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Days Out in Essex

The Essex landscape has much to offer. Grab a good pair of walking shoes, a couple of friends, your family or your S.O. and enjoy a proper day out, or two, in the great British countryside. Here are some of our favourite things to enjoy in Essex that are less than an hour from London by train too. 

Walks along the Estuary

Kids and nature lovers alike will love rambling along one of the well signposted Thames Estuary Path routes. Taking in the lush South Essex Marshes, along the routes you’ll see historic sites, nature reserves, and landscapes that feel much further away from London than they are. 

Read our Thames Estuary Path guide 

Family Activities

We've made it easy for you to find fun things to do with the kids that gets them out of the house. From big indoor play areas to getting out in nature, explore our guide to the best family activities you can do together along our route. 

Read our Family Days out in Essex guide

Artisan ales in picturesque pubs

Dogs curled up in front of roaring fires, a selection of real ales, traditional grub and a handful of friendly locals, who the landlord knows by name - the sprawling Essex countryside is home to dozens of historic pubs. After a good stomp through the countryside these make perfect pit-stops for enjoying a pork pie and a pint (or three). 

Read our guide to cosy pubs in Essex

Cycles on the seafront

With a fantastic selection of coastal cycle routes and flat landscape, Southend is a great place to explore by bicycle. Tootle along through the town centre, or glide down to the seafront and absorb the seascapes along the palm-studded paths. You can hire bicycles at Southend station, or take your own on the train during off-peak hours. 

Read our guide to cycle routes in Southend

Romantic breaks

From luxurious four-star pampering to cute cottages near the coast we know a bunch of bolt-holes that make for great escapes. Less than an hour from London - you'll have more time to connect with each other too.

Read our guide to weekend breaks for couples 

Foodie Hot Spots

From Freakshakes to fish & chips, cakes to cockles, the quaint sea-side town of Old Leigh in Leigh-on-Sea is a food lovers paradise. The plethora of hearty food available will warm you up so you can walk it off with a crisp stroll through the cobbled streets of the old town and past the fishing boats moored along the seafront. 

Read our Guide to Leigh-on-Sea

Historical Sites

If you have a passion for history, especially World War One and World War Two, there are many forts, relics and ruins to explore in South Essex. highlights include English heritage protected Tilbury Fort built in the 1500s and the eerie Manusell Towers which loom out of the Estuary mouth. 

Read our guide to historical sites in Essex