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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
7
Bedrooms
3
Pets
0
Granary Loft Ref: E5442

Set on a working arable farm amidst gloriously peaceful and attractive farmland, these two delightful ground floor and first floor holiday apartments have been converted from the former granary and adjoin the owners’ home. They boast spectacular views across undulating countryside and are ideal for a relaxing break whatever the season. Both properties offer visitors the opportunity to enjoy bird watching, walking and cycling along the many farm tracks. Situated in the little hamlet of Wimbish just 3 miles from the bustling town of Saffron Walden with its quaint pubs, restaurants and shops. Ideally placed to visit the many attractions in the area, just 50 minutes by train to the centre of London for a days sightseeing, Duxford Imperial War Museum, 8 miles, Newmarket famous for its racing, the city of Cambridge with its famous Backs and universities, the pretty town of Ely with its waterside pubs and English Heritage Audley End which is a venue for many concerts are all within an easy drive. Shop and pub under 1 mile.

Stairs to entrance. All on first floor: Living room with double sofa bed/dining room/kitchen area. 3 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 twin, 1 single. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet. Separate toilet.

Ground source CH and elec inc (£25pw 2nd Oct-30th Apr).

Both properties: Bed linen and towels inc. Freeview TV. DVD. M/wave. D/washer. Freezer. Garden with patio and furniture. Parking. No smoking.

WAS
NOW
£368-£780
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
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
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
2
Pets
1
Pippins Ref: 29624


Pippins is a charming, semi-detached holiday property, adjacent to the owner’s home, located on a working fruit farm in Halstead, it is set next to a quiet road and has an enclosed garden, as well as a sun catching conservatory. Set in a rural location, however only a short distance to all amenities and the picturesque village of Wickham Saint Paul. Pay to pick your own fruit and vegetables on the farm for an evening BBQ, and have a coffee and browse the on-site shop. Local attractions include Hedingham Castle and its beautiful grounds, an ideal attraction for a family outing, and during the summer there are a variety of special events which bring its colourful history alive. Come and enjoy one of our exciting jousting tournaments or other entertainments, and the Colne Valley Railway, where you can sample the atmosphere and take a ride on an award-winning period country railway. Shop, pub and restaurant 1 mile.

Steps to entrance. Ground floor: Living/dining room with wooden floor. Kitchen. Utility room. Conservatory. Separate toilet. First floor: 2 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite shower room (no toilet), 1 twin. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet.

Woodburner in living room (initial fuel included). Electric heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. Freeview TV. DVD. MP3 player. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed lawned garden and furniture. Barbecue. Shared 30 acres of natural grounds. Parking (2 cars). Welcome pack. Pet free of charge. No smoking. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£260-£861
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
7
Bedrooms
4
Pets
0
Estuary View Ref: E5409


A real gem, this delightful holiday property is set on a hill overlooking the river estuary; its decked balcony makes a perfect spot for relaxing and enjoying sunsets over the river, while the stylish interior offers a high standard of comfort, perfect for a family holiday whatever the season. Only 45 minutes from London by train (0.5 miles from station) and just yards from the old town of Leigh with its cobbled streets, traditional pubs, museums, restaurants serving local seafood and a man made beach. For the more adventurous, a good walk takes you into nearby Southend-on-Sea which offers family fun and an abundance of shops, restaurants and of course its famous pier. Shop and pub 100 yards.

18 steps down to entrance. Lower ground floor: Utility area. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet. Ground floor: Living/dining room/kitchen area with wooden floor. First floor: 3 bedrooms: 2 double, 1 single. Bathroom with roll-top bath, shower cubicle and toilet. Steep stairs to second floor: 1 double bedroom.

Gas CH inc (£25pw 2nd Oct-30th Apr). Elec, bed linen and towels inc. Five Freeview TVs. DVD. Stereo/CD. M/wave. W/machine. T/dryer. D/washer. F/freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed garden and furniture. Decked balcony. BBQ. Parking. No smoking. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£326-£861
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
5
Bedrooms
2
Pets
0
Owl Barn Ref: 16981

On the outskirts of Dedham, in Constable Country, Owl Barn is set in the grounds of the owner’s 18th century rural cottage. With separate drive, the barn is decorated and furnished to a very good standard, incorporating an enchanting mix of styles. The barn is ideally situated for holidays exploring the numerous attractions in the area. Colchester with its castle and zoo is close by and the Suffolk Heritage Coast is not to be missed. Shops and pubs ¾ mile.

Ground floor: Living/dining room with wooden floor/kitchen with tiled floor. 1 twin bedroom with wooden floor. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet. First floor: 1 double bedroom with wooden floor, additional single and en-suite shower room with toilet.

First £10 electricity included, remainder by meter reading. NSH, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot and high chair on request. DVD and small library. Stereo/CD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washer/dryer. Dishwasher. Freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed gravelled garden area and furniture. Barbecue. Parking (3 cars). No smoking. Friday to Friday.

WAS
NOW
£411-£672
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
1
Pets
1
Englepoint Lodge Ref: 18112

Close to the River Blackwater and the River Colne, this spacious, bright and airy detached holiday property is set amidst the owners attractive gardens, surrounded by lovely rural countryside. The fishing towns of Maldon, Brightlingsea, Wivenhoe and Mersea are all close by. Colchester, famous for its castle, zoo, cobble streets and excellent shopping facilities is within driving distance. Easy access to Felixstowe and the Suffolk Heritage Coast. Shops and pub 1 mile.

