November may not be the most appropriate time to discuss holidays but after returning from our half term break away I wanted to share my thoughts on the importance of holidays for me and my family and also give a recommendation based on our experience earlier this year.
Holidays are very precious to me, growing up my mum couldn’t afford to take the 4 of us away. I think the first and only family holiday we had was when I was about 13 and even then only came about because my older brother and sister were working and help support the household. Given this I am so grateful that we in such a privileged position to be able take our kids away. For me the experience of visiting and exploring somewhere new, getting out and about ,enjoying fresh air and most importantly spending quality time together as a family can’t be stated enough. The lives of a parent can, at times feel like it is just moving between tasks, just to ensure that the wheels keep moving. Some days for me just feel like they go through the cycle of: Wake up- great dressed-School drop off- go to work – cook dinner- bed time. It’s a routine that I know some of you will be familiar with and I would hazard a guess that I am not the only one who feels a massive amount of guilt about not being able to find enough quality time for the kids. I guess that’s life though and we all have to do what we need to get by but for me it just places a greater significance on our family holidays.
My wife and I are the sort of people who have to have the next holiday lined up as soon as we return from the last one and with the last holiday diminishing to nothing but a memory, we are trawling the internet and harassing travel agents as we speak! The primary reason for this meticulous future planning: money. We like a lot of families, don’t have a lot of money available to spend on holidays and this year was no exception but we managed to afford to get away by embracing a great British tradition: The seaside Caravan Holiday and you know what? We have had some of the best holidays ever as a result!
We decided to head north as we had found a deal that was too good to turn down and it just so happened to be at the same caravan site where my wife and I had our first ever holiday together: (aww, ain’t I sweet!) Cayton Bay, just outside of Scarborough https://www.park-resorts.com/holiday-parks/yorkshire/cayton-bay/
The first thing to praise is the location as you are not far from loads of great places to get out and about. It is 5 minutes away from Scarborough with two great beaches and a brilliant Sea Life centre which is well worth a visit! I can also recommend a trip to Whitby which is about 40 minutes away and famous for being the landing place of Dracula in Bram Stoker’s story. You won’t be short of reminders but don’t let that put you off it is a picturesque town with possibly the best fish and chips around!
The site itself is compact but not short on facilities. There is a decent sized swimming pool with water slides and shallow area for the littler ones, the only thing I would have liked is a distinct changing area as the current changing facilities are cubicles at the side of the pool so during busy periods you found yourself waiting a while but this is a minor thing. The play area and 5 aside pitch are excellent and the kids spent hours playing there. There is a massive beach opposite the site but it is quite a steep walk downhill with a some steps to contend with and can be difficult to navigate if the tide is in.
I also have to mention how great the evening entertainment was for the kids. There was something on for them every night ranging from kids discos to character shows and games. The staff are brilliant and very inclusive of all the kids there so no-one felt left out. On the negative side and I think this needs to be mentioned as cost was one of the determining factors for doing this holiday, drinks are quite expensive in the clubhouse. We kind of expected it as the customer base is a captive audience. It didn’t really matter that much to us as we would usually head back to the caravan and get the kids in bed after the children’s entertainment had finished but if you were intending on staying out for the night I would recommend making sure you have plenty of cash!
I understand that a caravan holiday may not be to everyone’s taste and I would be lying if I said that we wouldn’t consider getting on a jet plane should money not have been an issue, but the fact of the matter is that we had a week filled with wonderful memories for the princely sum of £430 and I don’t think anyone could argue that wasn’t value for money.
Written by Andy Kapadia