East of England Coach Holidays
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Everything is on offer when you choose coach holidays to the East of England from tranquil rural escapes to breath-taking sandy beaches and a multitude of amazing places perfect for a spot of sightseeing. Get your loved ones together and really celebrate the very best of what East England has to offer on a coach holiday this year.
For a coach holiday full of contrasts, a visit to Essex should feature high in your touring itinerary and you'll be surprised at the variety of things to do and places to see. Essex is home to a variety of historical and natural treasures with thousands of listed buildings dating back to the time of the Romans, Saxons and Normans, all wonderfully preserved for you to view at leisure. Pack your binoculars and visit RSPB Rainham Marshes where you can observe a variety of wading birds, wild ducks as well as spotting a rare bird or two. Enjoy the thrill of white-water rafting at the Lee Valley White Water Centre which featured as a venue at The Olympics. See the animals at Colchester Zoo, walk the length and breadth of Southend's Pier, shop till you drop at Lakeside or step back in time with a ride on the Epping Ongar Railway – the longest heritage railway in Essex!
If you visit the beautiful town of Lowestoft in Suffolk on your coach holiday, you'll discover that 2013 is a rather special year for the East of England as the locals will be celebrating the centenary of legendary composer Benjamin Britten's birth. The celebrations will continue through to Aldeburgh where he lived and sought inspiration for many of his great musical pieces. Aside from music, Suffolk's beautiful countryside is what lures visitors to holiday here where you can stand in the very spot that Constable stood and see where he visualised his most famous paintings. Stroll along Southwold's famous Pier as you consume a hearty portion of fish and chips. Visit Ipswich, one of the oldest Anglo-Saxon towns in the whole of England and try to spot the smallest pub in Britain when in Bury St Edmunds.
East Anglia, comprising of six fascinating counties, is just one of many areas in the East of England to explore especially if you wish to sail upon the glorious Norfolk Broads. Norfolk tends to have a bit of everything for everyone looking for that traditional seaside coach holiday. The sands of Great Yarmouth are popular with families as are the amusement parks. Venture inland and you'll come across historic towns and villages to explore including Sandringham (the Queen's residence when she's in Norfolk), Cromer, Thetford and Hunstanton.
Another highlight on East of England coach holidays is spending time in the beautiful city of Cambridge famed for its University and punting along the River Cam. Travel into the heart of the city and you'll find plenty of churches, courtyards and other fine buildings to explore. There's an abundance of galleries, theatres and museums to please any culture vulture. Shoppers will squeal with delight at the multitude of independent shops and classy malls. But you can always escape city life and head to the wide open spaces of The Fens which appear to go on for miles and miles.
East of England coach holidays tend to include; return travel by coach, transportation whilst in the resort, accommodation in good standard hotels, meals and a variety of included or optional excursions so can really get the most out of your coach holiday here.
Things to do
Although it may only a small region of the UK, the East of England, is actually jam-packed full of exciting places to visit for the whole family. Just take a look at these:
If you're looking for the perfect yet traditional seaside escape, you can't go wrong with a break to Aldeburgh. Not only does this seaside spot have beautiful coastlines to explore but it has a variety of musical connections, in particular Benjamin Britten who founded the fabulous Aldeburgh Festival. Along the coast you will find a series of pastel-coloured beach huts where local fishermen sell their daily catch. See the controversial Maggi Hambling statue, visit the fascinating village of Thorpeness and uncover Meare, the gardens that inspired JM Barrie to write 'Peter Pan'.
The Norfolk Broads, Norfolk
This is a fabulous scenic area of the East of England and is great should you be of the active kind. One of the main things to do is to hire a boat and cruise along the waters of the Norfolk Broads. Another touring favourite is to walk the length and breadth of The Broads, especially Nature Trails which the whole family can enjoy. You can also have a go at fishing, spot some of England's feathered friends or hire a bike and cycle whilst admiring the stunning scenery.
Located near to the beautiful River Orwell, Ipswich is known as the premier waterfront to be found in the East of England. Admire some of the beautiful moored yachts. Due to its connections with many famous artists, you will find an abundance of galleries containing all sorts of collections. Follow the Blue Plaque Trail or visit a variety of museums and admire the fine architecture in the town. Enjoy a leisurely cruise down the River Orwell, check out the latest blockbuster movie at the cinema and experience wonderful festivals.
Venture a little further and you'll come across the beautiful town of Colchester which is apparently the oldest recorded town in the UK. Attracting more than 4.5 million people each year, Colchester is definitely buzzing with all sorts of activities to suit all ages from the wonderful Colchester Zoo to Beth Chatto Gardens, Abbots Hall Farm and Colchester Castle Museum. Not forgetting the buzzing town centre with fabulous shops and an entertaining night life.
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Tips & Advice
To help you have an enjoyable holiday in the East of England, take a look at these useful tips and advice provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO):
Health and Travel Insurance
British Citizens are advised by some of our tour operators to have travel insurance before going on a tour or holiday, even if it happens to be in your country of residence. As a British citizen you will be entitled to free emergency health care on the NHS.
If you are visiting England from outside of the United Kingdom and fall ill or are involved in an accident and are from any member of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you can obtain free or reduced cost treatment with The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Comprehensive travel insurance is advised for all other nationals planning on visiting England.
If you need to contact the emergency services whilst in England simply dial 999 or 112 to ask for an ambulance.
Most destinations are generally trouble-free, however as with all places that you are not familiar with, keep an eye on your belongings and if necessary lock them away somewhere safe back at your hotel. Keep an eye on everyone in your party and do not go off with people you do not know. Buy your own drinks and keep sight of them at all times. Be aware of your surroundings and don't venture off on your own.
Local Laws and Customs
Queuing is a British Institution - jump a queue at your own risk!
Drug offences will carry penalties in the UK, so avoid getting involved with anything whilst in England. Please note the narcotic plant Khat/Qat is legal in the UK, but is not in a majority of other countries so never try to export this when leaving the UK.
If you are visiting from outside of the United Kingdom, it is wise to check customs requirements before you travel. If you are planning to bring alcohol, tobacco or souvenirs into the country, you need to be familiar with the UK's custom laws. For those people coming to the UK from the EU, you are allowed to bring an unlimited amount of most goods for your own use without paying tax or duty.
However, if you are travelling to the UK from outside of the EU, you are given an allowance of how much alcohol, tobacco, perfume, souvenirs and other goods. If you go above this allowance you may have to pay tax or duty. It is worth checking the HM Revenues and Customs website before you travel.
When travelling between the UK, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man in most cases an official form of identification such as a Driver's License will be ok. However, some airlines will insist that you show a passport so check before you travel.
If you are travelling to England from Australia, Canada or the USA, you must have a valid passport for at least three months beyond the length of your stay. EU nationals need to have either a valid passport or identity card.
Visas for the UK are not required by those travelling from Australia, Canada, USA or EU for stays of up to six months.
Any other nationality looking to visit the UK must contact the local embassy to check visa requirements.
For more information about visiting the East of England you can check out the official tourism website at visiteastofengland.com