Visit Colchester

Visit Colchester - Britain's first Roman city. Watch our film to discover what awaits you.

Welcome to Colchester! A historic Essex town, Britain's first city and former capital of Roman Britain. Its rich history dates back over 2000 years.

But it's not all about the past. 21st Century Colchester is a thriving, modern town with first class visitor attractions, including the family favourites Colchester Zoo and Colchester Castle, as well as fantastic places to eat, drink and shop.

Poised at the gateway to East Anglia with picturesque villages and only minutes away from the coast, the Colchester area is the perfect destination for a well-deserved short break, day trip or family holiday.

 

Discover Colchester

What to do in Colchester?

Castle at Night

History & Heritage 

With Roman Ruins, a Norman Castle, and Civil War scars - Colchester's history can be explored without even leaving the town centre, but head further afield and discover even more!

Cudmore Grove Country Park by Visit Essex

Family Days Out 

With both a Zoo and a Castle Colchester is off to a great start for any adventurous children. There's more to see and do whatever the weather, and it doesn't have to break the bank.

Firstsite

Arts & Culture 

With three theatres and several art galleries, including the internationally recognised Firstsite, Colchester is the cultural hub of Essex and the local region.

Cow in river at Dedham Vale

Outdoor Adventure 

Constable Country and Mersea Island are on Colchester's doorstep, as well as several award winning parks, gardens and nature reserves, there's plenty of opportunity to explore the outdoors.

Explore the Beautiful Borough

The Beautiful Borough - Colchester

There's more to Colchester than the historic town centre, with the borough covering more than 135 square miles of scenic Essex coast and countryside.

From island life on Mersea, jam-making in Tiptree, and the heart of Constable Country in the Dedham Vale, there's a wealth of small towns and villages just a short distance from Colchester's centre, all with their own unique character and stories to tell. Sometimes the smallest villages hold the most unlikely secrets!

Stay a few days, explore the Beautiful Borough of Colchester, and share your experiences with us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook using the #BeautifulBorough hashtag.

Find out more

The Beautiful Borough
Download the posters as wallpaper for your phone, tablet or desktop

Events in Colchester - Highlights

The Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkin Patch & Corn Maze

Sat 28 Sep - Thu 31 Oct 2019

Pick your own pumpkin at Foxes Farm Produce

Super Black

Super Black

Sat 12 Oct 2019 - Sun 12 Jan 2020

Art Exhibition at Firstsite

Goulash Festival

Colchester Goulash Festival

Sun 13 Oct 2019

Rescheduled Food festival at Firstsite

Ross Noble

Ross Noble Live

Fri 18 Oct 2019

Comedy at the Mercury Theatre

Rhod Gilbert

Rhod Gilbert: The Book of John

Fri 18 Oct 2019

Multi-award-winning Welsh comedian at Charter Hall

The dark - The Ultimate Scare Experience

The Dark - The Ultimate Scare Experience

Fri 18 - Thu 31 Oct 2019

Enter the DARK side of Colchester at Rollerworld

Bazaar

Bazaar

Sat 19 Oct 2019

Firstsite's monthly art & craft market

Camulodunum to Colchester

Guided Walk: From Camulodunum to Colchester

Sat 19 Oct 2019

Guided Walking Tours of Colchester. Meet at the Visit Colchester Information Centre

Colchester United Crest

Colchester United v Morecambe

Sat 19 Oct 2019

League 2 Football at the Weston Homes Community Stadium

Josh Widdicombe

Josh Widdicombe - Bit Much...

Wed 23 Oct 2019

Comedy at the Mercury Theatre

Simon Reeve

An Audience with Simon Reeve

Fri 25 Oct 2019

Travel Stories at Colchester's Charter Hall

Big 90s Festival

The Big Nineties Festival

Fri 25 Oct 2019

Go back to the 90s in Lower Castle Park

Day Out With Thomas

Day Out With Thomas

Sat 26 - Sun 27 Oct 2019

Thomas and Friends appear at the East Anglian Railway Museum

Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest

Sat 26 Oct 2019

Bavarian Beer Festival in Lower Castle Park

Halloween

Shriek Week

Sat 26 Oct - Sun 3 Nov 2019

‘Shriek Week’ returns to Colchester Zoo this October half term! Join in with our fantastic themed displays and activities taking place every day between the 26th October – 3rd November!

Book Fair 2018

NSPCC Book Fair

Sat 26 - Sun 27 Oct 2019

Over 35,000 BOOKS for sale at the NSPCC's annual book fair.

Camulodunum to Colchester

Guided Walk: From Camulodunum to Colchester

Sat 26 Oct 2019

Guided Walking Tours of Colchester. Meet at the Visit Colchester Information Centre

Guided Walk: Rotten Romans & Naughty Normans

Guided Walk: Rotten Romans & Naughty Normans

Sat 26 Oct 2019

A special guided walk of Colchester for children.

Colchester United Crest

Colchester United v Newport County

Sat 26 Oct 2019

League 2 Football at the Weston Homes Community Stadium

Ben Elton

Ben Elton - Live 2019

Wed 30 Oct 2019

Stand Up Comedy at Colchester's Charter Hall

More events around town

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