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Is Center Parcs worth the money?

(100 Posts)
perceptionreality Wed 18-Jan-12 10:41:10

Everyone I know goes and says how good it is but it seems really expensive especially as you have to pay for all the activities separately.

Any experience?

pictish Thu 19-Jan-12 16:35:57

I have never been to Centerparcs personally - I looked into it as an option once (quite recently) and was really taken aback by the tariff, considering how little (to my mind) you were getting for your muller.
If I was better off financially, then perhaps I would not have been so taken aback. That's what I mean when I say it's relative.

I used the coat analogy because a less well off friend of mine was gobsmacked that I spent £90 on a winter coat this year. I thought £90 was a fairly run of the mill amount to spend on a coat. She disagreed, and thought I was throwing money away. Again - it was relative.

Either way, sorry to hear you felt ripped off at Centerparcs. It is crap to feel like you have been taken the piss out of no matter what your financial situation.

MegBusset Thu 19-Jan-12 16:51:48

We've been once and didn't rate it at all. Horribly overcrowded (even in term time), expensive, and a PITA to get around/off the site. Would much rather stay on a smaller caravan site near to beach/countryside.

LaurieFairyCake Thu 19-Jan-12 16:58:11

It's £2200 for a week in the summer holidays - I can't see how that could possibly be worth it confused

We paid £900 for a lovely cottage in Cornwall on the beach for a week.

I just genuinely don't get why anyone would go in school holidays - to a shed - in a wood for 2 grand confused

We can only go in school holidays though as dh is a teacher and dd can't miss school. Maybe it's worth it with little ones ???

MegBusset Thu 19-Jan-12 17:10:13

Oh yes and the chalet (not even the cheapest) was dire, damp and mildew everywhere. Have stayed in MUCH nicer caravans for a lot less.

pictish Thu 19-Jan-12 17:13:35

£2200 for one week!!! shock shock shock

Now come on! WHO is paying £2200 for a week in a chalet in Britain? Who ARE these people??!

That is an astronomical amount!

perceptionreality Thu 19-Jan-12 17:52:37

I think people must just go for the range of activities? I have looked at the children's ones and they do look good. I also have an autistic child and I think the setting would suit her. There is no way I would pay over £2000 though - for that you can go to a lovely hotel in Majorca with (good!) half board.

TheHumancatapult Thu 19-Jan-12 17:58:30

Not mr Pictish I go in December for £300 for a week , the site is lovely got Christmas

ByTheWay1 Thu 19-Jan-12 20:00:35

Not many go for a week - (and by the way .... the top price is MUCH more than £2200...... try a treehouse at Longleat - 4 bed, hottub, games den, set away in forest £6798 for a week....Easter NEXT year.

pictish Thu 19-Jan-12 20:33:40

I saw that 'treehouse' on the website. I thought it was shit.

It's not even a treehouse. It's a shed on stilts. With log effect wallpaper!

perceptionreality Fri 20-Jan-12 22:35:47

Ok........just a few more questions:

Can you book for more people than you are sure are going and if one decides not to come is that ok??

Is the woodland lodge accomodation any good? It's about the same price as comfort plus.

I'm kind of on the verge of booking at Winfall - I figure we'll give it a go (and take our own food!!) Thanks everyone this thread has been so helpful.

perceptionreality Sat 21-Jan-12 09:37:35


loulou4 Sat 21-Jan-12 11:30:23

We had a great time at CP. Accommodation very basic for the money and not good value for money at all - wouldn't want to stay there fore more than a couple of days, BUT activities made up for it. Went with friends so we were able to do grown up stuff and kids stuff - swaped kids with friends / left kids with dads, etc. fantastic. Good spa. Kids had a GREAT time. Will go back.

ps. The supermarket food is very expensive, and not very good selection - so take your own if you intend to eat in.

bruffin Sat 21-Jan-12 11:42:56

We always went for 10days in the European cp which are far better value for money. Even with the high euro now they are still good value.
The activities are far cheaper, kidsclub was free and under 12s ate for free .

