.5m, depth 1.2m) with changing room, open 9am to 10pm all year (3 hours’ private use per day). Shared games room with pool table. Table tennis. Welcome pack. No smoking. Friday to Friday. NB: 5 steps in grounds.

WAS
NOW
£719-£1745
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