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to want to book a Haven holiday?

(76 Posts)
Madmum24 Wed 30-Jan-13 09:07:08

I am in the mood for a holiday and Haven (according to it's lovely TV ads and brochure) seems the ideal solution. I was thinking of Craig Tara or Presthaven Sands orHafan y Mor.

The problem is when you check out review sites half of the reviews are 5 star "this is the best holiday we have been on" and the other half are 1 star "this is a dump die before you come here" type of thing, there never seems to be any 3 star "well it was fine for a budget holiday" sort of thing.

So, I am seeking MN advice, AIBU to want to go, and if I am then tell me what the alternative is.

well im sorry but i had a fantastic time at Hafan Y Mor. Our caravan was immaculate, clean and tidy. I found the staff friendly and accommadating. This was last year and I would certainly go back

Madmum24 Wed 30-Jan-13 13:37:39

All of the anal activities mentioned on here put me off Centreparcs, has anyone actually been and enjoyed it?

Groovee Wed 30-Jan-13 13:43:10

We went to Lakeland Haven and had a good time but it was mainly a base for us. We went to Tumnel Valley which is a Parkdean and had another good time. Though on the Friday the manager seemed to be dealing with petty complaints from people in the bar, just before we left.

We're off to CP next week. It's my mum's 60th so we're off to the spa, kids are doing archery and tree treking. Then we're going to see the Llama's next door as we adopted one for dd last week for her birthday.

Twinklestarstwinklestars Wed 30-Jan-13 13:45:40

We've been on sun holidays and dp's mum had a caravan on one. We've been to Reighton sands and primrose valley (yorks coast) and Marton mere near Blackpool and would visit them all again.

familyfun Wed 30-Jan-13 13:51:00

went to presethaven sands 3 years ago, it was run down, peeling paint, pool was filthy, wouldnt go back.
went to one in great yarmouth and it was clean and ok.
been to butlins 3 times since and found it better value.

LaQueen Wed 30-Jan-13 13:57:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PearlyWhites Wed 30-Jan-13 14:12:44

Posh frock , really sorry that's when we went to haven as part of "new word alive" Christian conference! Hagan y mor is a dump though am sure France was better smile

nellyjelly Wed 30-Jan-13 14:20:34

Why don't you avoid holiday parks and book a cottage or something? I know you won't have the full range of facilities but we have done the north wales coast 3 years in a row and a great time. There is always something to do, even if it rains. You hust do 't have things laid on at your doorstep so to speak.

Abersoch is nice and some small flats let there are quite reasonable. Near the beach.

Madmum24 Wed 30-Jan-13 14:22:17

Yes LaQueen I think I need to ascertain the level according to what my standards are! I want something clean (as in Domestos clean) but not too fussy about decor, as long as it is cheap presentable. I can't abide by chavvy behaviour either, I don't drink so not interested in bars/nightlife entertainment etc. Also saw in some of the reviews that the staff called kids "dogs" so that is also unacceptable in my book. Just looked up centreparcs, £900 for a 5 day break for accomodation only is out of the budget!

nellyjelly Wed 30-Jan-13 14:22:18

Or www.pinelodges.co.uk. i think it is called has good offers for lodges out of season. In Derbyshire with lots to do. Nice pool etc.

Just depends on your budget I guess

nellyjelly Wed 30-Jan-13 14:22:59

When you planning to go? School hols?

nellyjelly Wed 30-Jan-13 14:25:02
SaladIsMyFriend Wed 30-Jan-13 14:26:19

We've been to Haven Seashore (near Great Yarmouth) with a Sun holiday and it was great. DD, 3 at the time, loved it, right by a nice beach, stuff to do on site, restaurant on site was fine (compared to places like Park Resorts it was fine dining grin), you could have breakfast with the "characters" coming round. Caravan clean with everything we needed, own pizza delivery place on site. We had a fab time, have booked to go to Wild Duck this year (in Jan sale).

I think a lot of the complaining is either raised expectations (yes, it's nicer than Park Resorts, but it is not as posh as Center Parcs), or snobbery (British caravan holidays).

But I think Haven is pretty decent value for money and great for kids.

SaladIsMyFriend Wed 30-Jan-13 14:28:01

Oh I forgot sorry, YANBU, just go!

shottspar Wed 30-Jan-13 14:30:18

In the past 5 years I've been to Craig Tara, Center Parcs and Butlins.

Craig Tara is awful - we went on a Sun holiday and upgraded to the "prestige" caravan. The caravan itself was lovely and clean, we did need to get used to people gawping in the windows though - it was the only caravan of it's type on the site. We went at an off-peak time and even then I thought it was very rowdy. Not much to do really, unless you want fairground rides and amusements. It was very unkempt.

We really enjoyed Center Parcs, although the lodge wasn't as clean as I would have liked and the activities are pricey. With little kids in tow, sometimes it feels that all you can do is swimming and that becomes a hassle eventually and just a different routine from home IYSWIM?

