Essex is arguably the UK’s most notorious county and one that many people have a distinct impression of - whether they have visited the area or not. However, most are surprised to find a diverse and culturally diverse place, offering plenty to see and do - from superb shopping facilities, to some of the best nightlife destinations anywhere in the country. Essex also has plenty of stunning green spaces and historic landmarks - though these rarely appear on the county’s notorious reality TV show! From quaint villages to lively seaside towns, Essex has something to offer everyone.
If you’re planning on an extended stay in Essex, then booking a serviced apartment is likely to be the most cost-effective and flexible option for getting the most out of your trip. Those who require regular access to London might wish to consider corporate housing in Epping, Chelmsford or Basildon, as these all feature fast rail links into the capital. The Squa.re carry a range of such properties, to suit the specific requirements of your trip. Each features a tasteful decor, full kitchen facilities and a range of modern conveniences. Reception and concierge services are also included where available.
Essex has a reputation for having a party atmosphere in many of its major towns, but the county has a surprising level of diversity when it comes to attractions and things to see. Whether you are looking for scenic countryside, fascinating heritage sites, or some of the country’s best live music venues, Essex has something for all.
The towns of Basildon and Chelmsford are chock full of attractions, ranging from modern sports complexes to stunning cathedrals, but travel to the more rural areas around Brentwood or Braintree and you will find charming countryside, with numerous country pubs dotted about for good measure.
For the summer months, Essex also offers the traditional British seaside experience, with Southend-on-sea, Clacton-on-Sea and Walton on the Naze offering many events throughout the season, ranging from marine sports and competitions to family-themed activity festivals.
Essex’s range of restaurants is as diverse as the county itself, from gastro-pubs such as the Bull at Brentwood or The Fox and Goose in Chelmsford, to high-end dining experiences, such as those found at The Magic Mushoom (Billercay), The Cuckoo (Ingatestone) or Haywards (Epping). For the more adventurous, there’s also several themed restaurants, such as Charnallies American Restaurant & Bar, or Grumpy’s Diner.
Shopping is never a problem in Essex - the county is home to the famous Lakeside Shopping centre, which plays host to some 250 stores, as well as restaurants and various entertainments. Furthermore, there’s The Victoria Shopping Centre and the Royal Shopping Centre - both in Southend, or the Water Gardens - an open-air shopping mall in Harlow, with vendors selling everything from homewares to designer fashions.
Essex has a fantastic array of entertainments and attractions, whether you are a solo traveller or visiting the area with family. Adventure Island in Southend, the Imperial bird of prey academy in Billericay or the Chelmsford Museum are great places for those with children, whilst The Essex Police Museum and RHS Garden Hyde Hall are two of the premier attractions for all ages. Those who enjoy the outdoors can also head to Promenade Park in Maldon, with its Victorian riverfront park with ornamental lake.
Essex is covered by a comprehensive public transport network, which covers the main towns in the centre of the county as well as towards the coast. Trains link Chelmsford and Colchester to London, with fast services running several times an hour, whilst Buses run between Harlow, Braintree, Southend and other smaller towns. There are also numerous taxi firms in the area, which can be ideal for those seeking more rural locations. Many of the towns have also seen much investment in their cycleways, meaning this is also an option for short urban journeys.
There are numerous firms based in Essex, ranging from financial services to manufacturing and public transport providers. CNH Industrial is one of the major international firms that operates out of the county, with several other smaller local operators. Aviation also plays a big part in the local economy, with Janes Aviation and CargoLogicAir both being based locally.
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