Steps to entrance. All on ground floor: Living room with double sofa bed/dining room/kitchen with laminate floors. 1 double bedroom with en-suite shower room and toilet.

Economy 7 central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. Video. Stereo/CD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Patio, terrace, sitting-out area and furniture. Parking (2 cars). No smoking. Friday to Friday. Couples and family bookings only.

WAS
NOW
£234-£499
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
2
Pets
1

This detached holiday property is in a beautiful location with views over the River Colne and Blackwater estuarys. An ideal location for walking and bird watching, with Colne Point Nature Reserve on the door step (day passes provided by owner). Cart Lodge is a great place to unwind. The views are wild and beautiful, marsh harriers are seen every day and you can see barn owls hunting on the meadow in front of the cart lodge most evenings. Close to St. Osyth and within easy reach of Colchester, the Essex sunshine coast at Clacton, Walton and Frinton. Shop 1 mile, pub and restaurant ½ mile.

Ground floor: Living/dining room/kitchen with French doors. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet. First floor: 2 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 twin, both with Velux.

WAS
NOW
£278-£579
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
2
Pets
0
The Crow’s Nest Ref: 29314

Located above the Colne Yacht Club, the Crow’s Nest provides spectacular views across the Colne Estuary and out to sea. This second-floor holiday apartment is set in the historic Brightlingsea yachting harbour, where there is year-round activity available, including sailing (visitors enjoy temporary membership of the yacht club), a public open-air swimming pool, beach with colourful beach huts, and a local ferry to explore the charming Mersea Island. Brightlingsea has a wide range of shops and restaurants, as well as a museum, but is also conveniently located to explore the sunshine coast of Essex or, further inland, the county town of Colchester with its castle and zoo. Shop, pub and restaurant 150 yards.

External, open-tread, concrete stairs to entrance. All on second floor: Living/dining room. Kitchen. 2 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 bunk. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet.

Electric heaters, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Freeview TV. DVD. iPod dock. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Fridge/freezer. Wi-fi. Parking (1 car). Welcome pack. NB: River, 15 yards.

WAS
NOW
£228-£664
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
2
Maycot Ref: 27213

This well-furnished, detached house with attractive lawned garden is located close to the beach at Point Clear Bay. Known as the ‘sunshine coast’, this part of Essex is a hidden gem. The holiday property is ideally situated for visiting Frinton, Walton-on-the-Naze and Clacton, or exploring Constable Country. The historic village of St Osyth has shops, restaurants, boating lake and fishing. Ideal for bird watchers, cyclists and walkers, or take the foot ferry (seasonal) to Mersea Island or Brightlingsea. Shop 200 yards, pub and restaurant 1/2 mile.

Ground floor: Living room with parquet floor. Conservatory/dining room with French doors. Kitchen. 2 bedrooms: 1 double (5ft), 1 twin, both with parquet floor. Bathroom with bath, shower cubicle and toilet. Open-tread stairs to first floor: 1 double (5ft) bedroom with Velux and en-suite shower room with toilet.

Gas central heating, gas & electricity included (£25per week November-March). Bed linen & towels included. DVD. Gas hob. Electric oven. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Fridge/freezer. Enclosed lawned garden, sitting-out area, furniture. Barbecue. Parking (3 cars). Cycle store. Welcome pack. Pets free of charge. No smoking.

WAS
NOW
£254-£811
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
0
Daisy Cottage Ref: 24191

This detached bungalow is perfect for family holidays with its enclosed rear garden and proximity to the sea and beach. With ramp access to the front and rear of the property, and all accommodation on one level, it is also ideally suited to less mobile or wheelchair dependent visitors. It is 9 miles from the historic town of Colchester with its castle and zoo, and is ideal for those who enjoy walking, cycling, swimming and bird watching, or wish to explore Dedham Vale, the Stour Valley or Constable Country. Famous fish restaurant 1/2 mile. Shop 300 yards, pub 500 yards.

All on ground floor: Living/dining room. Kitchen. 3 bedrooms: 2 double, one with patio doors, 1 twin (zip and link). Wet room with toilet.

Oil central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. DVD. CD. Electric cooker. Microwave. Washing machine. Enclosed lawned garden with sitting-out area and furniture. Parking (2 cars). No smoking. Wheelchair access.

WAS
NOW
£244-£768
Shortlist
Grade 2 Star rating
Sleeps
4
Bedrooms
2
Pets
0
The Showmans Wagon Ref: W42097

Very quiet and peaceful

Come and live like a fairground showman in this unique holiday accommodation, set in 150 acres of woodland and wildflower meadows with some of the most scenic countryside views in the county. This compact property has been extensively renovated and insulated throughout and provides a warm and welcoming atmosphere. There are many footpaths and lanes to explore, including the Stour Valley Path from Newmarket to the sea at Manningtree. Horse riding and cycle hire can be arranged locally. The area is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts with deer and bird watching available. Badger sightings are almost guaranteed, bring some peanuts. Shops 2.5 miles, pubs and restaurant 1 mile.

Ground floor: Living/dining room/kitchen with wooden floor. 2 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 bunk. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet.

Electric central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Electric cooker. microwave. Enclosed garden with furniture. Shared use of 150 acre of farmland with unfenced ponds. Barbecue. Ample parking. No smoking.

WAS
NOW
£199-£405
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