Essex has hundreds of attractions up and down the county for people to enjoy.

So why go further afield when you could enjoy a bucket list of things to do right on your doorstep.

Here is tourism website Visit Essex's '20 things you must do in Essex before you pop your clogs'.

1. Osea Island

Osea Island is described as an ‘Essex gem’ by Visit Essex. The idyllic get-away in the Blackwater estuary is just off the coast of Maldon. You can stay in the island’s 400 year old cottages, the Manor House, Captain’s House or in modern apartments.

2. Try Mersea or Maldon Oysters

Mersea Island is where the region's native Mersea oysters are harvested from – you can try them with a little vinegar and tabasco for a tasty dish. They are served fresh daily at The Company Shed, The Oyster Bar and The Coast Inn on the island. Maldon oysters are just as good too, and served in top restaurants all over the world.

3. Have afternoon tea and try Tiptree jam

The county is home to Wilkin & Sons of Tiptree and a proper afternoon tea will be served with on the the brand's famous preserves.

Choose from one of the ten Tiptree tearooms located throughout the county.

4. Have a day at the Races

We all like a little ‘flutter’ now and again, but forget Ladies Day at Ascot and spend the day at Chelmsford City Racecourse Ladies Day (or any other race day). It is the only racecourse in the UK with an all-weather track, and plenty of indoor viewing areas if it rains or gets a bit chilly.

5. Lee Valley White Water Centre

Are you a fan of exhilarating sports? Ever wanted to know what it feels like to be an Olympian? Well you can pretend to be one when you ‘ride the rapids’ at the White Water Centre at Lee Valley – the only purpose built venue for the Olympics, and where Team GB won the canoe slalom in 2012.

6. Take a stroll along Southend Pier (or take the train!)

Southend Pier is the longest pleasure pier in the world. You can take a trip on the train to the end or if you’re feeling energetic, take a leisurely stroll – it’s 1.3 miles long.

7. Fish and chips (and an ice cream)

Make sure to enjoy a meal of fish and chips at one of the many seaside resorts around the county. If you have room for more try ice cream for dessert. Rossi ice cream comes from Southend and has been hand-made to an Italian recipe in the town since 1932.

8. Leigh on Sea

Just a little further along the coastline you’ll find Leigh-on-Sea, the nearest coast to London, and where you’ll find the cockle sheds. Nothing beats a sunny day in Old Leigh, sitting by the sea with a bowl of cockles.

9. Be a zookeeper for the day at Colchester Zoo

Step into the boots of a keeper or just enjoy a visit to Colchester Zoo. You'll be able to meet meerkats, elephants , giraffes, penguins, sea lions, tigers and primates.

10. The Naze, Walton

Go hunting for sharks teeth and fossils dating back to the Ice Age at The Naze. This wondrous part of the Essex coast also boasts the Naze Tower where you’ll be treated to stunning views over the Walton backwaters, countryside and coast.

11. Go seal watching

You can take boat trips to see seals from the Walton backwaters or Burnham-on-Crouch to Foulness Island. Both seal watching trips are amazing.

12. Listen to the nightingale's song

Ever heard the ‘call’ of a Nightingale? Essex Wildlife Trust’s Fingringhoe Wick Visitor Centre has one of the largest concentrations of these amazing birds in the country, and there’s nothing better than listening to their song. They have 11 visitor centres and 87 nature reserves dotted throughout the county.

13. Dedham Vale

You can walk in Constable’s footsteps and sit in the exact spot where he painted The Haywain, regarded as his most famous painting, in the beautiful Dedham Vale. The scene today is exactly as it was back in 1821 when he painted it, a stunning area of the county not to be missed.

14. Grayson Perry's House for Julie

Designed by Essex’s very own sculptor and artist the stunning ‘gingerbread’ style house, sits in the middle of a field with fabulous views over the unspoilt countryside and Wrabness beach. You may not be able to afford to stay there, but you can certainly take a peek for free.

15. RHS Garden Hyde Hall

A stunning garden set in the heart of the Essex countryside, with views for miles over the south of the county and beautiful planting throughout.

16. New Hall Vineyard

New Hall Vineyard in Purleigh is the oldest vineyard in the UK, and was the first to grow and produce wine from the Pinot Noir grapes. A tour and tasting of award-winning wines may leave you feeling slightly ‘sozzled’, but also very happy.

17. Stow Maries Great War Aerodrome

The aerodrome is the oldest surviving in the world. You can experience the site and even attend an event where you get to watch the vintage aircraft fly in.

18. Audley End House and Gardens

Experience a real life period drama as you explore life above and below stairs at this decadent mansion. The authentic Victorian Service Wing, glorious gardens, Jacobean stable block and intricate interiors are all waiting to be discovered.

19. The Sugar Hut

TOWIE fan or not, you can’t take a trip to the county without at least taking a peek at the original TOWIE ‘hang out’. Brentwood folk and Taxi drivers are used to be being asked as to its whereabouts, and you can’t miss Amy Child’s Beauty Salon either - just along from it on the High Street.

20. Take a trip in a hot air balloon

There is no point in travelling to Egypt to experience flying in a hot air balloon over the Valley of the Kings, when you can take to the skies and fly over the beautiful Stour Valley in Essex, and to every corner of the county for that matter.