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Centreparcs for non-driving family

46 replies

SarahWoodruff · 01/01/2022 22:44

Is Centreparcs a stupid place to go on holiday if you don't have a car? I've never been but think DD (nearly 5) would like the swimming and hanging out in the woods. But we'd have to get there by train (from London). So we wouldn't be able to get groceries en route, which judging by previous Mumsnet threads on the subject is essential. Also we'd have to hire a bike for DD when we were there (unless we could manage it plus luggage on the Tube/ train/ taxi journey, which I'm not sure about). Is it doable without a car? And is it worth the effort?

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RampantIvy · 01/01/2022 22:46

How would you get there? I'm not sure many or any are near railway stations. There must be other similar types of holidays with better public transport links.

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Rrrob · 01/01/2022 22:47

I wouldn’t worry about food shopping too much. There is a shop there that is quite reasonably priced. How would you get there from the train station? Taxi?

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Findahouse21 · 01/01/2022 22:47

The centerparcs in Paris is 10 mins on the bus from the main disneyland station. Has an amazing pool and is significantly cheaper than CP in Europe. I would recommend

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Findahouse21 · 01/01/2022 22:48

Sorry, cheaper than CP in the UK

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SouthOfFrance · 01/01/2022 22:48

Are you trying to do it on a tight budget or could you afford to spend a bit more on it? Because you could just buy food in the (overpriced) supermarket, or eat out. And all hire bikes. Taxi to get you from train station to the site? Totally doable just more expensive than it already is.

Where abouts in the country are you? Perhaps people can suggest alternatives to look at.

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Playdoughcaterpillar · 01/01/2022 22:49

You definitely don't need a car once you're in there and there is a supermarket in there but it's expensive. Just hire a bike, don't try and take one, use your spare hands for some essential foodstuffs! Or get a shop when you get off the train and then a cab to CP.

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Hellocatshome · 01/01/2022 22:50

You can just buy food and eat out while you are there and I would prebook a hire bike for DD. You would have to look at how far they are from railway stations (I dont think any are close) and factor in how would you get from the train to the complex which would most likely have to be taxi.

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Playdoughcaterpillar · 01/01/2022 22:50

Second vote for Europe being a lot cheaper but their supermarkets inside are possibly worse. Restaurants cheaper though.

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Terminallysleepdeprived · 01/01/2022 22:53

Depends which CP you want to go to.

They are designed to Benin the middle of nowhere. O know for certain that the sherwood forest one isn't massive accessible on public transport. There are a couple of options for train stations like Mansfield, Worksop and the local stations and then get a taxi out there. The Lake District one is also less than accessible. Not sure about the southern ones.

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littlemisslozza · 01/01/2022 22:56

The supermarkets there are now Co-ops, so the prices aren't too inflated. You'd manage without taking your own groceries.

We hired bikes last time we went, they're not too expensive and great for getting around and generally enjoying exploring. Definitely easier than trying to take your own via public transport.

The swimming is great. Our three DC love the pool and all the rides, especially going outside in the river rapids in the dark when the site is lit up for Christmas! You might want to check height restrictions before you go so you know what she can go on though. The big flumes and the river rapids have restrictions. I think you have to be 122cm to be able to go on absolutely everything.

We've enjoyed a couple of breaks at the Woburn one over the past few years, 3 nights and 4 nights. They've been great but I think a week would be too long if you don't have a car to go off site.

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DollyP23 · 01/01/2022 22:59

The Woburn one is not too far from Flitwick so you could get the train there from London and then taxi without it being a long taxi ride

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Shylo · 01/01/2022 23:00

Woburn is easily accessible by train, the nearer station is flitwick and it’s about 10 minutes drive.

Yes it’s easier to take some self catering essentials but honestly the onsite supermarket is well stocked and I don’t recall it being horrifically overpriced to be honest, a little more expensive sure but not crazy and if you’re mainly going to swim, bike and tramp through the woods then you won’t be spending a fortune on activities so some extra cash on shopping isn’t the end of the world

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Findahouse21 · 01/01/2022 23:01

@Playdoughcaterpillar we found the on site supermarkets expensive in both Paris and Holland, however there were some good deals on breakfast delivery packs and bags of pre purchased shopping which were very reasonable

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OverByYer · 01/01/2022 23:02

You certainly don't need a car when you are there. Getting there will be the tricky thing. Can you do a supermarket delivery to your villa once you are there?

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Bagelsandbrie · 01/01/2022 23:02

We’ve done Thetford (Elveden) before I could drive. You can get the train to Thetford and then it’s about 20 mins via taxi from there - you’d need to book the taxi in advance as being rural Norfolk they’re few and far between! We just hung around the site all week, hired bikes etc. It was really nice although now driving I’m sure it would have been cheaper if I could have driven to the local Tesco rather than using the £££ on-site supermarket all the time.

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gogohm · 01/01/2022 23:03

I would look at the overall cost including transport, food and activities as well as the base price, it might be better to go somewhere more accessible which is as good or better

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ElleGettingBetter · 01/01/2022 23:03

A taxi from Mansfield station to Sherwood Forest would be about £15. From Nottingham train station you’re looking at closer to £50, same from Newark.

Centre parcs don’t allow cars on the village, you park in the car park (or your accommodation depending on the type) and leave it there until the end of your break - there’s no driving round so you don’t need a car when you’re actually there.

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toomuchlaundry · 01/01/2022 23:04

MIL joined us at the Longleat Center Parcs via train. She got a taxi from the station. She travels light, I don’t, so I usually fill the car with stuff.

We don’t take bikes. There used to be a land train. Don’t know if that is still running in COVID times

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NoSquirrels · 01/01/2022 23:04

Woburn was specifically sited to be accessible from London.

You don’t need to take supplies, it’s just more expensive stocking up there than Tesco but not ridiculous at all.

Everyone hires bikes! Go for it.

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WiltedDaffs · 01/01/2022 23:06

DH and I did this before either of us could drive. We went to Elveden. Took a train to Thetford and got a taxi from the station. Once you're there you don't need a car. We ate in the restaurants and bought food from the on-site shop.

You can also get to Woburn forest by train+taxi. Flitwick is the closest station you can easily get to from London. There's also a Tesco across the road from Flitwick station. You could get off the train, do some food shopping and call a taxi from the supermarket.

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user1477249785 · 01/01/2022 23:07

OP Woburn is designed to be accessible for people coming from London with no car. They do a pick up from the station. We used to do it all the time. It's great

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negomi90 · 01/01/2022 23:11

If you don't have a car, do you have a licence? If you can drive, you could rent a car which will give you more options about which one to go to and make it easier to pack lots.

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AHobbyaweek · 01/01/2022 23:12

I have got the train to and from Woburn before and it is easy enough. Last time we went we got a Gousto box and their welcome breakfast type thing and it did most of our groceries.

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Mum090521 · 01/01/2022 23:16

You can hire bikes when you get there at Sherwood Forest and there's a supermarket on site. If you can get there you don't need a car.

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Embracelife · 01/01/2022 23:21

Woburn has ,free c p shuttle bus from flitwick. Easy

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