With our kids tucked up in bed inside the caravan, my wife and I made the most of a relaxing dip – minus the obstacles of little elbows and feet – with a drink as the sun went down over Torbay.
We were on a mini break at Beverley Holiday Park at Paignton, South Devon. Anyone with kids will know that short trips to holiday parks can be hectic.
There are pools to jump in and splash about, dance workshops to jiggle at, mini golf to argue over and little ones want to do… everything!
So after busy days enjoying the dozens of activities on site, this hot tub up on the hillside felt like our very own spa.
Beverley Holidays has been providing a warm welcome to funseekers on the English Riviera for 60 years.
Its founder, Joseph Stanley Jeavons, was a lifetime supporter of Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and named the resort after Joy Beverley from the Beverley Sisters, who was married to Wolves captain Billy Wright.
The resort is also a favourite of comedian Alan Carr’s family who took many trips here when he was a child, always staying in the same caravan.
While its roots are in traditional family fun, it’s certainly moved with the times.
Throughout the school holidays Beverley Holidays runs its own Be-Active programme, with activities every hour from 10am.
Featuring some seriously cool stuff for all the family, there’s zorbing, kids’ pamper sessions, killer pool and darts tournaments, plus there is a state-of-the- art virtual reality experience, transporting tech-lovers to lands far beyond the imagination (£7.50).
We signed up for a couple of activities a day including Water Walkers (hand-powered pedalos) and a pirate adventure.
If you fancy doing your own thing, there’s a choice of pools, a gym, a soft play area and mini golf.
There’s also an on-site shop, which is useful for stocking up on essentials.
When you don’t feel like cooking, there’s the Jetty lounge bar and terrace, with wonderful sea views and a great choice of family favourites and hearty grub.
On the first day, we had just sat down on the sunbeds by the pool to enjoy some freshly sizzled hotdogs and burgers from the barbecue when a commotion erupted over the other side.
Our children, Layla, six, and Ralph, three, began dragging us in its general direction.
Resort mascots Beverley Bear and Sandy Starfish had arrived on the scene and a queue was already forming to get those all-important selfies with the celebrities of the holiday park world.
Little did we know that this bouncing twosome would hold such power over our kids during our stay.
When the furry pair bounded on stage at the Starlight Bar and entertainment lounge that evening, everyone below the height of a vacuum cleaner zoomed to the dance floor in anticipation of the “shake down” party games.
We then got the chance to sit back and watch the hilarious scenes unfold as the kids raced to pass a beach ball along each line, through their legs and over their heads like their lives depended on it.
Beverley Holidays’ own entertainment team then took to the stage, performing an array of professional shows, including Pop Goes The Movies, a jukebox-style production featuring hit after hit.
If, like us, Beverley and Sandy become your kids’ brand new besties – for life in our case – you can enjoy a Disney-style character breakfast with them in the restaurant. This pretty area of South Devon is brimming with fun attractions and options for day trips.
Stretching down into a small valley, over four acres, the miniature world of Babbacombe Model Village will bring out the big kid in anyone.
From the set of Eastenders to little fishing villages and battle scenes with knights and fire-breathing dragons, the detail is mind blowing.
If you like thrills and spills, there’s Devon’s biggest theme park, Crealy Adventure Park, boasting over 60 rides and attractions, animals and live shows.
Beverley Holidays is also ideally located for some bucket and spade fun down on the beaches.
At Goodrington, there’s a terracotta sweep of sand lined with colourful beach huts.
Meanwhile Paignton has its pier, rows of amusement arcades and waterplay features on the front.
Plus at Torquay, there’s the big wheel and the Living Coasts penguin park and aquarium in a spectacular setting, right on the cliff edge.
Accommodation options at very popular on the park Beverley Holidays, Devon, include pitches from £14 per night and three/four night breaks in caravans from £149 and lodges from £342.
To book visit Beverley-holidays.co.uk, call 01803 843887 or email [email protected]
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