Butlins on the other hand we thought was fantastic - much to our surprise. I went with an open mind, but not really expecting to love it. We went to Skegness and stayed in the Gold accomodation with Premium dining. The chalet was spotless with maid service daily, the food was excellent with plenty of fruit and veg - it certainly didn't fall into the nuggets and chips and nothing else category. There were loads of activities for the kids - nearly all free - and they loved the shows with the Redcoats and the various Characters. When we were there it was off peak, so it was geared to younger kids (Angelina Ballerina, Fireman Sam, Thomas the Tank Engine etc).

Given a choice - I'd take Butlins any time. We've been twice now and will certainly be back.

dancemom Wed 30-Jan-13 14:38:02

I have been to Haggerston Haven several times, dd loves it!

OohMrDarcy Wed 30-Jan-13 14:45:58

Anyone been to perrandsands haven? Thoughts?

We stayed in perranporth last year and fell in love with the beach but the site was awful so have booked perran sands haven as its walking distance to the beach. We are camping so not fussed about the accomodation - as long as the pool / facilities are ok we'll be happy!

Butlins in Minehead is lovely. We book every year and it's worth the 10 hour journey from Glasgow to get there rather than booking with Haven Craig Tara.
There's a lovely clean beach just outside the camp and it's only a 5 minute walk to the local tesco.
There's entertainment on all day every day for the kids and family entertainment/ live bands at night. There's plenty of choice for eating out and the food outlets are open all day unlike at Haven.
My kids love the free funfair and would happily play there all day. There's also activity passes you can buy for older kids for climbing, high ropes etc.

lampwick Wed 30-Jan-13 15:37:37

Im going to craig tara in july this will be about the fifth time, kids love it. Don't just think about the park its a great base for the west coast, Culzean Castle up the road is amazing and the electric brae then you've got all the Robert Burns stuff in Ayr and the beach is lovely. We always like going to Arran for the day as well. Never had any problems with accommodation and the last time we where there we complained about the neds in a caravan oopsite swearing and making noise, security was out straight away and kicked them out. Swimming pool is really good for all ages to. Would rather go to haven than center parcs anytime.

thefirstmrsrochester Wed 30-Jan-13 15:40:30

Don't go to Craig Tara op. Its awful. Spent a weekend there - 48 hours of my life I will never get back again. Shuddering even thinking about it. The Haven Lakeland is great tho! And Berwick.
I wld love to go to the one featuring in the current TV ads but I suspect it was filmed in other locations - not haven.

soverylucky Wed 30-Jan-13 15:45:46

We went to Hafn Y mor. A week before we went we got a call asking us if we wanted to pay a bit more to upgrade. When we enquired as to what extras we would get we were told that they had more heating. Well I thought - that isn't really worth it. What I didn't realise was that the caravan we booked had NO HEATING AT ALL except for a gas fire in the lounge. It was Easter but a particularly cold one. We couldn't cope with it. We went out to use the facilities in the park but got drenched in terrible rain. When we got back to the caravan it was totally impossible to get properly dry and to dry coats etc.
The staff came round with a blow heater when we complained of the cold. I stayed in caravans over 20 years ago on budget breaks with my family and even they had heating. On our last night there (we did leave early) we all slept in the lounge with the fire on - the children crying because they were so cold.

The pool was great, it was near the beach, there was a decent enough park, the kids thought the kids show was good - I thought it was terrible.

We only paid £100 for all of us to stay for 5 nights and tbh I thought for that price you can't really expect much more. I would go back again but in much better accomodation and in summer.

themindwonders Wed 30-Jan-13 15:53:21

we used to have a caravan near presthaven sands and it was a dump then (and i am talking 15 years) .. we used to sneak through as kids to go the beach

done quite a few parkdeans and the kids have always enjoyed it, and tbh so i have

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Wed 30-Jan-13 15:53:28

the year I had my knee replacement we went to Haven Hafan Y Mor. It cost us a fortune as we went for a 'posh' caravan. the caravan was awesome the site was a stereotypical holiday camp, very Hi de hi we hated it. The nearby towns were run down and lots of closed down pubs shops etc. looking back we could have gone abroad for less but I wasn't allowed to fly at the time. kids might like it but we didn't. why not look for a cottage or something in a place you have always fancied visiting? most towns and cities have plenty to do or better still look at a french camp hol ( camping life, keycamps etc) we had some of the best hols ever when our boys were young at these. Ty nadan in Brittany has gone down in family legend as a great hol.

thefirstmrsrochester Wed 30-Jan-13 15:53:45

madmum I've been to centre parcs 13 times. No anal at all. I love
CP but its so damned expensive even just for your lodge, never mind additional activities.

TheLightPassenger Wed 30-Jan-13 15:56:12

Hafan Y Mor is OK, nice pool and beach but for North Wales would strongly recommend Talacre Beach Hoseasons park, much nicer.

I thought Haven Haggerston was quite grim.

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