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Sunday, 30 August 2015

My Amazing Summer holiday break!

On Friday, I returned from a fantastic holiday at Center Parcs in Whinfell forest.  We kept the children busy and probably over-spent but I do think I actually tried to pack too much into the holiday as we booked several activities and meals out, but we would have had a good time without as many activities.

It can be an expensive holiday but I too found Haven expensive.  As you stay in lodges the accommodation itself is costly.  I found it a good holiday because there was something for everyone to do.  There were activities ranging from around £6 and some that were a lot more, but it really depended on what you want to do.  The lodges had a build in barbecue which was great, as it was cheaper than eating out.  If you want to save money on any holiday then it's best to eat out as little as possible.  In a family of five like ours, I don't think a meal out cost us less than £45 but it was the drinks that I found the most costly.  There was also a Dining In takeaway and you could order Chinese, tapas, Indian, and pizzas to your door and although it was more expensive than a regular takeaway in my home town, it was not as expensive as dining out.  I must admit that we did not enjoy the food (and drink) at every establishment as we did eat out for lunch and dinner on most days.  We didn't try every food establishment either but we did enjoy food at Canopy Bar, Cafe Rouge, Bella Italia, Rajinda Pradesh and most of all, Hucks.

There are free activities too, and I must say that the subtropical swimming area is fantastic.  There are flumes for all ages, a wave pool, a water jet area, whirlpools and there was so much to do for everyone here, even if you didn't want to swim there are chairs at poolside and also a cafe.  There are also great adventure play areas for children as well as a beach area.  There is a free children's disco every evening in the bar that includes the bowling and many of the restaurants have free indoor play areas for children too!

If you do have some spending money and you like a pamper you should certainly check out the Aqua Sana Spa.  I had a paraffin wax foot treatment and it was around £16, but it was fantastic - really refreshing and it made my feet feel replenished after all of the walking I had done.  We also painted pottery too as a family activity and that was fun.  As well as buying time in the studio you have to also pay for your pot so it wasn't cheap, however it was nice to have something memorable to bring home.

The Activity Den is amazing for young children as they have nursery places or 3 hour activities in which you can leave your child to do an activity with qualified staff.  My son enjoyed a couple of activities here during our stay.  Other activities that my family utilised were bowling, cheer leading, football, quad biking, creative canvas, a photo shoot, and archery.

If we go again, we would like to do miniature golfing and possibly the family den building.  I know I would certainly be up for another Spa treatment too.

The summer holiday period is now drawing to a close, but to be honest I still feel like I'm in holiday mode - back to work on Tuesday too!  It's all fitness and health for me come September and it will certainly be planning our family Christmas - oh and it's my son's fourth birthday and I'm returning to University for my final year of MA studies in October.  Back to Earth with a bump for me!

How have your Summer holidays been? Have you had a holiday this year or have you had any days out?  Do you have children returning to school/starting?

I would love to hear about them all in the comments below, guys!

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