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The 8 best places to live in Essex

The results are in! See where you voted as the best place to live in Essex.

Hugging 350 miles of blonde-beach coastline, Essex is home to a whopping 87 nature reserves, a buzzy cafe culture and ruins rich in Roman history (Colchester is, after all, Britain’s oldest recorded town). Short train hops into the capital are convenient, but you’ll soon relish life beyond London: swish spas, gourmet gastros and a labyrinth of salt marshes to kayak through on a sun-dappled morning come as standard here.

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Burnham-on-Crouch marina
3

Burnham-on-Crouch

This scenic riverside town packs a punch with its energy, foodie scene and indie vibe, and all within half an hour from London.

Brentwood countryside
6

Brentwood

With its speedy connections into London, buzzy high street and slew of leafy country parks, this pocket of Essex is on the up.

Highlands House Estate Chelmsford
5

Chelmsford

Great schools, parks and, yes, shopping: Chelmsford remains one of the best places to live in Essex since gaining city status. Here's why.

7

Manningtree

A historic high street packed with independents, plus rolling riverside vistas: here's the lowdown on why to move to Manningtree.

Wivenhoe
8

Wivenhoe

Fancy a sea change? With its waterfront views and artisan culture, this pretty metropolitan river town is one for the movers and shakers.

best places to live Frinton-on-Sea
4

Frinton-on-Sea

Yes, immaculate swathes of blonde beach help, but there's a lot more to this upmarket seaside town than ice creams on the prom.

Corner Club Leigh-on-Sea
2

Leigh-on-Sea

Combining a buzzy cafe culture with Old Town charm, Leigh-on-Sea is one of the county's hippest property hotspots.

best places to live Saffron Walden
1

Saffron Walden

Cosy pubs, a medieval market town and more country walks than you can shake a wellie at. Here's how SW serves up a slice of the good life.