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Has anyone been to Centreparcs? What was it like?

(26 Posts)
TheSweetLittleBunny Tue 08-Jul-08 09:39:49

I am thinking of trying Sherwood Forest as it is our nearest.

But I would welcome comments about any Centreparcs in UK please.

tiredemma Tue 08-Jul-08 09:44:19

We love CP- we go every year just before christmas.

Sherwood is our fave!

Flier Tue 08-Jul-08 09:45:53

been 3 times, once to sherwood. loved it, both with children and without.

Marina Tue 08-Jul-08 09:46:39

Well, how old are your children? What do you like doing as a family?
We loved Centreparcs after doing our first visit in June. If you all like swimming/nature/active pursuits, it's a dream holiday IMO

savoycabbage Tue 08-Jul-08 09:52:25

I have been to Sherwood Forest a couple of times. I think it's good in a lot of ways. No cars, plenty of wholesome activities like swimming, feeding the ducks, and cycling. Everything is easy, there is a cot and a highchair and things like that. There are places to eat and a normal priced supermarket. I go to sainsburys on the way though.

On the minus side it can be a bit surreal. Everybody is the same age. In their thirties with young children or grandparents. All the children are wearing Boden and are all called Ruby. grin I always feel that nobody speaks to anybody else. Maybe that's because I am from Newcastle where everyone talks to everyone else.

I do like it though. I have only been in term time.

hatrick Tue 08-Jul-08 09:52:43

Message withdrawn

Sidge Tue 08-Jul-08 09:54:39

We went to Sherwood about 5 years ago.

Expensive.

'Tropical' pool was anything but - it was bloody cold!

Needed to book activities so far in advance that they are all full up.

Absolutely heaving there, even on an October weekend (not half term).

But the villa was ok, lovely and peaceful and ducks came up to our patio door for feeding.

Collision Tue 08-Jul-08 09:55:04

we love it!

LotosEater Tue 08-Jul-08 09:55:54

hatrick IME CP is better when your children are a bit older than yours are at the moment.

eenybeeny Tue 08-Jul-08 09:56:51

we went to sherwood a couple of years ago and loved it!!! I found it very relaxing. Though the pool wasnt the most relaxing place and not as warm as I had hoped, other than that I thought it was lovely!!! And the Pancake House was deeeeeeeeeeeeeevine.

hatrick Tue 08-Jul-08 09:58:01

Message withdrawn

sis Tue 08-Jul-08 10:00:48

We've just got back from a week at Elevden with our 9 year old son and had a lovely time. Ds loved the pool with the slides and stuff and it was good to be able to cycle without cars everywhere. Any walks are best taken on the paths around the 'lakes' to avoid the bikes but that would be tricky if you have very young children in a buggy.

We tend to self cater as the food in the restaurants tends to be expensive and not really to our taste.

Mutt Tue 08-Jul-08 10:02:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

eenybeeny Tue 08-Jul-08 10:03:32

well my DS was 14 months when we went and he loved it, all the nature and there were some lovely activities we did for toddlers. Granted a lot is for older children but he did the disco, the handprint thing, swimming, and LOADS of manic running around outside (and play areas outside) he really did love it!! He even cried when we left

(the smiley isnt because he cried!)

I will happily go back again but for us we really need to share with another family to be able to afford it.

Bundle Tue 08-Jul-08 10:04:40

tis fairly hideous but each to their own

mumto2andnomore Tue 08-Jul-08 11:19:58

Its fab, but like any holiday its what you make of it. My kids love swimming and the outdoors and we always have a great time.If you go just to a cottage you have to get in the car and go out to places each day (and spend money !) whereas at center parcs you can just walk out of your front door and there is loads to do.

MaryAnnSingleton Tue 08-Jul-08 11:22:03

overpriced,imo - we had fun but I'd rather rent a cottage somewhere - escaping to the outside world felt very naughty too

Mutt Tue 08-Jul-08 12:08:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

giddykipper Tue 08-Jul-08 12:12:36

Happy kids = relaxed parents

Which is why we're going back to Centerparcs this summer.

We always go abroad though to make it feel a bit more exotic! And it's significantly cheaper - we have a 3 bedroomed deluxe villa in August for 1,000 Euros this year. We just have to pay for the ferry and petrol but it's still going to be considerably cheaper than the UK in August.

mumto2andnomore Tue 08-Jul-08 12:17:30

The only extra money we spend is for bike hire for the adults, the childrens bikes we take with us. If you are stuck in a cottage in the rain then you do have to pay to go to places. Seems like its you either love it or hate it-I love it !

NotDoingTheHousework Tue 08-Jul-08 12:23:46

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TheSweetLittleBunny Tue 08-Jul-08 12:36:49

DS is 4.5. We have just come back from a Haven Holiday and I hated it. While we were in Norfolk we visited two forest parks - BeWilderwood and Dinosaur Adventure (both miles away from where we were staying) and we all eally enjoyed being in that environment.

Haven has put me off a bit - but I know Centreparcs is on on the other end of the spectrum (or is it - perhaps it is the same thing but more expensive?).

I just wondered whether it was more worthwhile renting a cottage independantly and finding our own entertainment. I am concerned about spending loads of money to do the same things we do here in our home town at local country parks, forests, etc.

Marina Tue 08-Jul-08 13:07:22

Elveden was lovely - not a bit like a Haven Holiday. Landscaping is carefully done so that you don't see much, if anything of your neighbours, the site is real woodland with ducks and rabbits everywhere, plentiful wildlife, and the Tropical Swimming Paradise is fantastic.
We didn't eat out or go in much for organised activities either.
Maybe you would prefer Forestry Commission (Forest Enterprise now) cabins? They do the same sort of layout without the array of entertainment and restaurant facilities.
But I promise you can be five minutes from the main locus of Fun at CP and still have utter peace outside your own front door.
We are absolute converts

UnquietDad Tue 08-Jul-08 13:16:58

We have been a few times and enjoy it (Sherwood). You need to just relax and accept that the activities cost money, otherwise you are tutting about it all week (as I was the first time). I'd mistakenly had the assumption thaty it worked on the "theme park" mode, i.e. you pay at the door and everything is included.

The only thing included is the "tropical" (yes, lukewarm) swim-dome, so it's always crowded - if you aren't a water-baby you need to a) arrange other activities or b) be one of those people who bags a lounger and sits in one of the poolside areas (and there are one or two quite a way from the poolside itself) reading a book or paper. There are usually big queues for the slides, especially the "Grand Cascade" (four-person dinghy thing which you ride down a massive slide).

If you have bikes, take them - plenty of bike rides to do. You can hire them there too. I gather it is pretty good for birdwatchers.

The restaurants were just OK the first time we went, but recently they have had a bit of a refurb and are better quality, but also more expensive.

newgirl Tue 08-Jul-08 13:17:25

i dont love it - i think for the money its nicer to go to a self-catering place, say in the new forest, or even a week overseas.

i think they can be busy places - lots of acom everywhere so nowhere to really get away from it. Pool was heaving even on a good weather day. Activities are overpriced.

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