Coastal North Essex

The area that surrounds The Shepherds Hide is an excellent coastal location in North Essex just south of the Suffolk border but only 90 minutes from London. 

On Your Doorstep

Brightlingsea is a market town situated just 2 miles away and offers a range of supermarkets (including Tesco and the Co-Op – the latter being a 20-minute walk away from The Shepherds Hide), shops, cafes, an outdoor swimming pool, a marina and sandy beaches lined with beach huts and a lovely promenade. 

Thorrington offers a local store for basic supplies, a post office and a fantastic local pub - The Red Lion. This is about a 30-minute stroll from the accommodation.

Places to Explore, Eat & Drink During Your Stay

Colchester is Britain’s oldest recorded town and is only a 20-minute drive away. It has a colourful history dating back over 2000 years. Find out more at the town's award-winning museums where you can see collections of international importance. There’s so much to see and do in Colchester, you certainly won’t get bored. Take a look at Visit Colchester’s site here for more info.

Dedham is along the River Stour, in the heart of Constable Country and is just 25 minutes’ drive away. It was here that Britain's greatest landscape artist – John Constable - went to school. The attractive main street is lined with Georgian-fronted houses, old inns, and a leading Art and Craft Centre. The magnificent 15th century church was built from the wealth of the medieval cloth industry.

This area is frequently rated as containing some of England's most beautiful lowland landscape – specifically the Water Meadows of the River Stour which passes along the northern edge of the village, forming the boundary between Essex and Suffolk.

Dedham has a wide range of truly lovely restaurants and pubs. We highly recommend the Boathouse, the Sun Inn or Milsoms. If you’re looking for a little extravagance, Le Talbooth is an award-winning restaurant with excellent service, food, atmosphere and location, sitting right on the edge of the River Stour.

You can also visit the famous Flatford Mill owned by the National Trust.

Wivenhoe is a picturesque town known for its fishing history and is only 10 minutes’ drive away – or about an hour’s walk. The streets are small and quaint and bring you down to the charming waterfront where fishing boats and small sailing craft bob up and down at their moorings. 

Get refreshments at The Black Buoy Pub or dine at Valentino's - a unique Italian restaurant with a homely atmosphere … but book in advance as it’s pretty popular. Or head to Wivenhoe House for a great afternoon tea. 

Frinton-on-Sea and Walton-on-the-Naze are traditional seaside towns located 25 minutes away by car.

The Naze, as well as being a natural open space, is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) famed for its fossils found in the Red Crag cliffs. Walton-on-the-Naze is also known for having the 2nd longest pier in the country, its yacht club and marina, and the iconic Naze Tower from where panoramic views of the Walton backwaters, Harwich and Felixstowe and the Suffolk coast can be enjoyed.

The Tower, which was built in 1720 to help navigate ships into Harwich Harbour, is now an art gallery and tea rooms and well worth a visit. 

Harwich is a busy coastal town and international port around 25 minutes’ drive away. The old town is a conservation area containing many historic buildings and well worth a wander. If you fancy sampling some wonderful fish, we recommend The Pier – or if you’d prefer something lighter, they also do a lovely afternoon tea.

Neighbouring Dovercourt, while giving the appearance of being much more modern, actually merits a mention in the Domesday Book. 

Aldeburgh is a little further afield, at around an hour’s drive. But we highly recommend making the trip. Sitting on the Amber Coast it’s renowned for its mix of music and drama, fine eating and drinking, sailing and shopping - you'll definitely find something to enjoy. Take a look at the Visit Aldeburgh website for more info.

Charming Southwold is just another 30 minutes’ drive from Aldeburgh, also on the Amber Coast. A quintessentially English resort town, you can easily while away a few hours wandering the attractions of the working lighthouse, beach huts, award-winning pier, Adnams Brewery, busy harbour, cliff top cannon and of course the beach. Plan your visit with Explore Southwold

For local tide times see Brightlingsea Tide Times.

Contact us today for more information or to make a booking