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Romantic ruins in Hadleigh

Overlooking the Thames Estuary, Hadleigh is best known for its romantic castle ruins, as depicted by 19th-century artist John Constable.

This small Essex town is within easy access of Southend Airport and around a 15-minute drive from the popular seaside towns of Southend and Canvey Island if you fancy some sea air on your visit.

Get active in Essex

Hadleigh Park offers windswept countryside walks among the undulating hills, as well as pony trekking and one of the UK's top mountain biking courses - as used in the 2012 London Olympics no less.

There are also 60 golf courses dotted around Essex, including Belfairs and Garon Park, a 27-hole golf course with all three nines starting and finishing Near the clubhouse.

Enjoy classic seaside fun in Southend

Pack your bucket and spade for a trip to Southend. Hitch a ride on the restored Cliff Lift, and take the train down to the end of the world's longest pier - or walk it if you need to increase your daily step count. A day in the resort isn't complete without a whirl on the fantastic rides at Adventure Island. Scream as you loop and twist on Rage, with its 75 ft drop, and try your luck on the arcade games.

Looking for a cheap hotel Near Hadleigh? Your best options are Travelodge Southend-on-Sea Hotel, Travelodge Basildon Wickford Hotel and Travelodge Basildon Hotel.