Autumn days out in Essex: 6 great places to go

PUBLISHED: 12:59 10 September 2019

Autumn at Ingatestone (c) Tomas Petersen, Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Autumn at Ingatestone (c) Tomas Petersen, Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Copyright by Tomas Petersen. You are hereby granted a non-exclusive license to use this photo for non commercial purposes on the

The days may be drawing in and temperatures are going down but there’s still loads of things to do across Essex. Here are 6 great places for you to go this autumn

1) Blackwell Farm Shop

Herons Farm, Colne Road, Coggeshall, CO6 1TQ | 01376 562500

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Local produce, freshly baked cakes, pies, cheese and deli counter at Blackwells Farm Shop make it a top destination in Essex for food lovers. The Blackwell family have been farming at Coggeshall for four generations and are passionate supporters of local producers. Over 90% of produce in the Farm Shop is sourced from within a 20-mile radius of the farm.

From BBQ meats to roasting joints and the best free-range sausages, the Butchery sources meat from local farmers known and trusted by the family for their good husbandry and animal welfare, providing unrivalled provenance and traceability. When you visit, be sure to stop by the farm's free-range turkeys and geese grazing in the paddocks beside the shop.

From the Deli Counter, pick up specialty cheese and free-range Gloucester Old Spot ham, perfect for pairing with homemade pickles and chutneys from the farm kitchen. The Blackwells Kitchen also keep the shop stocked with scrumptious cakes ranging from old-favourites and seasonal bakes to showstoppers - all too good to resist.

Using fresh produce from the shop, homemade pies and ready meals are made from scratch in the kitchens and ideal for deliciously quick suppers. With selected vegetarian and vegan options available, there's a dish for the whole family to enjoy. And to complete your feast, the shop sources fresh grown fruit and vegetables and a wealth of wine, beer and locally produced food and drink. Blackwells Farm Shop is open seven days a week, Monday to Friday, 8am-5.30pm; Saturday, 8am-4pm and Sunday, 10am-3pm.

2) Dedham Boathouse

Mill Lane, Dedham, Colchester, CO7 6DH | 01206 323153 |


'Breakfast at Boathouse' has proven to be so popular that they will now be serving breakfast between 9am-11am throughout the whole year on Saturday and Sunday mornings. From a Full English breakfast to homemade pastries they are sure to have something to satisfy your taste buds!

'Let's do lunch:' Their signature mid-week Taster Menu is priced at £15.95 for three courses and is a perfect excuse to spend lunch or dinner with friends at an affordable cost. The menu is subject to change daily, as produce that they use is local and fresh.

'Dinner by the river': If you're looking for something a little more romantic, then why not take advantage of their 'row and dine' offer which takes place from Tuesday - Friday evenings. This offer includes a two-course set menu with one hour free rowing boat hire for only £15.95 per head.

'Make it a December to remember': They are now taking bookings for December and the New Years Eve extravaganza. An impressive set five-course meal with live music throughout the evening and a firework display with bubbles. Don't miss the chance to celebrate with them.

Dedham BoathouseDedham Boathouse

3) Waldegraves Holiday Park

Mersea Island, Colchester, CO5 8SE | 01206 382 898 |

Facebook | Twitter

Escape to the coast and enjoy a break at Waldegraves Holiday Park. Waldegraves is situated on the beautiful Mersea Island overlooking the sparkling Blackwater Estuary. You can hire a luxury static Holiday Home at the Park that sleeps six guests including one double room, two twin rooms and the added option of a pull-out bed in the lounge.

Each Holiday Home is self-catering and bed linen is included in the price, all from £159 per break. There is also a choice of electric, non-electric and hardstanding pitches, which are properly maintained and have all the space you need to enjoy the great outdoors. Day visitors are welcome to come and dine in The Granary restaurant or make use of their golfing facilities and fishing lakes on site. Four well-stocked lakes are full stocked of commercial sized carps averaging 6-10lb with several going to mid-teens and rising up to 22lb, plus a variety of other species.

If you love Mersea Island, you could even become the owner of your very own holiday home. They know that your choice of Holiday Park is the most important decision to make when looking to invest in your own holiday home, Waldegraves is very proud to mention that some of their customers have been with them for over 20 years.

This park is ideal for families or grandparents treating their grandchildren to a holiday, there is a heated outdoor pool open from May to September, several play areas, beach access, and family entertainment. The greatest benefit of being an owner is that you are able to holiday whenever you want during the 11-month season.

Waldegraves Holiday ParkWaldegraves Holiday Park

4) Lathcoats Farm

Lathcoats Farm, Beehive Lane, Galleywood, CM2 8LX | 01245 353021

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

It is a great time of year to visit Lathcoats Farm with the apple harvest in full swing. The farm shop will stock over 40 varieties during autumn, all of which you can try on the tasting table.

The Bee Shed is offering a limited-edition Harvest Afternoon Tea (booking required) for September and October along with many other seasonal treats.

The animals are always happy to see you and the play area and tractors are available to use all year round.

This time of year also brings their biggest event Apple Day on the 19th October followed by the Pumpkin Festival with lots of games and pumpkin related fun. Check out their website or social media for more information.

Lathcoats FarmLathcoats Farm

5) The New London Restaurant

147 New London Rd, Chelmsford, CM2 0AA | 01245 266288

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

The award-winning New London restaurant has been on Chelmsford's dining and social scene since October 2013 and it's now well established as a relaxed yet sophisticated dining venue. The venue is full of elegance and glamour - now more than ever after an incredible redesign in March 2018.

This restaurant offers an enchanting setting and elegant surroundings with a relaxed, unpretentious atmosphere and effortless yet impeccable service.

Their seasonal menus change every eight weeks and are inspired by the team of chefs who have a passion for first-class contemporary cuisine with a classic twist. Provenance is key to their success and they have developed relationships with the best suppliers to keep consistency of quality.

The team is passionate about our seasonal food, drink and service and always strive to bring you a truly enjoyable experience from the moment you walk through their doors.

The New London RestaurantThe New London Restaurant

6) Bottle Bureau

Basement of Waterloo House, 59 New Street, Chelmsford, CM1 1NE | 01245256901

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Bottle bureau is pioneering the standard for Chelmsford gin lovers offering a collection of over 200 gins from small batch and local distillers to leading global brands. Put simply, they love gin! Their gin fanatics can savour in excess of 9000 possible gin-based drink pairings deep underground the town in their relaxed, welcoming and industrially-styled basement.

They marry their gin obsession with a bar menu featuring new Gin cocktails and much-loved classics as well as a variety of carefully selected spirits, fine wines and craft beers.

This exclusive bar is an indulgent journey of discovery where new industrial tastes and unexpected combinations can be experienced and enjoyed in a comfortable setting. Everything is made with technical precision and comes beautifully balanced.

Bottle Bureau is a charming place where you can - alone or with others - experience great beer and gins, delicious cheese plates, interesting people and great conversations.

Bottle BureauBottle Bureau


Follow Essex Life on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Latest from the Essex Life