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Beautiful country road in Essex

Compare the best Essex hotels

When looking to visit somewhere offering history, attractive countryside, beaches and excellent shopping opportunities, Essex offers all this and more.

Why go?

Find cheap hotels in Essex with TravelSupermarket and get to know this charming English county...

With hotels ranging from very modern to historic and with good transport links by rail, road, air and sea, Essex is a diverse and interesting county to visit. And, although Essex is relatively flat, with a few large towns such as Colchester, Chelmsford and Basildon, there is much attractive countryside.

Historic places to visit include Colchester Castle, an 11th-century Norman keep, and the late Saxon tower of Holy Trinity Church. Hedingham Castle, built during Norman times, is also well worth a visit. Set in beautiful grounds, there are also lakeside and woodland walks to enjoy. Kelvedon Hatch Secret Nuclear Bunker inspires curiosity. Built originally for the RAF, it has seen life as a Civil Defence Centre and Regional Government Headquarters.

Essex also has miles of picturesque coastline. Thorney Bay Beach on Canvey Island is quiet, sandy and sheltered so ideal for family beach-based holidays. Labworth Beach, also on Canvey Island, offers pools, funfairs and amusement arcades. The Southend-on-Sea coastline has seven miles of seafront with a variety of bays, coves and sandy beaches.

Booking great-value hotels in Essex has never been easier thanks to TravelSupermarket's price-comparison service. Use the search tool to tell us when you want to go and we'll take the hard work out of finding a hotel in the right place at the right price.

Where to stay?

Coastal hotels, riverside hotels and country hotels, as well as hotels within larger towns, offer a good base from which to explore Essex...

Essex has so many different experiences available, from nature reserves to large shopping centres, small villages to large and historic towns to seaside resorts. Choosing Essex hotels, especially online, has never been easier and Essex's importance in both business and tourism ensures an excellent range of hotels throughout the county.

Long recognised as a popular holiday destination, Essex has plenty of seaside hotels. Consider hotels in Southend or Clacton for a traditional and wonderfully British take on a holiday by the shore.

Hotels in Basildon provide a handy base for exploring many of the area's top-rate shopping opportunities, as well as offering excellent links into London. Many visitors also book Brentwood hotels for easy and fast access into the capital.

History buffs will want to consider Colchester as a short-break destination. Said to be Britain's oldest recorded town, there are plenty of attractions that delve into the past, plus a number of captivating family highlights.

Wherever you choose to stay in Essex, book your hotel as early as possible via TravelSupermarket to secure the cheapest rates.

What to see?

With a vast array of attractions on the doorstep, there's never a shortage of things to do in Essex...

Top five attractions

Audley End House

One of the most lavish stately homes in England, Audley House was built by the Earl of Suffolk and decorated by the celebrated Robert Adam - all to entertain King James.

Colchester Castle

Europe's largest Norman keep is the centrepiece of this award-winning attraction that will leave smiles on the faces of young and old alike.

Barleylands

This countryside craft village and farm park boasts an impressive collection of indoor and outdoor activities.

Stow Maries Aerodrome

History buffs will enjoy this WWI airfield that's been lovingly restored as a museum and visitor experience.

RHS Garden Hyde Hall

Dramatic views over the Essex countryside are the reward for visitors at this stunning venue that houses excellent garden displays and a well-equipped playground if the kids get bored of plants.

What's on?

There's never a dull moment in Essex, where you'll discover plenty of annual events...

Game and Country Show; March: Followers of country pursuits converge at Cressing Temple Barns near Braintree to celebrate country life, from shooting and fishing to falconry and shopping.

Clacton Air Show; August: A mesmerising array of modern and ancient aircraft over Clacton-on-Sea form a breath-taking day out. There's plenty to see on the ground, as well as in the air.

Essex Country Show; September: A huge collection of spectacles, from monster truck racing to clowns, combine at Barleylands to deliver the county's biggest annual event.