Picture of a dad and son waving from a train window.

Getting here and travelling around the county

Essex is on London's doorstep and is served by an excellent rail network and local bus routes. The county has accessible travel links from all over the UK and Europe, and is well served by major roads including the M25, M11 and A12. There are main-line rail links into London plus the international gateways at Stansted Airport, Southend Airport, Harwich International Port and London Cruise Terminal at Tilbury offer direct links to London Liverpool Street.

Essex Tourist Information Centres

Travel by car

Welcome to Essex

There is good access to Essex from all parts of the country via the A12, M25 and M11. Most of the main destinations are easily accessible through these main roads.  The A12 slices through the county from Brentwood in the south west to just past Colchester in the north east. From the A12 a number of key roads connect to other main destinations of the county. To give you an indication of travel times, a journey from Brentwood to Colchester under normal traffic conditions will take just under an hour (approximate distance 36.5 miles or 59 km). Download a road map of Essex.

For more details on planning your journey, please contact the local Tourist Information Centre or use the AA route planner.

Hiring a car is a great way to explore independently the county and explore more rural locations. Rhino Car Hire compare prices from all car hire agents in order to give you the best possible rate. Visit the website www.rhinocarhire.com

Travel by bus or coach

First Essex Bus

First Essex Buses
The largest commercial operator in Essex, serving destinations from Chelmsford, Colchester, Clacton, Basildon and Southend including both Essex Airports London Stansted and London Southend.With Real time technology allowing you to track your bus, and Mobile ticketing, taking the bus around Essex has never been easier. To get in touch with First Essex bus, why not follow us on Twitter @FirstEssex or like us on Facebook - First Essex Bus for all the latest information, competitions, news, and up to date bus information. Visit the website for more information.

National Express
National Express run coaches to and from over 1,000 destinations throughout the UK, and a regular shuttle bus service operates from Stansted Airport to London Liverpool Street and London Victoria. Visit the website for more information.

Local coach operators

Kirby's Coaches are renowned throughout South East Essex for luxurious coach travel in the UK and Europe. For 60 years, Kirby's have provided the very best in coach travel to quality destinations for individuals seeking the unusual and interesting. The coaches are luxurious and the drivers are knowledgeable and friendly.
Visit the website for more information.

Cooks Coaches offer good value for money shorts breaks, holidays and day excursions, as well as priviate coach and contract hire.  They are a reputable family-run business who have been operating in the Southend area for over 100 years.


Download the First Essex Bus ticket app

Travelling by bus around Essex has never been easier. You can download the First Essex Bus ticket app, mTicket, which allows you to purchase tickets wherever you are without the need to print out any paper ticket. Just show the ticket on your phone to the driver. More information can be found on the First Essex Bus website.
First Essex Bus ticket app

Travel by train


National Rail Enquiries
National Rail service give comprehensive information on all passenger rail services of the National Rail Network in England, Scotland and Wales. The website offers journey planning, timetable and fares information. Visit the website for more information.

Abellio Greater Anglia
Greater Anglia provides a fast and frequent service to London Liverpool Street, whilst connecting major towns throughout Essex and East Anglia. Visit the website for more information.

c2c operate rail services between Southend-on-Sea and London Fenchurch Street. Visit the website for more information.

Stansted Express
The fastest route between Stansted Airport and central London. It takes about 47 minutes to London Liverpool Street. Visit the website for more information.

Save an average of 51% when you book tickets in advance*. Visit the website for more information, *terms and conditions apply.

Transport for London
Transport for London manages the transport service across the capital. Services include buses, underground and overground. Visit the website for more information.

Flying into Essex

Stansted Airport

Stansted Airport
Stansted is the UK's 4th busiest airport with over 24 million passengers passing through every year. Many low-cost airlines have made Stansted their base. It is located just over 30 miles North East of London at Junction 8 of the M11, less than 20 minutes from the M25.
Visit the website for more information.

Southend Airport
London Southend Airport officially opened its superb modern terminal building in 2012 and has been Voted Best Airport in the UK in 2013, 2014 and 2015 by Which?. easyJet, TUI, Flybe, SkyWork and Adria Airways all have operations at London Southend. London Southend was the fastest growing airport in Europe in 2013 and currently handles over 1 million passengers per year. Visit the website for more information.

Car hire at Stansted Airport
Rhino Car Hire
Visit the website for more information

London City Airport
London's business airport is easily accessible from Essex via the A13, M11 and M25. Heathrow and Gatwick airports are just over an hour's drive away and car hire facilities are well appointed.
Visit the website for more information.

Explore our county

Picture of the iconic Firstsite building at night.
Discover Essex’s creative spaces. They come in all shapes and sizes and are crammed with artistic treasures, from international names to emerging local artists.
Picture of a sunset over the The Naze waters with some rocks protruding from the water.

Explore our 350 miles of coastline, the longest shoreline of any county in England, a place of surprising wild beauty, rich in wildlife and sprinkled with history and hidden cultural gems.

Essex’s history has been shaped by a wide variety of cultures. Romans, Saxons, Vikings, Normans – all left their mark. Echoes of their influence can still be seen today.
Picture of a cow at the edge of the River Stour and drinking water.
A scenic patchwork of rich farmland speckled with pastelwashed villages of thatch and timber, the views interrupted by mighty oaks and ashes presided over by the hurrying skies.