I am not in my sister’s good books.
On a recent visit, as I danced around the kitchen while we cooked, my young nephew asked me, “Auntie Emily, why are you dancing?” My response? “Well, why not?!” Of course this sparked a rather annoying habit from little Jake. “Jacob, why are you jumping on the sofas?” “Why not!” “Why are you punching your sister?” “Why not!” I might be Auntie-of-the-Year according to Jake, but my poor sister is not best pleased!
‘Why Brightlingsea?’ is a question we got asked A LOT. “Why Brightlingsea?” After all, this little town was practically unheard of amongst my friends and family, and no doubt the choice seemed a little random. Why Brightlingsea? Why there? Why not Devon or Cornwall or Southend or Brighton?
My response then and now, and for anyone who’s thinking of visiting, is – why not?!
Whatever you’re looking for in a UK break, I’d bet my bottom dollar that Brightlingsea and the surrounding areas have it covered.
If you’re looking for a ‘jolly holiday’ by the sea – well, kiss me quick because Clacton Pier is just up the road, with all the fun of the fairground!
If you’re looking for a bit of culture – Britain’s Oldest Recorded Town, seeped in history, is a just short drive away. (Colchester, in case you were wondering 😉 )
If you need some artistic inspiration – Dedham, need I say more? Visit Constable Country in all it’s glory.
For gardeners, there’s Beth Chatto. For animal lovers, Colchester Zoo. For adrenalin junkies, there’s watersports. And that’s not to mention the thriving art scene in Colchester and the myriad of museums, theatres, galleries and picturesque landscapes that adorn this gorgeous part of Essex.
And Brightlingsea is nestled quietly amongst it all.
There’s something blissful about the landscape here. An evening walk along the estuary is delightfully peaceful. In the summer, you can even take an evening dip as the sun goes down. And during the day, the seawater paddling pool next to Bateman’s Tower makes for a very special day (I strongly recommend the rhubarb & custard ice cream from Bateman’s cafe!). There are plenty of sweet little beach huts available for a day’s hire – last summer, I saw a group having a quiet sunset barbecue by the sea and have been green with envy ever since!
But that’s not to say it’s always quiet here in Brightlingsea! There are some incredible annual events that are well worth a visit. The Regatta, the Brightlingsea Music Festival, Christmas Shopping, Winterfest, to name but a few. The pubs and bars can always be counted on for fantastic and varied evening entertainment – live bands, karaoke and the odd Michael Jackson impersonator are pretty much the norm of a weekend in Brightlingsea! You’ll never be at a loss for things to do.
And so, to anyone contemplating a weekend break in Brightlingsea, considering all the wonderful and varied activities the area has to offer, the question remains: