Now I’m a mum I’ve been forced to embrace British holiday parks – and I’ve realised they’re not all bad

I’ve by no means wished to go to a vacation park. The thought of spending a weekend in an aluminium field has by no means actually shouted ‘vacation’ to me.

5-star glamping with connoisseur picnics? Possibly. Massive-scale vacation park with slot machines and cringey leisure? Completely
not.

Self-confessed holiday snob Lucy McGuire took her family to a holiday park this year and ended up loving it

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Self-confessed vacation snob Lucy McGuire took her household to a vacation park this yr and ended up loving itCredit score: Lucy Mcguire
The family spent £130 on a mid-week break at Haven's Hopton Holiday Park

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The household spent £130 on a mid-week break at Haven’s Hopton Vacation ParkCredit score: Lucy Mcguire

However since having youngsters, I’ve been pressured to, let’s say, be a bit extra adaptable to how I vacation.

Earlier than youngsters, my husband, Ben, and I used to take fashionable metropolis breaks and romantic journeys to the Caribbean.

However submit youngsters, our budgets have tightened. And the considered navigating airports and aircraft journeys with two tantrum-prone pre-schoolers simply doesn’t attraction.

Nonetheless, when Ben advised we booked a household break to a Haven vacation park not too long ago, I couldn’t conceal the preliminary look of horror on my face.

Haven have midweek breaks this autumn from just £49 for 4 nights
Haven's best indoor and outdoor swimming pools - from £4pp a NIGHT

I may consider a thousand different locations I wished to go for a household getaway, they usually didn’t contain karaoke or each day journeys to the comfortable play.

However after confiding in some shut yummy mummy associates, it turned out a few of them had ‘executed a Haven vacation’ too. They usually’d really loved it.

As extra folks egged me on, telling me to place my snobbish assumptions apart, I lastly gave in.

In addition to, with our children but to begin college, we may reap the benefits of Haven’s cheap-as-chips time period time offers.

Lucy, pictured with her daughter, on a ride in nearby Great Yarmouth

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Lucy, pictured along with her daughter, on a experience in close by Nice YarmouthCredit score: Lucy Mcguire
Lucy and her family spent plenty of time at the sandy beach that neighbours the holiday park

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Lucy and her household spent loads of time on the sandy seaside that neighbours the vacation parkCredit score: Lucy Mcguire

For a mere £130, we may have 4 nights in a three- bed room caravan in Norfolk, with all swimming and leisure included. Cut price.

I sounded out my four-year-old daughter, Maya, and he or she was already packing her suitcase. So I took a deep breath and booked a break at Haven’s Hopton vacation park in Nice Yarmouth .

The very first thing that shocked me was how slick the entire operation was.

On arrival, we have been greeted by a heat and smiley uniformed girl with a clip board.

She took our title and automotive registration and chatted with the excited youngsters within the again.

We have been handed a map, baggage for our laundry and waste and clear directions on the way to discover our caravan. First impressions? Fairly good.

The caravan itself was in nice situation. Save from just a few bits of chocolate we discovered on the couch, I may inform it had been completely cleaned.

Haven prides itself on its excessive ranges of cleanliness and visitors are even entitled to a full refund in the event that they discover the room’s less than
scratch.

Okay, so there was no bathtub for me to take pleasure in an expensive soak and I used to be pressured to take a digital detox with no speedy WIFI connection to depend on (though they do have it in public areas).

However with comfortable beds, a wardrobe every and all of the mod cons wanted to cook dinner a good meal, I felt relieved – we weren’t staying in a hovel in any case.

As a mum of two energetic youngsters, one other weight lifted when I discovered there have been loads of child-friendly facilities near our caravan, together with three playgrounds, a loopy golf course and several other sand pits.

The seaside was additionally only a quick stroll away, so we didn’t have
far to lug the youngsters’ buckets and spades.

The following morning after breakfast, I headed to the primary constructing, bracing myself for seedy arcades and extra rowdy lager louts however breathed a sigh of aid after we discovered a classy hub of locations to eat and drink.

The comfortable play was cleaner than any I’ve ever visited (consider me, I’ve seen rather a lot). And the tastefully designed arcade was removed from the naff set-up I’d imagined, with just a few enjoyable rides for the youngsters.

With a play move at Haven, you possibly can take pleasure in as many leisure reveals as you want.

Earlier than I knew it, I used to be belting out nursery rhymes and doing downward canines at a 10am ‘Totsy Time’ and chanting magic spells for a wizardry workshop.

It felt good to see the youngsters’ having a lot enjoyable.

When it got here to tea-time leisure, my two-year-old, Felix, was wide-eyed as he watched a dinosaur-ranger stage present.

And the colorful Marina Bar, the place all of it occurs, was removed from the cheesy drink-until-you-drop horror I’d imagined.

As I sipped on a glass of chilled rosé whereas the youngsters had a boogie, I realised one thing: I used to be a vacation park convert.

After I acquired again house to my associates, my associates gave understanding smiles once I introduced that vacation parks are bloody sensible and we’re already reserving one other one for subsequent yr.

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There are nonetheless offers available on Haven breaks this summer season – with August and September holidays from £3pp an evening.

For extra staycation concepts, Zog The Dragon followers will love Warwick Citadel’s £32pp in a single day breaks – together with glamping, entry and breakfast.

After having a great time, they're already booking another holiday park break

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After having a good time, they’re already reserving one other vacation park breakCredit score: Lucy Mcguire

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