Mersea Island is reached by an ancient causeway (reputedly, Roman soldiers drowned here and their shrieks can be heard during a gale, so it's said) The road still floods a few times a month and cuts the island off from the mainland, so check the tides. There are two parts to the island-East and West Mersea. The whole place is no more than a few miles wide so head east for a small sandy beach and bracing walk along the sea wall where elephant and hippopotamus bones were discovered. Or go west into the village where the beach is larger, fringed with beach huts, and you will find the highly-rated Company Shed, a black weatherboarded place where you bring your own bread and wine to enjoy the freshest, prized oysters. Apparently, Rick Stein is a fan. It's Essex...but there's not a Cortina or a stilletto in sight.
Mersea Island, Essex
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