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Dizzying Heights and Steam Fun for Families

Dizzying Heights and Steam Fun for Families

Travel back in time by steam to a land of castles at Hedingham and the Knights Templar barns at Cressing. Switch to outlet shopping in Braintree, leisure parks and high ropes.

Day 1

Morning - Start your journey at Hedingham Castle - a 900-year-old keep which stands in 160 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens and woodland, and is still owned by descendants of the original owners, the De Veres.

Afternoon - Just a few mintues down the road you'll find the Colne Valley Railway - travel on an old diesel/steam train along the mile-long heritage line. Complete with a working signal box, travelling Post Office and Interpretation Centre, and special events throughout the year including meeting Thomas the Tank Engine, the children will love this place! Cafe on site.

Day 2

Morning - Head to Great Notley Country Park, a fantastic space for cycling or just enjoying the fresh air. It is home to Sky Ropes and Essex's longest play trailat 1.2km, which includes a giant see-saw, sand pits, tyre swings and more, making it a great place for all ages to explore.

Afternoon - Make your way over to Cressing Temple where you'll find the Tiptree Tea Room, The Barns where you can tuck into some lunch. The historic Templar barns (some of the oldest in Europe) and gardens are also free to explore.

Braintree Village is a short journey away and the place for a spot of outlet shopping. Whislt the Leisure Park offers a cinema, bowling and a swimming pool, plus many restaurants.


Six Apples is a wonderful place for children to run around and have fun. Beautiful self-catering accommodation, it sleeps up to 8 and has a heated swimming pool (May to September), BBQ and summer house.

*Please check opening times of all venues before visiting as they are subject to change. Please quote Visit Essex when booking any of these venues.

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Product Information

  1. Hedingham Castle


    Visit Hedingham Castle for a great family day out and a memorable experience. Bring a picnic and explore the beautiful gardens and lakes then take time to explore the 110ft tall Norman Keep.

  2. Great Notley Country Park

    Great Notley Country Park covers some 100 acres of open space, which is managed for the benefit of wildlife and the community. It's home to the longest Kid's Play Trail in Essex.

  3. Sky ropes


    Sky Ropes Adventure for adults and children from one meter tall. Perfect for the whole family!

  4. Braintree Village


    Discover Braintree Village, an outlet shopping village in the heart of Essex, where over 80 premium aspirational brands such as Reiss, Polo Ralph Lauren, Ted Baker, Boss and Radley London can be found at great value, outlet prices.

  5. Six Apples

    Six Apples


    Six Apples is a newly refurbished eighteenth century former coach house offering luxurious self-catering holiday accommodation in an acre of private gardens with its own swimming pool surrounded by the delightful North Essex countryside.

Itinerary Distances

FromToDistance * (metric)
Hedingham Castle (51.99266,0.60268)Great Notley Country Park (51.86454,0.51896)13.84
Great Notley Country Park (51.86454,0.51896)Sky ropes (51.86305,0.51192)0.46
Sky ropes (51.86305,0.51192)Tiptree Tea Room at The Barns at Cressing Temple (51.83885,0.60781)6.41
Tiptree Tea Room at The Barns at Cressing Temple (51.83885,0.60781)Braintree Village (51.86938,0.56954)3.87
Braintree Village (51.86938,0.56954)Six Apples (51.9503,0.49121)9.44
Total Distance *34.02 miles
Estimated Journey Time1.09 hours

* Approximate distance by road

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