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Peaceful piscators will find Oaklands Holiday Village the plaice to be: the central part of this gorgeously laid-out and maintained park is its freshwater fishing lake, kept fully stocked for ambitious anglers (let staff know when you want to fish and they’ll book a spot for you).
For non-fishy types, the lakeside setting is a serene spot for laying out the picnic blanket: sit back and watch the ducks and rabbits or bring a book to go with your hard-boiled eggs; if you prefer to eat indoors there’s the relaxed and family-friendly Forester’s Tavern clubhouse for filling up and thirst-quenching.
If you do fancy being a bit more lively, there’s entertainment to be had most weekends and during peak season, while little monkeys can swing around in the adventure playground on site. Guests at Oaklands can also take advantage of the entertainment and facilities at Park Holidays’ other sites near Clacton-on-Sea: St Osyth Beach has another freshwater fishing lake, kids’ clubs and a heated indoor pool with flumes and seating area, while Seawick Holiday Park across the road from St Osyth is classed as one of Park Holidays’ ‘Active and Fun’ sites and has heaps of stuff going on for all ages.
For the practicalities, Oaklands has a mini mart store, a launderette and a sales office; dogs are welcome around the park if kept on leads and are allowed into caravans on the Bronze tariff. All caravans come with gas, electricity, linen and entertainment passes included in the price.
Tourist board rating
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Leisure on park
Bar or club house
Indoor swimming pool
Outdoor swimming pool
Amenities on park
Ice pack freezing
Parent & baby washroom
Pick-up from public transport
Propane/gas cylinders available
Barbecue grills allowed
Commercial vehicles allowed
Dogs allowed all year
Lake and/or mountain
Indoor pool nearby
Leisure/theme park nearby
Outdoor pool nearby
Single-sex groups welcome
Student groups welcome
Convenience store nearby
Public transportation nearby
Medium (26-50 sites)
- Coach stations
St Osyth: Shangri La Caravan Park Coach Stop
— 0.1 kilometres
0.1 kilometres St Osyth: Kings Arms Coach Stop — 1.4 kilometres
1.4 kilometres Jaywick: Chester Holiday Park Coach Stop — 3.5 kilometres
- Train stations
Great Bentley Rail Station
— 4.3 kilometres
4.3 kilometres Weeley Rail Station — 5.3 kilometres
5.3 kilometres Clacton-on-Sea Rail Station — 5.9 kilometres
- Ferry ports
Brightlingsea Ferry Landing
— 3.6 kilometres
3.6 kilometres Point Clear Ferry Landing — 3.8 kilometres
3.8 kilometres Harwich International Ferry Terminal — 19.4 kilometres
London Southend Airport
— 37.4 kilometres
* From the M25, junction 28, take the A12 (signposted Colchester).
* Continue forward onto the Colchester bypass, (signposted Colchester North, Ipswich, Harwich).
* At junction 29 branch left (signposted Colchester North) then at the next take the second exit on to the A1232 (signposted Colchester).
* Continue forward and straight across the first roundabout; at the second roundabout turn left on to the A133 (signposted Clacton).
* Follow the A133 and cross over the next two roundabouts, then at the third roundabout turn right onto the B1028.
* Take the left hand fork, the B1027 and follow signs for St Osyth, Brightlingsea.
* Follow the B1027 through Arlesford and Thorrington and you will reach Oaklands Holiday Village on your left.
Oaklands is a ‘Relax and Explore’ site, and there’s heaps of this about in the surrounding countryside too: the sea is only a couple of miles away and the park is close to seaside resort Clacton-on-Sea with its pier funfair, aquarium and two theatres; a little further along the coast is the longest pleasure pier in the world at Southend-on-Sea. Walton-on-the-Naze is also within easy reach for some sublime sands and the rides and attractions of New Walton Pier.
The tiny town of Frinton-on-Sea, featured in the BBC’s Wonderland documentary in 2008, is close at hand too for a sumptuous stretch of sand and has a dedicated sea zone for swimming, sailing and windsurfing; if you’re in Frinton over the summer, catch a few shows at the well-known seasonal theatre season at the McGrigor Hall.
Colchester, the oldest recorded town in Britain, is less than ten miles away and has all sorts of historic attractions to see: Colchester Castle Museum is closed in 2013 for essential redevelopment but you can still spy the Temple of Claudius, browse around the museums and see historic buildings, churches and architecture; there are art galleries, tasty restaurants and top shops too for those whose tastes are a little more modern. The award-winning Colchester Zoo is also well worth a visit and has regular events alongside its teeming menagerie.
For other historical highlights in the area, the Tudor Christchurch Mansion also has the largest collection of Gainsborough and Constable paintings outside London, and there are National Trust houses and gardens as well as the medieval hunting ground Hatfield Forest with its 1,200 year old trees.
Sightseers can take the mile-long trip on the Colne Valley Railway or wander along the River Colne to the waterfront towns of West Mersea and Wivenhoe; amble through Constable Country; spot rare birds from the Essex nature reserves or take a trip to Mersea Island, the home of Colchester oysters, a microbrewery and a vineyard.
- firstsite (14.5 kilometres)
- Colchester Castle Museum (14.7 kilometres)
- Colchester Zoo (17.4 kilometres)
- Bourne Mill (13.2 kilometres)
- Flatford: Bridge Cottage (16.6 kilometres)
Find local routes on the National Cycle Network - over 12,000 miles of cycling routes.