Center Parcs - Winter 2020

That's another Center Parcs trip that's come to an end!

I always feel so sad when we get home from Center Parcs because there's something so peaceful about being there.

Anyway, I like to document our family adventures, so I thought it would be nice to write about our trip that we are just home from and to give a bit of an insight as to what activities we got up to whilst we were there!


What park did we go to?

I'm quite a creature of habit, as you may know, so I like to be familiar with where I go. I'm not big on going to new places, at least not often anyway. So, we opted for Elveden Forest, in Suffolk, which is where we've been for the last two years. The first time we visited, I wrote about it here, and the second time is here.

Elveden Forest, is also the only park that we've been to in the UK, as before when we've visited Center Parcs, we visited one of the parks in France.

We went with some of our friends, which was a lot of fun. We had managed to perfectly plan out when we did our activities and everything seemed to just flow. 

Getting ready to go

Naturally, I'm a planner. I like to be organised. Things might not always go to plan when I organise, but I like to think that I've tried. 

I recently wrote out a blog post about how to prepare for a Center Parcs holiday, because with enough planning, it can make the trip much smoother...and much more cost effective.

I had written my usual packing lists before I'd started packing, and had successfully managed to condense as much as I could in a small amount of bags. 

One of the best things that I think I packed was my wild bird seed and nuts. We had so much wildlife, so it was nice to know that we were feeding them things that wouldn't harm them.





What did we do?

As this isn't our only Center Parcs trip this year, we didn't want to book too many activities. We ended up mostly booking activities for Edith that we hadn't tried before.

You may have known that I wrote about activities for under 2's at Center Parcs, well this time we made sure to take advantage of some of them and give them a go. On our next visit, Edith will be two, so hang tight for a blog post about appropriate activities for her age!

So, the activities that we booked for Edith are:

Mucky Pups

Edith is quite accustomed to getting her hands dirty and taking part in crafts. She loves it, so it seemed only fitting that we book her on. 

Some of the activities included food play, such as baked beans, spaghetti and porridge. Funnily enough, Edith did not want to play in this section, but I think that's because we don't encourage food play at home. 

There were also various painting stations, water play, sand play and play dough play. There was a big variety, all very nicely spaced out and it was completely child led, apart from some singing towards the end. 


At the end of the session, anything that Edith had created was left in a drying rack that we could then collect by the end of the day.

Soccer Play

Edith loves playing with a football. She loves kicking them and looks so pleased with herself when she plays. So, we thought it might be a good idea to book her on. 

She loved it! She took part and seemed to enjoy running around, although she did try stealing other children's balls...oops! 



There were various activities to take part in, such as tunnels, balancing, and at the end there was a penalty shoot out. 

Musical Mini Movers

I was convinced that Edith would absolutely love this. However, Max tells me to the contrary. I wasn't actually present for this activity, as I was having a much deserved and needed break in the spa - sorry Max!

However, Max did tell me that there were various different activities, which were teacher-led. Including using musical instruments and singing. 

I think Edith has been so used to going to Story Imagin-ory, that the layout was very different for her so she wasn't as happy to take part!

Aqua Sana Spa

Oh my goodness. I hadn't been on a spa day since before I was pregnant with Edith, so let me tell you how much I didn't realise that I needed it!

It was heavenly. As I'd never been to the spa at Center Parcs before, I wasn't really sure what to expect, or what I was missing out on. As soon as your set foot in the door, the relaxing smells instantly hit you. I was so excited. 



Nat and I had booked on to a half spa day, which included brunch (which was delicious), robe and towel hire and access to the spa facilities. I had also booked a scalp massage as an extra. 

We started our morning at 10am, and finished at 2pm. It's definitely somewhere I'd go again, because there was such a variety of relaxation rooms available. If you know me, I'm very much a steam room kind of girl, and there were just so many to take advantage of!

Cabana

The first time we booked a Cabana in the swimming pool area, we loved it. So, this time, as we were going with a baby and a toddler, it seemed a good idea to have a real pit stop in the swimming pool rather than a towel on a chair. 

We love getting the cabana's in the pool, and it's something that we do on one day of our trip. We typically plan to have the day with the cabana, as the day that we have a pool day. 



Within the cost of the cabana you get bottled soft drinks in the fridge for the amount of people that you have rented the cabana for (6 or 8). You have your own lockable safe and also have access to some inflatables to use during your time in your cabana (3hrs). 

What did we do for food?

I like to keep our trips cost down to a minimum, so we don't eat out too much when we visit. However, we did have our last meal at Hucks, which was delicious and it seemed the right way to celebrate our last night on holiday. 

Whilst we were away, it was also Shrove Tuesday, but instead of eating pancakes at The Pancake House on tuesday, we had brunch the next day. I don't think any of my Center Parcs trips now would be complete without a trip to the Pancake House. The strawberries and cream stack is to die for!



Generally though, we at all of our meals at out lodge. Max did a small food shop whilst we were there at a local supermarket and picked up enough food for lunch and dinner. We stuck to things like beans on toast for lunch, and then I'd cook dinner.

So, that's our Center Parcs Winter trip!

Thanks, lovelies.

A.x


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