Fun and free things to do just a stone’s throw away from Leez

Enjoying a winter escape this Christmas doesn’t have to cost the Earth –  especially if you’re staying with us.

Here at Leez, we’re hosting several great winter mini-breaks and dining events so you can experience all the luxury and indulgence you deserve without breaking the bank.

Those staying a little longer at our extra mile venue will want to explore the best of the Essex countryside too, and we’re pleased to say there’s a long list of things to do in the local area that are fun and free.

Read on to discover the freebies you should add to your itinerary when staying at our spectacular Tudor manor house.

Thames Chase Community Forest

Thames Chase is the perfect place to while away a crisp winter’s day, and better yet, it’s just £1 for all-day parking!

Loved by walkers, cyclists and horse riders alike, Thames Chase is your gateway to the Essex countryside. The area offers an uninterrupted view of the natural world at the most beautiful time of year.

The chase’s rich landscape of woodland, meadows, marshes and ponds is frequented by a diverse range of wildlife. Water voles, great crested newts, and a large selection of birds and insects call Thames Chase their home.

If architecture is more your thing, then explore the many heritage sites littered around Thames Chase, including Rainham Hall, Valence House, and The Old Chapel.

Belfairs Nature Discovery Centre

Marvel at Essex’s most ancient woodland by visiting Belfairs Nature Discovery Centre in the beautiful Daws Heath Wood.

The 1160-acre site provides a sanctuary for nature (including several nationally threatened species) and an essential green lung for nearby urban areas.

The ‘living landscape’ has been the subject of much conservation work in recent years with the Essex Wildlife Trust, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, their partners and local people all working together to make this the stunning place it is.

Hylands Estate

Hylands Estate sits at the centre of the Chelmsford community. It’s due to host many events throughout the festive period – including Christmas workshops, a Christmas crafts market, and their sell-out illuminated trail.

There’s always a lot going on at Hylands, but if you want to simply enjoy the surroundings and take in its amazing atmosphere, you can do this for free.

It’s free admission into the estate and its stables, artists’ studios, and gardens. It’s free parking too! You can even explore Hylands House for free on selected dates.

Central Park

You don’t have to travel too far from the city centre to find your own slice of tranquillity this winter. Central Park is a popular spot and one that will unexpectedly blow you away with its beauty.

Here The Crazy Tourist reveals what to expect on your upcoming visit:

“For a moment of peace, this park curls along the north bank of the River Can in the centre of Chelmsford. The park is divided into meadows, pastures, a nature reserve, a war memorial garden and a large lake with geese and swans.

On the south shore is the Cake at the Lake cafe, a pillar of local life, while the Central Park Viaduct brings some spectacle to the park. This eye-catching, 18-arch construction dates to 1842 and was built for the Eastern Counties Railway.”

Leez Priory Parkland

With some 40 acres of private grounds, guests staying with us will have plenty to explore right on their doorstep.

A stunning mixture of gardens and parkland, our grounds provide a breathtaking backdrop for your romantic winter escape.

Once you’ve finished exploring our beautiful grounds, retreat to our award-winning countryside venue. Inside, you can enjoy your favourite tipple in our warm and cosy bar, relax in our log-fire lit Tudor Room or tickle the ivories in our Light Oak Room.

Explore our winter breaks or dinner date evenings today and treat yourself to an early Christmas present.

If you have any questions relating to having your wedding at Leez Priory, please don't hesitate to call Gemma via the contact details below:


T: 01245 362 555

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