It feels good to be open

Wow, it’s nearly one month since we opened our North Devon holiday parks’ doors and it feels good to be open.

For most of the country 12th April was a long-awaited for date in the roadmap to ease lockdown in England. It was a delayed start to the season before we could welcome families back to the seaside, to top it off the sunshine arrived. We think pretty good timing, don’t you?

Our springtime holidays in April have been packed with activities, swimming, beach days and time spent in the great outdoors. So it’s no wonder we have happily welcomed over 2,200 families away on holiday across our 4 Woolacombe Holiday Parks. We wanted to share exactly what these holidays have looked like:

Longer sunnier days

The skies have been blue, the sun has been shining bright and the days have been longer. It seems April is the perfect month for beach days. Voted as England’s best beach with 3 miles of pristine golden sands, the RNLI lifeguarded beach on our doorstep has been the perfect location for our guests to get outside for a breath of fresh air at the coast again.

Sunset from Woolacombe Sands beach in April 2021

Food delivered directly to their door

Our guests have browsed the menus in the comfort of their accommodation along with the convenience of ordering and paying on our ‘Woolacombe To Me’ app. Who wants to be hanging around whilst on holiday? We know that holiday time is important so we have added the option of free of charge delivery. Over 45% of guests who stayed with us so far have opted to have food delivered right to their accommodation door, socially distanced of course.

Food delivery directly to your door, Woolacombe Bay Holiday Park

Swimming every day of their holiday

Many guest have taken advantage of our swimming pools, with bookable pool sessions, our guests have been able to swim on every full day of their holiday. It was so successful in 2020, that our pools continue to be bookable to secure your preferred swim time. All swimming sessions are available to book from 12 hours before the desired swim time.

Castaways Fun Pool, Woolacombe Bay Holiday Park

Planned days with activities booked in advance

We know how important planned holidays days can be. New for 2021 our guests have been the first guests to book their holiday facilities 14 days before the day of activity. This gives everyone plenty of time to check out the weather and plan those perfect action-packed holiday days.

Wavesurfer surfing simulator. Golden Coast Holiday Park

Reopening of facilities closed in 2020

It’s been a busy winter for our teams, putting together extensive plans for 2021 and we are pleased to be able to safely reopen a number of our facilities that we were not able to offer in 2020. But best of all. we open these facilities knowing it’s a safe environment for everyone. So back with a bang, our April arrivals have been the first to experience the return of our:

Bungee trampoline

Our super-sized trampolines are finally open for guests to bounce to new heights. Our highly trained Instructors will be there to guide our guests, as they personalise each bounce to each person. That way you can be certain to feel comfortable every step of the way.

Bungee trampoline (Shutterstock)

Spa treatments

This is what relaxing holidays are all about, our experienced therapists are back, offering a variety of calming treatments. So whether you can spare 25 or 55 minutes our spa therapists offer a truly relaxing, safe experience for everyone.

Segway safari

Our ever-popular Segway safari is back and exploring has never felt so good as you explore our safari course on 2 wheels. Our highly skilled instructors will soon have you zipping through the Segway safari course. This is certainly, a holiday experience to remember.

Segway safari, Woolacombe Bay Holiday Park

High ropes course

Our high ropes adventure has proved to be a guest favourite in previous years. So it’s felt good to open back up again for guests to swing from obstacle to obstacle. Once everyone is safely strapped in, it’s time to tackle this aerial course. Our high ropes course is one for thrill-seekers, wanting to take on new heights.

Climbing walls

Climbing to new heights is back. So take the climb up our walls with three different levels of difficulty to take on. Will you make it to the top of all 3?

Rock climbing wall – Golden Coast Holiday Village

Full steam family holidays ahead

It’s been a busy month on Park and we cannot wait to open all of our facilities as of 17th May… fingers crossed. So it’s come as no surprise to us that a whopping 98% of guests who completed our survey after they stayed said they’d come back. It’s looking like an action-packed season for us. So if you’re looking for a seaside staycation next to England’s best beach, don’t leave it too long or you might miss out. It’s been a great month here on the Parks and it feels good to be open!

Click here to book now!

Posted in Holidays and Events, Our Parks
Barricane Beach in Woolacombe

From roadmap to open road trip

As things open up from 12th April, it’s fast approaching so we’re all getting excited to start socialising and going away. Whilst it may feel too soon to start packing sun cream and swimsuits, it’s safe to say we’re not far from it!

April 2020 was the sunniest on record, according to the Met Office’s climate statistics. Although we can’t guarantee the weather, the stats are leaning in our favour. Which couldn’t come at a better time, with all the outdoor facilities that we will be opening.  

