Europe

A great holiday in Brittany with teenagers – Al Fresco Domaine des Ormes

Jets and fountains at the Dome Domaine des Ormes

Domaine des Ormes holiday parc review – a breakdown of the parc in northern France, and some of the day trips we did with our teenagers in October 2021 half term. Activities on offer at Domaine des Ormes with Al Fresco Holidays, plus what there is for families with older children to do.

Why cheesy holidays are good for your soul

Family travel tips - find a good water park

A long time ago, I used to write in the voice of my child. A bizarre concept, I admit, but it made me laugh, and preserved my memories. It made other people laugh too. Either that or they all commented because they were building their own fledgling blogs, just as I was, and needed the visits! I like to think it was the former. Anyway, I was cleaning up my draft posts – organising the loft, as it were – and I came across this. I think she was around 6 years old. It made me smile. So indulge me, …

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Ski: Tips for doing The Luge Toboggan Run in Val Thorens

Tips for surviving the Luge toboggan run in Val Thorens

  If you’ve always fancied taking a family ski or snowboarding holiday, then Val Thorens is the perfect place to start. Our kids get very excited about our ski trips, and it’s a complete joy to share the antics of the day with them after a long session on the slopes. But even though they love the skiing, children sometimes need a break, or a change of scenery during a week’s holiday. For ours it can be a lazy afternoon in the apartment, or a swim in the hotel pool. But one of the highlights of their holiday in Val …

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Travel: Top 10 activities at Duinrell holiday park

A lovely traditional carousel provides the centrepiece for the pancake house at Duinrell

Our summer holiday this year took us on a family week to Duinrell holiday park, in the Netherlands. We’ve done a lot of campsite holidays, and several with Canvas, but this was probably the most successful of all of them. And it wasn’t due to the weather! Duinrell is a bit different in that – once you’ve paid for your accommodation – you have a range of rather unusual on-site activities included in the price, including access to a full-scale theme park! We honestly could have spent the whole week on site. Here are our top 10 things to do …

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Travel: What we loved about the Tikibad water park in Duinrell!

The terrifying (and wedgie-giving) Pelican slide at the Tikibad in Duinrell Holiday Park is not to be missed!

Without a doubt, the main reason you will stay at Duinrell is the Tikibad. Aside from the fact that it is a genius addition to a park where the weather isn’t always of the beach variety, it is quite simply the most fun you will ever have in a soggy swimsuit. I’m not the biggest fan of water parks since passing the hedonistic age of 21, preferring to stay dry and warm, and to keep all my belongings where I can see them. But I was the first to beg for another day at the Tikibad, once I’d sampled the …

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Travel: The day a seagull stole my lunch.

Seagulls. What big fat bullies they are! I knew they were cheeky, having frequently been in a near-miss swoop confrontation; I even knew that they were clever enough to flock to tourist traps for easy pickings, having once lost a chip at the beach in St Ives. Put down your doughnut at Felixstowe beach and someone else is sure to help themselves. But hats off to the Dutch gulls – they have it all figured out. It was on a day trip to the beach, not far from Duinrell holiday park, in the Netherlands, that we first crossed paths with what can …

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Travel: Food Inspired by our Travels

Crayfish starter #TasteofTravel

  Restaurant in Honfleur, France What’s the best part of a holiday for you? Lounging by the pool with a cocktail? Swimming in a perfect sea, on champagne sand? The spectacular view at the top of a canyon, or the rush of adrenalin as you ski down snow-capped peaks? I’ve been lucky enough to experience all of these, and more, and still have a bucket list I could never hope to complete. But you know what all of those pleasures have in common? Food. Whether it’s a thickly-buttered warm baguette, oozing strawberry jam, after a long hard day on the …

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Why You Should Plan a Weekend in L’Estartit on the Costa Brava

Visiting L'Estartit during the Medes Islands Pirates and Corsairs festival

When you think of a weekend break, it usually involves the car. If you do decide to venture further afield, maybe the Eurostar. You don’t generally think of getting on a flight to Spain. Especially with the kids. But you should. Oh, you really, really should. Here’s how we managed a family weekend in L’Estartit, on the Costa Brava.   How to make the most of a weekend in L’Estartit A few weeks ago I picked up the kids from school on a Friday afternoon, and headed down to Gatwick. Less than 2 hours after take-off, our Vueling flight touched …

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Simple but delicious: food on the Costa Brava

Catalan food - Surf and Turf Paella

Mummy, I’m on fire! And he was – kind of. As part of our weekend break on the Costa Brava we took a drive out to the gorgeously secluded La Vinyeta for a spectacularly different kind of dinner. As we pulled into the privately-owned vineyard, the sun was setting over the vines, and the distinctive smell of a wine cellar wafted over to us. Olives and grapes mingled in the fields, and we paused to squeeze and inhale the aroma of the fruits as we wandered down to the kitchens.   Catalan food to please the whole family. The wonderful chef Jordi …

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A half-term family holiday in France is closer than you think

It’s snowing. Again. I’m bored now, and instead of the excitement of a glittering white blanket of silence outside, all I see out of my bedroom window is another long day indoors. I might momentarily relish the slothful prospect of staying in pj’s, but such thrill soon dissolves, to be replaced by sibling quarrels as dirty as the grey slush which lines the gutters. What I need now is a holiday, or at least the delicious anticipation of spending my half-term break somewhere warm, with a great pool, lots to do, and close to a fabulous beach. The May half-term …

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The food in Brittany – not just your usual crêpe!

Devouring a plate of “Citron Chantilly” (that’s lemon and sweet whipped cream to the likes of you and me) didn’t take me long, and the Bug wolfed down his Apple and Caramel version with equal gusto. But whilst M&D enjoyed their savoury versions (galettes, if you need to know) they marvelled at the 199 possible compositions of this mealtime staple and dessert treat of Brittany on offer at the Crêperie Mariniere in Trévignon. But the food in Brittany is not just about these gorgeous pancake confections. Oh no no no no noooo…… There is more! And here is just a …

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Why we’re definitely booking another Siblu holiday

We came home just as the weather turned bad again! Our ridiculous timing took us out of the country just as the sunshine arrived for its week long holiday in the UK. That in itself would be sufficient to see M&D booking another Siblu holiday, but that isn’t the driving factor. Is it the splash park my brother and I spent long hours in, only being dragged away when our teeth were chattering with cold, and then only for as long as it took to eat yet another French ice-cream? The gorgeous beaches, wide enough to find our own space – no …

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Why parents not only can, but should take their kids to the Catalunya Vineyards

  As I climbed out of the air-conditioned car the heat walloped me in the face and my eyes screwed tight against the sun’s glare over the vines. I reluctantly handed over my games console and prepared for the boredom to kick in. Our holiday in Catalunya was underway, but as far as I was concerned it wouldn’t begin until we got to our campsite on the Costa Brava, so for now I was planning to be a grumpy 6-going-on-13-year-old. Catalunya vineyards Champage it is not! (Legally anyway) We had visited the Codorniu vineyards and wine cellars at Sant Sadurni …

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