Something a bit different from my normal posts today as I would like to tell you a little about our recent holiday in Wales. Reviews haven’t really featured on my blog before now, and this post is in no way sponsored. I received no concession from the places that we stayed or visited, but we had such a fantastic time that the ex-travel consultant in me felt the need to share a piece about this stunning place.
Cardigan Bay Holiday Park
Cardigan Bay Holiday Park is a hidden gem. Nestled into the beautiful Pembrokeshire coastline in Wales, about 5 minutes drive from the pretty town of Cardigan. It is a small and peaceful holiday park, featuring smart and well maintained caravans, plus two gorgeous holiday cottages – Smugglers Cottage and Old Millers Cottage.
This was our home for 10 nights in September this year. (If you look carefully you will spot an enormous pile of pool inflatables inside the porch. The joys of travelling with two tots!) This was our second visit to this gorgeous cottage and so it felt like home from home. We were still surprised and touched by the lovely welcome gift that awaited us as we checked in though:
I mean who doesn’t like to be welcomed with a chilled bottle of crisp white wine and a delicious plate of home-made Welsh cakes?
The cottage is very well equipped with a huge homely kitchen, complete with fridge freezer and dishwasher and a large wooden dining table that comfortably seats six. It also has a small but incredibly comfy sofa which I buried myself into on more than one occasion to read an actual book. (Yes other mums – I read a book and everything – feel free to hate me!)
The lounge has two huge sofas and a wooden floor (perfect for sandy little feet that have run in from the beach), a TV and DVD and a small stove style fire feature. There is a large shower room downstairs, and then a further family bathroom with whirlpool bath upstairs. The cottage has three bedrooms, a small but pretty outdoor dining area and last but not least has its own private hot tub. It also has a small lawned front garden which was a favourite for our two, as they ran about collecting pebbles and examining their haul of shells that they had dragged in from the nearby beach.
A travel cot, high-chair, and stair gates were all provided for us as requested.
Holiday Park Facilities
The first thing that drew us back to this amazing place was the fabulous pool. It is sheltered under a glass roof which keeps the heat in and gives it a tropical cove feel when the weather is that bit cooler, but then on warmer days the roof is retracted so that you can feel the sunshine. Granted we haven’t stayed here in the peak months, but on both of our stays here (June and September) the pool has been very relaxed and peaceful. We have quite often been able to enjoy the whole area to ourselves which is a real treat, and the kids loved being able to throw on their swimwear in the cottage and just run across through reception to jump in.
The park also features a friendly reception area where the staff are more than happy to help, a small essentials shop, the family friendly Dolphin Bar and an outdoor seating area overlooking a children’s play park with slides, swings and climbing frames. There is also a small games arcade where The Tots learned the joy that is 2p slot machines. Neither of them really got the concept or aim of it, but they both had a great time shoving lots and lots and lots of “pennies” into the slots as quickly as they could.
At peak times the Dolphin Bar hosts an entertainment programme for all of the family which we didn’t manage to see, but the reports in the visitor book were all sparkling!
The park also has its own amazing Smugglers Restaurant. I say amazing, and I absolutely mean it! It isn’t open every day out of season, and so the first time we stayed here we only ended up discovering the food here on our penultimate night. We were determined to make up for that this time though as this is one of those places where you see the menu and genuinely want to choose about 4 dishes as they all look so nice! The food is honestly delicious, and if you are ever in the area on a Sunday you NEED to go and sample their Sunday lunch. It is quite honestly the best Sunday lunch that we ever tasted. (Yep, sorry Gran.) Word to the wise – Book in advance!
Poppit Sands Beach
One of the highlights of this park is the fact that it is so close to the beach. About 300 yards to be precise. There is a short woodland path which follows a stream down to the sands, and the tots loved exploring and searching for butterflies as we set off carrying our all important buckets, spades and fishing rods. Poppit sands has a small (but excellent) beachside cafe and an RNLI station complete with gift shop which sold the all important beach necessities including crab bait and lines. (And Christmas cards – because Christmas).
The sands themselves are glorious and sweeping. Lots of people bring their dogs to run on the sands and we even saw people riding horses through the surf, but during the summer months they keep sections of the beach just for us two legged folk which meant that it suited everyone. Miss Tot has clearly developed my love of rock-pooling and we found a great sandy spot filled with rock-pools hosting all kinds of tiny fish and shrimps which kept the two of us busy on quite a few mornings.
Days Out & Things To Do
We love the Pembrokeshire area and have visited a lot of the many tourist attractions around and about Cardigan Bay. Each of the following are within around a one hour drive and I can fully recommend them for a family day out. I won’t write much more about them in this post but I may well go on to write a little more about them individually in the future. I will include the links to the websites, but please feel free to ask me to ask me any questions about any or all of the places listed if you hope to visit. I’ll be happy to help!
You can find the Cardigan Holiday Park website here which has so much more information if you would like to know more.
If you’re looking for somewhere new to try for your next UK holiday and you like somewhere peaceful and beautiful but with lots of fun days out within easy reach, I cannot recommend this place enough.
For now though I’ll leave you with a few more of our favourite holiday snaps from this gorgeous place!