Barricane Beach in Woolacombe
Barricane Beach in Woolacombe, voted one of best in Britain

Here’s what you can expect to be open if you’re arriving between 12th April to 16th  May 2021

  • Indoor heated swimming pools including toddler water play areas at two Parks and the two tallest waterslides on any holiday resort in Devon at Twitchen House Holiday Park, so there’ll be splashtastic free pool fun every day.
  • The outdoor pools following on 8th May as planned including all their water slides and water features.
  • Indoor gym at Woolacombe Bay, along with the outdoor gyms at most other Parks and trim trail at Golden Coast, so now your fitness regime can restart there’s no need to take a pause in it.
  • The spa at Woolacombe Bay isn’t fully open when but you can still take in a soothing body or beauty treatment with our qualified therapists
  • Outdoor sports facilities with a long list including: 
  • Outdoor nature activities – the Rangers are back at Twitchen House Holiday Park and are “ready to ramble”.
  • Outdoor children’s play areas, sports fields and adventure golf courses are all open for unlimited free run!

All these facilities are going to be ready to use as soon as you’ve checked into your self-contained accommodation. It’s also worth a mention that because all of our accommodation is self-contained. That means indoor facilities are not shared by other households. You don’t have to wait to take an overnight leisure stay if you stay self-catering. That’s unlike hotels, hostels and B&B’s which cannot open until 17th May at the earliest. You do however need to stick to your household bubble indoors, and the Rule of 6 or two households outdoors.

Outdoor fun pool at Golden Coast Holiday Park in Woolacombe open from May
Outdoor heated pool at Golden Coast Holiday Park

Pit stop in between all the fun to eat and drink

We can’t open our bars, pubs and restaurants to eat in, but when the weather’s fine there’ll be outdoor dining with table service on our sea view and poolside terraces. Because access into the venues is not alloweed, you need to order and pay on our app ‘Woolacombe To Me’. Our team will bring your food and drinks out directly to you. The rules around substantial meals being needed with an alcoholic drink are expected to be removed. You can also order for click-and-collect takeaway at a time slot to suit you, You can even order from your accommodation for socially distanced delivery to your front door. Fancy breakfast in bed or a break from the dishes?

Fast forward to 17th May

We can count on even more freedom and lighter Spring days. This is when we can welcome our camping and touring guests back to our campsites with full toilet and shower facilities available. The numbers of social contact also increase, to the Rule of 6 or two households indoors (subject to review) and up to 30 outdoors. All just in time for the opening of these Indoor facilities:

  • Daytime and evening live entertainment like your favourite pantomimes, live acts, and most importantly bingo! 
  • Amusements including arcades, cinemas, soft play areas and pottery painting studios. 
  • Indoor sports facilities including bowling, indoor bowls and pool tables. 
  • Wellness facilities including saunas, steam rooms and thermal suites. 
  • Food & drink venues like all-day café bars, pubs and entertainment lounges. 

All our amusement arcades will be open over our 4 Holiday Parks along with all of our soft play areas. Because of restrictions lifting you can also expect to see an abundance of local food and drink venues open here in Woolacombe. Along with local attractions and family days out around North Devon.  

Opening from 21st June

If everything goes to plan, any remaining restrictions will be lifted. Which means, we can all mix freely with our friends and family again. Finally, we can all say goodbye to isolation and hello to staycation

Sunset over the Atlantic Ocean in North Devon
Miles of open horizon, sea view sunsets are always best in the South West

You can always find the latest official guidance at gov.uk/coronavirus as things can change after this post was published.

Posted in Our Parks
Devon holiday park swimming pool

5 things that changed for the better

The last 14 months have been tough bringing major changes to all our lives, not all for the better. Restrictions stopping us from meeting loved ones and doing things we most enjoy. Spring brings longer, warmer days and lots of green shoots with multiple vaccines rolled out and testing readily available. We’ve now too a roadmap of when we can start getting life back to normal.

We too have made some changes on our four Devon Holiday Parks to keep our guests and team members safe. Some of those changes are here to stay, but all for the right reasons. 

1. Better guest experience on arrival

I caught up with some of the leaders in the business to get their thoughts on the positive changes. Orinta is General Manager at the Golden Coast Holiday Park and tells me drive-through check-in is much better:

“It’s brilliant! Guests receive their keys and holiday information then drive straight to their self-contained accommodation. If they have any queries the reception desk is available without queues from check-in.”

Welcome arrivals team

2. Better flexible self-catering

Another enhancement is getting food and drink delivered right to your front door. It brings a new meaning to the words “breakfast in bed”. This is why Lauren, the General Manager of Woolacombe Bay Holiday Park affirms it’s a change for the better:

“Guests can stay inside their own self-catering holiday accommodation ordering on the app. No need to cook or buy ingredients. Socially distanced food delivery is available all day straight to the front door. This includes early morning breakfast deliveries. You could literally enjoy it in bed, and lunch and dinner up until 10pm. Many meals available to order and no minimum spend. Guests could also order drinks to their accommodation including various alcohol options.”

food delivery Woolacombe Bay

3. Better way planning your day

Also here to stay for the better is swimming pool entry. Something our guests last year would have already experienced last year with resounding success. You can quickly book a time that suits you to take a dip, no more tokens and no more turnstiles! Debbie is General Manager at Twitchen House Holiday Park loved this and told us guests do too:

“Our guests quickly adapted to the new system. They told us how good it was to be able to book the pool knowing they could then plan the day. The guests no longer had to attend reception for their pool tokens saving time and any inconvenience.”

