A few weeks ago, at the beginning of May, we took a trip down to the Dorset coast for a little caravan holiday. Having read about the wonderful antics Deborah and Teddy Robinson got up to in their caravan, Rosalie was quite excited to be staying in one herself.
We were travelling down on Bank Holiday Monday, but by the time I’d packed the car (no easy task), we missed any traffic so had a smooth run through to the New Forest where we stopped for a picnic lunch, in Burley. We wandered into the village where we sampled and bought some fudge, then had ice cream before getting rained on – it wouldn’t be a British holiday without ice creams in the rain though now would it?
We arrived at our caravan (we stayed at Hoburne Park) late afternoon and were so impressed – it was spacious, light and modern. The living area was huge with lots of lovely sofas, a TV and an electric fire. The kitchen had a huge fridge-freezer and a full oven.
Rosalie went straight off to explore the bedrooms and chose one for her and Teddy – she was thrilled her room had two beds, and the first night she and ted slept in separate beds! She was very excited and bedtime was a little late that first night.
I was impressed that we had two toilets! Who’d have thought they could cram so much into such a small space! I was even more impressed when I used the shower in the morning – hot and powerful, that I was not expecting. I guess caravans have advanced a bit since I last stayed in one, probably around 20 years ago…
Having checked the weather forecast it looked like Tuesday was going to be the best day for sunshine, so we headed down to Avon Beach. It was sunny, but the wind was cold and the sea was even colder (I’m reliably informed, I didn’t paddle). Rosalie was happy to play for an hour or so before realising she was actually quite cold. We had taken our beach tent so that’s where Matilda and I were hiding out.
Jim and Rosalie went swimming in the caravan park pool to warm up before dinner, whilst Matilda and I hung out in the caravan with the fire on.
We asked Rosalie what she’d really like to do on her holiday, and, apart from the beach (done) and eating ice cream, she really wanted to go to a farm park. So we drove over to Farmer Palmer’s Farm Park for a very full day out – we were the last people to leave, they practically had to kick us out.
There’s so much for little ones to do at Farmer Palmer’s – animals, playgrounds, soft play, slides, sand, tractors. Rosalie really enjoyed the slides which involved climbing straw bales and shooting off the end into a big pile of straw! So much fun!
There were feeding times for some of the animals but what Rosalie most wanted to do was guinea pig handling – look at her little face, Florence the guinea pig was so soft.
After a long day at Farmer Palmer’s we thought a slightly more relaxed day would be good, so we decided to take a look at Christchurch. It was bloomin’ chilly – I’m not ashamed to admit that I wore gloves in May. We strolled around, found a park for Rosalie to have a play in, ate some fish and chips (had to be done), fended off some hungry seagulls, took a look at the castle and got some ice cream.
This is how Matilda spent most of the holiday…
Amazingly we managed to get the car packed up and check out on time – it was a squeeze but we did it! Rosalie was very sad to leave her room in the caravan, she had such a fun time, but the promise of a Gruffalo trail seemed to convince her leaving the caravan was a good idea.
We stopped at Moores Valley Country Park on our way home to do the new augmented reality Gruffalo trail – it was a lot of fun, and although the pictures aren’t great quality, I’ve shared a few so you can see what it’s like.
We only intended to pop in for an hour or so, but there is so much to do at Moores Valley that we ended up staying most of the day. There is a wonderful play trail with some seriously fantastic wooden play structures to explore. There’s also an adventure playground, or two and a train. We sampled the restaurant for lunch and the food was delicious if a little pricey.
Oh look, Matilda was there with us…
We had all been struggling a bit before the holiday, but it was so nice to spend some quality time away together – away from all those niggling house chores – and give Rosalie lots of attention.
I definitely came back feeling refreshed, but it seems like ages ago already, I’m about ready for another one!