Our trip to Butlins – half term week one.
Normally I wouldn’t be able to talk about the first week of the Easter holidays. (Or the second as a matter of fact) Because simply, we don’t ever really do anything.
I am not a mum who has days out planned and fun and exciting things happen every day. BUT. At the beginning of the year, as a family we made the decision that we would not be holidaying abroad this year. Last year we took the children to Crete for 2 weeks. We had a lovely time don’t get me wrong, but 2 weeks of sleeping in the same room as your 7 year old and 8 month old is enough to put you off holidays for LIFE. We decided that we were going to holiday in the UK. Lots of fun weekends away instead of one big holiday. Being cramped up with the kids in one room is more acceptable for 2 nights than 14. Especially when the youngest is such a light sleeper, that even me rolling over in bed wakes him up! Still. We need some family time and to just “Turn Off” working life.
So we kicked our Easter break off with a trip to Butlins. We opted for the site at Skegness as its only around an hour and a half away, so not too long in the car for the kids. Plus we have been before and know the site. We booked ahead in January so got a pretty good deal for a 2 bedroom room, with breakfast and dinner (tea if your northern) for a very good price of around £300 for a Friday to Monday stay in half term for two adults and two children.
We ran into a small problem on the Thursday before we arrived, Fred became unwell, and a quick trip to the doctor was diagnosed with tonsillitis and a mild ear infection. He was prescribed antibiotics, the only problem was that they needed to be kept in the fridge, and we had booked a room, not an apartment, so there would be no fridge in our room.
As soon as we arrived we popped into Discover Butlins and explained the situation. The staff very kindly said we could hire a fridge for free for the weekend as it was for medical reasons. (You can hire a fridge normally for £15 for the duration of your stay). I thought this was brilliant customer service.
The entertainment for the kids is fantastic and the staff work so hard, there is always something going on. The food is good for the price, plenty of choice of cooked meals and fresh salad. Fish and chips on a Friday is a must, the fish was HUGE.
They have changed things around since the last time we visited and I must say that it works much better. Before, you had to queue for hours as all of the good evening entertainment happened in the REDS bar. People would start lining up 2 hours before the venue opened just to get a table near the front. They have now changed it so that the entertainment is spread across 2 venues, meaning that now people aren’t spending more time in a queue and are spending greater time enjoying themselves.
We got to see a McBusted tribute act and a Little Mix tribute act (Salute) on the Friday and Saturday night respectively. Ruby thoroughly enjoyed them both. Fred on the other hand, slept through the whole of both shows in his pram. Nothing on the entertainment I might add, simply way past his 6.30pm bed time. The water park is an absolute must visit too, a lovely area for the little ones to swim and play, a huge pool for everyone, water slides, and a lazy river made 2 very enjoyable days.
We also signed up for a pottery painting class for the children. They each got to pick out their own piece of pottery and paint it for a small fee of £5 per child. Fred didn’t last very long with this task. So after getting more paint on himself, and the table, than on his pottery, I packed him up and we went to watch the skyline gang in the main tent. Ruby stayed and finished her painting with Dad. They get to keep their pottery at the end, so now we have two very artistic money boxes in the shape of a trainer and a football, adorning the children’s windowsills.
Luckily for us, we had a good spate of weather, and managed to have a relaxing walk around the site. We meandered up to the beach and the iconic Butlins deckchair. Really making the most of the weekend, we crammed as much in as possible. We visited Scoop, the ice-cream parlor for a frozen treat. I had peanut brittle ice-cream on a warm waffle. It was absolutely delicious. There are so many flavors to choose from! The only thing we ran out of time for, was hiring a cycle. I’m pretty sure Fred would have been too small for that anyway.
We left early on Monday morning for Dad to get back to work, but you are able to stay on site until 11am. (Vacating your room by 10am). We could have gone swimming again if we fancied. After a busy weekend of late nights, dancing, and all round enjoyment, the kids were ready for home and I was ready to tackle the mountain of washing!
Checkout is super fast. You just drop your room key off as you drive out of the site.
All round great entertainment and value. We are all now looking for the next weekend away. If you have any suggestions of great places to go, let me know in the comments.