Ardleigh is in the district of Tendring and the parliamentary constituency of Harwich and North Essex. The village has its own Parish Council. The parish had a population of 2081 according to the 2001 census and includes the area known as Crockleford Heath.
The Great Eastern Main Line passes close to the village but the railway station closed in November 1967. The closest railway station is now at Manningtree, northeast. The village is on the A137 road, a route from Colchester to Ipswich, Suffolk.
Ardleigh Reservoir is less than to the southwest.