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.
Cobbled streets, medieval architecture, and thriving independent shops: Thaxted is an under-the-radar Essex gem with great commuter links.
Surrounded by acres of green space, you’d never know this market town is just 17 miles from the capital. Add an ancient forest, period charm, and its own tube station, and you’ve something special.
Not just the oldest town in Britain but we reckon one of the best, thanks to good schools, theatres galore, award-winning park, plus its very own zoo, and all within easy reach of both the coast and the capital.
Perfectly placed between Brentwood and Chelmsford, with its own rail station, Ingatestone is the picture-perfect combo of commuter town with a vibrant village feel and oodles of gorgeous indies, including a couple of Muddy Award winners.
Great schools, parks and, yes, shopping: Chelmsford remains one of the best places to live in Essex since gaining city status. Here's why.
Yes, immaculate swathes of blonde beach help, but there's a lot more to this upmarket seaside town than ice creams on the prom.
Combining a buzzy cafe culture with Old Town charm, Leigh-on-Sea is one of the county's hippest property hotspots.
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.