three children in a large park with huge old tree and lots of puddles

36 of the Best Family Walks in Essex

As a family, we love to play outside and to go on family walks in Essex.  I am sure you can all relate but if I don’t get the little ones out, they turn into wild things and we all start to drive each other mad. We live just outside of Chelmsford in the Essex countryside and we are lucky enough to step outside the door and head off across fields. But there is only so many times you want to do the same old walk.

three children standing on the edge of a large lake with autumn trees hanging over head

With everything that has been going on this year with COVID (written in 2021),  you are limited to what you can do with kids in Essex and probably like you, I have exhausted so many of our  walks in Essex, and the girls are definitely getting bored of doing the same ones over and over again. With this in mind, my husband and I got our laptops out, and thinking caps on to search out some fun family walks in Essex that you may like to do over the coming weeks. But please remember to follow the current government guidelines – stay local to where you live.


Family Walks in Essex: Chelmsford

Galleywood Common Play Trail

Chelmsford CM2 8TR


Paper Mill Lock

Little Baddow, Chelmsford CM3 4BS


Great Notley Country Park

Braintree, Great Notley, CM77 7FS

Home to Essex’s longest play trail and Sky Ropes


Phyllis Currie Nature Reserve

Chelmsford, CM3 1PE

Small car park. Woods and lakes.


Hylands Park, Chelmsford

Play area CM2 8FS

The House CM2 8WQ

three children in a large park with huge old tree and lots of puddles


Swan & Cygnet Woods

Swan Lane, Stock

Woodland with streams


Holybred Woods

Little Baddow, Chelmsford, CM3 4BW


Galleywood Common

Chelmsford,CM2 8PL


RHS Gardens Hyde Hall

Chelmsford CM3 8ET

Pay to enter.


Little Waltham Nature Reserve

Chelmsford CM3 3PP



Family Walks In Essex: Other

Danbury Woods

Danbury,CM3 4JJ

Paid car park. Well marked paths. Lakes to walk round. Streams to paddle in. Dens to build.

Children climbing on a large fallen log in the woods

Blake Woods

Danbury, CM3 4ED


Maldon Promenade Park

Maldon, CM9 5JQ

Kids play area, coffee stalls

Paid car park


Tiptree Heath, Tiptree

Tiptree, CO5 0PT

Free car park Ponies graze here at certain times of year.

Children walking through woods


Flitch Way, Braintree

Braintree, CM77 7FS


Nature Reserve by Marks Farm Tesco, Braintree

Braintree,CM77 8AA


Hadleigh Country Park, Benfleet

Benfleet, SS72PP

Café, mountain biking course


Paycocke’s House, Coggeshall

25 West Street, Coggeshall CO6 1NS

2.5 miles

Start at Paycocke’s House and walk along West Street. Then, take Bridge Street and head towards the River Blackwater. After that, pass Grange Hill, Abbey Lane, Gallows Street, Dead Lane and Church Green before finishing off at The Woolpack.


Weald Country Park, Brentwood

Weald Road, Brentwood, CM14 5QS

Famous for its deer park and Stick Man trail.


Gruffalo Trail Thorndon Country Park, Brentwood

Brentwood, Warley, CM13 3RZ


Warley Place Nature Reserve, Great Warley

Great Warley, Brentwood CM14 5LN

Three children running around some old trees

three children in bright dresses with one child sitting on a brick wall


Bourne Mill – National Trust, Colchester

Bourne Road, Colchester, CO2 8RT

National Trust Lakeside Café


Abberton Reservoir Nature Discovery Park, Colchester

Layer de la Haye, Colchester CO2 0EU


Fingringhoe Wick Nature Discovery Park, Colchester

Fingringhoe, Colchester CO5 7DN


Langdon Hills Country Park, Corringham

One Tree Hill, Corringham SS17 9NH

Car Park.


Naze Nature Discovery Centre, Walton on the naze

Walton on the Naze CO14 8LE


Bedfords Park Nature Discovery Centre, Romford

Havering-atte-Bower, Romford RM4 1QH


Chestnut Trail route, Epping Forest

Warren Road, Wanstead Park, E11 2LX

The Temple visitor centre


Hatfield Forest, Takeley

Bush End Road, Takeley, Bishop’s Stortford, CM22 6NE

Lakeside Cafe


Hanningfield Reservoir Nature Discovery Park, Billericay

Billericay CM11 1WT

Wind in the Willows Trail


Norsey Woods, Billericay

Billericay,CM11 1HA.

Car Park.

Bluebells are beautiful in season.


Ingrebourne Nature Discovery Centre, Hornchurch

Hornchurch RM12 6DF


Belfairs Wood, Park & Nature Reserve, Southend

Southend-on-Sea, SS9 4LR

Play area and sculpture trail.


Belhus Woods Country Park, South Ockendon

South Ockendon, Aveley, RM15 4XJ

Kids play area, visitors centre, café


Cudmore Grove Country Park, East Mersea

East Mersea CO5 8UE


Aubrey Buxton Reserve, Stansted

Alsa Street, Stansted CM24 8XL

Three children running through fields


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Hi, I’m Anna, a travel loving wife to Tristan and Mother to 6 year old twins Poppy and Tabitha, their 3 year old sister Matilda, and together we are Twins and Travels.

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