PavlovtheCat Sat 21-Jan-12 11:49:40

i hope so! we are going for winter wonderland so expect a few additional costs like panto and father christmas, but, other than that, we plan to so as you did, swimming, winter walks, bike riding, fireside snuggles in the evening, playing board games. It is an opportunity to have a break, just get away from it all before the christmas hecticness! We did not go for basic lodge but if we did it would have been £249 for longleat for 4 day break. That is pretty good for family of 4 i think.

I like the walking aspect, woodland walks etc, that is a big appeal. I like not having the car nearby. and there is a land train apparantly for tired legs if we want to go to the complex/return. But I doubt we will use that.

I think, it is as expensive as you want it to be once you have paid for the initial outlay. It could be really costly if you want to do everything.

PavlovtheCat Sat 21-Jan-12 11:52:11

pictish I know a couple who did the treehouse thing. They have 7 children so £2200 is still cheaper than a holiday abroad for that size family.

curlytoes Sat 21-Jan-12 12:18:17

We went off peak to the Lobgleat Centre Parcs. We got passes to Longleat with our Tesco vouchers. We used the free Centre Parcs pool lots, cycled around, (took our own bikes), and did Longleat which is fab. We took fancy groceries with us- all our favourites - but didn't eat out at all. We spent approx £450 including fuel on a 5 day break for our family of 5. We had a great time. My kids are younger though so they weren't asking to do extra activities.

perceptionreality Sat 21-Jan-12 14:09:48

I have booked a weekend and will probably pre-book some activities for the children as well. I'm a little apprehensive after reading reviews on Trip Advisor which say the accomodation is filthy, but these are in the minority so I'll hope for the best!

PavlovtheCat Sat 21-Jan-12 14:36:12

Perception - i think the general thing is if you are annoyed/disappointed with something you are more likely to review than if it was good, so I would not take too much notice about the reviews. I know a few people who have been, a few times, and never had any problems with the hygiene of the a/c, they return each year.

Enjoy yourselves!

TheHumancatapult Sat 21-Jan-12 15:04:20

pavlov we go to elvrden every year for winter wonderland and have to say it really is fab

woodland lodge is similar to comfort plus its just newer decor

percep[tion we have never had a problem with how clean they are

PavlovtheCat Sat 21-Jan-12 15:27:45

thehumancatapult we are doing the executive lodge with the maid service grin as it was only £30 more than the woodland lodge, am in fact quite excited and only thing that bothers me is that I have to wait for almost 11 months to go grin grin. good to hear it you enjoyed it. a colleague of mine went xmas just gone and she had nothing but positive to say about it, has children almost identical ages to mine so was my inspiration for giving it a go.

perceptionreality Sat 21-Jan-12 16:02:36

Pavlov - yes you are right, that crossed my mind actually. Thanks again for you advice everyone.

LadyGahGah Sat 21-Jan-12 16:21:22

I looked at centre Parcs recently. Then did some maths. Then booked a cottage for a week, on the edge of a lovely lake with on site heated pool(free to use) lots of walks, and great free interactive museums nearby and a lovely play park. We are aslo near a big city for the odd day out. Cost of cottage? £300. I doubt we will spend more than £200 including food. Worked out much cheaper this way. But if we had extra money we would do centre Parcs.....tho kid soup swimming pools do not appeal....

serin Sat 21-Jan-12 21:28:12

Can I suggest Holgates as an alternative!
It has proper wildlife at the RSPB reserve just down the road.

suebfg Sat 21-Jan-12 21:32:50

No, it's rubbish - save your money

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sat 21-Jan-12 21:40:34

I've not been, and quite fancy it, but am always shock at the prices.
we generally manage to get a week in a really, really, good cottage (this year's one had a pool, sauna and tennis court amongst other things) for less than 4 nights at CP.

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