Recommend me a family holiday - very inexperienced.

(27 Posts)
harryhausen Wed 16-Jan-13 22:16:16

Me and my DH are both self employed. Consequently we hardly ever take holidays and when we do its mainly a few days in the uk here and there.
The last holiday we had was to visit my Dsis in Malaysia. It was great, but my lovely sis basically Organised all our outings. We did some amazing stuff, but the thing we enjoyed the most was a simple beach resort break for a few days on a small island

Now we want to book ourselves a holiday and have no idea where to start. Our dcs are 8 and 6. We'd like to go in August (I know, I know). We'd like a nice relaxing place for us, not much effort to find food (so maybe a buffet restaurant) and some great water parks for the dcs. However have the possibilty for some nice outings.

We've looked at Thompson holidays villages but feel slightly like its Butlins in the sun.

I've been looking at Ibiza, which looks nice but I haven't much experience of places to go on.

We can spend up to about 5k.

Can you give me any of your experiences? I feel so naive about holidays. I don't even know the jargon.

The last h

popserinis Wed 16-Jan-13 22:19:13

Try a Thomson family hotel rather than a village, less like buntlines. Thomson sensatori are fab but may not get for that price range in August but if you can, will be worth every penny

harryhausen Wed 16-Jan-13 22:21:23

Thanks! Yes, we have that brochure at least! I will have a look.....

When you're not experienced at 'holidays' it's all a bit mind bogglingsmile

Dededum Wed 16-Jan-13 22:26:32

We went to Lake Garda with canvas last August. Hot but near the lake so not over powering. We didn't but easy to get to Venice for a day trip.

We went to some amazing water parks and they were not busy. Out doors, grab a deck chair, great food in the restaurant. It was great the slides all shut for an hour at lunch so the staff could eat - very civilised.

franticallyjugglinglife Wed 16-Jan-13 22:28:23

Do you want a package? We do villas and swear by them... peace and quiet away from the masses! smile

Have been to some fab places if you'd like any recommendations?

OhIWishThereWasABook Wed 16-Jan-13 22:29:40

Majorca and Greece are lovely for families. Be careful in Ibiza, I only remember it as a party island but I hear some bits are amazing. Florida was fab (and only just over budget). Turkey was also lovely but hot! As a seasoned AI, you cannot go far wrong with your budget but prefer to get out a bit now mine are a bit older.

popserinis Wed 16-Jan-13 22:31:17

Garda is lovely, good theme park there too for kids. There is also a park in cola, short rive from Garda that has natural lagoon type pool that is warm. Forgot about that. Took my sisters there when they were ten an fourteen and they loved it

Waswondering Wed 16-Jan-13 22:34:42

Blue Lagoon Village on Kos. Lovely food; lovely pools, spas, kids clubs.

Book through Thomson.

harryhausen Wed 16-Jan-13 22:39:38

Wow. These are great recommendations. Thanks so much.

We would love to go to Disneyland Florida, but we went into Thompson & the woman basically talked so quickly and completely confused us. It seems we wouldn't get much change out of 9k!!! Is that right?

pinkteddy Wed 16-Jan-13 22:40:01

Sorry to hijack, popserinis but who did you go to lake garda with and where did you stay?

OhIWishThereWasABook Wed 16-Jan-13 22:45:25

We spent about 6k. Had a villa, cereal in the morning and out. Restaurants are pretty cheap there. It was expensive and we will be back to Europe this year (maybe lake Garda) but it was amazing- and I hate theme parks.

popserinis Wed 16-Jan-13 22:51:15

Dp stayed in bergamo for a year so we took my sisters to Garda for a weekend. Can't remember name of hotel, it was out of peak season so we just drove and picked somewhere we liked the look of, sorry not much help!

zzzzz Wed 16-Jan-13 23:00:58

How far do you want to travel? (eg far east? America? Europe?)

What time of year do you want to go?

harryhausen Wed 16-Jan-13 23:26:28

I don't mind going long haul. We did about 14 hours to Malaysia with the dcs with a change at Dubai - we managed with Emirates excellent inflight entertainment!

We'd like a package I think but am open to suggestions.

We have to go August due to DH's work schedule.

harryhausen Wed 16-Jan-13 23:29:21

Popserinis, those Sensatori hotels look great. Do you have any recommendations of any particular one?

zzzzz Thu 17-Jan-13 00:01:19

I'd go Phuket, lie on a beach, eat beautiful food, and take the kids to ride the elephants.

popserinis Thu 17-Jan-13 08:39:46

I've been to Egypt and Mexico sensatori. Truly all inclusive, they have proper restaurants that y ou can eat in, run kids parties every night so you can dine as a couple if ou want to. Honestly the best kids club facilities I have had on a holiday, truly professional. My dd even done a sleepover which I did not think I would ever have done but she was desperate to go and hey had high security etc. thy had laid all the blow up beds out and put kids names next to the friends they made so it wasn't a free for all and kids felt welcome. Egypt was my favourite a on the reef and beach is beautiful. We went snorkelling every day and it was truly amazing - putting your head in the water was like turning on the discovery cannel with all the tropical fish. You don't need to leave he hotel. We had a swim up room next o the main pool and you could chill out on balcony and wave to the pool bar tender who would bring you drinks, ice cream and crisps etc. my dd was six when we went and he loved it. Staff were all lovely, we tipped about 200 pounds on our holiday and that was all we spent ( with the exception of my spa treatments!). Everyone we met were having a lovely time. They also done classes like gyptian cooking with the head chef etc all art of all inclusive which is a bt different from the standard activities. There are very few female staff, the exception being kids club and sensatori reps as they are English, shark is a tourist resort and no nationals stay there permanently so it tends to be men working away from home but all so friendly and great with kids too as most mss their families. If you take time to get to know some of them, they are very kind and patient. Loved sharm, we are going back next year

popserinis Thu 17-Jan-13 08:41:43

Meant sharm not shark.....no shark's....promise!

harryhausen Thu 17-Jan-13 09:21:08

Thanks popserinis. That's all really helpful. For some reason we had dismissed Egygt as we thought it might be dodgy at the moment with all the troubles etc.

I will have another looksmile

notamomtokids Thu 17-Jan-13 09:37:42

If you don't mind the long haul, have you thought about Australia? I live in Spain and would have recommended it but in August it is horribly hot. I suppose it would be ok near the beaches though

givemeaclue Thu 17-Jan-13 09:55:55

How yo le yet get Australia for £5k though

notamomtokids Thu 17-Jan-13 10:05:08

Yeah, maybe I didn't think that one through too well!!

Closer to home: Barcelona??? Not as hot as the south and possibly not so 'hectic' as Malaga. Not that there is anything wrong with a holiday in Malaga!!

Also, stuff to do for the children.

notamomtokids Thu 17-Jan-13 10:12:53
harryhausen Thu 17-Jan-13 10:17:39

Hmmmm Barcelona. Haven't thought if that but I have always wanted to go. Thanks.

I would second Sensatori if you want AI. Its a totally different experience to most for the reasons already given - great restaurants, really professional kids clubs (ratios are same as uk nurseries), decent wine at dinner. If you fancy Mexico go and talk to someone at Thomson about Azul Beach or Azul Fives. They're run by the same group as Sensatori Mexico and are really amazing hotels. Concierge as standard, day beds on the beach with butler bringing books, toys, food, drinks, suncream etc. Amazing restaurants and kids clubs, dvd rents on room service (they bring popcorn too). It'll stretch you to the top end of your budget but it really is worth every penny smile

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now