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Great places to visit with the kids.

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The Rage
VistEngland VAQAS

Western Esplanade, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS1 1EE, Tel: 01702 443400, www.adventureisland.co.uk

Adventure Island is the UK's No.1 free admission fun park. There are over 50 rides and attractions to enjoy, which are situated either side of the world's longest pleasure pier in Southend-on-Sea.

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  • Rail station: Southend Central (0 mile)
  • Parking: with charge
  • Children welcome
  • Free entry
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Audley End House and Gardens
VistEngland VAQASEssex Tourism AwardsEnglish Heritage

Audley End, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB11 4JF, Tel: 01799 522842, Email, www.english-heritage.org.uk/audleyend

Step back in time and see Victorian life come to life before your eyes at Audley End House and Gardens. You can experience what life was like at one of England’s grandest stately homes.

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  • Rail station: Audley End (1 mile)
  • Parking: free
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Audley End Miniature Railway

Audley End Road, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB11 4JB, Tel: 01799 541354/542134, Email, www.audley-end-railway.co.uk

The Audley End Miniature Railway and Enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk is a family fun day out near Saffron Walden, Essex full of innocent fun and imagination

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  • Rail station: Audley End (1.3 mile)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Barleylands Farm Park and Craft Village
VistEngland VAQASEssex Tourism AwardsSelf-assessed Accessibility Information

Barleylands Road, Billericay, Essex, CM11 2UD, Tel: 01268 290229, www.barleylands.co.uk

Get ready for free range family fun at Barleylands Farm Park. Say hello to cuddly farmyard friends, meet birds of prey, run wild in the indoor play or jump aboard the tractor and trailer ride.

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  • Rail station: Billericay (3 miles)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Windsurfing

Eastern Esplanade, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS1 2YH, Tel: 01702 612770, Email

Beach Club on Thorpe Bay Beach is a Royal Yachting Association Training Centre and the only ‘Fast Forward’ windsurfing instruction centre in the eastern region.

 
 
Belhus Woods Country Park
Green Flag Award

Romford Road, Aveley, South Ockendon, Essex, RM15 4XJ, Tel: 01708 865628, Email, www.visitparks.co.uk/places/belhus-woods-country-park/

Woodland, open grassland and lakes suitable for walking, picnics and fishing. Visitor Centre with refreshments on site. Guided tours by arrangement.

 
 
Blackwater Dawn
Self-assessed Accessibility Information

Brook End Road (South), Chelmsford, Essex, CM2 6NX, Tel: 01206 853282, Email, www.blackwater-boats.co.uk

'Blackwater Dawn', a traditional Narrowboat, offering public trips on Sundays and Bank Holidays also private charters for that special occasion.

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  • Rail station: Chelmsford (3 miles)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Blake House Craft Centre
VistEngland VAQASSelf-assessed Accessibility Information

Blake End, Braintree, Essex, CM77 6RA, Tel: 01376 344123, Email, www.blakehousecraftcentre.co.uk

Wander around the exclusive shops where there really is something for everyone! Once you've looked around, enjoy a bite to eat in Timbers Restaurant or challenge friends to a round of crazy golf.

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  • Rail station: Braintree (4 miles)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Free entry
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Braintree District Museum
VistEngland VAQAS

Manor Street, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3HW, Tel: 01376 325266, Email, www.braintreemuseum.co.uk/

This award winning museum is based in the converted Courtauld School and has displays from Crittall steel windows to Warners royal silks, Castle Hedingham pottery to Edward Bawden prints.

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  • Rail station: Braintree (0 mile)
  • Parking: with charge
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Central Museum

Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS2 6ES, Tel: 01702 434449, Email, www.southendmuseums.co.uk

Central Museum houses the collections of local and natural history and archaeology. Displays reflect the story of Southend's growth as a major seaside destination and its rich natural history and fishing heritage.

 
 
 
Central Park Lake and Viaduct

Parkway, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 1LU, Tel: 01245 605566, Email, www.chelmsford.gov.uk/central-park-bell-meadow-and-sky-blue-pasture

These parks are very popular with office workers and families alike. A great way to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life, relax and enjoy the wildlife.

 
 
 
Chancellor Park

Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 4BX, Tel: 01245 605566, Email, www.chelmsford.gov.uk/chancellor-park

Chancellor Park is a popular park for the Sports enthusiasts. Due to its multi surfaces it is available to use all year round.

 
 
 
Chelmer & Blackwater Canal Cruises

Paper Mill Lock, North Hill, Little Baddow, Essex, CM3 4BS, Tel: 07813 014325, Email

Public trips and charters aboard traditional 48-seat barge "Victoria" with bar and catering options. Cruiser and dinghy hire, lock-side tea-room, island picnic area, walks and fishing. Coaches welcome by appointment.

 
 
Chelmsford Museum
VistEngland VAQASSelf-assessed Accessibility Information

Oaklands Park, Moulsham Street, Chelmsford, Essex, CM2 9AQ, Tel: 01245 605700, Email, www.chelmsford.gov.uk/museums

Local, industrial and social history from prehistory to present day; fine and decorative arts (ceramics, glass); coins; natural history (geology, animals, live beehive). Exhibitions and events. Set in park with children's play area.

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  • Rail station: Chelmsford (1 mile)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Free entry
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Clacton Pier

1 North Sea, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, CO15 1QX, Tel: 01255 421115, Email, www.clactonpier.co.uk

Six and a half acres of fun and entertainment, including under cover and outside fairground, amusements, side stalls, cafés and take aways, Seaquarium, public house with children's play area and lots more for all the family.

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  • Rail station: Clacton train station (1 mile)
  • Children welcome
  • Free entry
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Colchester Castle Museum
VistEngland VAQAS

Castle Park, Colchester, Essex, CO1 1TJ, Tel: 01206 282939, Email, www.cimuseums.org.uk

Colchester Castle is the largest Norman Keep in Europe. Constructed on the foundations of the Temple of Claudius. The Castle Museum today reveals many fascinating layers of history to visitors.

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  • Rail station: Colchester Town (0 mile)
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Colchester Zoo
VistEngland VAQASSelf-assessed Accessibility Information

Maldon Road, Stanway, Colchester, Essex, CO3 0SL, Tel: 01206 331292, Email, www.colchesterzoo.org

Colchester Zoo is home to over 260 species set in 60 acres of parkland and lakes and are proudly listed as in the top 2 zoos in the UK as part of the TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Attractions.

  • image for Zoo item typeMore Details
  • Rail station: Colchester North (4 miles)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access
 
 
 
Colne Valley Railway
VistEngland VAQASEssex Tourism AwardsSelf-assessed Accessibility Information

Hedingham Station, Yeldham Road, Castle Hedingham, Essex, CO9 3DZ, Tel: 01787 461174, Email, www.colnevalleyrailway.co.uk

One mile length of line with re-located buildings, large collection of heritage rolling stock, steam and diesel locomotives and miniature and model railways. Special events including Thomas and Santa specials.

  • image for Steam Railway item typeMore Details
  • Rail station: Braintree (7 miles)
  • Parking: free
  • Children welcome
  • Disabled access