Local area guide

Located on the Tendring Peninsula, lifehouse is perfectly located to explore the joys of the Sunshine Coast, offering a perfect blend of nature, wildlife, seaside resorts, culture and history.

the Tendring district has the River Stour to the north, the North Sea to the east, and the River Colne to the south.

Explore Tendring district and you will discover the Essex Sunshine Coast. www.essex-sunshine-coast.org.uk and find a wealth of leisure and tourism experiences from traditional seaside resorts rich in history, to quieter coastal paths bursting with nature and wildlife

Coastal & Estuary Walks

Discover walks along the Essex Coast, connect with nature, the wild environment, the rivers and estuaries and enjoy outdoor adventures with family and friends. You can download the Go Jauntly app on your smartphone and search for the walks in the category theessexcoast and let the adventure begin!

Recommended walks

We suggest visiting the Walton Trails http://www.walton-on-the-naze.com/portfolio/walton-trails/ for more information and maps.

Walton Wildlife Trail

A wildlife walk around the stunning Naze at Walton. This walk is mainly off road, and the terrain is grassy and can be uneven. Refreshments and toilets are available at the start point, but there are no pit stops over a large part of the walk and it is very open terrain, please dress sensibly for the weather and bring water.

Start Point and End Point The Naze Tower 6km/3.7miles

Walton History Trail

A walk through the town and industrial areas of Walton-on-the-Naze with a focus on the history of the town. This is a medium length walk partly off road on paths that may be overgrown. Refreshments and toilets are available en route. Parts of the walk are on open sea wall, please dress sensibly for the weather.

Start Point and End Point Walton Train Station 5.6km/3.5miles

Walton WWII Trail

An interesting walk exploring the history of the Naze during World War Two. Short walk at a slow pace. This walk is off road, and the terrain is grassy and can be uneven. Refreshments and toilets are available at the start point.

Start Point and End Point The Naze Tower 1.5km/1mile

Nature and Wildlife

Venture out along the Essex Coast and estuaries and you’ll encounter plenty of diverse natural environments and wildlife along the way. If you love to walk in the wild, and see a whole host of coastal and countryside birdlife then explore the Essex Wildlife Trust reserves at the Naze Discovery Centre, and the adjoining John Weston Nature Reserve, Walton on the Naze, Weeleyhall Wood Nature Reserve and Great Holland Pits Nature Reserve. Directions and information can be found at the Essex Wildlife Trust website, www.essexwt.org.uk

Wildlife Boat Trips

Book a fantastic boat trip around the beautiful backwaters at Walton-On-The-Naze and experience two hours of seal watching in the Walton Backwater During your trip, you will encounter common and grey seals, plus many other rare and beautiful birds and wildlife that live on the Hamford Water Nature Reserve. The best way to see the seals is to take a trip on Tony Haggis’s boat Karina which can be booked in the summer months. Learn about this SSSI locations stunning variety of wildlife and sea birds - Our lifehouse team highly recommend this experience! To book, or for enquiries, please ring: (please do not leave messages) 07806 309460 or 07596 597615

Local Attractions

East Coast Gin Distillery

Thorpe-le-Soken is proud to be the home of the East Coast Distillery. This small gin distillery in Essex is located just off of the estuary in Landermere, and produces a range of fine Gins including the locally well respected ‘Tides Fortune’. Free tour & Tasting sessions are available on Saturdays or choose a ‘make your own Gin Class’ for a charge https://eastcoastdistillery.co.uk/ or call 01255 258833

Frinton Summer Theatre

People come from far and wide to attend this event. Frinton Summer Theatre is the longest standing repertory theatre in the Country. The McGrigor Hall has been the principal venue for Frinton Summer Theatre for over seventy years. For most of its history, Frinton Summer Theatre has staged seven productions over seven weeks during July and August. Frinton Summer Theatre is a registered charity. Every penny received in ticket sales, grant, sponsorship and donations goes back into ensuring the theatre can continue to produce a summer season year on year. For more information or tickets visit For more information or tickets visit https://www.frintonsummertheatre.org/

Princes Theatre Clacton on Sea

Constructed in 1931, the Princes Theatre is an impressive purpose built theatre, with an 820 seat auditorium. With modern retractable tiered seating and large proscenium arched stage the flexibility of this venue is limited only by imagination. The Princes Theatre plays host to many celebrity acts. www.princestheatre.co.uk

West Cliff Theatre, Clacton on Sea

Established on the current Clacton site in 1899, and run independently by the West Cliff Trust, the West Cliff is the only surviving purpose-built theatre in Clacton, and plays host to professional touring shows and many local amateur dramatic and operatic groups, dance schools, and other youth groups. Its compact auditorium with just under 600 seats, a unique atmosphere and knowledgeable and friendly staff make it Clacton's theatre of choice for artistes and audiences alike. The Stage Door Bar is open prior to, during the interval and after each show. www.westcliffclacton.co.uk

Clacton Pier

Clacton Pier is officially the largest pleasure pier in Europe, covering a staggering 6 1/2 acres. First opened in July 1871 as a landing stage for goods, it was the first construction in the "new" town of Clacton-on-Sea. Set on the beautiful Essex coast and full of entertainment and attractions, it's the perfect destination for all the family. Open 364 days a year - only closed on Christmas Day! www.clactonpier.co.uk

Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead

The inspirational, award-winning and world-renowned gardens of 'the most influential gardener of our time' Beth Chatto OBE VMH. Beth took on a challenging site in the 1960s, which was boggy in places, incredibly dry and infertile in others, and began to create the most beautiful garden, based on her principles of ecological and sustainable planting 'Right plant, right place'; growing plants where they are happiest. With her team, Beth transformed the land into various informal gardens comprising the Gravel Garden, Water Garden, Reservoir Garden, Woodland Garden and Scree Garden. 7.5 acres of sustainable planting in challenging growing conditions to inspire any gardener or plant lover. Extensive nursery with choice of over 2,000 different kinds of mainly herbaceous plants and bulbs, plus giftshop and tearoom serving locally sourced light refreshments. Entry to tearoom, gift shop and nursery is free. Entry to the gardens must be booked online. www.bethchatto.co.uk

Festivals and Events

The Tendring area is host to many fun and interesting annual events including the Famous Clacton Airshow, Tour de Tendring, Harwich international Shanty Festival and more!

For the most current information and dates for local events and festivals please visit the Essex Sunshine Coast's website. click here for details