Outdoor pool at Woolacombe Bay

Easewell Farm Holiday Park is much more about camping and touring holidays. Predominantly our campsite experience it was already perfect for enjoying the great outdoors with plenty of space. It doesn’t mean we couldn’t make it better. More guests come to camp so we moved reception to the main road. As a result you don’t need to go far to check-in. First a temporary structure and now a brand new building for 2021. We’ve already renovated many of the pitches and most roads have been resurfaced with fresh tarmac giving you better access.

4. More control of your holiday

The improvements don’t just end there. Customers who book direct with Woolacombe Bay Holiday Parks can now manage their booking online in the same way as could previously only happen by phone. Over the winter we totally rebuilt the My Account self-service portal, expanding it to meet your demand for even more control over bookings. I asked Kevin the group’s Sales & Marketing Director why we did this:

“Our teams did brilliantly handling the thousands of bookings that had to be amended or cancelled last year. And mostly because we weren’t allowed to open but also where a customer’s plans changed. It’s often reported in the media that the switch to online retail has accelerated by about five years in the pandemic. That’s no different for holiday booking with more than 9-in-10 families now booking their holiday on our website. Many are very happy to use self-service solutions rather than waiting on the phone. Both options are still there. But now we’re able to make all online booking amendments free – giving real flexibility is a sign of what a great holiday company now is. Control is the number one thing people want and number one thing that gives them confidence.”

5. Better if plans have to change

He elaborates how it has already paid huge dividends for our guests already this year:

“In the past we’d have struggled to handle sudden significant changes when announced by the Government usually at very short notice, things were very different this time. Over half of guests who were affected by the postponed opening on 12th April were able to reschedule their holiday instantly, and the vast majority did this within the first 24 hours. If we were doing that over the phone it would have taken a team member four weeks to get to everyone so availability may have gone by the time we did. Many more guests could also replan their break with certainty reassured by how easy it was in case their plans have to change again.”

We’re adding more features for you all the time. Your one place to book pool times, sports activity sessions and outdoor nature activities plus tables in bars and restaurants as well as nightly entertainment. You’re sent an email when activities are available to book for your holiday, so you can easily plan your day.

Good times are coming!

2021 is going to be the year of UK holidays and catching up with your family, friends and pubs. Here’s to all the positive things to come this year. Now we’re looking forward to welcoming guests from 12th April. Until then stay safe and we’ll be seeing you soon!

Posted in Our Parks
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Your Holiday Pictures

After waiting for a proper holiday this year, we are delighted that so many of you have chosen a staycation with us here in Woolacombe. We’ve been inundated with amazing holiday pictures and messages, it’s an absolute pleasure to see each one of you enjoying a well-earned holiday.

We’ve added some of our favourite holiday pictures in a showcase for all our guests to enjoy. Please do keep sending us your holiday pictures and videos, follow our Instagram or Facebook pages and share with us across social media too.

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Posted in Beaches, Our Parks, Relaxation, Things To Do With The Kids
Woolacombe Beach

Holiday Tips

Your well needed holiday is fast approaching, and you’re bound to have a few questions for us. We’ve put together a few of the things we’re asked most about, holiday tips and tricks and those all-important holiday essentials.

We’re here to make your holiday as special as we possibly can, if you can’t find your answer here then please check our Frequently Asked Questions.

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Posted in Beaches, Our Parks, Places to Visit, Relaxation, Things To Do With The Kids
Beach campsite

Campsite Checklist

You’ve booked a campsite. You’ve researched your trip away, reviewed the area and planned your activities, as well as days out and about. You’ve arrived with smiles galore, only to discover you’ve got nothing but wonky tent pegs, mouldy sleeping bags and nothing to open the beans with…

Whether you’re touring with an awning, camping or glamping, or even caravanning around – we’ll ensure you are well prepared and have everything you need.

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Posted in Our Parks
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Wet in Woolacombe

What to do when it’s wet in Woolacombe

When it’s wet in Woolacombe you still have so much to do. We all love blue skies and sunny days, running to the beach and jumping in the waves. Sometimes the clouds do appear though, this is England after all, but don’t let that ruin your plans. Woolacombe won’t stay wet for long anyway!

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Posted in Our Parks, Places to Visit, Things To Do With The Kids