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Family YHA holidays...please come and reassure me...

(15 Posts)
WhereamI Fri 19-Jun-09 09:18:38

In an effort to cut costs, have just booked a 5 day stay in YHA for family..and now I'm panicking a bit. Well, was after seeing a documentary about them the other night and hearing the people staying singing 'on ilkley moor b't hat'. Admittedly, the footage was a couple of decades away but I have got some serious questions:
1. Are the family rooms very spartan? Is there a wardrobe, eg?

2. Where do you store your food? Do people label their milk in the fridges? (assuming there is one as it does have s-catering facilities.

3. We have young children (4 & 8). Can we come back to our room anytime? Are people generally quiet at night-time?
4. Are there like 'male' and 'female' bathrooms/loos?

WhereamI Fri 19-Jun-09 17:16:28

oh, now you're scaring me..someone somewhere must have holidayed in a YHA with a family before now..or have you all given them a wide berth?

Galava Fri 19-Jun-09 17:19:02

Nope, never done it myself.

But if its any reassurance I have seen some very well heeled folk coming out of the one near us.

Goober Fri 19-Jun-09 19:31:37

Have never used them, but I too keep thinking about using one.

Fennel Mon 22-Jun-09 13:35:48

We've done it a few times, so have others on mumsnet, it's always been very successful. In fact we find it more relaxing than a hotel or B&B with 3 small children - it's less fussy, less to break, less to spill, less anxiety about noise and children racing around the place like mad things.

You can come back to your room at any time once you've booked in. We usually have ensuite bathrooms, otherwise there will be male and female showers separately, the loos might be single ones, unisex. Not grouped together unisex, or not that I've come across.

They vary in spartan-ness and whether they have wardrobes or lockers in the room, some have been done up lately and they are much smarter than the older ones.

Food in box in communal kitchen. Very handy with small children.

Really, it's great. Very child friendly, especially the communal living rooms and tv rooms and dining rooms and, often, large gardens.

serin Mon 22-Jun-09 14:30:53

We use them sometimes, the only time we had trouble with noise was at the St Pauls Cathedral one. Lots of whooping girls back from a ball. They soon shut up when I yelled at them in my northern fishwife way.

These days we generally go to campsites as the kids are older but we do use the Lakedistrict ones in the winter and the city ones where there are no campsites.

Travelodge would be cheaper but like you we have 3 DCs and would need 2 rooms.

We tend to have the cooked breakfast and evening meal and the food is generally okay.

WhereamI Tue 23-Jun-09 13:54:28

thanks for these lodges tend to be off main A roads and are a bit souless..this is a norfolk one and it's in a seaside town so hopefully will be okay

Mspontipine Thu 25-Jun-09 23:52:31

Hi there WhereamI ds(6) and I have recently joined the YHA and we have booked a 5 night stay in August in Sherwood Forest in August but I am really interested in the Norfolk ones. We have stayed in Wells many many times (at the campsite) if it's there you're staying please let us know how it went - or indeed at the others too. Make sure you go to Wells if you're not staying there - it's gorgeous.

I've not stayed in one since about 1980 so I'm thinking they've moved on a bit since then - but a 5 night stay for £150 in August was well worth giving it a go for me and hoping it'll lead to many more nice trips away for us. :-)

Kathyis6incheshigh Thu 25-Jun-09 23:56:37

1. yes they are spartan, though there is usually a wardrobe
2. usually there are pigeonholes in self-catering kitchens to store food; yes, a lot of labelling goes on in fridges (and may even be compulsory in some)
3. in all the ones I've been to so far you can; traditionally you couldn't but I think it's something they've changed since bringing in family rooms
Yes people are mostly quiet at night-time.
4. yes

QueenofSpleen Fri 26-Jun-09 00:10:31

We stayed two nights in one last year so dh and ds could climb Snowdown. The place was nice, the food (we ate an evening meal one night) was out of this world.
I felt grubby in theirs. (the bedding was very clean. it just that the sheets felt thin between me and the mattress iykwim)

QueenofSpleen Fri 26-Jun-09 00:13:42

(Stupid I know, but I need to correct myself. DH and DD climbed snowdown; DS could never have done it, he is disabled.)

lollell Mon 29-Jun-09 18:17:17

The YHA at Hartington Hall, Derbyshire is lovely - family rooms in main building like hotel rooms with ensuite facilities, bar and restaurant better than many hotels. Rooms in annex bit spartan but fine for couple of nights.

lollell Mon 29-Jun-09 18:17:24

The YHA at Hartington Hall, Derbyshire is lovely - family rooms in main building like hotel rooms with ensuite facilities, bar and restaurant better than many hotels. Rooms in annex bit spartan but fine for couple of nights.

madm00se Tue 30-Jun-09 09:03:35

I've YHA'd-admitedly not with DD, in UK, Ireland & Canada. We've booked in advance for all of them, and apart from the ones in the UK, and some of them in Ireland, the private rooms we've had, have been the family rooms-private en-suite. When we've been in dorms (normally single sex) there have been seperate male/female bathrooms. Kitchens are VERY well equipped-always enough to go round pots/pans/cutlery wise, and a few YH's actually have a restaurant/cafe offering evening meals-but you do have to pre-order sometimes. Yes we did label our milk and food left in the fridge, I've never stayed in a hostel-even the barest & remotest ones, that's not had a fridge, I think the ones that don't you will find are the mountain hostels-ask what facilities they have. Some hostels have a "curfew" time, normally just after chucking out time from the pub!! The noisiest one I've stayed in was Keswick YH.


newmummy86 Tue 14-Jul-09 20:07:08

I thoroughly recommend YHA holidays. We have been with our daughter since she was 8 months old. We took a monitor and rather than being stuck in a hotel room could use the games room, lounge and bar. The rooms are spartan - a plus in my view as you've got no worries about them breaking things. And don't forget that YHAs are often in the most gorgeous places - last time we ended up with a room overlooking Windermere for pittance. I have wonderful memories of them as a child and always made new friends. Have fun!

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