With the great British break in demand this summer and beyond, Laura French rounds up the best options for families.
Ride the waves in Devon
North Devon seems to have been made for families, with a raft of child-friendly attractions to entertain alongside cobbled villages, scenic hiking trails and powder-sand beaches. 29 Bay excels on the last, drawing surfers and bodyboarders to ride its frothing waves, with a wide stretch of soft, golden sand. For a well-located, idyllic place to rest your head, Oliver’s Travels recommends Beach Bay Cottage, which sleeps up to eight and boasts a hot tub and outdoor terrace that’s ideal for long summer evenings.
Book it: A week at Beach Bay Cottage in October half-term starts at £2,436.
Stay at Haven without the crowds
Haven fans will be pleased to hear its parks reopened on July 6 – albeit with a difference. The new Haven Hideaway breaks mean the usual activities, restaurants and entertainment offerings won’t be running, but guests will be able to stay at a cheaper rate with a focus on exploring the great outdoors. Recommend the Seashore park near Great Yarmouth, with boating activities on the Norfolk Broads close by.
Book it: A three-night Haven Hideaway break at Seashore starts at £279 per family based on four sharing a standard two-bedroom caravan from July 31, or from £327 on August 7.
Go walking in the Brecon Beacons
For active families keen to get out there and make the most of the UK’s natural beauty, Wales has plenty going for it. HF Holidays has a seven-night Family Walking Adventure taking guests on daily walks in the hills and interspersed with family-friendly activities, from toasting marshmallows to playing croquet.
Book it: From £999 per person, including full-board accommodation, guided walks and transport.
Hit the rides at Alton Towers
Alton Towers is back in action, including its resort hotel and the majority of its outdoor attractions; from Rita, the cheek-sucking, G-Force-pumping rollercoaster, to CBeebies Land, home of Postman Pat and the Teletubbies. Visitors will need to pre-book tickets online (from £34 a day) and there’ll be a cap on numbers – but that means more space and shorter queuing times, so highlight the plus points.
Book it: Just outside the resort is Bespoke Hotels’ Stone House. A one-night Welcome Back Break starts from £89 per room, including breakfast and a £30 food and drink voucher.
Sleep in a Scottish castle
For an elaborate stay amid the tumbling hills of Scotland, suggest Glenapp Castle, a turreted, fairytale-like mansion in Ayrshire. It offers more than 60 activities – from perfume-making to mountain biking. But the highlight has to be the Hebridean sea safari, which takes guests on a luxury private boat to explore the remote Hebrides islands, and throws in a private
dinner and exclusive glamping experience.
Book it: Nightly rates for a Garden View Suite sleeping four start at £415 per room, including breakfast.